It’s not like Planet 125 is all that big. It’s more like a tiny moon or asteroid, lost in
the vastness of the dirt bike universe. There
are only three serious players: KTM, Yamaha
and Husqvarna. And of those three, the
Husqvarna CR125 is the one least likely to
cross earth’s orbit. But that’s a shame for a
number of reasons. For one thing, the CR125
is considered by many to be the best bike
that Husky makes. For another, it’s one of
the best values on the market.
Preparing a Husqvarna for two-stroke warfare
HUSKY CR125 SCREAMER
These days, the identity of the 125
two-stroke is somewhat blurred with
the 144. For racing purposes, most of
the 125s on the start line actually
have a displacement of 144cc, either
by original design or by modification.
KTM sells both sizes, while Yamaha
lets you do whatever you want in the
aftermarket. What makes the Husky
such a good deal is the way it’s sold.
When you take a CR125 home, it’s a
relatively normal 125, with a bore of
54mm and a stroke of 54.5mm. But,
you walk out of the dealership with a
box that has all the parts to transform
the bike into a 144. And, the price is
only $6299. Wow.
Going in, we already love the Husky
125/144. But we know it can be better. That’s why we gave our 2013 test
bike a work-over and made it into a
bike that can go head to head with its
In stock form, the CR125 is a far
better bike than most people realize.
The motor was designed a long time
ago, but so was Yamaha’s. In the time
since then, the Husky has continu-
ously evolved. Today, the Husky has a
super-compact motor in a steel
frame, with a combination of a KYB
fork and a Sachs shock. The brakes
are Brembos, the reed is a V-Force 3
and the carb is a good old-fashioned
Mikuni 38mm TMX. You don’t get fuel
injection, electric start or a hydraulic
clutch, but the good news is that you
don’t need any of those things on this
particular bike. They would add
weight and price without giving any
performance gain. The bike starts
easily, the carburetor works perfectly
and the clutch has a super-light pull.
In terms of sheer power, a stock
Husky 125 comes in third place
among the three. The KTM 125 is a
rocket, but the Husky can at least
give the Yamaha a good, tough run.
The YZ125 has a longer powerband,
starting earlier and ending higher,
although in the meat of its working
zone, the Husky is very Yamaha-like.
Where the Yamaha really stands out
is in the suspension department. A