Kawasaki reveal 2023 off-road roster, major changes to KX250

Kawasaki has launched its 2023 off-road range, encompassing the full range of mini bikes up to the new KX450, and from motocross to enduro. 

Jeremy McGrath, 2023 Kawasaki KX450. - Kawasaki

KAWASAKI has today (3 May 2022) launched its 2023 off-road range, including both motocross and enduro machinery. 

Starting off at the top of the range, the new KX450, which Kawasaki says is “Created to dominate in the upper echelons of off-road sport, the mighty KX450 continues to carve a fearsome reputation heading up an impressive range of off-road machines.” Indeed, Romain Febvre took Jeffrey Herlings to the very last race of the 2021 MXGP World Championship with Kawasaki, and Jason Anderson has won six races in this year’s AMA Supercross series with his KX450.

The KX250 - currently performing well in the MX2 World Championship with both Mikkel Haarup and Kevin Horgmo - will feature more power than ever before for the 2023 model. The pitch for the intake valves has been narrowed from 37mm to 35.5mm, which is combined with “increased clearance at the valve seats,” according to Kawasaki, to provide improved peak performance. With the same result (added power), “the downdraft style intake duct is straighter plus the upstream injector is repositioned from above to below the duct,” Kawasaki says. The valves themselves are also smaller, which has required a redesign of the piston crowns.

Kawasaki have also looked to improve the low-to-mid-range torque by increasing the length of the exhaust header pipe from 457mm to 557mm, while a new magneto rotor has been brought to the KX250 for smoother and more manageable power delivery.

A longer first gear has also been brought to the KX250 thanks to feedback from Kawasaki’s AMA Supercross riders, while its All-Japan riders’ feedback has resulted in revised front fork internals, which give a firmer compression damping than before. The same is also true for the rear suspension.

The 2023 KX250 will also feature a wider rear tyre, with Dunlop’s MX33 110/90-19 being used compared to the 100/90-19 that was used before. Its footpegs are also different, with 5mm extra width, and they sit 3mm further back than before.

On the smaller end of things, Kawasaki’s KLX110R will feature a four-speed box and auto-clutch, while the KX85 small- and big-wheel variants both feature liquid cooling and Kawasaki’s Uni-Trak suspension. There is also a KX65, but the lack of details on it would suggest that Kawasaki’s smallest dirtbike will be pretty much identical to previous years for 2023. 

There are also few details on the 2023 KX250X and KX450X enduro bikes, implying significant similarities with previous years.
Prices are currently unconfirmed by Kawasaki, who say they will be “confirmed soon.”