SEARCHING FOR THE ULTIMATE 2013-14 HONDA CRF450 EXHAUST

April 30, 2014
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The MXA wrecking crew took its time during this test. We did test sessions with different skill level riders with each exhaust system, and we discovered that different skill levels required different types of powerbands. The favorite pipe of the Pro test riders wasn’t always the first choice of the Novices, while the Intermediates always seemed to seek the middle ground. Thus, you have to have an inner dialogue with yourself about what you really want out of an aftermarket exhaust.

We raced with each exhaust system. We dynoed each exhaust system (on the same dyno at the same temperature and within a three-hour window to avoid weather variables). We sound tested each system. We spent one full day going back and forth with three different skill level riders at the test track. And, we bloodied our knuckles installing and removing the CRF450 exhaust systems over 60 times during the testing period.

10 VERY IMPORTANT FACTS

(1) We tested the exhaust systems as they were sent to us.

(2) We didn’t add any reducing cones to make the pipes quieter than their stock setup (and they can all be made to meet the AMA standards with inserts).

(3) We didn’t put more hours on one pipe than another before sound testing or dynoing them.

(4) We sound tested them using the current AMA 115 dB two-meter-max standard.

(5) We weighed the pipes the way they came out of the box.

(6) We tested the highest-priced system that each company offers.

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(7) We dynoed each pipe on the same dyno that we have used for years. We were surprised how hard it was to get appreciable power gains out of the 2013 CRF450. Even with an exhaust pipe, the CRF450 can’t touch the KTM’s, Kawasaki’s, Yamaha’s or Suzuki’s stock dyno numbers at peak.

(8) We used three test riders?a Pro, an Intermediate and a Novice?in the final, eight-hour, marathon round of testing.

(9) We never let the test riders talk to each other during test sessions.

(10) These are our results. The best 2013-2014 Honda CRF450 pipe for you is in here. You might be surprised that not every test rider went for the pipe that made the most horsepower, instead choosing power delivery or breadth of power over the obvious max power equation.We did not test single-side exhaust in this test?that will require a new pipe shootout. Your next pipe might be in here, find it.

STOCK HONDA CRF450 EXHAUST

MXA TEST RIDER COMMENTS

“It is a little jerky off the bottom, especially when you come out of turns, but that translates into a peppy feel that allows you to lift the front wheel whenever you want at low rpm.” (Pro)

“It tracks really well in real dirt, but on hardpack, the abrupt low end isn’t as hooked up. (Intermediate)

“The amount of power feels comfortable. Everything happens in a predictable way. After the strong bottom end, nothing really stands out. It is a basic powerband?very easy to ride and very short.” (Novice)

“The midrange is workable, but nothing to write home about. Once you are halfway into the midrange, the power goes flat.” (Pro)

“Just when you think the midrange is going to start pulling, it goes flat?very flat. The top end is the weakest part of the powerband.” (Intermediate)

“In the higher rpm ranges, I always wanted more, but it wasn’t there.” (Novice)

STOCK 2013 CRF450 DYNO NUMBERS

Here are the stock CRF450 dyno numbers.

rpm…….horsepower
6000……37.51
7000……45.84
8000……50.13
9000……51.20
10,000…50.45
Peak…..52.49 @ 8800 rpm
Max torque…34.44 ft-lb stock at 6900 rpm

WEIGHT

10.55 pounds. That is 2 pounds heavier than the stock 2012 Honda CRF450 single-sided muffler.

SOUND TEST

115.3 decibels on the two-meter-max test.

RETAIL PRICE

$1528.00.

CONTACT INFO

Your local Honda dealer.

DR.D NS-4 CRF450 EXHAUST

MXA TEST RIDER COMMENTS

“It traded a lot of the pep that the stocker had off the bottom, but it picked up the midrange much earlier. It pulled very smoothly.” (Pro)

“I liked the breadth of this pipe. It was smooth and broad in the middle. And while it didn’t have a lot of snap off the bottom, it transitioned into the middle quicker.” (Intermediate)

“This pipe doesn’t have the roll-on power of the stocker, but once in motion, it feels very good.” (Novice)

“This pipe is all about smoothness, and that makes the bike easier to ride. Its biggest strength is the broad midrange. The power isn’t outstanding, but the breadth is.” (Pro)

“The DR.D pipe is not a top-end pipe; it is a midrange pipe. This is a good all-around pipe for the average guy, but not for a Pro. (Intermediate)

“This pipe was fun to ride. It wasn’t leaps and bounds better than stock, but it was very broad and smooth. Plus, it had a nice exhaust note.” (Novice)

TEST RIDER OVERALL RATING

Pro: Fourth
Intermediate: Second
Novice: Third

DR.D NS4 DYNO NUMBERS

Here are DR.D’s dyno numbers (with the stock CRF horsepower in parentheses).

rpm…….horsepower
6000……36.85 (37.51 stock)
7000……44.32 (45.84 stock)
8000……50.60 (51.13 stock)
9000……50.65 (51.20 stock)
10,000…49.65 (50.45 stock)
Peak……51.53 @ 8400 rpm (52.49 at 8800 rpm stock)
Max torque…33.89 ft-lb at 7400 rpm (34.44 stock at 6900 rpm)

WEIGHT

This is the lightest exhaust at 7.8 pounds (stock is 10.55 pounds). The weight savings is 2.75 pounds.

SOUND TEST

This is the quietest pipe at 114.1 decibels on the two-meter-max test.

RETAIL PRICE

$979.00 (Carbon/Stainless and carbon end cap).

CONTACT INFO

www.dubachracing.com or (877) 382-2241.

PRO CIRCUIT TI-5 DUAL EXHAUST


MXA TEST RIDER COMMENTS

“It is obvious that Pro Circuit was willing to give up a little bottom to get more top. It was very smooth off the bottom but not impressive.” (Pro)

“It sacrificed low-end hit for more top end, and the more I rode it, the more in tune with it I became.” (Intermediate)

“This pipe carries its speed better than any other pipe. It had the most usable power, because it wanted to go beyond the middle.” (Novice)

“The big hit down low is replaced by a longer pull in the middle and some power on top?although in no way is the CRF450 a top-end engine.” (Pro)

“In the middle and the top, this is the most powerful pipe, and it is the only pipe that actually changed the way the CRF450 ran. It was the only pipe that seemed to add top end.” (Intermediate)

“To me it was a toss-up between this pipe and the Yoshimura.” (Novice)

TEST RIDER OVERALL RATING

Pro: Third
Intermediate: First
Novice: Second

PRO CIRCUIT TI-5 DYNO NUMBERS

Here are Pro Circuit’s dyno numbers (with the stock CRF horsepower in parentheses).

rpm……horsepower
6000…..37.61 (37.51 stock)
7000…..44.90 (45.84 stock)
8000……50.96 (51.13 stock)
9000……52.28 (51.20 stock)
10,000…50.66 (50.45 stock)
Peak……52.37 at 8900 rpm (52.49 at 8800 rpm stock)
Max torque…33.93 ft-lb at 6900 rpm (34.44 stock at 6900 rpm)

WEIGHT

8.5 pounds (stock is 10.55 pounds). The weight savings is 2 pounds.

SOUND TEST

This is the second quietest exhaust at 114.5 decibels on the two-meter-max test.

RETAIL PRICE

$1395.00 (Ti/Ti, carbon or Ti end cap and RC-4 resonance chamber).

CONTACT INFO

www.procircuit.com or (951) 738-8050.

FMF FACTORY 4.1 RCT EXHAUST

MXA TEST RIDER COMMENTS

“This pipe has a double hit down low. The first hit is the bark off the bottom, then there is a little dip, and then it goes again. I liked this because I could use the second hit as a starting point.” (Pro)

“I thought it was faster because it was so much louder than the DR.D or Pro Circuit pipes. It has a very snappy feel with a light throttle.” (Intermediate)

“The most noticeable aspect of the FMF pipe was that it was very sharp. Wherever you were in the powerband, the hit was instantaneous.” (Novice)

“The two-meter-max-legal pipes (Pro Circuit and DR.D) were quieter and smoother. The louder FMF pipe was abrupt and hard-hitting. That might be a product of the sound rules more than anything else.” (Pro)

“The best part of the FMF pipe was that it was really good on throttle response, especially when coming out of turns. The power was immediate.” (Intermediate)

“It feels aggressive and not as easy for a Novice to ride.” (Novice)

TEST RIDER OVERALL RATING

Pro: First
Intermediate: Fourth
Novice: Fourth

FMF FACTORY 4.1 DYNO NUMBERS

Here are FMF’s dyno numbers (with the stock CRF horsepower in parentheses).

rpm…….horsepower
6000……37.27 (37.51 stock)
7000……44.77 (45.84 stock)
8000……51.82 (51.13 stock)
9000……52.52 (51.20 stock)
10,000…51.26 (50.45 stock)
Peak……53.07 at 9300 rpm (52.49 at 8800 rpm stock)
Max torque…34.07 ft-lb at 7800 rpm (34.44 stock at 6900 rpm)

WEIGHT

8.4 pounds (stock is 10.55 pounds). The weight savings is 2.15 pounds.

SOUND TEST

This is the loudest exhaust at 117.0 decibels on the two-meter-max test.

RETAIL PRICE

$999.99 (Ti/Ti, Ti end cap and Megabomb head pipe).

CONTACT INFO

www.fmfracing.com or (310) 631-4363.

YOSHIMURA RS-9 EXHAUST

MXA TEST RIDER COMMENTS

“The RS-9 didn’t have more bottom than stock. I’m not sure that any of the test pipes were better than the stock pipe off idle, but the Yoshimura pipe had a long feel down low. It didn’t go braapp, but it pulled longer.” (Pro)

“The bottom end was fair, but with slower throttle response than I expected.” (Intermediate)

“The Yoshimura RS-9 exhaust system ran very well and wasn’t snappy or abrupt. It was, paradoxically, responsive without being abrupt.” (Novice)

“From past Yoshimura pipes, I expected a harder hit and stronger pull, but the 2013 CRF450 pipe was a no-drama pipe. It was strong enough to get the job done without being aggressive.” (Pro)

“This pipe would work well for every skill level. It beefs up the stock powerband without changing its characteristics.” (Intermediate)

“I looked for weakness, but it filled all the gaps.” (Novice)



TEST RIDER OVERALL RATING

Pro: Second
Intermediate: Third
Novice: First

YOSHIMURA RS-9 DYNO NUMBERS

Here are Yoshimura’s dyno numbers (with the stock CRF horsepower in parentheses).

rpm……..horsepower
6000……37.41 (37.51 stock)
7000……45.29 (45.84 stock)
8000……51.99 (51.13 stock)
9000……52.84 (51.20 stock)
10,000…51.55 (50.45 stock)
Peak……52.84 at 8900 rpm (52.49 at 8800 rpm stock)
Max torque…34.20 ft-lb at 7300 rpm (34.44 stock at 6900 rpm)

WEIGHT

8.3 pounds (stock is 10.55 pounds). The weight savings is 2.22 pounds.

SOUND TEST

116.0 decibels on the two-meter-max test.

RETAIL PRICE (AS TESTED)

$1495.00 (Carbon/Ti and carbon end cap).

CONTACT INFO

www.yoshimura-rd.com or (800) 634-9166.

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