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After 12 months with the 2023 Sherco 300 SE Factory it is finally time to say goodbye. Here's what ADB Ed Mitch Lees thought after a year.

The hard enduro scene has exploded in the last 10 years and I’m not ashamed to admit, I’ve jumped onboard with a 2023 Sherco 300 SE Factory. Like a groupie with a thirst for action, I sampled hard enduro many years ago and have been hooked ever since. My journey to becoming a hard-enduro-wannabe was somewhat challenging as up until I decided to like throwing a brand new dirtbike down rock-strewn cliffs, I actually didn’t really like two-strokes.

Most of my riding was fast flowing singletrack and the best bike for that stuff is a mid-capacity four-stroke. But when I tried to ride one of those in the real hard stuff it was too hard so I decided to make the switch to two-stroke and I’m glad I did. I’ve had all different brands of two-stroke since from Beta to KTM and GASGAS and for most of 2023 I was Sherco mounted on the 2023 300 SE Factory.

I decided on the 2023 Sherco 300 SE Factory because it was one of the last carby-fed two-strokes on the market and I liked the idea of KYB suspension. The other components are very similar to the other brands but they were the things that stood out. I liked the way the carburettor in the 2023 Sherco 300 SE Factory made power in our 300cc two-stroke shootout back in issue #519. After that quick date I just knew I had to have one.


The Sherco 300 SE Factory makes the most unique sound and power of all the 300cc two-strokes on the market. It has an old school, throaty grunt to the note, like the noise you make when imitating a two-stroke with your voice and the power comes on so early and with so much torque. You hardly need to apply any revs if you slowly release the clutch to get moving. In fact, after a year with the bike I worked out there were some steep hills I didn’t even need to use the throttle at all! I could climb them with just the low-end idle with the clutch.

And after 12-months of this kind of pressure on the clutch, I didn’t get any fade. The clutch remained as accurate on day 365 as it did on day one. It didn’t slip or get grabby once, even when I was cooking myself and the bike in the bottom of some very slippery gullies. I loved how lightweight and smooth the clutch felt for the entire duration and despite many crashes, even the clutch lever stayed in one piece.

The Sherco 300 SE Factory produces so much torque, more than any other 300cc two-stroke on the market. This makes it the perfect bike to grovel on. I didn’t bother bolting up an exhaust or messing with the carb or engine because I found it produced the perfect power without needing to tinker. Over the course of 12 months I did notice the power change when I badly dinged my pipe.

I was curious to see if the ding was just a placebo effect or if it caused a legitimate drop in power so I stuck it on the dyno of ADB’s Tech Editor Mat Boyd. We ran the bike with the dent in the pipe then took the pipe off, blew the dent out, bolted it back on and ran it again. The difference was almost an entire horsepower and right in the meat of the power where I ride (we ran a feature with dyno results in issue #534)! So my lesson was learnt, If it was holding onto the Sherco 300 SE Factory for another 12 months, I’d definitely fit a pipe guard.

To make the bottom-end grunt even more torquey I also fitted a larger rear sprocket which I purchased from the Sherco Accessories store. I opted for a 51-tooth in anodised blue. The sprocket size was bang on and improved the torque even more meaning I could carry second gear where I was carrying first. The only downside was after 12 months of abuse the anodising had pretty much all rubbed off back to the bare metal. The sprocket was tough as hell and didn’t lose any teeth or show any major signs of wear but it did lose its gorgeous blue colour.

After 12 months of crawling around my local riding area the motor on the Sherco was bullet proof. I changed the filter oil every three rides (there’s not much dust when you’re crawling) and the filter itself only twice in a year. I did two gearbox oil changes and made sure I lubed the chain, sprockets and other moving parts on the outside of the engine every time I used it. With that kind of maintenance nothing broke and the engine still felt incredibly fresh.


The only thing that I had to keep an eye on while living with the Sherco for a year was the air in the fork. I found the KYB fork built air pressure more than most other forks I’ve ridden with so I had to keep bleeding the fork after almost every ride otherwise it would become a little harsh. It’s easily done via the bleed valve on the top of the fork cap but it was just something else to thing about before taking off from the car every time.

The rest of the suspension was flawless. The fork seals never leaked and the shock never gave out. Despite dropping the Sherco over 100 times on sandstone rocks I never scuffed or scarred the outer fork tubes or any other suspension component.


The only real gripe I had with the Sherco was changing the air filer. The filter lives under the seat and while the tool-less fastener that holds the seat on is quick and easy to use, getting the filter out past the frame rails was a nightmare. The worst part was, getting it back in usually resulted in getting the filter dirty again if I hadn’t properly cleaned the airbox. I’d like to see Sherco employ a new method for filter changes.

I had no other issues with the Sherco. It started first time every time and when I gave up the bike with a little over 40 hours on it the brake pads were still standard and the chain was too!


When most people see a hard enduro bike while looking for something to buy, they run the other way. All the scratches and chewed out plastics make it look well-worn but in my case, this was not true. Because I wasn’t pinning it up and down fire roads, pushing it through mud or racing it into corners, the engine was still like new (it never did any hard work), the brakes were hardly used (I wasn’t going into corners in third gear hard on the brakes) and the suspension wasn’t flying up and down at a million miles an hour.

My only concern was how long the clutch would last and thanks to the incredible torque, it too was like new!


Dunlop AT81EX on rear

Dunlop MX52 on front

Nitro Plushie Mousse in rear

Nitro Platinum Mousse in front

Sherco 51-tooth sprocket

Sherco Grab Handles

MoniMoto security system



$15,499 + ORC


Six months


Mojo Motorcycles



49 hours