The all-new WR450F celebrates 20 years of Yamaha 4-stroke enduro production with a complete redesign that delivers stronger power with increased agility, as well as greater versatility and lighter handling. At the same time as being lighter, slimmer and faster, the all-new 2019 model maintains the characteristics that have made it one of the most popular 450cc enduro models all over the world, namely rock-solid stability, legendary reliability and outstanding high-speed performance.
In the two decades since the first WR-F 4-stroke revolutionized the enduro scene it has established a reputation for its linear and tractable power, high build quality and rugged construction – and these are the key elements that have made the WR450F a firm favourite with fast trail riders and serious
Since its original launch in 1998, the WR-F’s engine has grown from 400cc to 426cc, and the latest generation reverse cylinder head engine displaces a full 450cc. The new 2019 model has been further developed using advanced engine and chassis technology derived from the latest highly successful YZ450F platform – an apex predator motocross bike that blends mind bending power with absolute control.
WR450F: Built to win in any environment
Yamaha’s WR-F enduro bikes have been proving their race-winning potential all over the world in a wide variety of competitive off-road events. In the FIM Enduro World Championship, Outsiders Yamaha Official Enduro Team riders Jamie McCanney (E1) and Löic Larrieu (E2) have been challenging hard for the top place on the podium throughout the year – while Larrieu took a sensational outright victory in the 2017 ISDE against the world’s best riders. Riding WR-F enduro bikes, Manxman McCanney and Frenchman Larrieu have established Yamaha as a main contender in EWC and underlined the company’s total commitment to enduro.
In the 2018 Dakar Rally, Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team rider Adrien Van Beveren retained the overall lead on his WR450F Rally for five days until an unfortunate race-ending crash on stage 10. With one stage victory and three more stage runner-up results, Frenchman Van Beveren proved the winning capabilities of the WR450F in the toughest possible environment.
In addition to the legendary Dakar Rally, Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team riders have also had a full season competing in Cross Country Rallies all over the world, and the experience gained has contributed towards the development of the new WR450F.
Faster and stronger 450cc reverse-head engine
The all-new WR450F is equipped with a sophisticated reverse cylinder head engine featuring a rearward slanting cylinder that helps to ensure idealized mass centralization. Developed from the MXGP-winning YZ450F motocross bike – and equipped with enduro-specific intake and exhaust systems, fuel injection and ignition advance maps – the new high torque 450cc 4-valve engine produces a broad and linear spread of useable power. With an excellent feeling of traction, the WR450F delivers harder-hitting performance for winning times on enduro special tests.
The stronger engine produces a wider band of pulling power and offers smoother throttle control for technical sections, and these enhanced characteristics – together with the lighter and slimmer feeling chassis – enable the WR450F rider to maintain a faster pace throughout the day.
New smartphone tuning with the Power Tuner app
On board WiFi means that you can tune the new WR450F to suit different tracks and changing weather conditions using a smartphone in association with the Communication Control Unit that is available in the optional race kit*. The new Power Tuner app gives every WR450F rider the ability to make instant fueling and ignition timing changes and upload/share data for the ultimate in track-side tuning.
The free Yamaha Power Tuner app also allows owners to record race log information and monitor a range of data such as maintenance and system diagnosis, engine run time and more. (* Race kit available separately).
Adjustable engine mode switch
A handlebar-mounted dual engine map switch has been adopted and positioned next to the clutch lever to enable changes in the engine power delivery characteristics mid-race. This switch allows the rider to select one of two engine maps on the fly at the press of a button to cater for changes in the riding environment. Together with the new engine’s wider spread of torque, this engine mode switch underlines the new WR450F’s versatility and adaptability, making it an ideal enduro bike for racers as well as leisure riders.
Sharper handling aluminium bilateral beam frame
Developed from the latest YZ450F, the all-new aluminium bilateral beam frame is slimmer and lighter, giving it a much lighter and more agile feel through twisty, rocky and technical terrain. The new frame design includes a revised head pipe position, straight tank rail, larger absorption zone and an enlarged rear arm bracket and these elements contribute to an improved agility, precision and traction.
Industry leading front and rear suspension
The WR450F runs a sophisticated suspension system that provides a stable damping force with plenty of surface feedback at low to mid speeds.Featuring new internals with longer high-rate springs, the industry-leading KYB® air-oil-separate upside-down front forks provide stable damping characteristics over all types of terrain – while the flex-resistant outer tubes contribute to a secure feeling of ground contact. This front suspension system is widely acknowledged as being one of the best available on a production dirt bike, and responds particularly well during the transition between the compression and rebound strokes.
The rear shock absorber is also based on the YZ450F unit and, like the forks, features enduro modelspecific settings. Its new 11.5mm diameter coil spring is 350 grams lighter and has a higher fatigue strength than the current model’s – and for cooler running and more stable damping force, the capacity of the shock’s reservoir has been increased by 30cc.
Larger 7.9 litre fuel tank
For increased riding time between fuel stops the 2019 WR450F is equipped with a newly designed large-capacity 7.9-litre plastic resin fuel tank featuring a compact fuel pump. The increased fuel capacity has been achieved by extending the fuel tank’s lower section towards the centre of the bike – a move that improves mass centralization and ensures a slim and compact body design that enhances rider comfort and mobility.
Lighter, slimmer and sharper bodywork and headlight design
Current WR450F riders will appreciate how much this bike has changed for 2019 – and those who are new to Yamaha 4-stroke enduro will be impressed by its easy ergonomics. The new frame has enabled Yamaha’s designers to fit much slimmer bodywork that looks and feels more like a 250, making this one of the most compact 450 enduro bikes. Mass centralization is also improved, and the overall impression of lightness and agility is reinforced by the new headlight cowl that sits lower and closer to the rider, giving a sharper race-bred look.
The WR450F is also equipped with new and more compact radiators that facilitate the fitment of narrower and closer-fitting radiator shrouds that contribute towards rider mobility and give added control during stand up riding. The new shrouds also feature wear resistant in-mould graphics that accentuate the athletic lines of the slim new body design.
More protective skidplate and new speed sensor
The new model gets a larger and lighter plastic resin skid plate that is designed to protect the frame, engine, hoses and water pump from deep ruts and flying debris – and its close-fitting frontal area prevents mud and stones from accumulating in any cavities around the crankcases and so reduces additional running weight.
For quicker and easier front wheel removal the new Yamaha enduro is equipped with a new type speed sensor.
Free flow air filter
For easy maintenance the WR450F gets an all-new airbox that enables tool-free filter changes. The new filter element gives reduced airflow resistance with increased reliability, and features rubber seals at the centre positioning pin for increased dust-filtering capability.
Lighter, tougher clutch & wide ratio 5 speed transmission
In order to better handle harsh enduro conditions, the durable new clutch is equipped with a highly heat-resistant friction plate – and a new design that eliminates the judder spring is adopted to give a much lighter pull at the lever for better feel and improved controllability.
The new WR450F adopts a wide-ratio 5-speed transmission with modified internals that provides strong off-road performance in difficult and technical areas, as well as strong high-speed performance for flat dirt sections. Also, the shapes of the dog gears have been revised.
Lower and narrower seat
Whether you’re sitting down or standing up, the new seat’s slimmer design makes it easier to shift your body weight. As well as being 2cm narrower in the front section, the middle and rear sections of the seat are also lower, enabling you to move backwards or forwards more easily for a higher degree of control when cornering, accelerating or braking.
2019 WR450F Key Features
- All-new 450cc engine with optimized settings
- Optional race kit with CCU enables Power Tuner app
- New handlebar mounted switch adjusts engine mode
- New YZ450F-based lightweight bilateral beam frame
- Revised KYB® suspension for stable & smooth ride
- Slim, mass-centralized 7.9 litre fuel tank
- New light, slim and sharp body & headlight design
- Tough new skidplate and new speed sensor
- New radiator shrouds and easy-access air filter box design
- Durable new clutch, 5-speed wide-ratio gearbox
- New narrow, lower and more accessible seat
- Tough new wear-resistant in-mould graphics
The 2019 Yamaha WR450F models are expected to arrive in South Africa this December.