2022 Honda CRF450R-S Review / Specs + Changes Explained | CRF Buyer’s Guide

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– NEW 2022 Honda CRF450R-S Dirt Bike Review / Specs + Changes Explained from CRF450R | CRF Buyer’s Guide –

2022 Honda CRF450R-S Review / Specs: Horsepower, Weight, Seat Height + More!

Say hello to the new 2022 Honda CRF450R-S dirt bike! Well, technically it’s not a “new” 2022 motorcycle so-to-say… 

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What is the 2022 Honda CRF450R-S model exactly? How does it compare to the 2022 CRF450R or CRF450RX models etc? In short, the 2022 CRF450R-S is a rebadged 2020 CRF450R. Why would Honda introduce a new 2022 CRF motorcycle based off of the old platform? It’s simple, cost. Dirt bikes are hotter than ever right now and Honda’s cream of the crop CRF450R prices have been steadily rising year after year because they keep dumping so much R&D into them so they can go racing and try to pull off that W. Because of this we’re starting to see prices exceed that $10,000 price point with ease and not everyone wants to sink that much money into a hobby and they want the performance that a cheaper CRF-F model can’t offer. 

That’s where the CRF450R-S comes into play. Honda can take older technology that they’ve already paid for and price it out a little cheaper to bring in more buyers and get more riders on red because not everyone needs or wants the best of the best but they still want something better than the cheaper CRF-F dirt bikes. 

Below, we’ll take a deep-dive into all of the nitty-gritty details behind the 2022 CRF450R-S. Everything from their engine and transmission to the electronics packages which seem to be getting more love than ever thanks to all of the advances in tech the last couple of years. Hopefully, in the end we’ll end up helping you decide whether or not you need to buy the 2022 CRF450R-S or the CRF450R but then you could also just go ham and break out wallet for the 2022 CRF450RWE haha!

Key 2022 CRF450R-S Info (for those in a hurry):

  • 2022 CRF450R-S Price / MSRP: $8,599
    • This bike was originally priced at $9,399 when it was for sale in 2020 and called the CRF450R.
  • 2022 CRF450R-S Release Date: September 2021
  • 2022 CRF450R-S Colors: Red
  • 2022 CRF450R-S Horsepower: 60.8 HP @ 9,500 RPM
  • 2022 CRF450R-S Torque: TBA
  • 2022 CRF450R-S Seat Height: 37.8 inches
  • 2022 CRF450R-S Weight: 247 lbs (curb)
  • 2022 CRF450R-S VS 2021 CRF450R-S Changes: None, first year introduction for the CRF450R-S model.

2022 Honda CRF450R-S Review / Specs + NEW Changes! | 2020 CRF Dirt Bikes & Motorcycles

  • 2022 CRF450R-S Review Contents:

    • CRF450R-S Introduction / Overview
    • Key CRF450R-S Features / Development
      • CRF450R-S Electronics
      • CRF450R-S Chassis / Suspension
      • CRF450R-S Engine
    • CRF450R-S Photo Gallery / Pictures
    • CRF450R-S Technical Specifications

CRF450R-S Introduction / Overview

2022 Honda CRF450R-S Review / Specs: Horsepower, Weight, Seat Height + More!

The Honda CRF450R has been the motocrosser to beat since its introduction 2002. It has become a byword for balance and agility, and as such has always offered its rider – whether amateur enthusiast or pro-racer – total control and the chance to get the very best from their ability. Plus, of course it’s built with the durability and longevity that Honda has long been famed for.

And of course it’s a machine that has constantly evolved, with every upgrade, large or small, drawing on lessons fed back from Honda’s racing programs around the world.

In 2017, under a total redesign headlined ‘ABSOLUTE HOLESHOT!’ Honda’s baddest open-class motocross machine was effectively a ground-up redesign, wielding a major power boost from a brand-new engine, plus increased grip and drive from a completely redesigned chassis. Addition of standard-fit electric start in 2018 completed the package.

For 2019, an HRC-developed cylinder head upped peak power and torque considerably, and HRC launch control was added along with revised rigidity balance for the frame and swingarm, a new front brake caliper and adjustable-position Renthal Fatbars.

But the MX pack waits for nobody, and the best machines have to get better; in 2020 the CRF450R received a new electronics package to make it faster over a lap, yet with even more control.

fast forward to 2022 and the motocross category has seen exceptional growth in recent years, creating strong demand for 450cc motocross machines. While many riders demand the latest technology, many customers also see price as a top priority, but without making a big sacrifice in terms of performance. By offering both the advanced CRF450R and the CRF450R-S (based on the 2020 CRF450R platform), Honda addresses the needs of both groups.

Key Features / Development

CRF450R-S Electronics

  • Honda Selectable Torque Control (HSTC) with 3 riding modes (plus OFF)
  • Electric starter (powered by a lightweight lithium-ion battery).
  • Shift sensor allows a dedicated ignition map for each gear, enabling optimum running.
  • HRC Launch Control offers 3 start options
  • Engine Mode Select Button (EMSB) features 3 maps to adjust output character

The HSTC system fitted to the 2022 CRF450R-S works to minimize rear wheel spin (thus wasted forward drive) and maximize traction. It doesn’t use a wheel speed sensor, and critically maintains feel at the throttle while managing power; ignition timing is retarded and the PGM-FI controlled when the rate of change of rpm is detected to have gone over a set amount.

2022 Honda CRF450R-S Review / Specs + NEW Changes! | 2022 CRF Dirt Bikes & Motorcycles

  • The three Modes differ in drive management level for different riding conditions:
    • In Mode 1 the system intervenes most lightly, and after the longest time – useful for reducing wheelspin and maintaining control in tight corners.
    • Mode 3 has the system intervene more quickly and strongly, and is therefore useful in more slippery, muddy conditions.
    • Mode 2 naturally offers a mid-point between 1 and 3 in terms of speed and strength of intervention.

Pressing and holding the HSTC button for 0.5s will cycle the system to the next mode, with a green LED indication – 1 blink for mode 1, 2 for mode 2 and 3 for mode 3 – to confirm selection.

The HSTC system can also be switched off completely. When the engine is turned on, the system uses the last-selected setting.

  • HRC Launch Control gives any rider the best option for a strong start and also has 3 modes to choose from:
    • Level 3 – 8,250 RPM, muddy conditions/novice.
    • Level 2 – 8,500 RPM, dry conditions/standard.
    • Level 1 – 9,500 RPM, dry conditions/expert.

Activating HRC Launch Control is easy – to turn on, pull in the clutch and push the Start button on the right. The purple LED will blink once for Level 1 selection. Push the Start button again, for 0.5s or longer, and the LED will blink twice for Level 2. Repeat the process and the LED will blink 3 times, indicating that Level 3 has been chosen.

  • The Engine Mode Select Button (EMSB) alters the engine’s characteristics and three maps are available to suit riding conditions or rider preference:
    • Mode 1 – Standard.
    • Mode 2 – Smooth.
    • Mode 3 – Aggressive.
      • The LED also displays mode selected, but with a blue light.

The rider controls and displays – Launch Control indicator, EFI warning, EMSB mode button, and LED indicator – are sited on the left handlebar, with a separate unit for the new HSTC alongside.

CRF450R-S Chassis & Suspension

  • Showa® shock and 49 mm coil-spring fork
  • Twin-spar aluminum frame engineered for great traction and cornering feel, and to minimize weight.
  • Chassis layout allows heavier components to be located as centrally and low as possible for nimble handling and feel.
  • Front-brake caliper uses a pair of pistons (30mm and 27mm) for optimal braking performance on a 260mm rotor with a petal pattern to best dissipate heat.
  • Showa® shock and 49mm coil-spring fork.
  • Front brake hose resists expansion for precise, consistent braking feel.
  • Top triple clamp has two handlebar-clamp locations for moving the handlebar back and forth by 26mm. With reversible handlebar clamp enabling an additional 10mm of adjustment from the base position, there are a total of four different handlebar positions.
  • Black Renthal® Fatbar® handlebar encourages active riding position, while also contributing to light steering feel.
  • Footpegs shed mud and give the rider great feel and confidence in all riding conditions.
  • Lightweight, compact 1.66 gallon titanium fuel tank keeps weight to a minimum.
  • Black D.I.D rims deliver a strong presence on and off the track.
  • Minimization of lines and gaps in the plastic panels results in a smooth surface, facilitating riding-position changes.
  • In-mold graphics are durable and resistant to peeling caused by washing or abrasion.
  • Available only through Honda dealers, Dunlop Geomax MX3S tires provide superior bump absorption and excellent grip.

2022 Honda CRF450R-S Review / Specs: Horsepower, Weight, Seat Height + More!

The new CRF450R-S’s seventh-generation twin-spar aluminum frame was revised last in 2019 for the CRF450R and went unchanged in 2020; it maintains lateral and torsional stiffness for turning ability and traction, with increased yaw-angle stiffness for improved stability and tracking accuracy into, through and out of a corner.

The aluminum swingarm has a stiffer rigidity balance tuned to match the frame; the battery box is now positioned 28.5mm lower to improve mass centralization and drive. Rake and trail are set at 27.4°/116mm, with wheelbase of 58.4 inches (1482mm); dry weight is 238 lbs (108kg), wet / curb weight 247 lbs (112kg).

Fully adjustable, the 49mm Showa USD coil spring fork is a version of the Showa ‘factory’ fork supplied to MX race teams in the Japanese championship. In 2020 – with the target of improved response in the hard-braking zone – the rod-end ‘B’ hole diameter has decreased from 2.4 to 1.6mm to increase the low-speed compression damping.

Likewise, the Showa rear shock’s main piston valving has been revised with greater low-speed compression damping (and less high-speed compression damping) to give improved control under hard acceleration.

The standard-fit, lightweight Renthal Fatbar flex for optimal comfort; the top yoke features two handlebar-holder locations for moving the handlebar rearward and forward by 26mm. When the holder is turned 180°, the handlebar can be moved an additional 10mm from the base position, resulting in four unique riding positions.

The twin-piston front brake caliper uses 30 and 27mm diameter pistons; along with low-expansion rate brake hose, it gives both a strong feel and improved staying power. It works on a 260mm wave-pattern disc. For 2020 a new rear brake pad material for the single-piston caliper increases power and durability in muddy conditions, and dispenses with the need of a cover guard for the 240mm wave-pattern disc.

Lightweight DID aluminum rims, with directly attached spoke pattern layout are finished in black; the front is a 21 x 1.6 in., the rear a 19 x 2.15 in. Fitted as standard equipment are Dunlop’s MX3SF and MX3S soft terrain tires.

The CRF450R-S uses a lightweight 1.66 gal. titanium fuel tank. The smooth external lines of the plastics help the rider move easily and the narrow frontal area and front mudguard directs an efficient funnel of air to the radiator. The radiator shrouds use durable film inset graphics – updated in 2020 – that cover a wide area with scratch-resistant style.

2022 Honda CRF450R-S Review / Specs + NEW Changes! | 2022 CRF Dirt Bikes & Motorcycles

CRF450R-S Engine & Drivetrain

  • 449cc single-cylinder engine with Unicam cylinder head, downdraft intake tract, electronic fuel injection and electric start offers unparalleled “Absolute Holeshot” performance.
  • Shift sensor allows a dedicated ignition map for each gear, enabling optimum running.
  • Selectable HRC launch control provides a steady stream of torque for excellent performance on race starts.
  • Honda Selectable Torque Control with three levels of intervention. HSTC monitors rpm spikes and responds by temporarily reducing torque to aid rear traction. A handlebar-mounted switch allows selection between three modes, depending on conditions and rider preference.
  • Ignition mapping with riding modes in Standard, Smooth and Aggressive options, selectable via a separate handlebar-mounted switch, enables simple tuning depending on rider preference or course conditions.

2022 Honda CRF450R-S Engine Review / Specs + NEW Changes! | 2022 CRF Dirt Bikes & Motorcycles

The 2019 boost in peak power and torque to the CRF450R’s 449.7 four-valve Unicam engine was significant – 2 more horsepower at 9,500 RPM and 1.5 more lb/ft torque at 7,500 RPM – but not achieved at the expense of low-down performance from 3,000rpm-up, which was also improved. These performance numbers carry over to the 2022 CRF450R-S model. 

And the work HRC performed on the cylinder head was extensive; combustion chamber squish was revised, as well as piston skirt profile, piston ring and conrod while both right and left engine cases were optimized for strength versus weight.

In 2020 (carrying through to 2022) the engine hardware was unchanged, with the focus of development on refinements and optimization of the PGM-FI mapping, HRC Launch Control and addition of HSTC.

Bore and stroke is set at 96 x 62.1mm with compression ratio of 13.5:1. A gear position sensor allows the use of three specific ignition maps for 1st and 2nd, 3rdand 4th, and 5th and the PGM-FI injects fuel twice per cycle – the new air cleaner element base employed in 2019 more than doubled the surface area, with much greater flow as a result. The exhaust uses differing, larger diameter bores where it splits from the downpipe; 35mm right and 42mm diameter left and the left exhaust is also 89mm longer than the right.

Rock-solid reliability has always been a big factor in the CRF450R’s success and a 5-hole piston oil jet and dual 12mm drum scavenge pump manage lubrication.

* In short, take the 2022 CRF450R and click copy / paste and here’s your 2022 CRF450R S model… Thanks for checking out the site, hope the info was helpful!

CRF450R-S Photo Gallery / Pictures


Technical CRF450R-S Specifications

2022 CRF450R-S Specs
Model 2022 CRF450R-S
Type 449.7cc liquid-cooled 10º single-cylinder four-stroke
Valve Train Unicam® OHC, four-valve; 38mm intake, titanium; 31mm exhaust, steel
Bore x Stroke 96.0mm x 62.1mm
Compression Ratio 13.5:1
Induction Programmed fuel-injection system (PGM-FI); 46mm throttle bore
Ignition Full transistorized
Starter Push-button electric starter
Transmission Constant-mesh 5-speed return; manual
Clutch Multiplate wet (6 springs)
Final Drive #520 chain; 13T/49T


49mm fully adjustable leading-axle inverted telescopic Showa coil-spring fork
w/ 12.0 in. travel
Rear Pro-Link system; fully adjustable Showa single shock w/ 12.4 in. wheel travel
Front 2-piston caliper (30mm, 27mm) hydraulic; single 260mm disc
Rear 1-piston caliper hydraulic; single 240mm disc
Front Dunlop Geomax MX3S 80/100-21 w/ tube
Rear Dunlop Geomax MX3S 120/80-19 w/ tube
Rake (Caster Angle) 27°22’
Trail 116mm (4.6 in.)
Length 85.9 in.
Width 32.6 in.
Height 49.6 in.
Ground Clearance 12.9 in.
Seat Height 37.8 in.
Wheelbase 58.4 in.
Fuel Capacity 1.66 gal.
Color Red
Curb Weight* 247 lbs.

* Includes all standard equipment, required fluids and full tank of fuel—ready to ride Specifications subject to change.

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