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2016 KTM 450sx review

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Sold my beloved 06 crf450r for this bike. I rode a friends 16 KTM and loved it. I also rode a 15 Honda and Yamaha. I wasn't impressed enough with them to sell my old Honda.

Broke it in Friday, raced Saturday and practiced Sunday. Put 5.2 hours on it, all track. Felt comfortable on it immediately. Cornering this bike is amazing. It carves in all conditions. Brakes and clutch are awesome. I prefer the aggressive map. The power is easy to use, soft when you want and meaty when you twist it. I only stalled it once on the track and it restarted immediately in gear. I really like the motor. I'm happy with the suspension. Way better than anything I've ever had. It is actually better with more compression dampening for some reason. Love the lightness in the air. Scrubbing is easier. Corrections from bad takeoffs are easier. I landed crossed up a few times and it just straightens out. The rear shock saved me a few times. I feel more in control of this bike. The holeshot assist is cool. When I practiced with it, I was sure I'd get the holeshot at the race. But I didn't. I'm pretty sure its my fault. My reaction was delayed, but once I left the line I wheelied all the way to the first turn. It was fun, but I was fifth to the turn. Won the 30+ class anyway. Love the electric start. It is cold blooded. Takes 4 or 5 five second cranks to get it going in the morning. Maybe I'll figure out a better starting technic. That's the only thing I don't like. No buyers remorse here. The bike is awesome.

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I have been having better luck starting the 450 sxf when cold. I'll tap the starter and hear the pump run, put on my helmet, tap it again, put on my goggles and then crank it, usually starts right up. It must need to pressurize the line. Battery also gets stronger. Starts immediately first try the rest of the day. I'm loving this bike. 10 hours now. No problems. No melted side plate like some of the earlier ones. No broken shifter or peg springs like I've heard of. No significant metal or anything in the screens or filter. It's fast. I've had a couple near "whisky" throttle moments. Rutted corners are no problem. Flat slick corners are fun too. Any corner is your friend.

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Great review. I'm considering one (slow old vet MX rider)

After riding 250/350/450 I think I'd be fastest around an MX track on the 350, but I'm thinking of doing a few Sumo races on it. (Pretty big time and money conversion, I know, but I'm still considering it. Long story re my reasoning...) so the 450 is first choice at this stage.

Can it be tuned/re mapped like the Yamaha?

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It can be done, but I don't know anything about it. The bike runs so good, I'm not messing with it. I did just get the recall on front spokes. I have over jumped some really big jumps and never had a problem, but apparently there have been some spoke breakage issues. The dealer knocked it right out for me.

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It comes with a map switch 2 (3?) maps. More / less aggressive I believe.

They certainly are a great bike. I enjoyed all three sizes, but didn't rev the 250 enough to get the benefit of that engines top end.

I think they are all a little heavier than my 08 YZ250F. (Great, but aging tech.)

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They must be real close to your 08 ?with the aer fork they would be as light and have tons more power than your 08

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Great review. I'm considering one (slow old vet MX rider)

After riding 250/350/450 I think I'd be fastest around an MX track on the 350, but I'm thinking of doing a few Sumo races on it. (Pretty big time and money conversion, I know, but I'm still considering it. Long story re my reasoning...) so the 450 is first choice at this stage.

Can it be tuned/re mapped like the Yamaha?

How is the vibration of the 350 vs the 450?

I'm on a 250F now and the vibes are no problem, but my previous bike was an 07 YZ450 that would numb my hands. I miss the 450 torque, but love the 250 vibe level. Wondering if the 350 would be a good compromise.

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No vibration issues on the 16 450. It feels like a 250 with all of the power you could ever want.

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No vibration issues on the 16 450. It feels like a 250 with all of the power you could ever want.

Likewise, I noticed no vib issue with any of them.

As stated, I loved the 350. To me it was a super powerful 250, without the hit of the 450. Need more? Rev it more.

Because I want to do a few Sumo meetings on it. I'm leaning towards the 450. Maybe try the "mellow" map, or just pretend I'm not as old and slow as history would suggest.

My current Sumo is an ancient 525. It's 54hp at the rear wheel, and I'd think a bit heavier than a '16 450. (And probably about to cry "enough"..)

I believe, with a pipe, the new 450 is close to 60 RWHP (enough to scare the crap out of me on an MX track, but useful on tar.)

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Update: bike has been problem free. Used it only for MX racing. Put 35 hours on it. Have been riding off road on an 09 450xcw. Decided to try the sxf on our local singletrac. Just turned the clickers softer, went to the soft map and this bike is really fun in the woods. I'm amazed at how well it does. We do ride really fast though. Unless I'm hitting pavement, the sxf is going to be my choice. Super happy with this bike.

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