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MXA’S 2012 YAMAHA YZ450F MOTOCROSS TEST: THE MUFFLER CORKS IT UP AND THE MAPPING FREES IT UP

Q: FIRST AND FOREMOST, IS THE 2012 YZ450F BETTER THAN THE 2011 YZ450F? A: That depends on how you define ?better.? It is quieter and the rims are black, but apart from that, the modifications are of the garden-variety type?new mapping, new valving, new muffler and new tires. The 2011 model was a warmed-over 2010 YZ450F, but the 2012 gets more power thanks to an odd combination of slowing it down and speeding it up. Q: WHAT ARE THE MAJOR CHANGES THAT YAMAHA MADE TO THE 2012 YZ450F? A: There aren?t any ma…

MXA PERFORMANCE GUIDE TO THE 2011 YAMAHA YZ450F

The MXA wrecking isn?t totally bummed out when a manufacturer doesn?t make any changes to his new model release. As much as we like totally new bikes, we aren?t big fans of totally new problems.  A bike that stays the same is a known quantity. The factory may not have made any changes, but the MXA wrecking crew can easily fall back on its play book from the year before and bring the bike up to snuff. Even better, we are a year smarter. And so it is with the 2011 Yamaha YZ450F. For the uninformed, t…

2011 YAMAHA YZ450F MOTOCROSS TEST: THE MOST REVOLUTIONARY MOTOCROSS BIKE ON THE SHOWROOM FLOOR

Q: FIRST AND FOREMOST, IS THE 2011 YZ450F BETTER THAN THE 2010 YZ450F? A: Nope. Oh, don?t get us wrong, we love that the new clutch actuation arm has a slightly heavier pull with less free play whether hot or cold. But in the grand scheme of things, it isn?t much to get excited about. Q: WHAT ARE THE MAJOR CHANGES THAT YAMAHA MADE TO THE 2011 YZ450F? A: The clutch actuation arm and the white plastic. That’s the complete list. Q: IS THE 2011 YZ450F FASTER THAN THE 2010 YZ450F?   A: The fuel-injected…

WE RIDE RICKY DIETRICH’S VALLI MOTORSPORTS YAMAHA YZ450F

Here’s a hypothetical situation. Pretend you?re an offroad racing champion (perhaps you?re the WORCS champion, Endurocross title holder and have won ISDE medals). You?ve been so successful that you are paid a handsome salary, are feted in the press and have a full-boat ride. Now, imagine that your real passion is motocross. The conundrum is that no one wants to pay you to race motocross, but they will pay you to keep racing offroad races. When you ask your factory sponsors if you could switch to motocro…

WE RIDE A WORKS GYTR YAMAHA YZ450F ENGINE KIT (AND THE REST OF THE BIKE ALSO)

Yamaha used to have a race team to develop hop-up products for their race bikes. The only problem was that when Team Yamaha did the R&D, they kept the results secret. In fact, they hid the data like it was the formula for Coca-Cola. Now there is no Team Yamaha anymore. No trick parts. No secret technology. No in-house Gyro Gearloose tricks. Instead, when Yamaha dropped their factory motocross team, they handed the development of the YZ-F’s aftermarket components over to GYTR (Genuine Yamaha Technolo…

FRIDAY’S USED MOTOCROSS BIKE GUIDE: HOW TO SETUP YOUR 2010 YAMAHA YZ450F:

This is the 2010 Yamaha YZ450F the way the MXA test crew raced it. As a rule, we don?t go for exotic or expensive mods, but if push comes to shove, we will seek competent help (no matter how much it costs). Use MXA ‘s mods as a guide. Front brake: The front brake is workmanlike, but the MXA test riders felt that it wasn?t as powerful as it should be. We traded the stock 240mm front rotor for a 270mm Galfer Wave brake rotor kit. The oversized rotor provided progressive stopping power. The complete kit (w…