First Look: 2019 Kawasaki KX450
A year ago, the 2018 KX450F only got modest refinements, but for 2019, Kawasaki’s premier-class motocross weapon has copped a heap of updates. Now referred to simply as the “KX450” – that is, without the “F” – the 2019 machine gets an overhauled engine, and significant updates to chassis, suspension, and bodywork. And for the first time ever, it’s fitted with a hydraulic clutch and an electric starter.
Here’s are the mods that Kawasaki detailed when they recently unveiled their 2019 KX450…
The Kawasaki KX range has always been built with one goal in mind: to put riders on the top step of the podium. The 2019 KX450 benefits from a new engine mounted in our leanest 450cc chassis to date, making it the most powerful machine in the paddock. A number of new features are firsts for a Kawasaki motocross model and further elevate the race-winning potential of the KX450, including finger-follower valve actuation, electric start, and a hydraulic clutch.
- Factory-inspired 449cc single cylinder DOHC four-stroke engine with larger-diameter valves and more aggressive cams – generates an increase of 4PS (2.5kW) in peak power compared with the previous model, and a flatter torque curve.
- Electric Start with lightweight Lithium-ion battery – makes starting the engine as easy as pushing a button. Net weight gain is 1.3kg over its predecessor.
- Aluminium perimeter frame gets revised rigidity balance – for better feel and traction.
- Revised swingarm and rising-rate linkage ratios – for improved rear wheel traction.
- Hydraulic clutch – offers a more direct feel and lighter lever action.
- 49mm coil-spring Showa fork comes with Kashima Coating and a larger diameter axle (22mm) – delivers smooth action, firm damping and improved front wheel traction.
- Finger-follower valve actuation – brings Kawasaki’s previous MotoGP and World SBK racing technology to the KX450.
- Larger (250mm) rear brake disc – for better braking power.
- All-new slimmer and more streamlined bodywork (aside from the front fender and number plate) and a lower, flatter seat and fuel tank – for improved rider ergonomics and movement around the bike.
- Adjustable handlebar and footpeg, with the 2019 pegs 5mm wider and positioned 3mm rearward – enables the KX450 to better adapt to the rider, and lowers centre of gravity.
- Kawasaki launch control mode and three engine map plugs (DFI couplers) – all come standard.
Kawasaki Australia anticipates the 2019 KX450 will be released in Australia in late July, 2018. Its RRP is yet to be announced.