Suzuki comes out of
the gate charging KING
2015 SUZUKI RM-Z450
No one expected this. In the past, Suzuki built motocross
machines that handled well—dating
back to the RM125, the Full Floater
and Carmichael’s dominance on the
early ’05 RM-Z450—but the last few
years have been tough, not only for
Suzuki, but for all of the “Big Four.”
Manufacturers were just trying to survive and shied away from investing
heavily in research and development.
The new Suzuki RM-Z450 has all of
the appearances of a machine stuck
in the doldrums, the victim of a hand-off policy that has been in effect since
the bike went to fuel injection.
But, hold onto your shorts. Though
the new machine looks like a replica
of the 2014 model, one ride around
the track proves that this just might
be the 450 motocrosser of the year!
One would think that the biggest
change was the new Showa SFF
(Single Function Fork) Triple Air fork.
It uses no springs, is lighter (by 2. 5
pounds) and gives you the ability to
dial in the spring rate for any size
rider. As was the case last year, the
spring and damper functions are
separate and the air spring is not
influenced by heat. It is a copy of the
works unit used by JS7 and Ryan
Villopoto on the green side. The SFF
has three chambers.