2012 Yamaha YFZ 450R

The Yamaha YFZ 450R is a motocross ATV that shuns popular convention and offers an enticing combination of wonderful handling, comfortable ergonomics, and uncompromising performance.

The design of the YFZ 450R comes with body panels that can be removed easily to make for easy maintenance. Likewise, the body features an aluminum frame that’s been bolted together instead of being welded, ensuring that the ATV carries maximum durability. Another notable element of the YFZ 450R is the oil tank, which has been integrated with the crankcase, making it easier to service the engine.

More than that, the YFZ 450R is powered by an impressive 449cc DOHC engine that’s both agile and nimble, and uses state-of-the-art titanium five-cylinder head technology with a camshaft that has been designed to deliver abundant low to mid-range torque. On top of that, the ATV also incorporates Yamaha Fuel Injection that comes with a big 42mm Mikuni throttle body and 12-hole injector. All together, the combined powertrain elements of the YFZ 450R translate to the perfect combination of hole-shot acceleration and unbridled power.

As an ATV of its stature, the YFZ 450R also comes with a long-travel adjustable suspension and a no-weld aluminum with steel hybrid frame. The ATV’s suspension comes from the 44mm KYB shocks in front that have Kashima coating with 9.8" of wheel travel. This is paired to a gravity-fed cast aluminum swingarm that’s matched to a fully adjustable 46mm KYB piggyback shock affording the 11" of travel for the rear wheel.

Find out more about the Yamaha YFZ 450R after the jump.


Yamaha YFZ 450R
  • The fuel-injected 449cc engine has superb power characteristics. Power delivery is smooth and strong off the line with lots of low and mid range where you need it.
  • The crankcase holds a crankshaft that’s ready to handle the increased balance ratio, as well as a counterbalancer for superior vibration control. The crankcase also houses the oil tank, which helps to centralize mass for unmatched handling and makes maintenance easier.
  • Camshafts are designed to maximize the torque available in the low and mid ranges.
  • Fuel injection uses a 12-hole injector that provides exceptional atomization of the fuel for maximum combustion efficiency and power delivery. The system also uses a big, 42mm Mikuni® throttle body and includes ISC (Idle Speed Control) for easy, reliable start-up and warming.

Chassis and Suspension

Yamaha YFZ 450R
  • The chassis is very spacious, allowing room for even an aggressive racer to move around during the moto, and the ATV’s body panels that the rider contacts during operation are of a softer plastic material for greater comfort. The seat is narrow in the front, yet wide and padded in the rear to provide a more comfortable ride, even when hanging off on the side of the seat in a turn.
  • The wheel has been designed with the inner lip rolled in. This increases the rigidity, allowing a reduction in weight while maintaining strength.
  • Wheels are set motocross-spec wide, near the maximum allowable 50 inches, for great cornering ability. The Dunlop® tires are grippy with a great pattern for cornering, and at 20 inches in the rear and 21 inches in the front, provide much better ground clearance than the competition. That makes the YFZ450R fun to ride off-road, too.
  • ProTaper handlebars are mounted on 4-way clamps for exceptional adjustability. There are two sets of holes in the handlebar crown, and eccentric clamps so the rider can choose the standard setting, 10mm or 20mm forward, or 10mm back.
  • Foot pegs are a generous 2.6 inches wide, something riders will appreciate every time they want to get up on the pegs, with good kick-up on the ends for solid footing.
  • The frame is aluminum for lightweight, except for the frame member under the engine. Here tensioned steel is used for its combination of strength and thinness. This allowed the designers to sit the engine lower overall for excellent mass centralization for unmatched handling. The aluminum frame is bolted together, rather than welded, for maximum durability.
  • The front frame is noticeably narrow at the A-arm mounting points. This dramatically reduces changes in camber as the long A-arms travel through their full range of motion. The front 44mm KYB shocks have Kashima coating for smooth operation with superb bump absorption and excellent anti-bottoming characteristics. The 9.8 inches of wheel travel means this racer is up to even the most challenging tracks.
  • The rear swingarm is crafted of strong, gravity-fed aluminum, and it’s matched to a fully adjustable 46mm KYB® piggyback shock absorber for excellent handling. Rear wheel travel is 11.0 inches for comfort even on tough terrain.
  • For excellent stopping ability, YFZ450R features dual front hydraulic disc brakes and a trick looking, lightweight wave-type rear rotor.

Additional Features

Yamaha YFZ 450R
  • The throttle lever requires low effort, and it’s very comfortable to use. That means less fatigue during all-day riding.
  • The instrumentation is all business. The discrete panel on the fender in front of the rider gives vital indicators about low fuel, coolant temperature, check engine, and neutral gear via a straightforward LED display.


Yamaha YFZ 450R
Engine Type449cc, liquid-cooled w/fan, 4-stroke; DOHC
titanium 5-valve
Bore x Stroke95 x 63.4mm
Compression Ratio11.6:1
Fuel DeliveryYamaha Fuel Injection (YFI) , 42mm
IgnitionTCI (Digital)
Starting SystemElectric
Transmission5-speed manual clutch
Drive Train2WD; sealed O-ring chain, eccentric
Suspension/FrontIndependent double wishbone, w/ Kashima
coated piggyback shocks, High/Low speed
compression, rebound and threaded preload
adjustment, 9.8-in travel
Suspension/RearCast aluminum swingarm w/ piggyback
High/Low speed compression, rebound and
threaded preload adjustment, 11.0-in travel
Brakes/FrontDual ventilated hydraulic disc, twin piston
Brake/RearWave-style ventilated hydraulic disc,
twin piston
Tire/FrontAT21x7-10 Radial
Tire/RearAT20x10-9 Radial
L x W x H70.7 x 48.8 x 41.9 in
Seat Height31.9 in
Wheelbase50.0 in
Ground Clearance4.5 in
Fuel Capacity2.6 gal
Wet Weight403 lb
LightingDual 30W Krypton Multireflector Headlights
and 3.9/0.5W LED brakelight
ColorTeam Yamaha Blue/White
White w/choice of graphics kit

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