I have been excited to write this post about the KTM SXF 450 top speed because there is bad information being spread on the internet.
By the time you read this article, I’m hoping it shows up at the top of Google’s search results so that you get accurate information. But, if for some reason you’re reading this article and it’s not at the top of the search results, then you likely saw a lot of bad information too.
In this post, I will be covering the true top speed of a KTM SXF 450 and talking about a few of the items that can impact the top speed. Let’s dive in.
Bad Information about the KTM SXF 450 Top Speed
As I write this article, if you search “KTM SXF 450 Top Speed” in Google, the top 4-5 results all say that the top speed is 123 mph. That is wrong.
Here is what’s showing up in Google search results as I write this:
If you scroll down a bit more, here are even more results saying that same thing:
Do you know why this is?
It’s because most of these sites are simply copying the content from each other and regurgitating it. Once one site publishes the wrong speed and ranks well in Google for it, the others copy it. Even when the data is wrong.
I’m writing this post to show you the correct KTM SXF 450 top speed.
The True KTM SXF 450 Top Speed
The KTM SXF 450 top speed is about 75-85 mph.
Change some of the items I mention below to really optimize for top speed you might be able to get 90-95 mph out of the bike. That is if you’re truly just shooting for top speed and that’s all you care about.
If you have unlimited money and your sole focus is making the bike as fast as possible, you could make it go what the other sites are claiming, but that’s not what most people want to know.
Why did I pick these two bikes to compare the KTM SXF 450 to?
The YZ450F and CRF450R were both chosen to compare the KTM SXF 450 to because they are the most common 450 motocross bikes people ride and race. There are other brands, like GasGas, Husquvarna, and Suzuki, but the YZ and CRF are generally the most common 450s.
What changes the top speed of KTM SXF 450?
It can be tough at times to calculate the true top speed of a dirt bike because there are quite a few different items that can impact it. Let’s take a look at them.
Engine Work and Aftermarket Parts
This might be obvious to some, but engine work and aftermarket parts are going to impact the KTM SXF 450 top speed. Arguably, most of anything.
If your KTM SXF 450 has engine work and a pipe, that’s not really comparable to the top speed of a stock KTM SXF 450.
The top speed of KTM SXF 450 that hasn’t had any work done to it will be significantly lower than the top speed of KTM SXF 450 that has undergone mods.
The more work you do to the bike, the greater the difference in speeds will be.
A Factory Red Bull KTM SXF 450 that Cooper Webb races in Lucas Oil Pro Motocross isn’t going to be comparable to a stock KTM SXF 450 off the dealership floor.
There are other factors at play here too – such as gearing, riding conditions, and more.
The second most important factor in determining the KTM SXF 450 top speed is its gearing. Gearing refers to the size (and ratio) of the front and rear sprockets.
For reference, the stock gearing for this bike is a 13-tooth front sprocket and a 49-tooth rear sprocket (depending on the year of your bike).
Riders normally pick different gearing depending on the situation they’re riding. If the rider is racing supercross, they would typically want more acceleration (referred to as more bottom end). To achieve this, they’d use either a smaller front sprocket or a larger rear one. This is known as having a low gear ratio.
If the rider is racing motocross, they may want more top speed (known as top end). To do this, the rider would use a larger front sprocket or a smaller rear sprocket; in other words, they would be changing to a higher gear ratio.
Riding in the woods can require an entirely different gearing combination than that of supercross or motocross.
This might not sound like much to some people, but it has a large impact on the top speed of KTM SXF 450 (or any dirt bike, for that matter). Depending on the gear changes made, it can increase or decrease the KTM SXF 450 top speed by more than 5-10+ mph.
A KTM SXF 450 with an 8-tooth front sprocket will have a different top speed than one with the stock 14-tooth front sprocket (I made the difference wide to make a point — no one is running an 8-tooth front sprocket on their KTM SXF 450….).
Additionally, a change to the front sprocket has a great effect on the KTM SXF 450 top speed and bottom end than changing the rear sprocket. Going up or down one tooth on the front sprocket is not equal to one tooth on the rear sprocket.
Rather, changing the front sprocket by one tooth is equivalent to 3-4 teeth in the rear.
Rider: Size and Ability
The top speed of KTM SXF 450 is going to be slower if the rider weighs more because it takes more work from the bike, while the bike and engine maintain the same ability/capacity. The heavier the rider, generally the lower the KTM SXF 450 top speed is going to be.
The rider’s weight doesn’t impact the top speed on a 450 quite as much as it would on a small cc bike, like a Yamaha YZ125, but it does have some impact.
In addition, an experienced rider can make the KTM SXF 450 go faster than a beginner who is just learning. A rider who knows how to quickly and smoothly shift gears can hit a higher top speed than someone who is just learning how to use a clutch.
I’ll use Cooper Webb as an example again. He can make a KTM SXF 450 go faster than someone who is just starting out riding dirt bikes
Conditions of Riding
The KTM SXF 450 top speed can also be impacted by riding conditions, including both location and surface.
For example, a dirt bike’s power output is generally higher closer to sea level than at high altitudes. So if you’re planning to ride your KTM SXF 450 in the mountains, it will likely have a lower top speed than if you were riding at sea level.
Or, even if you’re not in the mountains necessarily, but you’re just riding in Colorado, you’re much higher above sea level than the coasts of the US. That will cause your KTM SXF 450 top speed to be lower.
Smaller-size bikes (bikes with small cc engines) are more impacted by elevation changes than larger bikes, too. Just like my YZ125 example above with the rider’s weight.
Are you riding in the woods, on a motocross track, or on a paved road? If it’s in the woods, your top speed might be limited. If you’re racing motocross, you can only go so fast while remaining safe and within bounds (and, don’t forget, sometimes slow is fast).
Apart from the elevation and location, another factor that affects the KTM SXF 450 top speed is the surface on which it is being ridden. The top speed of KTM SXF 450 ridden on flat pavement will be different than if it were driven on a tight, sandy motocross course; even the type of tires can make a difference.
If you’re on a drag strip with gearing set to go as fast as possible, that’s going to be different than if you’re running a tight arenacross or supercross race.
A Few Other Factors that Can Impact the KTM SXF 450 top speed
Your KTM SXF 450 top speed can also be impacted by a few more things, including the condition of your bike, the weather, and how you’re recording the data.
A bike that is regularly maintained will run faster and more efficiently than one that isn’t. For example, a KTM SXF 450 that has had consistent maintenance done to it will be able to reach a higher top speed than one not taken care of properly.
The weather and temperature can both affect your KTM SXF 450 top speed. If it rains, the pavement or racetrack will be wet or muddy and your top speed will likely be lower than normal.
If you want to get an accurate reading of the top speed of KTM SXF 450, use an onboard GPS device rather than relying on someone pointing a speed gauge at you as you zoom past. This doesn’t mean the bike will actually go any faster or slower, it just changes what you end up seeing on paper.
Waving the White Flag on the top speed of KTM SXF 450
As we pass by the white flag of this article and enter into the last lap, I want to summarize what I’ve covered so far.
Ultimately, most people want to know their bike’s rough top speed. Yes, mods and other items impact a KTM SXF 450 top speed potential, but at the end of the day, people just want to have an idea of how fast their bike is.
I also wanted to clear up the bad information that’s being shown in Google’s search results. Hopefully, this article will rise to the top of the search results and you’ll get the real information you want.
With that in mind, a KTM SXF 450 top speed is about 75-85 mph.
Frequently Asked Questions About the KTM SXF 450 Top Speed
If you have questions you’d like answered, submit them in the comments below and I will add them here to the FAQ section.
There are a lot of factors that go into how fast a 450 dirt bike can go, but generally speaking, most 450 dirt bikes can go between 80-95 mph.
Yes, KTM 450 is a reliable dirt bike.