How Much Power Does the 2023 Honda CRF450RL Make?

Dyno testing Honda’s 450cc street-legal dirt bike for horsepower and torque.

Honda has been in the street-legal dirt bike game since 2019 with its CRF450RL. It was called the “CRF450L” then, but the Japanese manufacturer added the “R” to its name in 2021 to signify it’s a performance-focused model akin to the CRF450R and CRF450RX. An impressive pedigree indeed, but does having the bones of a motocrosser and cross-country racer translate to similar numbers on the dyno?

Being a dual sport, the CRF450RL is equipped with a catalytic converter, charcoal canister, and restrictive EFI mapping to make it adhere to EPA regulations. With that, we can’t expect it to pump out the same horsepower and torque figures of Honda’s off-road-only competition models, but it’s still a fuel-injected liquid-cooled SOHC four-stroke 450cc engine that’s capable of sending plenty of power to the 18-inch rear wheel. In the several pulls, we documented peak figures of 38.0 hp at 7,500 rpm and 27.8 lb.-ft. of torque at 6,400 rpm.

“The CRF450RL’s throttle response is extremely precise and calls up a burst of power from the bottom-end through the midrange; however, it does fall off a bit when transitioning from the midrange to the top-end,” test rider Evan Allen said. “As a result, the bike likes to be ridden in the low to midrange, as opposed to being revved out.”

2023 Honda CRF450RL Dyno ChartRobert Martin

2023 Honda CRF450RL Engine Specs

Engine Type: SOHC, liquid-cooled, four-stroke single-cylinder; 4 valves/cyl.
Displacement: 450cc
Bore x Stroke: 96.0 x 62.1mm
Compression Ratio: 12.0:1
Fuel Delivery: Electronic fuel injection w/ 46mm throttle body