From the 2022 Monster Energy Kawasaki race team to the people: The 2023 Kawasaki KX450SR enters its second year as a factory-level production dirt bike.

From the 2022 Monster Energy Kawasaki race team to the people: The 2023 Kawasaki KX450SR enters its second year as a factory-level production dirt bike. (Kawasaki/)

Up-spec versions of 450 motocross flagships bring factory-level performance to avid off-road racers. Kawasaki’s latest entry is the KX450SR (Special Racer). The SR builds on the KX450 platform with specific tuning and design to make its performance and appearance similar to the machines raced in Monster Energy Supercross and AMA Pro Motocross Championships.

Editor’s note: If you want to know what it’s like to ride, our sister brand Dirt Rider published review content during the 2022 Kawasaki KX450SR First Ride Review.

When it debuted in 2022, it rode with KYB suspension at both ends. Now, for 2023, the Special Racer sports Showa’s 49mm coil-spring fork and shock.

Pricing has gone up from last year. The 2023 KX450SR is now $12,699.

Pricing has gone up from last year. The 2023 KX450SR is now $12,699. (Kawasaki/)

The new Showa suspension’s SR-specific settings are tuned for top performance and smooth, plush damping characteristics, but another focus for the new unit is longevity. Kawasaki says that the components have titanium oxide (TiO) on the large-diameter inner fork tubes to improve wear resistance and reduce friction. The inner surface of the outer fork tubes have Showa’s Dimplush wave-like texture which retains an oil film, for smooth-moving parts, and is also Kashima-coated to prevent wear.

The fork is held up by a set of XTrig revolutionary opposing clamp system (ROCS-TECH) triple clamps, which according to Kawasaki have opposing split clamp areas that help improve fork flex action. An XTrig progressive handlebar damping system (PHDS) mount is said to improve the fork’s responsiveness and help dampen forces and absorb vibrations that travel to the handlebar. The Renthal Fatbar handlebar is 12-position adjustable.

Showas what you got.

Showas what you got. (Kawasaki/)

The liquid-cooled 449cc four-stroke has a few exclusive features specific to the SR, including polished intake ports, special FI mapping, and a Pro Circuit TI-6 Pro titanium race exhaust. Other factory-like details include the SR-specific suspension/settings, those trick triple clamps, DID Dirt Star ST-X aluminum alloy rims, DID gold chain with Renthal rear sprocket, Hinson clutch cover, and special factory graphics.

Riders can channel their inner Jason Anderson and Adam Cianciarulo.

Riders can channel their inner Jason Anderson and Adam Cianciarulo. (Kawasaki/)

2023 figures for travel, ground clearance, seat height, weight are all to be announced, but we do know other specifications, listed below. Team Green’s limited-edition dirt bike will be available late fall 2022 for an MSRP of $12,699.

2023 Kawasaki KX450SR Technical Specifications And Price

PRICE: $12,699
ENGINE: 449cc, DOHC, liquid-cooled single cylinder; 4 valves per cylinder
BORE x STROKE: 96.0 x 62.1mm
COMPRESSION RATIO: 12.5:1
FUEL DELIVERY: Fuel injection w/ Kehin 44mm throttle body
CLUTCH: Wet multiplate clutch
TRANSMISSION/FINAL DRIVE: 5-speed/chain
FRAME: Aluminum perimeter frame
FRONT SUSPENSION: 49mm inverted coil-spring fork adjustable for compression and rebound damping; TBA-in. travel
REAR SUSPENSION: Uni-Trak shock adjustable for preload, rebound, and low- and high-speed compression; TBA-in. travel
FRONT BRAKE: 270mm petal disc
REAR BRAKE: 250mm petal disc
WHEELS, FRONT/REAR: DID Dirt Star ST-X aluminum alloy; 21 in. / 19 in.
TIRES, FRONT/REAR: 80/100-21 / 120/80-19
RAKE/TRAIL: 27.4°/4.8 in.
WHEELBASE: 58.5 in.
SEAT HEIGHT: TBA in.
FUEL CAPACITY: 1.6 gal.
CLAIMED WET WEIGHT: TBA lb.
WARRANTY: N/A
AVAILABLE: Late Fall 2022
CONTACT: kawasaki.com

Currently there are some blanks in the spec sheet. What we do know for certain is that there are 21- and 19-inch wheels, a 58.5-inch wheelbase, 1.6-gallon fuel tank, 4.8-inch trail, and 27.4-degree rake among other details.

Currently there are some blanks in the spec sheet. What we do know for certain is that there are 21- and 19-inch wheels, a 58.5-inch wheelbase, 1.6-gallon fuel tank, 4.8-inch trail, and 27.4-degree rake among other details. (Kawasaki/)

KYB suspension has been swapped for the Showa units to more closely resemble current factory race bikes.

KYB suspension has been swapped for the Showa units to more closely resemble current factory race bikes. (Kawasaki/)

Graphics, engine upgrades, DID rims, and other details separate the SR from the KX450.

Graphics, engine upgrades, DID rims, and other details separate the SR from the KX450. (Kawasaki/)
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