2016 KTM 450 SX-F Comparison

Adam Booth | November 24, 2015
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Six years ago the KTM’s 450 SX-F won its first and only MotoUSA 450 Motocross Shootout. Fast forward to 2016 and the KTM narrowly missed the top spot. In fact, if we could give the winning position to two bikes it would be the KTM 450 SX-F and YZ450F. Despite the runner-up finish, there’s no doubting the all-new 2016 KTM 450 SX-F is one wicked motocross bike.

2016 KTM 450 SX-FOverall handling of the KTM 450 SX-F is unmatched (though its nearly identical twin from Husqvarna comes close). The SX-F produces excellent power, is lightweight, corners amazingly, has great brakes, uses a hydraulic clutch and, of course, sources the praised electric start. The WP suspension, especially the 4CS fork is the best it’s ever been on a KTM MX bike, especially for the general consumer. To top it all off the 239-pound KTM 450 SX-F is the lightest 450 motocross bike in production, even with a sacred electric start – a standard feature which has eluded all other motocross bikes, much to the dismay of consumers.

The KTM’s conventional-spring WP fork earned praise from test riders, but 450 buyers may soon not have a choice between a bike with air or spring forks. Whether you like air forks or not, expect to see WP air forks on both the Husky FC 450 and the KTM 450 SX-F in 2017.

We don’t want to beat a dead horse, but we can’t mention attributes of the KTM 450 SX-F without mentioning the Husqvarna FC 450. They are almost one in the same. While the KTM 450 squeaked out a slight win over the Husky FC 450 amongst test riders, the Husky very well could have tied for the second spot had we switched to the Dunlop MX 32 tires and used a less restrictive KTM muffler.

2016 KTM 450 SX-F

First through fourth were all very close when the shootout scores were tallied, and the KTM just missed the overall victory. While the 2016 KTM 450 SX-F lands in the second position, it actually rated higher than its Yamaha rival in some important categories. The KTM 450 SX-F is the lightest 450 in production, handles awesome, churns out big power that is easy to use and sports electric start! It’s a winning combination, just not quite a shootout-winning one.

2016 450 Shootout Dyno KTM 450 SX-F

Highs
• Lightest bike in class
• Excellent power delivery
• Best WP 4CS fork yet
• Electric start!

Lows
• Big price tag
• A tad soft for very fast riders.

KTM 450 SX-F Suspension Settings
Fork
Compression: 15
Rebound: 15

Shock
Sag: 106mm
Low-Speed Compression: 15
High-Speed Compression: 2 out
Rebound: 15

Previous | Next
2016 450 Motocross Shootout
2016 Suzuki RM-Z450 Comparison
2016 Honda CRF450R Comparison
2016 KTM 350 SX-F Comparison
2016 Kawasaki KX450F Comparison
2016 Husqvarna FC 450 Comparison
2016 KTM 450 SX-F Comparison
2016 Yamaha YZ450F Comparison
2016 450 Motocross Shootout Conclusion

MotoUSA 2016 450 Motocross Shootout

 

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Adam Booth

Off-road Editor | Articles | Enjoying single track in the mountains, hitting the motocross track or battling an EnduroCross track, if it's on two wheels Boothy will have a smile on his face. Adam has served a mega ton of years in the off-road industry as a photographer, writer and popper of wheelies.

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