The 2018 KTM 450SXF has a much stronger battery than the previous year. You can order it, or better yet, order the WPS battery.
KTMs come with inline fuel filters. They need to be back-flushed
at regular intervals. They can cause hard starting.
MXA test riders cut the V-shaped wing off the inside of the KTM
airbox cover to increase airflow to the engine.
IS IT REALLY LITHIUM-ION OR SOMETHING
Although the manufacturers like to say that their
electric-start bikes have lithium-ion batteries, that
isn’t completely accurate. They are, in fact, LiFePO4
batteries. LiFePO4 stands for lithium (Li), ferrous (Fe)
and phosphate (PO). Once we redefine ferrous as
“iron,” you have what is known as a lithium-iron phosphate battery. Don’t confuse a lithium-iron phosphate
battery with a lithium cobalt-oxide battery. The more
expensive lithium cobalt-oxide batteries are used in
computers, cameras and phones. For motocross bikes,
lithium-iron phosphate is a better choice because it
has a longer calendar life, quicker recharge rate, higher peak-power rating and costs less.
THE COLD-WEATHER-STARTING TRICK
MORE ON THE IN-LINE FUEL FILTERS
KTM installs inline fuel filters in its gas lines. They
can be accessed via the quick-release fitting on the
fuel line. Once you separate the fuel lines, you can
flick the small nylon fuel filter out and check it for
debris. The filter can be back-flushed or replaced.
Clogged filters hurt the fuel pressure and flow. If your
bike is sluggish to start, check the fuel filter first. One
important caveat: be very careful to make sure that
the fuel line’s quick-release fitting clicks back together
completely. We have had the quick release pop off
because we didn’t get it clicked properly. When the
fuel line pops off, the engine stops almost immediately. Click it!
Everybody knows that the KTM 450SXF’s twin, the
Husqvarna FC450, can get better throttle response
and increased power if you drill holes to allow more
air into the airbox. Guess what? The same holds true
for the KTM airbox, albeit to a lesser degree. MXA
doesn’t drill holes in the KTM airbox, but we cut
off the deflector wall on the inner surface of the airbox cover to improve airflow. Additionally, we have
noticed improved throttle response by removing the
wire backfire screen. Unfortunately, this is a difficult
job, so you might just want to order the KTM two-stroke air-filter cage (it doesn’t have a backfire screen).