MotoOnline.com.au rides and reviews the 2015 Husqvarna FE 350.
When it comes to choosing an enduro bike there’s quite an extended list of qualities you’ll be looking for before you make a purchase. High-speed performance, agility through tight sections, reliability, weight, power and much more all come into play.
With that in mind, the 2015 Husqvarna FE 350 puts itself at the pointy end within the list of applicants designed to fill those requirements.
For 2015 Husqvarna chose to massage and refine their previous 350cc four-stroke enduro offering. To start with, the FE 350 received an updated graphics package which differentiates slightly from the motocross models. The new and improved seat, which features a harder and more durable cover, has also been added to suit the fresh MY15 look.
The FE 350, along with the complete MY15 enduro range, now features the same front fender as the motocross models for easier mounting. Paired with the updated fender is a new headlight and mask for a clean and distinctive look. New CNC triple clamps have also been fitted to suit the updated fender design.
Updates in the cockpit of the FE 350 include an all-new speedometer cover that has been created to hide all warning lights except your highbeam – a great addition to ensure you’re not distracted while out on the trails. Updated handguards with improved impact resistance are also featured to keep your hands protected from those sneaky trees.
Much the same as their MY15 motocross models, the 2015 FE 350 ergos are a real standout on the bike. Seamless bodywork, a flat seating area and a comfortable bend of handlebar all come together perfectly to create a bike that you will feel comfortable on within minutes.
Chassis-wise, Husqvarna have applied quite a few of the same updates to both the motocross and enduro models. The 2015 FE 350 features the WP 4CS (four chamber system) fork that was created to unite the performance of closed cartridge forks with the simplicity of an open cartridge fork. In short, these forks are great.
The FE 350 4CS fork is noticeably softer than the motocross models, which is to be expected on an enduro bike. The fork is super plush to smash through the choppy tree roots and rocky sections, yet ensures plenty of bottoming resistance for those harder hits. The clicker adjusters, which require no tools whatsoever, located at the top of each fork leg are also ideal for mid-trail adjustments.
The rear-end of the FE 350 features a linkage suspension system which has been paired with a DCC (Dual Compression Control) shock from WP. Both the front and rear end on the FE 350 were on point – such a strong and consistent set up throughout quite a variation of terrain.
In the engine department, Husqvarna have used industry leader Pankl to produce a crankshaft and con rod to ensure durability and long service intervals. Husqvarna quotes 135 hours before you will be up for a con rod, con rod bearing and crank pin change.
To keep the FE 350 light and nimble Husqvarna have gone to great lengths. The pressure die cast crankcases feature thin walls thanks to advanced production processes. These walls maintain tensile strength and resistance to chipping, as well as having a higher quality surface finish compared to other casting methods.
The 349.7cc four-stroke DOHC engine features a Keihin electronic fuel injection system with a 42mm throttle body for accurate throttle response and silky smooth engine performance, ideal for enduro riding. Optional Husky Power accessories also allow riders to select maps via an optional switch and download engine data with to your computer via a setting tool.
The engine package is really the standout feature on the FE 350, it’s such a user friendly and smooth ride. The 350 provides enough punch to blast through or over any obstacle you may find, but at the same time it’s not yanking your arms off and tiring you out prematurely.
This is not to say that all of the 2015 FE four-stroke models are quite mellow and user-friendly, because they really are. But the 350 just comes in at that perfect mark, not too much, not too little – just right. Whether you’re a weekend warrior or a competitive rider, the FE 350 is going to suit you perfectly either way.
The innovative DDS (damped diaphragm steel) clutch system is featured on all the Enduro models except the TE 125. This system allows for smooth action and easy control of the clutch. A single diaphragm steel spring instead of coil springs is used and it integrates a damping system for better traction and durability.
The one-piece CNC machined steel clutch basket on the FE 350 has been redesigned for MY15, making it lighter. Paired with the Brembo hydraulic system, perfect clutch modulation and minimal lever force allow for consistent feel, reduced fatigue, and strong performance throughout those long rides.
The ability to improve clutch function and reduce fatigue is a huge advantage for every rider out there. Usually one to be quite critical of hydraulic clutch systems for lack of feel, the DDS and Brembo combination ticked all the boxes and was actually very impressive.
Speaking of the FE 350 engine package, we can’t overlook the electric start system which is featured on the entire enduro range except for the TE 125 two-stroke. It’s a reliable feature that just makes life easy in the bush, and if you’re not a fan of the electric start, you still have the option to retro-fit a kickstart system.
Overall, if you’re heading out to find yourself an enduro model that provides ample power, a nimble feel and great ergos, the 2015 Husqvarna FE 350 is the bike for you. Be sure to head over to your local deal and check one out.
Click here for a complete overview of the each and every model in the 2015 Husqvarna motocross range direct from the world media launch held in Lulea, Sweden.
Click here for detailed specifications