Markham, ON 2021, every part of the CRF450R is new save for the wheels and engine, with the comprehensive update benefiting directly from knowhow gained through HRC development and the bikes championship-winning history. The new frame and swing arm, plus changes to geometry and suspension, save weight and greatly improve cornering performance. The engine receives intake/exhaust upgrades, new decompression system plus single exhaust muffler to boost and smoothen low-mid-range driveability. A larger hydraulic clutch offers greater control with lighter lever pressure. More compact plastics and a smaller seat unit increase freedom of movement.
The Honda CRF450R has been the benchmark moto crosser since its introduction in 2002. The package it offers has become a byword for balance and agility, and as such has consistently offered its rider – whether an amateur enthusiast or pro-racer – total control and the chance to get the very best from their ability. Plus, of course, it’s built with the quality, durability and reliability that Honda has long been famed for.
It’s a machine that has constantly evolved, with every upgrade – large or small – drawing on lessons fed back from Honda’s racing programmes around the world.
For 21YM the CRF450R receives a wide array of improvements and upgrades under a development theme of ‘Razor-sharp Cornering’. Firstly, it is 1.5 kg (3.4 lb) lighter, thanks to a revised frame and subframe. The new frame and swing arm’s rigidity balance, combined with tighter chassis geometry, heightened ground clearance and suspension changes, are all targeted at creating optimal cornering performance and allowing enthusiasts of all ability levels to consistently post optimal lap times.
The engine also benefits from HRC’s knowhow to give a strong focus on low- to mid-range torque. The decompressor has been relocated, air box volume is up, and throttle body redesigned, and exhaust ports re-shaped. The exhaust downpipe is new and a single muffler replaces dual mufflers. The seat is also shorter and lighter
A larger-volume hydraulic clutch has an even lighter lever action, while other weight-saving details include a smaller fuel pump and optimised magnesium cylinder head cover. New plastics, too, are lighter and slimmer to aid rider freedom and the seat is a smaller unit, lower at the back. A smart new graphic scheme completes this major update.