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First of all the bike is nice, the red is beautiful, the led headlight gives it a modern touch...it looks slim maybe too much for the narrowness of the tyres and it would be nice to have a more badass look... the lack of handguards visually is as if it was missing something...the mirrors are high, rigid and ugly... although my friend only has the left one... the brake pump reservoir is grey which contrasts with the dominant black and not very well done, the chassis is polished and unpainted with large welds in sight (it would be cooler with a better finish) and finally the kickstand has a spring of a span and a half that remains... as you can see in the photos...

The unit I've tested and I'm going to continue testing has a short number plate holder (but with a big plate?), ARROW exhaust and a 25hp to 41hp (up to 44hp I've read about) deslimitation kit delivered as a free gift at the official Honda dealer.

The crankcase cover is thin and light, made of plastic.



It still feels slim and surprisingly the small tank (7.6L) and the thin seat, enduro and hard 100% unlike the smaller CRF 250/300 that mount one with slight reminiscences trailers, parsimonious and nineties instrument panel with clapper at the front under the frame itself on the seatpost.

Cable clutch, handlebars of little apparent quality (due to the black paint), eighties style handlebars with difficulty to operate indicators.



Electric start by button and "normal" mono sound even with the Arrow, (the owner tells me that with the standard one does not sound anything at all), The clutch goes smoothly but the travel is very short, too short, coupled with a fist with little touch gas/on/off and a very short development makes me nod in the first 3 gears ... I have not found data of the pinion but the crown is 51.

Keep in mind that I got off a KTM EXC500 several times to take the CRF, and this one has more engine sound and less fine.



It feels lively, no strong kick, but it has a low range and the short gearing helps, it encourages you to go light... it doesn't feel much heavier than the KTM which is 18 kilos heavier, maybe it's the narrower wheels that give it the agility. The dreaded stalling comes immediately when cutting the throttle at low speed and this is repeated up to 3 times during the test, even on the road, when crossing a town my experienced friend stalls when braking a car in front of him at low speed.

The piston strokes are very noticeable, I try to notice this in some of the exchanges with the EXC 500 and indeed they are more noticeable... but they do not translate into vibrations on the handlebars.



I'm getting the hang of it, little by little it's your bike, easy, for me it has enough power but I still don't like the development... as Tino says if you lengthen it for more mixed trail use, maybe the first gear is too long and it stalls more easily, but if you leave it as it is on the road at 100 it is no longer pleasant, and for me, a bike that even if it is a second surname wants to be called or used as a trail, should at least go to 120 of marker with decency... because otherwise it is not pleasant on junctions, and dangerous on busy highways.

As I say, it's great to ride it, the fork is awesome (showa 49mm), as is the frame and brakes, the shock absorber is hard (it must be the adjustment as it has to be in line with the fork for sure). I stall a few more times... I don't get it right with the short clutch travel and the feel of the throttle, and it stops on the spot... I miss handguards in a closed vegetation area.


As I have already mentioned, with standard development, it is only suitable for regional, tertiary and national roads, it has agility and gets along well with the standard tyres, which are very trai-light of Thai brand, which seem to be of simpler bikes (125, 250) and with measures far from the standard 80/10/21 and 120/80/18... with tyres of more usual measures I think it would win at least in aesthetics.


CONCLUSION "it is a bike that I would like to be convinced by".


I would like you to give me some arguments to have it next to the Ténéré 700, but strong arguments, without forcing them as we all do sometimes with the choice of the purchase of a bike to justify it (to us, to our colleagues or to the missus).

In other words, I like it, I could take it to the garden, I could tune it, but I am not convinced by its data, nor have I been won over by its performance. (I still have to test it more).

I still don't understand its maintenance/price/performance/comfort ratio, and how it doesn't follow the line of the CRF 300L and especially the Rally.


As all of the above are still the opinions of a bar or mototrailero forum, I leave you a small comparison (corrections are allowed) with other bikes that I know quite well and to which I have given exactly the same use on the same route as the CRF450L, although perhaps the bike that most resembles is the Suzuki DRZ-S .





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WhatsApp Image 2021-02-08 at 17.32.46.jpeg

WhatsApp Image 2021-02-08 at 13.01.33 (1).jpeg

Edited by Novorider
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Thanks for the writeup, nicely done. 

In the past, I have briefly thought about a bike like this for a ultra light adv bike,
But one thing that to me is a fatal flaw is the maintenance schedule.  

Looking it up for this bike:
The oil + oil filter, air filter (cleaning) need to be done every 1000km (600miles)
Valve clearance check, decompressor system check, every 3000km (1800miles)
Complete engine rebuild every 32000km (20,000miles)


You can check the schedule here:

This may be ok on a race/track only bike.... but for something used for street riding/adventure? 
Not for me.



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