2023 SML 450 Shootout | Video
What a time to be alive. Whether you are a motocross racer, a casual rider, or even an off-road trail rider; the current crop of 450-class machines is better than ever and there is surely a perfect fit for everyone among the red, blue, green, white, and orange sea of machines. Once again, our staff of SML test riders converged on Cahuilla Creek MX for one final day of comparison testing the 2023 Gas Gas MC 450, Honda CRF450R, Husqvarna FC 450, Kawasaki KX450, KTM 450 SX-F, and Yamaha YZ450F bikes. This year, we added a little twist by including the mid-sized KTM 350 SX-F, too. Though the 350 has no official home when it comes to racing – and no one fields it at the highest levels of competition – it remains one of KTM’s best-selling machines as it is hands-down one of the most fun bikes to ride.
Our test rider panel ranges in age, speed, and ability; but all have been testing new machines for years and are certainly not lacking in experience or know-how. As always, our shootout results are a collection of opinions from a select group of riders, and we do not proclaim our findings to be the end-all, be-all. It is our hope that you can find one of our test riders to relate with, and thus gain some valuable insight about the machine(s) you may be considering as your next. That said, let’s get this party started!