Kawasaki KX 450 F 2012


All new, the KX450F receives the latest “Factory” developments for 2012. Multiple innovations such as the departure management mode, unprecedented on a production machine, a new electronic control unit with 3 easy-to-configure maps and finally a driving position adjustable means the KX450F has everything it takes to stay ahead of the race.

If its predecessor had already distinguished itself in competition by the performance of its engine and the speed of its chassis, the KX 450 F 2012 is equipped with many elements inspired by factory machines, which give a head start to racing enthusiasts.

Among the main evolutions, we will note the assistance to the departures of the “Launch Control” mode – a first on a cross-country series -, the UCE redesigned with three easily configurable maps and the position in the saddle adaptable to the size and the style of the pilot.

All the bite of the injection

The 449 cm 4-stroke single-cylinder³ Liquid-cooled delivers punchy power from low to high revs. The highly usable power range and responsive acceleration unleash a torrent of torque that allows riders to pull the throttle right from low revs.

Optimized cam profile

By increasing the valve lift by 0.4 mm, the reshaped intake cams allow a greater volume of incoming air, a factor which enhances low and mid-range performance. At idle speed, a small part of the intake air is sent to the bypass circuit (main duct 3: bypass 7 >> main duct 6: bypass 4), for a better response to the initial opening of the throttle.

The piston

The piston, identical in design to factory machines, improves performance at all revs. Its short skirt, its external reinforcing ribs and its internal bridge cap (exclusive to a production machine) with flush internal reinforcement give it more lightness and strength.
On the piston, the redesigned section of the bridge ideally rebalances the stiffness, thus improving performance at medium and high revs.

Ease of engine adjustments: Direct injection parameters (3 maps to choose from)

The original settings for the three maps are: Standard, Hard, and Soft. Using the supplied DFI couplers, the rider can easily switch from one map to another to adapt the settings to the driving conditions. Just plug in one or the other of the 4-input couplers to activate the corresponding mapping. The location of the socket, to the right of the steering column, allows easy access without any dismantling of parts.
The optional KX FI injection calibration kit can be used to reprogram the three maps.

Accuracy of engine settings: KX FI injection calibration set (optional)

The KX FI injection calibration set is identical to that used by official Kawasaki teams in Europe and the USA. It allows experienced pilots to adjust the engine settings to their preferences (by modifying the original mapping), but also to record the taxi data and then analyze it to further refine the settings..

Launch Control mode – how to do the holeshot

The 2012 KX450F benefits from a departure assist device called Launch Control, very similar to that of the factory KXs. With the push of a button, the pilot can activate a separate map of engine settings that increases the chances of getting off to a good start in a race on slippery ground: by delaying the ignition timing, the Launch Control mode allows the tire rear to regain grip in a situation of low traction, and therefore the pilot to concentrate on his trajectory.


Considering the widened power curve, the gearbox has been redesigned to make shifting easier at high revs while significantly improving the overall feel of power..

New frame

Narrower by 4 mm (2 mm on each side) between the main beams, the more ergonomic frame refines the riding position and allows better control.

Front suspension

The Kayaba AOS (Air-Oil-Separate) fork is equipped with two separate cartridges for oil and air, which ensures consistent damping quality during extended sessions. Low friction spinnaker seals contribute to a smoother work.
The clamps of the lower triple clamp open towards the rear and no longer to the side, resulting in increased rigidity which optimizes the work of the fork.
The outer surface of the inner fork tubes benefits from an ultra-hard DLC (Diamond-Like Carbon) treatment which reduces friction (by preventing it from sticking) and thus improves the quality of damping and ride. This coating retains its effectiveness when the fork is subjected to lateral forces which generally hamper sliding, in bends for example. This increased surface hardness makes the tubes less susceptible to scratches and marks.

Rear suspension

By using an optional rear suspension link (1mm longer than normal), riders can lower the seat height by 4mm (measured in the middle of the saddle). Even if 4mm does not seem to represent a big difference, on a machine intended for competition having the possibility of changing the driving position without interfering with the performance of the chassis is extremely profitable..

Adjustable handlebars

On the upper crown, two mounting positions for the saddles and reversible saddles provide four handlebar adjustments: 25mm forward, 15mm forward, normal and 10mm backward.

Adjustable footrests

Thanks to their adjustable plate, the footrests can be lowered by 5 mm; by lowering the center of gravity and line of sight, this position enhances physical and psychological stability.

Shortened silencer

By refocusing the masses, the short type silencer (minus 60 mm) also improves handling.

Front brake

Adorned with a new aggressive-styled petal pattern, the fixed front disc reduces unsprung weight by 80g.

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      The technical aspect

      Kawasaki KX 450 F 2012

      • Frame
      • Frame: Perimeter aluminum
      • Tank: 6.2 liters
      • Seat height: 955 mm
      • Length: 2,180 mm
      • Width: 820 mm
      • Height: 1275 mm
      • Wheelbase: 1,480 mm
      • Weight in running order: 113 kg
      • Train before
      • Telehydraulic inverted fork Ø 48 mm, deb: 314 mm
      • 1 petal disc Ø 250 mm, 2 piston caliper
      • Front wheel:

        – 21

      Kawasaki KX 450 F 2012 technical

      • Transmission
      • 5-speed gearbox
      • Secondary chain transmission
      • Rear axle
      • Mono-shock absorber, deb: 315 mm
      • 1 petal disc Ø 240 mm, 1 piston caliper
      • Rear wheel:

        – 19

      • Motor
      • Single cylinder
        in line
        , 4 stroke
      • Cooling: Liquid cooling
      • Injection ø 43 mm
      • 2 ACT
      • 4 valves per cylinder
      • 449 cc
        (96 x 62.1 mm)
      • 56
        at 8000 rpm
      • Compression: 12.5: 1
      • Crit’air:

      Detached pieces


      chain kit


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