The 2022 KTM 450 SX-F makes its presence felt – even before it sets out of pit lane. Thanks to a powerful, championship-winning engine churning out an industry-leading 63hp, the KTM 450 SX-F delivers holeshot-winning performance with confident, bullet-proof handling lap after lap. In simple terms, the KTM 450 SX-F remains the one to beat when the gate drops, and is the closest you’ll get to a factory race machine, right out of the box.
The KTM 450 SX-F engine sits at the pinnacle of the 4-stroke motocross range, delivering a compact, single overhead camshaft design with the latest electronic injection system, resulting in unbeatable power. Its success lies in its ability to deliver usable power throughout the rev range while combining class-leading electronics, and adjustability – not to mention being the lightest 450 cc motocross engine on the market.
The KTM 450 SX-F is fitted with a lightweight, compact SOHC cylinder head, with a design that focuses on mass centralization, contributing to overall handling excellence. The overhead camshaft also has a friction-optimized surface and valve timing that delivers impressive responsiveness. Four ultra-lightweight titanium valves – 40 mm for the intake and 33 mm for the exhaust – are activated via extremely rigid rocker arms, which are DLC coated on the intake side, that work with low-friction chain guides to allow for an impressive 11,500 rpm rev ceiling.
The crankshaft on the KTM 450 SX-F is located in an ideal position close to the center of gravity, utilizing a short connecting rod, allowing for a compact motor design and a snappier power delivery. The whole unit is extremely well-balanced, with the perfect amount of inertia for optimal traction and rideability. This design also enhances durability, allowing for long crankshaft service intervals – resulting in less effort and cost and more time spent chasing podiums.
CRANK CASES & ENGINE COVERS
The KTM 450 SX-F boasts compact, lightweight engine cases which are manufactured using a high-pressure die-cast production process. This helps in reducing weight while retaining strength and durability. The design also allows for optimal shaft arrangements close to the center of gravity, resulting in better mass centralization and rideability. Most importantly, however, the engine covers feature a smart surface structure that reduces the wear caused by the rider’s boots, keeping them looking as fresh as the day the bike rolled off the production line.
Part of the KTM 450 SX-F’s acceleration comes courtesy of years of refining gear rations to ensure the best performance possible from the large displacement engine. The transmission is also engineered to be ultra-lightweight but has the durability to perform race after race. A 13/49 secondary drive also allows for instant response out of the corners, while the 4-stoke specific gear sensor provides the option of different engine characteristics for each gear, depending on engine load.
ENGINE MANAGEMENT SYSTEM
The state-of-the-art KEIHIN Engine Management System, with electronic fuel injection, features a 44 mm throttle body. The injector position guarantees optimal atomization of the fuel and air on the way to the combustion chamber, resulting in instant response and maximum performance when opening the throttle.
CYLINDER & PISTON
The 95 mm bore cylinder houses a lightweight CP piston, made to the very highest standards and stress levels. Its design contributes to the big 4-stroke’s low vibrations and overall engine speed. Due to the low oscillating masses, the engine is not only powerful but also displays extremely lively characteristics, smoothly rocketing out of corners.
The multifunctional side-mounted counterbalance shaft masterfully balances all the oscillating forces, while also driving the water pump. It effectively keeps engine vibrations to a minimum, resulting in the smoothest ride, even at the highest engine speeds.
The KTM 450 SX-F is fitted with the extremely durable, KTM-developed DDS clutch, with a wear-free steel basket and heat-resistant clutch plates. It makes use of a diaphragm spring instead of the usual coil springs, which results in considerably easier clutch action. The diaphragm spring is also compact enough to allow for a damping system to be integrated into the clutch hub, contributing to better traction and durability. What that means is, it can take everything you – or the Supercross Series – can throw at it.
The standard electric starter on the KTM 450 SX-F uses a proven starter drive and a strong starter motor made by Mitsuba. As demonstrated time and time again, it provides quick and reliable starting, saving you precious time and energy when you need it most.
HANDLEBAR MAP SELECTOR SWITCH
The KTM 450 SX-F brings technology to the track in the form of a multifunctional handlebar map switch. This allows riders to select traction control, launch control, and alternative power curves. The TRACTION CONTROL function is a unique feature that guarantees more efficient traction and better control when accelerating the bike off the line, or in track condition which calls for refined power output. LAUNCH CONTROL ensures the most effective launch out of the gate, by balancing the optimal levels of power and traction, while the engine mapping switch allows riders to select an alternative power map other than the standard configuration, providing performance options during the race.
Keeping things cool when the going gets heated, is a set of radiators ideally positioned for a lower center of gravity. By using computational fluid dynamics technology together with a clever coolant circuit routing, the innovative system ensures the optimum engine temperature for the highest performance, no matter what the conditions.
When it comes to power delivery and performance, the exhausts on all KTM 4-stroke SX-F models play a key role in getting to the head of the pack. Featuring a model-specific header pipe with an advanced Flow Design Header, the design allows the exhaust to be disassembled without removing the shock absorber. The aluminum sleeve, end cap, and internal design of the silencer allow for slimmer ergonomics, making the bike feel slimmer without any compromise to regulatory noise limits.
The KTM 450 SX-F makes use of a pin-point accurate hydro-formed chromium-molybdenum frame. These are robot welded to ensure the highest levels of consistent quality, stiffness, and responsive handling. And when paired with the WP PRO COMPONENT suspension, provides excellent agility and high-speed stability. For 2022, all KTM SX frames are powder-coated in full-factory orange and come with standard frame protectors. The subframe is made from lightweight aluminum and provides a great feeling for the rider, as well as easy movement across the seat.
The KTM SX range features a one-piece, gravity die-cast swingarm. This manufacturing process ensures exceptional strength at the lowest possible weight, and offers a wide range of adjustment for the rear wheel, allowing for a shorter wheelbase on tighter, twisty tracks, or a longer wheelbase for greater stability on longer straightaways. Additionally, the swingarm’s chain measurement markings are visible from above, meaning adjustments are easily made.
The full-size KTM SX machines make use of lightweight, CNC-machined hubs and high-end Excel rims, wrapped in the latest Dunlop Geomax-MX33 tires. The aluminum spoke nipples feature a design that conveniently reduces the frequency with which the spokes need to be tightened.
The KTM 450 SX-F makes use of lightweight 48 mm USD WP XACT front forks with AER technology. These air-sprung forks feature separate functions in each fork leg, with damping functions on the right side and the air spring on the left. The left leg features a two-chamber system with a capsuled air cartridge, preventing loss of air pressure. Essentially, this means that in the rare case of a leaking outer seal, the internal cartridge pressure maintains its standard position. The air spring is also easy to use and can be adjusted to any rider weight via a single air valve and an air pump which is supplied. The right fork leg integrates a damping cartridge to fit single damping leg requirements and can be adjusted to track conditions or rider preferences. Additionally, the fork top caps feature easy adjustment, with compression done from the top, and rebound from the bottom.
All KTM SX models make use of a WP XACT mono-shock, which has been developed to work with the entire frame and swingarm architecture, as well as the linkage system. This setup perfectly compliments the WP XACT fork, to provide balance and handling performance. It features high-quality machined and anodized components, is fully adjustable, including high and low-speed compression, and allows you to set the shock up precisely to suit any track and rider’s preferences.
High-quality, CNC-machined triple clamps have become a KTM trademark. With a precisely calculated stiffness and 22 mm offset, these have been developed to match the flex characteristics of the frame and fork, resulting in unbeatable handling and stability. An hour meter is fitted as standard on the upper triple clamp on all SX models, keeping the rider informed of the number of hours spent tearing up the track and when the next service is due.
The KTM SX range relies on the best in the business when it comes to slowing down. High-tech Brembo brakes take charge of the front and rear, ensuring maximum rider feel, less brake fade, and high-quality build quality. Combined with lightweight wavy discs, this race-proven system provides the highest level of braking efficiency, providing unrivaled stopping power.
Feeding the high-revving machine beneath, a lightweight, 7-litre polyethylene fuel tank ensures an uninterrupted flow of fuel at all times. The shape of the fuel tank also aids in the overall, slim ergonomics of the bike, without compromising on fuel capacity.
The airbox on the KTM 450 SX-F ensures optimal flow dynamics, and together with its intake snorkels, leads to maximum power and quick throttle response. Despite the obvious performance advantages, the design also offers maximum protection against soiling of the air filter. The large Twin-Air air filter is mounted on a cleverly designed stiff cage that minimizes incorrect installation. As found on previous models, filter maintenance is quick and easy and does not require tools – a standard, original feature from KTM. Every SX-F comes with an additional PowerParts airbox cover featuring additional air intake holes for higher engine performance, meaning that the airbox can be customized for different engine characteristics or to suit track conditions.
All KTM SX models feature a seat that merges dynamic performance-oriented ergonomics, and grip, thanks to laterally spaced silicone strips. Seat removal is also an easy affair, thanks to one long, lateral screw, making it secure and easy to handle. For 2022, the seat receives a factory-inspired blue color.
All full-size KTM SX models are equipped with the high-strength NEKEN aluminum tapered handlebar. These are fixed in rubber damped mounts, which allow for two different positions and come standard with an ODI vulcanized grip on the right side and a comfortable ODI lock-on grip, which does not require any wire or glue, on the left.
Sophisticated self-cleaning ‘no-dirt’ footpegs prevent mud clogging up the pivot, even when digging in deep ruts. This means you maintain perfect grip at all times. One less thing to worry about then you’re leading a chasing pack.
In an ode to KTM’s illustrious past in the motocross realm, the KTM 2022 SX range receives a nostalgic makeover, merging distinctive red Bull KTM Factory Racing colors with old-school inspired design. A new blue seat and orange frame complete this visually striking package.
Racers, start your engines! Thanks to the ultra-lightweight 2 Ah Lithium-Ion starter battery, firing up the KTM 450 SX-F takes little more effort than reading this sentence – especially in cold weather conditions. And to make matters easier in pitlane, the voltage regulator and condenser, as well as all the electrical components, are packaged in a common area below the seat, making the entire system compact, reliable, and easily maintained.
When it comes to putting the power down, Traction Control does exactly what it says on the box. Guaranteeing efficient traction and better control of the motorcycle when accelerating on wet or slippery hard-pack surfaces, Traction Control can be a game-changer when the weather doesn’t play its part. Best of all, it can be activated by toggling the handlebar map switch during riding.
Engage warp speed by pressing both buttons on the map switch, and activate Launch Control. This ensures a more efficient launch out of the start gate, reducing the maximum engine speed for the ideal power-to-traction ratio. The EFI control lamp mounted on the upper triple clamps flashes when the function is active, letting you know it’s time to get the elbows out, head down, and focus.
MAP SELECTOR SWITCH
With a simple touch of a button, the rider can toggle between a standard map setting, for general track conditions, or an aggressive map for loamy, high grip dirt conditions. This is particularly useful for changing track conditions or for a rider that is looking for more control at any point during a race.