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2010 Motocross Shootout Conclusion

Friday, January 1, 2010

2010 Honda CRF450R – 4th – 117 points
For ’10 Honda tried to infuse more balance into its CRF450R, but in the end it didn’t quite achieve the complete result. While there are certain attributes that we love about this motorcycle, including its quick steering, powerful-yet-friendly engine characteristics, awesome brakes and intuitive rider compartment, the chassis shortcomings and high-speed stability issues are too much to overlook. With some more chassis and suspension tweaks, the Honda could be the best bike. It’s got the engine, it’s got the turning, now it just needs some more balance and stability to be next year’s winner.
2010 Kawasaki KX450F – 3rd – 128 points
You’re probably thinking “how can a bike that won last year finish third a year later?” Honestly, the KX450F is an excellent motorcycle—for the right person and the right track. Although it is substantially easier to ride than in years past, it still requires more from its rider than any of the other bikes. With the right rider at the controls at an ultra high-speed track, there is nothing that will touch the KX, plain and simple. If the Kawasaki can shed some weight and become just a little less hard-edged it’ll be right back on top. 

2010 Yamaha YZ450F – 2nd – 136 points
We had high expectations for Yamaha’s retooled YZ450F coming into this shootout. Just like during our First Ride, the YZ450F blew us away with its high-end and well-sorted suspension, chassis and engine that allow the rider to ride to their full potential. The problem is that the Yamaha just missed out in the objective performance ratings. While its engine is good, it’s not the best. While it feels light in motion, at a standstill it’s a tank. If Yamaha could infuse a bit
The KTM is one of the fastest  most stable  and ultimately fun motocross bikes weve ever tested.
Meet the winner of the 2010 MotoUSA 450 Motocross Shootout: the 2010 KTM 450 SX-F.
more straight up performance this bike would win. 

2010 KTM 450 SX-F – 1st – 148 points
Never in a million years did we think that KTM’s 450 SX-F could outpace the best from Japan, especially with the heavy-hitting class of 2010. However from the minute we pushed the e-start button until we lifted it back on the stand, the KTM shocked us with its deceptively fast and quiet engine, solid handling, killer brakes and clutch response, not to mention spot-on rider controls. If you want the best motocross bike of 2010 the KTM 450 SX-F is it.

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2010 450 Motocross Shootout
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Leon -overweight  March 10, 2010 02:53 AM
the ktm has the weight savings because of the chromoley frame, it is lighter because when aluminium is used, is has less strength so more has to be used (extruded, cast and forged). It's a fact that aluminum is generally 1/2 the weight of steel but it is also 1/3 the strength. This means that you need 3 times the volume of aluminum to meet the strength of steel.

Also the ktm doesn't have the bulk of unsprung weight that is the suspension linkage of the jap bikes, but not having a progressive spring/shock set-up can be a big dis-advantage in terms of handling.

On a different note, I am wondering why the yz is having issues with hot starting/starting in gear, this would be an issue in racing for sure! Is this one of yamahas first teething problems to be brought to life?
Rusty -not your baby sitter  February 24, 2010 12:41 PM
Where is KTM - on the world podium. Yamaha had it right with there TTR line of bike - buyers want e-start. KTM just beat everyone else to the e-start punch!
Jake -Results!!  February 19, 2010 03:46 PM
Check the current SX results where are the ktm's??Not even a podium for the bike of the year---bullsh*t.
mx4ever1 -mr  February 12, 2010 11:03 AM
Heavier and better !? steal frame bulky engine no link & better ! money or retard ?
Paul -Hey Paul Dean  February 7, 2010 07:08 PM
How you feel about taking on a real rider who has rode KTM way before anyone thought they were thought a compeditor on any level. Think before you talk I agree with choose what you like but something tells me if you talk fast in a blog you ride slow. chill out there backyard warrior and get in some sactioned event.
Paul V. -And wait until next year  February 6, 2010 12:49 AM
Wait until next year when the new KTM is coming out, that one is gonna rock.
iko -KTM  February 1, 2010 04:48 PM
KTM is kicking BUTT!!! Just swallow that!
Best bike: Enduro, Street, Minis, Rally and now MOTOCROSS!!!!
Kevin -Rubbish  January 25, 2010 02:49 AM
What a load of rubbish! First of all I ride an old 2002 KTM sx 400 and love it. However, The top rider on our track put some laps in on 125 2 stroker and kicked all ass before him. Its the rider not the bike!
K. Dean -Sorry..!  January 21, 2010 08:57 PM
..The point is one bike has to be placed first, one last, the rest somewhere in between those marks. If every bike was identical in theory or on paper, than I guess you could drop 2 podium spots, or add 17, because I have never seen a 20 bike photo finish tie, or a single (only) 1 finisher on top a podium, the bike does not win the race, the rider does, for the sake of bragging rights, and bench racing, it is comforting for some to belly up and say "I have the best bike" So what, until I cant ride the bike myself, not ASIMO piloting my machine, I prefer to set up the bike to best suit my style, tastes and type of riding. To say one of these bikes is junk, the other superior is childish, un educated. Go look at the bike in your garage, and deep down honestly ask your self if it happens to be a modern age 450, "when was the last time I needed even more throttle, I dare you to tell me always. If you say you do, than I challenge you to safety wire the throttle full open, point it towards your favorite riding area and see how long you survive. We all win, we get production bikes with a massive amounts of ability, and endless opportunities to "Personalize" them to our liking even better.Just look at size of the catalogue selection at any dealer, probally several vendors to pick your poision from, and most of that stuff doesnt really re invent the wheel, it is just bolt on bling and armor, or farkles if you will. Find the best deal, the best dealer, the best bang for your buck, and go ride. Oh yeah, you probally want a louder pipe too so we can loose more riding areas, and you can actually loose more power. (it is mostly psychological) gains the newer pipes produce, not EXTRA umph, some just re-direct the delivery of the power to make it seem better, for what it is worth, stock pipes are generally not restricting your power nowadays, I love the sound of the thumper pinned, but to loose all the riding areas, not worth it, I would be thrilled to have any of these new bikes, but left over 09's at low pricing leaves me some serious jing to geat all the cool stuff to make my 3rd place bike even better I guess, But according to what I am reading, A KTM is going to win all the AMA championships this year, Sorry Ryan V & Ryan D. you loose, I guess your bikes suck, And they could not even test the suzuji, and it is currently leading the SX points series. Go figure.
Kevin Dean -BLAH blah....and so on.  January 21, 2010 08:29 PM
I am amazed at some of the items being said here, nutz. 1) Everyone has thier own tastes, likes, dis likes and so on, I would bet that not more that 2% of the people here could actually use 90% of ANY! of these bikes potential abilities how they were tested, that is bone stock. WHO even rides a bone stock bike nowadys? NO ONE! Trust me, I see more bikes on a daily basis than most people are exposed to, I work at a dealer, and have done so for quite a long time.Any one of thes is an incredible machine, power to spare (they all can overpower the rear tire too easily to get a "bite" to actually out accel. one another, it comes down to simple factors. We all want the most bang for our buck, to be not exactally like our buddies, and to have fun riding, or racing. Make your choice on what you like, it wont be abad one, and keep in mind the first place you usually go for help is the best, frienfliest, most knowledgeable dealer from your home. Buck the trend, do what you want, not what some magazine says, and try to kick your buds, a@% on his other brand of non shootout wining bike, trust me, I can usually be back in the pits or at the next trail crossing long before my friends, and my bikes are always much smaller in cc's and quite well used. ALL these bikes kick you know where, and if it makes the "bench racing" that much better for ya by buying the one that "Wins" these shootouts, come look me up, I will pullout an old air cooled, 2 stroke drum brake job from the late &0's and Guarantee i problly smoke you!
Ze -KTM MX performance  January 16, 2010 10:37 AM
KTM have been winning races and championships in the world mx championships for some years now... alessi already got 2nd place in the mx nationals in a 450 KTM i think, let's see what he and tony cairoli can do this year. and i'm sorry Brayton didn't remain in the SX KTM team.
VetMXR -2010 450F Shootout  January 10, 2010 08:39 AM
Congrats to KTM, this is the second test I've read where they came out on top in a motocross shootout. The bottom line however is that most of us would do equally as well on any one of them once they are setup for our own particulars. Dial the suspension, change the bars and tires to your liking and go race, any of them would do nicely. So for me it's about price. When you can purchase a left-over new 2009 CRF450 for $5200, it's hard to justify the extra cost of any of these new 2010's.
Malark -Haters  January 10, 2010 02:35 AM
Good review guys
dont be put off by the complaints, there will always be some idiot who is unhappy that their bike didnt win the shootout
Kevin -SX  January 7, 2010 03:04 PM
Cause were talking MX or SX lets see how many of the KTM wonders make the final starting grid for the 450 final.
mr vio -performance  January 6, 2010 11:33 AM
honda the best ktm no thanks
John -Interesting  January 5, 2010 11:29 AM
I'm glad to see that Yamaha's innovation paid off this time around! It's also interesting that KTM can put e-start on their bike and still have the second lightest bike, which is the main reason that race bikes never go with it. I'd personally rather have the extra pound and not have to worry about my bike not starting. I mean we all crash, it's just the strong that get back up and finish the race (unless your bike won't start).
Nathan -Steve284  January 4, 2010 04:59 PM
I agree with you. I enjoy reading all of these Stewart?Reed wannabes and pretenders bash a bike they have never ridden. One even has the gaul to rate them as he has tested them himself. LOL! The ignorance regarding what wins a SC race is pretty funny as well. Just because a bike doesn't win a race doesn't mean it isn't the best out there, only that its rider is inferior. Finally, the notion that there should be aftermarket modifications to these bikes before being tested is patently absurd. This is a test of STOCK machines, is that really so difficult to understand or are you just bitter that your bike didn't win?
Steve284 -450SX-F  January 4, 2010 03:59 PM
The 2010 450SX-F is a polished package. With the inception of this new chassis in 07 the handling took a leap forward and has been improved upon each year. Chromoly frame technology is actually supperior to the aluminum alloy technology right now. It's lighter, easier to work on and has optimum flex. Too bad aluminum is cheaper in Japan so that's why they use it. The carburator is not an issue when you have electric start. Just got done reading the MXA 450 test and it won that too. Go figure! It's funny to read some of these responses when the status quo is shakin up.

Yanko -When  January 4, 2010 02:02 PM
Amazed is what I'll be when one of the KTM's finishes top 5 in a SX race.Best 450 my *ss.
Billet -Test  January 4, 2010 01:03 PM
Interesting that the lowest tech bike in the mix beat the greatest techno marvel of the decade.

MX shootouts would be more meaningful if they'd test them with a small modication budget to address minor issues. We all budget at least a couple hundred bucks to fix glaring faults like tires and suspension springs. Nobody really cares that the Kawi has bad tires or that the CRF needs fork springs.
Steve -KTM haters  January 4, 2010 10:59 AM
KTM does extremely well off road, why is it so suprising they have built an excellent motocross bike, too? I have owned and tested several different makes/models and my KTM 200 was by far my favorite.

To me, what is so amazing, is everyone thinks an aluminum frame is a technilogical and lightweight masterpiece. KTM built a bike with a steel frame AND electric start and the weight is competitive. I say congratulations to KTM and keep up the good work!
Puddin' Tame -YZ450F 'in shame  January 4, 2010 08:14 AM
"While it feels light in motion, at a standstill it’s a tank." ?????
These moto-dorks need to keep to the asphault. How many races have been won at a standstill?
I feel like i've lost some IQ reading this article.
KTM? Really? Geez. These goons presumably all ride dual sports on their off-time. I want the 30 minutes of my life back spent to read this.
I'm buying the YZ, nuf' said.
Luke McMan -nothing  January 4, 2010 06:07 AM
3 of the areas of criterea where the KTM scored a 10 dont mean anything to a MX bike,,,,,,,come on "top speed","easy to start"and "sound".Get more objective in your testing huh.
thewall is a tard -austrailin ktm  January 3, 2010 06:41 PM
wow, you must be ten "thewall" ktm's are AUSTRIAN not AUSTRALIAN the results dont surprise me much i give yamaha another year to perfect there design
Craig Carmical -2010 shoot out  January 3, 2010 01:57 AM
All 2010 bikes are pretty good, some are stronger in particular areas then others but with that said im hardly convinced that the honda is as bad as they are displaying it. Its just the competition is so close now and everyone is still expecting honda to be leaps and bounds in front of the pack as it has been for the last x amount of years. I would love to know who grades these bikes. Like come on giving honda a 5 for horsepower and then a 10 for holeshot acceleration just doesnt make sense. This is how i rate it 1. Honda 2. Yamaha 3. Kawasaki 4. Suzuki 4. Ktm 5. Adam Waheed lost.
thewall -KTM's are great bikes  January 2, 2010 03:44 PM
Kick azz KTM! G'day mate. Let's put another shrimp on the barbie. This company keeps on impressing year after year. Welcome to the big time. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mqVzRD_nWLQ
Einstein -Companies  January 2, 2010 11:21 AM
You dont have to be a genius to know why KTM wins at Dakar or Honda wins at Baja.Its called $$$$$.These companies sponsor fleets of company rides.Of course the Japanese companies buy the best whore available for the Supercross series too.But at least at supercross the companies are held to some constraints.
Paul D -KTM's 15 minutes of fame  January 2, 2010 10:04 AM
Ironically KTM has the lowest number of "technological advances" on their bikes. For instance no fuel injecton, linkless suspension (which I am not sold on), steel frames, etc. Unfortunately they are going to be forced to change to keep up with the Japanese counterparts which is not a good thing when you finally get a carb'd bike dialed in. If the 08 CRF were in this group, it would have destroyed everybody .... but Honda is dealing with the growing pains of a new design. Unfortunately KTM will too when they update there 450SX-F. Good on them for the win ... enjoy the 15 minutes of fame.
paul butterfield -ktm  January 2, 2010 09:34 AM
ktm has ruled dakar for years. honda has ruled baja for years. supercross is ruled by the indian, not the arrow.
Nathan -Jimbo:  January 2, 2010 07:06 AM
Next week we will see that Stewart is the greatest SC rider on the planet and would win on any of these bikes, nothing more. I'm certainly shocked that the KTM came away with such a convincing win, it makes me wish I still had my 520SX!
Zimmer -Me thinks  January 2, 2010 05:14 AM
Personally I think your testers were looking for the best off-road bike,not the best MX'er.
bob -prices??  January 2, 2010 01:35 AM
Whats the price difference between all of them???
Tim B -What The?  January 2, 2010 12:55 AM
So the Kawasaki went from your 2009 best MXer to being in 3rd place for 2010? And Honda finishing dead last while KTM finishes first? I just have to say I'm blown away!
Jimbo -Not a believer  January 1, 2010 06:34 PM
Next week will see who's the best
Les D'Amico -"Carrying no more than 251 pounds..."  January 1, 2010 05:20 PM
To start out an article about the most technologically advanced and most powerful MXers made and stating their weight as if it's a good thing seems a little redundant. How much lighter and more powerful they'd be with a direct injection, power valve equipped 2 cycle we'll never know.
All I can remember is the rocket ship ride I got from a KX500 Kawasaki that at least weighted 20-25 pounds less than these bikes back in the day. I still believe if the manufactures hadn't caved to the enviros we could be riding lighter, more powerful bikes with the latest suspension, aluminum frames, and electric start too (have you ever kickstarted a 500 2 stroke?).
By the way, note what bikes KTM riders like for long races in the woods and cross country. Lighter bikes are always going to better.
Jeff M. Browning -2010 450F Shootout  January 1, 2010 10:45 AM
Wow, who woulda thunk it? Back in '93 when I was looking to get back into motocross after an eight year leave, I was looking at the KTM for an open class ride. It was more about being different and not conforming, but there was also something about their improvements.
We will have to see what the factory teams will do to their respective bikes, and if KTM will have the riders to live up to these shootout results.