Taken from All-Terrain Vehicle Volume 8, Number 3.
The 2007 Kawasaki KFX 450R is loaded with impressive features, not the least of which is an EFI inducted version of Kawasaki’s potent KX450 motocross 4-stroke with a lightweight reverse gear added.
Throw in a very trick, first-in-class, full aluminum frame and it’s immediately clear the KFX isn’t just tagging along; this thing is aimed at changing the game.
When you first sling your leg over the KFX you’re barraged with cool features. Factory installed Renthal tapered Fat Bars are light, strong and add big-time sizzle.
Attached mid-way to the throttle block is the reverse actuator. No, this isn’t a quick on/off reverse lever that goes loose when racing. This deal was designed to be lightweight and allows the rider to back out of first turn jams in a flash and represents the kind of engineering that can make or break your race results.
With the addition of a complex and beautifully constructed all aluminum frame, Kawasaki saves weight and allows the addition of reverse without a weight penalty. How cool is that?
Sitting down on its low and flat seat you realize just how low the KFX positions your body to the ground. Kawasaki moved and shifted components in a concerted effort to keep the center of gravity super low and still accommodate the rider.
It’s interesting to note Monster Energy KFX 450Rs in full race trim weigh-in 20-pounds lighter than Suzuki’s full race LT-R 450s. You can actually feel the weight reduction when throwing the KFX through a tight S-bend or braking hard into a tight off-camber turn.
The suspension is damped by three KYB piggybacks and all provide 20 clicks of compression and rebound adjustment. Up front there’s 8.5-inches of travel with 10-inches out back.
The KFX floats through bumps and is a strong candidate in rutted out, choppy whoop sections. The low and well suspended KFX tracks where you point it while the smooth, buttery delivery of the EFI mill allows you to roll on and off the power both in and out of turns.
In-flight service on the KFX is commendable. Airborne, the 450 feels both agile and maneuverable, allowing easy in-air attitude corrections.
The KYBs work admirably, soaking up the harshest landings, even when you come up short the chassis never feels nervous or twitchy.
This is a great race ready ATV. It brings many new features not yet seen in the Pure Sport market.