Yoshimura Suzuki QuadRacer R450 Review

October 29, 2009
JC Hilderbrand
JC Hilderbrand
Off-Road Editor|Articles|Articles RSS|Blog |Blog Posts |Blog RSS

Hilde is holding down the fort at MotoUSA's Southern Oregon HQ. With world-class dirt bike and ATV trails just minutes away, the hardest part is getting him to focus on the keyboard. Two wheels or four, it doesn't matter to our Off-Road Editor so long as it goes like hell in the dirt.

Dustin Wimmers LTR 450 Review
Dustin Wimmer’s factory Suzuki has sat atop the ATV MX heap for two years running.

You don’t earn a national championship title in the most competitive ATV MX racing series on the continent without building something special. Suzuki not only built a title-worthy machine for Dustin Wimmer, but the Japanese OEM has formed a platform of racing technology over decades of development that culminated in the 2009 championship. Wimmer has been able to put his Yoshimura Suzuki QuadRacer R450 to good use and is now the two-time defending AMA ATV Pro Motocross champion.

In 1985, Suzuki shocked the powersport industry by unveiling the world’s first high-performance four-wheeler. Up until that point, it was all about the three-wheelers. The Quadracer 250 helped lay the groundwork for where we’re at now. It wasn’t long before people were racing and dominating at the local level, as well as National and Mickey Thompson events. In 1986, Gary Denton took his first National title aboard a new high-performance quad. Fast forward to 2010 and Suzuki has virtually swept all forms of racing, so when Suzuki called us to see if we wanted to take Dustin Wimmer’s championship-winning QuadRacer R450 for a spin, we literally jumped at the opportunity. Suzuki’s premier sport ATV has served as an industry standard for motocross-specific equipment. The QuadRacer is bad enough in stock trim, but the chance to ride the best bike in the country for two years running wasn’t something we’d ever pass up.

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Check out Yoshimura Suzuki’s championship bike in action in the Dustin Wimmer’s 2009 Suzuki QuadRacer R450 video.

The MotoUSA team headed to Milestone Raceway in Riverside, CA to meet up with Yoshimura team manager Kory Ellis. Ready to go with a fresh set of plastic and new tires, we could hardly wait to put in a few motos in on the champ’s bike. One of the first things we noticed was just how low to the ground the R450 was. The bike has only 9.4 inches of ground clearance stock but before even riding it, we knew that this thing would handle like it was on rails. Letting our eyes devour this exotic ride in a very unsavory way, it’s apparent that the 22-year-old Wimmer needs some added components to pull off his title-winning aggression. Pro Armor provides nerf bars and the front bumper while skidplates on the front and rear frame sections are made by Quad Tech. The same goes for the nosepiece, seat foam and cover, shock cover and wiring guard – all QT products.

Crack the throttle and instantly the boost generated by the four-valve engine gives it away as a serious moto weapon. No electric start here. Yoshimura installed a kick starter to shave off seven pounds, plus the added benefit of less spinning weight on the flywheel for quicker engine response. On the first kick, the champ’s bike came to life with a serious growl and we made our way to the entrance to the track. It was game on!

The acceleration of the Yoshimura-tuned 450 was, to say the least, impressive. Yosh uses its Stage 3 porting and cams. Hinson noted that it’s very calm in the low rpm but was amazed with the level of tractability and pull throughout the rev range. The fuel-injected motor never stopped pulling and Wimmer uses the Yosh Peripheral Interface Module (PIM2) to ensure perfect fueling throughout the powerband. Of course, Yoshimura is known for its exhaust pipes, and the QuadRacer has the titanium RS-5 muffler with custom Ti head pipe. To handle the abuse of high-temp riding, CV4 radiator hoses are clamped on and Hinson Clutch Components are stuffed inside the right-side cover. A basket, pressure plate, inner hub and BTL slipper-clutch kit are all installed underneath the virtually indestructible clutch cover. Combine the hard-charging, smooth motor with pillow-top suspension and it’s difficult to know just how fast you’re going until it’s time to slow down for a turn.

Dustin Wimmers LTR 450 ReviewDustin Wimmers LTR 450 ReviewDustin Wimmers LTR 450 Review
A walkaround of Wimmer’s machine instantly got us excited about spinning laps aboard the championship bike with a wider, more aggressive stance and bristling with high-performance parts.

Squeeze the front brake lever mounted on the oversized CR-mid bend ProTaper handlebars and steel-braided Galfer lines channel fluid to Galfer pads and rotors held in stock calipers. The brakes are strong enough to do the job, but our testers were more focused on other aspects of the bike, like the suspension.

Contributing to the aggressive stance are long-travel JB Racing A-arms. The Yosh team powdercoats them black to match the color scheme, but they do much more than add good looks. Mated with Fox Racing Shocks’ top-of-the-line Float X Evol suspension, the front end garnered rave reviews from our tester, Bryan Hinson. Extremely planted in the corners, the front half of the bike never gets out of sorts. The dual air chambers are masterful at handling small chop, uneven stutters and ruts. Equally as impressive are their ability to soak up jump faces and landings regardless of how hard or uneven they are. A Precision Pro model steering stabilizer helps further separate the rider from track nasties. The result is a machine that not only has the ability to go fast anywhere on the track, but makes the rider confident to attack every obstacle.

“Suspension-wise this bike is awesome,” said Hinson. “It soaked up everything I made a mistake on… It made up for every inconsistent part of my riding style.”

Dustin Wimmers LTR 450 Review
The QuadRacer turns effortlessly with precision and security thanks to the Fox suspension, JB A-arms and Precision stabilizer.

The Fox Podium X rear shock kept the center of gravity low while maintaining travel. Again, the suspender was excellent on all areas of performance. The Podium X uses dual-speed compression, a remote reservoir and a 47mm steel shock body to ensure compliance at all times. It bolts to stock linkage and a JB Racing swingarm which has the same length as stock.

As with any race bike, weight saving was an important goal for the factory Suzuki squad. All of the parts used on the Number 1 machine are as light as possible while offering the strength and durability required for the most brutal motocross conditions. Titanium wheel hubs and studs on the rear are a good example. Even with the added protection, extended A-arms, beefier tires and nerf bars, the team says Wimmer’s R450 is lighter than a stocker.

The Maxxis RAZR MX tires spooned on DWT Rok-Out wheels with rear beadlocks combined with perfect dirt at the Milestone track, the QuadRacer was hooking up so hard it felt like your arms were going to come out of their sockets. Jumping was very relaxed; the center of gravity was amazing. The quad did everything we wanted it to do – flying straight and level, powering hard but not overly aggressive from corner to corner and supplementing rider skill with exceptional suspension. It’s not hard to see how Wimmer has taken back-to-back championships with equipment like this at his disposal.

Dustin Wimmers LTR 450 ReviewDustin Wimmers LTR 450 ReviewDustin Wimmers LTR 450 ReviewDustin Wimmers LTR 450 Review
Attention has been paid to every aspect of this ATV MX racer. Yoshimura has a proven formula and with the young Wimmer in full stride, this combination could prove potent in the future if Suzuki’s racing program holds together.

Yoshimura Suzuki QuadSport R450 Specs:

Quad: 2009 Suzuki QuadRacer R450
Frame: Stock with black powdercoat
Subframe: Stock
Engine: 2009 LT-R450 With Yoshimura Stage 3 porting and cams
Valves: CV4
Staring: Yoshimura kick start
Fuel delivery: Stock fuel injection with Yoshimura programmable PIM 2
Airbox: Stock modified by Yoshimura Racing
Air filter: Stock
Exhaust: Yoshimura RS-5 Titanium race team system 
Clutch: Hinson – Cover, Basket, Pressure plate, Inner hub, BTL system
Transmission: Stock, Yoshimura REM treated
Chain, sprockets: ProTaper 
Gearing: 13/37
Hubs: Stock front, Titanium rear with Ti studs 
A-arms: JB Racing long-travel powdercoated black
Front shocks: Fox Float X Evol
Steering stem: JB Racing Titanium
Steering stabilizer: Precision, pro series 
Swingarm: JB Racing, stock linkage, stock length
Rear axle/carrier: Stock lightened carrier
Rear shock: Fox Podium 
Tires: Maxxis RAZR MX
Wheels: DWT ROKOUT with rear beadlocks 
Brake calipers: Stock, rear is lightened
Brake pads, rotors: Galfer
Steel-braided lines: Galfer 
Handlebars: ProTaper fat bars CR mid bend
Hand guards: ProTaper
Clutch lever, cables: Stock
Grips: ProTaper
Tether kill switch: Pro Armor
Nerfs: Pro Armor
Front bumper: Pro Armor
Footpegs spuds: JB Racing
Skidplates: front frame, Quad Tech; rear frame, Quad Tech
Seat: Quad Tech cover and foam
Nosepiece: Quad Tech
Rear fender extension: Quad Tech
Shock covers: Quad Tech
Wiring guard: Quad Tech

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