It’s well known that the popular cycle for Japanese motocross bike manufacturers consists of three production years: an all-new machine is usually followed up by two years of subtle refinements before another major change can be expected. On this schedule, the 2019 Yamaha YZ450F is in its first year of refinement, having been debuted as a completely revamped machine in 2018.

In last year’s TransWorld Motocross 450 Shootout, the ’18 YZ450F was praised for many things, including its amazing powerplant, class-best suspension package, smartphone connectivity, and improved cornering characteristics. In fact, more than one tester liked the big blue machine best! There were some testers, however, that still felt that the YZ’s front end was a bit vague, especially when exiting corners under power, and that the suspension settings were a tad soft for more aggressive riders. Will the changes help it become the top choice for everyone?

New For 2019

Updated suspension settings for an improved feeling of traction

Redesigned front fork lugs/ axle brackets for improved rigidity and front-end feel

Redesigned front and rear wheel collars for an improved feeling of traction

Updated starter system to reduce drag and horsepower loss

Increased seat foam density

Blue valvetrain cover