Suzuki just revealed the fifth-generation 2018 RM-Z450 motocrosser. The redesigned dirt bike is all-new with a fresh frame and swingarm, increased engine and braking performance, and revised ergonomics. The motorcycle was built by Suzuki using a philosophy called 'The Winning Balance' around the core concepts of 'RUN, TURN, and STOP.'
For 2018, Suzuki engineers improved on the extant engine design of the 2017 RM-Z450 — the liquid-cooled, DOHC 449cc four-stroke single-cylinder. The powertrain is mated to a 5-speed constant mesh transmission with a wet multi-plate clutch. A redesigned intake port and larger air aperture have increased in-cylinder tumble flow by a claimed 25%. Camshaft profile and the fuel pump have been updated, and the Mikuni throttle body features an inverted fuel injector. Suzuki’s third-generation ECM manages the FI system with faster data processing and memory capacity. Performance numbers have not been released, but the refinements reportedly improve throttle response and increase power all across the rev range.
The bike gets a brand new, lightweight twin-spar frame and swingarm with overall rigidity optimized, weight shaved, and wheelbase shortened. Stability in shock absorption and handling improve cornering ability. A revised seat and new Renthal Fatbar aluminum handlebars make for slimmer dimensions and easier weight transfer.
Suspension is upgraded with 49mm Showa coil-spring inverted front forks; the 2018 RM-Z450 is the also the first production motocrosser to get a Showa Balance Free Rear Cushion (BFRC) mono shock, usually seen on factory racers as standard equipment. Nissin brakes helps stop the bike with a 270mm wave disc in front and a 240mm out back. The motorcycle rides on 21 and and 19-inch lighter spoked rims, wrapped with knobby Bridgestone Battlecross X30 tires.
The 2018 RM-Z450 comes with an Evolved Traction Management System and Suzuki Holeshot Assist Control (S-HAC). Two additional modes, A and B, are offered via an S-HAC switch. Mode A restrains engine speed, provides launch control at the start of a ride or race, and is handy on hard and slippery surfaces. Mode B advances ignition timing for more aggressive riding on dirt. Turning S-HAC modes off return the motorcycle to standard riding. Two additional fuel setting couplers can be plugged in trackside to achieve richer or leaner fuel mixtures for different track conditions.
The 2018 Suzuki RM-Z450 has a ground clearance of 220 mm, a seat height of 960 mm, curb weight of 112 kg, and fuel capacity of 6.3 L. Pricing and release dates have yet to be announced. It will be available in a Championship Yellow color scheme.