Bimota’s new BX450 is a revolutionary motorcycle. For decades, Bimota has created exclusive and ultrarefined streetbikes, but the BX450 is the design house’s first-ever enduro model. It’s not a crossover ADV bike, but a genuine competition machine intended to compete in major enduro and ISDE events.
Kawasaki requested that Bimota take the iconic KX450 and hone it into a lighter, more competitive motorcycle. The Bimota technical team worked with the basic Kawasaki KX450 platform, starting from the massive aluminum twin-spar frame with classic lower double cradle. This is a very solid structure that houses a powerful 449cc liquid-cooled DOHC four-valve single (96 x 62.1mm, 12.5:1 compression). In the new Bimota BX450, this unit features an electric starter, receives a more advanced ECU with specific mappings and a traction-control program, and is augmented with an Arrow exhaust system.
While Bimota hasn’t revealed much about the engine’s performance, it is more open about the chassis and suspension. Here, Bimota has retained the original parts: a fully adjustable 49mm Showa male-slider fork with an offset axle at the front and Kawasaki’s Uni-Trak monoshock rear teamed linked to an aluminum swingarm. Front and rear each offer 12 inches of wheel travel. Nissin provides the brakes, a single front disc with a four-piston caliper as well as a single rear disc. Wheelbase is 58.5 inches and features typical off-road steering geometry: 27.6 degrees of rake and 4.7 inches of trail. The spoked wheels are shod with Metzeler 6 Days M+S tires, 90/100-21 front and 140/80-18 rear.
Bimota’s execution of the bike has cut the curb weight down to 242 pounds. Harder to measure but more immediately impactful is the bike’s visual appearance, especially the attention Bimota has paid to detail and the refinement of the BX450′s slim lines. Like most Bimotas, production will be limited to a few hundred units at the most. Whether it’s their only dirt endeavor or the first of many, the BX450 is certainly an interesting new direction for Bimota’s creativity.