The new styling and body configuration allows more space for aracers to shift their weight. The seat is narrow in the front, while wide and padded in the rear with redesigned rear fenders providing smooth side-to-side transitions in corners. The quick-release fasteners — previously only available on Special Edition models — are now standard on all YFZs and provide for no-tools installation and removal of the front and rear fenders.
The wheels have been designed with the inner lip rolled in. This increases the rigidity, allowing a reduction in weight while maintaining strength. The wheels are set for motocross-spec width at nearly 49 inches for better cornering. Maxxis tires are designed for handling, sliding control and traction. At 20 inches in the rear and 21 inches in the front, they provide plenty of ground clearance. The YFZ stops via dual front hydraulic disc brakes and a wave-type rear rotor.
The YFZ450R has large-diameter, aluminum tapered handlebars that reduce vibration and are mounted on four-way clamps for adjustability. There are two sets of holes in the handlebar crown and the eccentric clamps so the rider can choose the standard setting, 10 mm or 20 mm forward, or 10 mm back.
New heel guards provide more room and are positioned closer to the chassis for a slimmer feel, while the vehicle’s foot pegs are 2.6 inches wide, providing grip and stability.
The frame is a combination of aluminum and steel. The frame member under the engine is steel, used for its combination of strength and low profile. This allows the engine to sit at its lowest possible point for mass centralization and better handling. The aluminum frame is bolted together, rather than welded, for durability.
The front frame is as narrow as possible at the A-arm mounting points. Yamaha said this dramatically increases the A-arm length, which reduces changes in camber as the suspension travels through its full range of motion. The new front KYB shocks with 9.8 inches of travel and Kashima coating are longer for increased suspension stroke with better bump absorption and anti-bottoming characteristics. The rear swingarm with 11 inches of travel is crafted of aluminum, and it is matched to a fully adjustable 46mm KYB piggyback shock absorber.
Posted by Arlo Redwine. Images courtesy Yamaha