The Honda CRF450L is coming to South Africa, and soon



We love the Honda CRF250L, we really do, but the problem with South Africa is that it’s extremely, well, big. And open. The 250 is an amazing street-legal off-road bike, but when it comes to the navigating of a thousand kilometres of open South African veldt and desert, it just doesn’t cut it.

Step forward the newly-launched CRF450L, Honda’s new dual-purpose machine. Let’s clarify that there is a distinct difference between dual-purpose machines and adventure bikes, something many people tend to get wrong. An adventure bike is a travel machine, designed to go nearly anywhere. Apart from being rugged and multi-purpose, it also needs to be able to eat up huge miles in comfort and style, and so they tend to be heavier, and thus are not entirely all encompassing when it comes to off-road.


Step forward, again, the Honda CRF450L. It is based on the CFR450R motocross racer but has LED lighting, indicators, a numberplate bracket and mirrors, meaning it is completely road legal. It features much the same Unicam 449.7cc four-stroke thumper mill as the R, but the valve-timing has been altered and the crank has 12% more inertia, all designed to make this motocross engine less terrifying. Apart from that, there is also a different exhaust designed to meet European bunny hugger rules and homicidal neighbour noise regulations.


The suspension uses different settings and a different rear linkage all designed for better road going usage, plus the fuel tank is made from titanium and holds 7.6 litres. Obviously it isn’t terribly kitted out in the comfort department, being basically a motocross bike, but then this machine has a kerb weight of 130 kg that we will all agree is absolutely buggerall.

More good news is that it will cost R124,999 and more so Honda South Africa say that it will be in the country towards the end of December this year.

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