Honda has announced “refinements” to their flagship off-road model the CRF450RX for model year 2022 – smoother power delivery via new ECU settings plus a damping re-valve on the Showa suspension to improve balance and overall control.

Honda introduced pretty seismic changes to its flagship Off-Road model, CRF450RX in 2021 – it remains one of the most ‘clicked upon’ bikes of the last 12 months and has sold out allocation in many countries globally.

Though the 450RX has its place at the top of the many CRF models in Honda's range, in reality the ’21 bike is a weapon and really at all not far removed from the CRF450R model developed by MXGP World Champion Tim Gasjer. It has handguards, a side stand and softer Showa suspension but is a weapon none-the-less.

Honda say they have ever-so slightly tweaked the 2022 CRF450RX to make it just a little more rideable...

2022 Honda CRF450RX updates: 

Firmer Showa suspension damping creates more balanced suspension performance  

Revised ECU mapping for enhanced bottom-end drive drivability

Suspension changes in detail

The 2022 CRF450RX’s chassis is unchanged apart from the changes to the front and rear Showa suspension which Honda say delivers “noticeably improved ‘hold up’” by raising the compression damping ride height of the stroke front and rear to improve balance between the front and rear as you ride.


The suspension settings are specific to the CRF450RX to cater for the wider variety of terrain and conditions this Cross-Country model is aimed at. 

The Showa 49mm USD coil spring AG2 forks are based on the ‘factory’ unit supplied to MX race teams in the Japanese championship. In 2021 that meant 5mm more stroke (310mm) and increased rigidity in the axle clamps.

For ’22 the low-speed shim-stack has been re-valved to generate firmer settings for both compression and rebound damping. Oil volume is reduced however, 8cc to 380cc and there are now 13 adjustment positions (rather than 14) for rebound with 14 for compression, as before.

Re-valved shock

The Showa MKE AF2 shock has undergone a complete re-valve to change the low-to-mid and high-speed shim stack. Honda says it delivers a firmer overall setting for compression damping and now also has changes to the number of clicks you have for adjustment: 13 clicks for rebound (from the 10) and seven for low-speed compression (from nine) and 2-1/3 turns available for high-speed (from 2-1/6). Spring preload length goes from 6.1mm/305N to 6.5mm/325N and the oil volume increases 1cc to 422cc.

ECU tweaks

Honda’s 449.7cc four-valve Unicam engine is unchanged on the 2022 model except for updated ECU mapping which they say boosts low to mid-range driveability.  

Stronger low-rpm torque feel, new injector angle to improve intake efficiency and throttle feel, improved stall-resistance, oval exhaust ports, new header pipe and a much improved hydraulic clutch – the list was extensive on the 2021 model.

Honda’s flagship XC bike retains the same impressive electronics package from the previous model also: Selectable Torque Control (HSTC) with three riding modes (plus OFF), HRC Launch Control offers three start options, Engine Mode Select Button (EMSB) features three maps to adjust output character and the HRC Setting tool which tailors Aggressive and Smooth modes.

2022 Honda CRF450RX technical specifications:




Liquid-cooled 4-stroke single cylinder Uni-cam



Bore ´ Stroke

96.0mm x 62.1mm

Compression Ratio

13.5: 1




Fuel injection

Fuel Tank Capacity

8 litres




Digital CDI





Clutch Type

Wet type multi-plate

Transmission Type

Constant mesh, 5-speed, manual

Final Drive





Aluminium twin tube



Dimensions (L´W´H)

2,182 x 839 x 1,282mm



Caster Angle




Seat Height


Ground Clearance



Dry 107.3kg – Wet 113.4kg



Type Front

Showa 49mm USD fork

Type Rear

Showa monoshock using Honda Pro-Link 



Type Front

Aluminium, spoke

Type Rear

Aluminium, spoke

Tyres Front

90/90-21M Dunlop Geomax AT81F

Tyres Rear

120/90-18M Dunlop Geomax AT81




Single 260mm disk


Single 240mm disk 


More detailed info on the 2021 model (largely the same machine) can be found on our separate story: First look: 2021 Honda CRF450RX


More information including availability and prices in your country:

Honda North America

Honda Australia