ENGINE; this bike has a short powerband but personally i believe its the way to go esspecially trail riding i go much quicker with the short punchy powerband than i did on a rmz450 with heaps of overrev you dont want a bike that revs to the moon to make power when woods riding.. also a lower reving bike will save your valves and thats a fact and the power it does make is very powerfull more than what i expected any gear crack the throttle and it goes super smooth and torquey your not looking for gears all the time...when i was much younger i allways used to look for hi revin peaky powerbands and thought they were the way to go, until i wised up and discovered the benifits of a short punchy powerband you seriously will ride much faster this way when you learn to use it properly.
AIRBOX SOUND; this has got to be the best sounding thing on this bike i absolutely love it it sounds like a vtwin ducati or something along those lines its not off putting at all super tuff sound.
SUSPENSION;kayaba sss super smooth absorbs everything very very happy i just leave the factory settings(6ft 180lbs iam)
HANDLING;the centralized engine makes the bike feel like a 250 stroke very light but it doesnt turn real easy other than that its good (i will tell you at the bottom of the page what i did to make it turn from okay to razor sharp) and no it doesnt wiggle in turn!
REALIABILITY; this bike runs very cool no where near as hot as other 450s you can feel it; very quiet engine and starts easy some say its hard to start but i dont think so its the same as other new 450s we have them in our group there all the same with starting 2 to 3 kicks and your off how is that hard to start....air filter stays very clean i was amazed after the dust bowl weekend i didnt even have to wash it,with the engine not being a hi revin engine i can see huge benifits there also.
GEARBOX; absolutely perfect i cannot fault it some say its hard to find neutral but again completely false
CLUTCH; very light feels like a hydraulic and dosnt really fall out of adjustment but it will fade if you do hard enduro long hard hill climbs to fix it all you need to do is replace the plates with steel ones the fibres are top quality as to are the springs just change the plates to steel and it will go for ages.
MAINTENENCE: very easy i have read on many reviews that the airfilter removal was really hard and bad design thats absolute crap i love where it is and its not hard at all. oil and filter changes are a breeze.
APPERANCE; this bike looks really modern in the raw and ahead if its time many friends when they first seen it just stared and stared.the plastics do look ordinary after a few rides or spills but what plastics dont.
GEARING; here in australia our 450s come with 13 49 and thats fine i wouldnt change a thing we do tight woods and open country and that gearing works really good.i understand your US bikes come with 13 48 thats not much difference if trail riding.
EFI MAPPING; just leave it stock i have fooled around with it and its a waste of time,,you lean it out it gives more snap,,you richen it up it mellows it...i dont see the point stock is the best setting with RS4 YOSHIMURA slip on dont change the header pipe theres nothing wrong with it. (if you need to take the bottom hit out of it to ride yor mx track then maybe this bike isnt for you.. just leave it and learn to ride it.
QUALITY; there is just awsome engineering when you get to know the bike from the welds to the great engine mounting system bolts dont bur off like some others everything matches 5stars here.(dunlop tyres it comes with are very ordinary change them).
heres what i did to make it turn razor sharp
1. repace front tyre with bridgestone m403
2. replace rear 120 80 with a 110 90 i use maxxis i t but its up to you
3.move forks up 5mm
4.set handlebars in the rear position and replace with higher ones i went pro taper windham rm mid 95mm
its as easy as that you dont need to waste your money on offset triple clamps or some radiator lowering kits
just do what i did the difference was huge and the bike handles amazing now.
ALSO if you plan on putting a pipe on it i would personally go with the akrapovic its not as fat and suits the bike much more the rs4 in the raw on the bike looks to fat and big on there website it looks short but they have lengthen it and its to long now they dont show it on the website also the rs4 stainless slip on is a heavy pipe.
Edited by throttle violence, February 17, 2012 - 11:44 PM.