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HomeDirt BikeFinest Motocross Bike 2nd Place—2022 KTM 450 SX-F

Finest Motocross Bike 2nd Place—2022 KTM 450 SX-F


Whereas looking out by the Filth Rider archives from the previous 15 years, we have been reminded that the KTM 450 SX-F has obtained mechanical modifications yearly since at the least 2007. That’s a very long time for one mannequin to get such constant updates. For 2022, the Austrian producer took a well-deserved break and left the 450 SX-F alone, at the least mechanically. Beauty modifications within the type of an orange body, blue seat cowl, white rear fender, and new graphics make the 2022 mannequin look significantly better than the 2021.

Associated: 2022 KTM Motocross and Cross-Nation Bikes First Look

“The KTM is close to the top for me; it’s just a little tricky to set up. I would like a little more comfort in the chassis, similar to the Kawasaki KX450 and Yamaha YZ450F.” —<i>Allan Brown</i>

“The KTM is near the highest for me; it’s just a bit difficult to arrange. I would really like slightly extra consolation within the chassis, just like the Kawasaki KX450 and Yamaha YZ450F.” —<i>Allan Brown</i> (Jeff Allen/)

How did the 450 SX-F leap up from a 3rd place end from final yr’s 450 Motocross Shootout with none performance-focused revisions? One other bike went backward barely in our eyes this yr, which allowed the orange machine to enhance its rating. Similar to in 2021, KTM’s flagship motocrosser has rather a lot going for it; it’s among the finest, most well-rounded 450 motocross bikes in the marketplace.

An orange frame, blue seat cover, white rear fender, and new graphics were the changes made to the KTM 450 SX-F for 2022.

An orange body, blue seat cowl, white rear fender, and new graphics have been the modifications made to the KTM 450 SX-F for 2022. (Jeff Allen/)

2022 KTM 450 SX-F Engine

The 450 SX-F shined on our in-house dyno. With a Dunlop D404 road tire on its rear wheel, KTM’s flagship motocrosser churned out 55.0 hp at 9,400 rpm and 34.3 pound-feet of torque at 7,500 rpm—essentially the most peak horsepower and torque of the bikes on this comparability.

At 235 pounds wet, the 450 SX-F ties the Husqvarna FC 450 for second-lightest in the class. It’s just 1 pound heavier than its other Austrian relative, the GasGas MC 450F.

At 235 kilos moist, the 450 SX-F ties the Husqvarna FC 450 for second-lightest within the class. It’s simply 1 pound heavier than its different Austrian relative, the GasGas MC 450F. (Jeff Allen/)

On the observe, the 450 SX-F affords the longest energy supply and pulls seemingly endlessly in every gear. It’s additionally impressively robust and torquey. These traits make the KTM engine one of the vital versatile within the class. It may be short-shifted and lugged or revved to the moon successfully, making it appropriate for riders of various ability ranges and driving kinds. It’s essentially the most vigorous Austrian bike within the take a look at with the strongest acceleration and torque really feel. One other wonderful function is its Brembo hydraulic clutch.

The KTM makes the most peak horsepower and torque of all the motorcycles in this comparison with 55.0 hp and 34.3 pound-feet of torque.

The KTM makes essentially the most peak horsepower and torque of all of the bikes on this comparability with 55.0 hp and 34.3 pound-feet of torque. (Robert Martin Jr./)

Downsides of the powerplant are that it’s not as free-revving because the Japanese bikes, neither is its throttle response as crisp or snappy. It additionally vibrates greater than the Honda CRF450R, Kawasaki KX450, and Yamaha YZ450F. Regardless of these few unfavorable qualities, the KTM engine remains to be among the finest within the class.

“The 450 SX-F has the best power delivery! It’s smooth yet powerful; I never felt like I needed more from it. The engine works great when ridden aggressively or easily; you can rev or lug it, and it will work good either way!” —<i>Cody Johnston</i>

“The 450 SX-F has the very best energy supply! It’s clean but highly effective; I by no means felt like I wanted extra from it. The engine works nice when ridden aggressively or simply; you’ll be able to rev or lug it, and it’ll work good both method!” —<i>Cody Johnston</i> (Jeff Allen/)

2022 KTM 450 SX-F Suspension

In accordance with KTM’s “Able to Race” motto, the 450 SX-F has essentially the most performance-oriented suspension setup of the Austrian bikes. Its setting is firmer than the GasGas MC 450F, Husqvarna FC 450, and KX450, however not as stiff because the YZ450F’s. Consolation is healthier than the CRF450R, however the WP parts are nonetheless not as plush because the KX450 and YZ450F’s respective suspensions.

“Under acceleration, the WP Xact shock works well. I struggle with it underbraking, though. I can stiffen the fork to reduce pitching, but then I can’t get the bike settled or the weight to transfer to the front wheel for traction.” —<i>Allan Brown</i>

“Below acceleration, the WP Xact shock works properly. I battle with it underbraking, although. I can stiffen the fork to cut back pitching, however then I can’t get the bike settled or the burden to switch to the entrance wheel for traction.” —<i>Allan Brown</i> (Jeff Allen/)

The WP Xact air fork’s bottoming resistance is unreal, whereas the WP Xact shock wanted extra holdup for riders over 170 kilos, as demonstrated by tire marks on the underside of the rear fender. This was largely alleviated by going stiffer on the shock’s high-speed compression adjuster. Other than that, inventory settings are within the ballpark for many riders. Testers additionally praised the WP models’ potential to soak up small chop with a reasonably supple really feel whereas holding up over massive hits.

2022 KTM 450 SX-F Chassis/Dealing with

An outstanding, neutral-handling chassis is among the fundamental components that makes the KTM a lot enjoyable to trip. The 450 SX-F and its Austrian siblings are second-quickest to steer behind the CRF450R; though Massive Crimson leans very far within the course of quick-handling manners and lacks stability. The KTM, alternatively, is secure and predictable at velocity. Its balanced dealing with traits are complemented by its 235-pound measured moist weight. As one of many lightest bikes within the class, the 450 SX-F is playful and intensely simple to place the place you need.

“The KTM cornered extremely well; I could cut down from ruts and berms whenever I wanted. It gave me the most confidence out of all of the bikes!” —<i>Cody Johnston</i>

“The KTM cornered extraordinarily properly; I might minimize down from ruts and berms every time I wished. It gave me essentially the most confidence out of the entire bikes!” —<i>Cody Johnston</i> (Jeff Allen/)

Agreeable ergonomics additional sweeten the deal, together with slim bodywork from entrance to rear, a roomy cockpit, well-proportioned rider triangle, and a cushty seat. To not point out its Brembo brakes, that are strongest within the class and a shared part with the FC 450 and MC 450F. One minor criticism we have now is the stiff and broad Neken handlebar, which is fortunately a comparatively cheap and straightforward merchandise to exchange.

Associated: 2022 KTM 450 SX-F Evaluate

“I really enjoy how well the 450 SX-F maintains traction through slicker sections. It’s a perfect balance of being solid and stable while keeping a loose, nimble feel.” —<i>Michael Wicker</i>

“I actually get pleasure from how properly the 450 SX-F maintains traction by slicker sections. It’s an ideal steadiness of being stable and secure whereas maintaining a free, nimble really feel.” —<i>Michael Wicker</i> (Jeff Allen/)

Why the 2022 KTM 450 SX-F Ought to Have Received

It makes essentially the most peak horsepower and torque, has a robust but very rideable engine bundle, a neutral-handling chassis, the strongest brakes, an superior hydraulic clutch, and is among the lightest bikes within the class. The KTM’s options and functionality off the showroom ground are laborious to beat.

“The KTM offers lots of adjustments between the airbox covers, throttle cams, two ECU map selections, traction control, and air fork pressure to suit a wide range of riders. Easy-to-adjust levers and no tools required to adjust fork compression and rebound are nice features too.” —<i>Casey Casper</i>

“The KTM affords a number of changes between the airbox covers, throttle cams, two ECU map alternatives, traction management, and air fork stress to go well with a variety of riders. Straightforward-to-adjust levers and no instruments required to regulate fork compression and rebound are good options too.” —<i>Casey Casper</i> (Jeff Allen/)

Why the 2022 KTM 450 SX-F Didn’t Win

Consolation from the suspension and chassis aren’t as much as the usual set by the opposite podium finishers. Additionally, the engine character isn’t as free-feeling or quick-revving because the Japanese competitors.

Gearbox

Helmet: Fox Racing V3 RS

Goggle: Fox Racing Vue

Jersey: Fox Racing Airline

Gloves: Fox Racing Airline

Knee Braces: Alpinestars Bionic-7

Pants: Fox Racing Airline

Boots: Fox Racing Intuition

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