2014 Kawasaki KX250F:
Overall, the 2014 KX250F is a very similar machine to its most recent predecessor. It hasn’t made the jump to an air fork and retains the Showa Separate Function Fork (SFF) where the compression and damping duties are in different fork tubes. The engine hasn’t seen any changes other than the counter-shaft and sprocket retainer now uses a nut and washer instead of a clip to make maintenance easier.
The biggest addition for the quarter-liter Green Machine is the Launch Control system, the same one Kawasaki uses on the KX450F. The KX250F will be the first 250 four-stroke motocrosser to have an electronically assisted starting mechanism. Next, the frame was updated with thinner steel engine mounts to offer a better mix of chassis rigidity and flex, aimed at improving handling characteristics.
The transmission has new four-dog set up instead of three-dogs per gear and the shift-fork grooves are more direct to enhance feel at the shift lever. Other than those changes and a white rear fender, the KX250F retains its successful specs from last year.
2014 Kawasaki KX450:
It looks like Kawasaki’s philosophy approaching the 2014 KX450F was, ‘If it isn’t broken, don’t fix it.’ The only items that can be called new on the 450F are the grips that have a softer compound. But, with some recent championships in their trophy room, Kawasaki didn’t have much incentive to reinvent the wheel.
For 2014 the big green motocrosser retains it’s industry leading stock adjustability with two positions for the bars and two position for the footpegs allowing a multitude of ergonomic options to fit different riders, riding styles and tracks. The 450F is keeping the Kayaba Pneumatic Spring Fork (PSF) that has no springs and uses air in its place.
Generally, the 2014 Kawasaki MXers are slightly updated versions of very successful machines that have proven themselves again and again. Only track time will show if these upgrades were enough to keep up with the competition.