2018 SUZUKI RM-Z450

No one ever accused Suzuki of being all bark and no bite. It’s more like the opposite: the RM-Z450 rarely calls attention to itself with new styling or frills, but its teeth have always been very sharp. So the 2018 RM-Z450 is big news indeed. It marks the first really big cosmetic change in the bike’s 14-year history. There’s more to it than just looks, too. The bike has a new frame, a new swingarm, new suspension, new bodywork and enough motor updates to make it the biggest mechanical change since the introduction of fuel-injection in 2008. Here are a few of the key changes:

  • Wheelbase: 8mm shorter
  • Steering head: 10mm back
  • Handlebar: 7mm forward
  • Rear shock: Incorporates new “Balance-Free Rear Cushion” technology
  • Fork: New coil-spring Showa
  • Tires: New Bridgestone Battlecross X3D
  • Fuel tank: Changed from aluminum to resin
  • Rear master cylinder: Redesigned
  • Air filter intake window: Larger
  • Air intake boot: Reshaped
  • Intake port: Reshaped
  • Fuel injector: Relocated
  • Fuel pump: More powerful
  • Throttle body: Updated
  • Intake cam: New profile
  • Piston: Strengthened
  • Engine management system: Updated
  • Suzuki Holeshot Assist Control: Updated

The 2018 Suzuki RM-Z450 looks new and is new. It’s shorter, narrower and said to be more powerful.

Suzuki has had a sort of electronic traction control for 11 years. It’s upgraded for 2018.

The front rotor is increased in size.

Coil springs return to the Showa fork.

The Suzuki Holeshot Assist Control is updated.

The Showa “Balance-Free Rear Cushion” shock uses a multi-chambered reservoir with low nitrogen pressure.

Below is the official Suzuki press release:

Key New Advancements on the 2018 RM-Z450
  • Increased Engine Performance
    • Improved Throttle Response with Higher Peak Power
    • Evolved Traction Management System Helps the Bike Hook Up
    • Updated Suzuki Holeshot Assist Control (S-HAC) Gets You Out Front
  • Advanced Cornering Performance
    • New Frame and Swingarm are Lighter with Excellent Strength
    • Refined Chassis Dimensions Blend Nimble Handling with Stability
    • Improved Coil-spring Fork Provides Great Performance and Easy Tuning
    • New Showa BFRC Rear Shock Delivers Remarkable Damping Response
    • Bridgestone X30 Tires bring Outstanding Grip
  • Improved Braking Performance
    • Larger Front Brake Increases Stopping Power and Feel
    • New, Compact Rear Master Cylinder is out of the Way of Mud and Boots
  • Functional Styling
    • Aggressive New Styling Blends Function with Suzuki Racing Identity
    • Narrow Cockpit Lets Rider Move with Ease for Maximum Racing Performance

Developed using Suzuki’s RUN, TURN, and STOP philosophy that creates a Winning Balance between engine and chassis performance, the 2018 RM-Z450 has stronger brakes for better stopping power, a wider spread of engine muscle with higher peak power, and a frame that is stronger and lighter resulting in a nimble chassis that elevates the standard for cornering performance.

This new bike continues Suzuki’s tradition of producing the best handling motocross motorcycles available by arming the RM-Z450 with a redesigned aluminum, twin-spar frame and swingarm. Refined with new dimensions and weight distribution, this frame is accompanied by a new style Showa coil spring fork and an ultra-advanced Showa Balance Free Rear Cushion (BFRC) shock absorber. Similar to the design used on Suzuki’s potent GSX-R1000R, the BFRC shock (shown at left) brings advanced damping force control and stability to off-road competition.

Fitted with a new, larger front brake rotor and a sleek new rear master cylinder, the RM-Z450 delivers improved stopping performance. A high level of grip and feedback is delivered to the rider via the RM-Z450’s new Bridgestone X30 tires mounted to the stronger, but lighter aluminum rims.

Key improvements for the 2018 RM-Z450 powerplant include changes to the air intake, electronic fuel injection system, and select engine parts to improve throttle response while boosting peak power.

An evolved version of Suzuki’s Traction Management System helps the bike hook up regardless of the conditions, while an updated Suzuki Holeshot Assist Control (S-HAC) system) gets the RM-Z450’s rider out in front with a stronger power surge out of the starting gate.

The RM-Z450’s aggressive new styling blends purpose with a strong Suzuki racing personality. The bike’s narrow cockpit lets the rider easily move around, blending with the chassis for maximum racing performance.

Function creates style as the bodywork flows from the front fender, into the number plate and radiator shrouds, through the slender seating area, then merging into the angled side covers and pointed tail.

Understated graphics with blue and black accents hover above the iconic Suzuki Championship Yellow bodywork, creating an innovative look that is instantly recognizable as a serious racing machine.

Always a successful racer, the RM-Z450 has delivered a world championship, seven AMA SX or MX championships, plus 19 national titles around the globe while securing more moto and overall wins in the US than any other 450-class bike in the last decade. Now, with this significant revision, the 2018 RM-Z450 is poised to be an even more formidable competitor.

Enlist in the RM ARMY and enjoy Suzuki Amateur Racing Support!
Suzuki’s RM Army and Amateur Racing Support is top notch, offering over $3.8 million in contingency, trackside support, and the opportunity to train with Ricky Carmichael at Suzuki’s exclusive Camp Carmichael. Want to see why champions choose Suzuki? Visit racesuzuki.com for more information on Suzuki’s Amateur Support Program and enlist in the RM ARMY!


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