The RM-Z450 has a good power delivery that is easy to control. The engine runs well with its consistent, torquey character, but has a heavy (less free revving) feeling that is not very exciting. The leaner white coupler improves the throttle response slightly, but the Suzuki is still the slowest revving bike of the bunch. The meat of the power is in the midrange and it doesn’t have the high-rpm pulling power of the other bikes either, which makes short-shifting mandatory and the need for it to be kept in the correct gear at all times. The gearing is a bit tall and as a result, some test riders found themselves using second gear more on it than any other bike. It has the most engine-braking and the hardest clutch pull of all six bikes, and is also the only machine in the class to still come with a kickstarter.