2024 CFMOTO 450NK Review | First Ride

2024 CFMOTO 450NK Review
The 450NK is one of four bikes in CFMOTO’s lineup powered by a liquid-cooled 449cc parallel-Twin with dual counterbalancers and a lively 270-degree crank. (Photos by Kevin Wing)

As a husky guy who’s 6 feet tall and more than 200 lb, I’m not the target buyer for small bikes, but man, I sure love riding them. Don’t get me wrong; I love riding powerful bikes (like the 190-hp KTM 1390 Super Duke R Evo I track-tested in Spain) and big bikes (like the Harley-Davidson Glides I recently rode on a nine-day, 4,200-mile tour through four states), but they require a level of respect and seriousness that I’m not always in the mood for. Sometimes I just wanna have fun.

2024 CFMOTO 450NK Review

The CFMOTO 450NK has carefree written all over it. It weighs just 364 lb, makes 50 hp at the crank, and has nothing to figure out – just hop on and ride. That’s not to say the 450NK is a toy or just a playbike. While it’s certainly slender between the knees and is easy to toss through a set of tight turns, it doesn’t feel diminutive, nor does it have a cramped cockpit. Snug, perhaps, but not cramped. The positions of the upright handlebar and footpegs are sensible, and the sculpted shape of the tank allows the rider to comfortably wrap around it, giving the sense of sitting in rather than on the bike.

2024 CFMOTO 450NK Review

Powering the 450NK is a liquid-cooled 449cc parallel-Twin that’s a workhorse in CFMOTO’s lineup. The same engine is found in the 450SS sportbike, the Ibex 450 adventure bike I recently tested, and the forthcoming 450CL-C cruiser. Dual counterbalancers help it run smoothly throughout the rev range, and its 270-degree crank gives it a delightful rumble complemented by a spicy exhaust note – not the dull drone one might expect of a bike in this class.

2024 CFMOTO 450NK Review


Except for a bit of low-speed roughness, the 450NK’s cable-actuated throttle provides good response. The slip/assist clutch makes for a light, easy pull when rowing through the 6-speed gearbox, and both the clutch lever and front brake lever are adjustable for reach. The 450NK’s 17-inch cast-aluminum wheels and narrow 110/70 front and 140/60 rear tires (made by CST, the parent company of Maxxis) contribute to the bike’s nimbleness. A light push on either end of the handlebar is all it takes to initiate a turn, and the 450NK holds its line obediently.

2024 CFMOTO 450NK Review
The 450NK’s tailsection has cut-outs in the bodywork, a small pillion, and a stylish taillight.

The bike makes a great commuter or playful canyon carver. It purrs smoothly at highway speeds and will do “the ton” with little effort. Given my body’s weight and terrible aerodynamic profile, not to mention my tendency to twist the throttle with abandon, I recorded lackluster fuel economy during this test – just 42.4 mpg, yielding about 157 miles from the 3.7-gallon tank. When our lighter and less aggressive associate editor, Allison Parker, tested the 450SS, she posted a more respectable 63 mpg. Sheesh, maybe it’s time to shed a few pounds and reduce my coffee intake.

2024 CFMOTO 450NK Review
Angular bodywork gives the 450NK a sleek streetfighter look. The bike is equipped with ABS, TC, a TFT display, and LED lighting.

The 450NK’s suspension and brakes, while competent, are about what you’d expect for a $5,399 motorcycle. The 37mm inverted fork is not adjustable, and the multi-link rear shock is only adjustable for spring preload. Damping is good for general street riding without being overly taut or too soft. The J.Juan brakes, with a 4-piston radial front caliper pinching a 320mm disc and a 1-piston floating rear caliper with a 220mm disc, provide adequate, consistent stopping power. Standard safety features include ABS and switchable traction control.

2024 CFMOTO 450NK Review

Carles Solsona, CFMOTO’s Italy-based motorcycle design director, did a great job on the 450NK’s styling, which echoes that of the 800NK. Both bikes have a V-shaped headlight nacelle with a large daytime running light, and the tops of their front fenders have a unique convex shape. The tank shrouds, radiator shrouds, lower cowling, and airy cut-outs in the tail give the 450NK a modern, go-fast look, and the Zephyr Blue colorway is especially eye-catching (the other color option is Nebula White).

2024 CFMOTO 450NK Review

Useful amenities include full LED lighting, a USB charging port, and a 5-inch color TFT instrument panel that includes Bluetooth connectivity to the CFMOTO app, which allows navigation and music to be shown on the screen. The switchgear and menus are intuitive, but the app’s navigation function needs some refinement.

2024 CFMOTO 450NK Review
The TFT is packed with info, but the small, thin font can be hard to read.

As with other bikes in CFMOTO’s lineup, the 450NK delivers good value for the money, but its most endearing trait is its approachability. After a long hiatus from riding, my brother, Paul, has returned to the joys of motorcycling, and lately we’ve been getting together for Saturday morning rides. He has taken a shine to the 450NK, which has been the perfect bike on which to sharpen skills that had become dull. 

2024 CFMOTO 450NK Review

Whether you’re new to riding, returning to the fold, or are a jaded veteran, the smile that will be on your face after riding this bike is priceless.

2024 CFMOTO 450NK Review
At just $5,399, the 2024 CFMOTO 450NK provides a lot of value in a playful package.

Check out more new bikes in Rider’s 2024 Motorcycle Buyers Guide

2024 CFMOTO 450NK Specifications

  • Base Price: $5,399
  • Website: CFMOTOusa.com
  • Warranty: 2 yrs., unltd. miles
  • Engine Type: Liquid-cooled, transverse parallel-Twin, DOHC w/ 4 valves per cyl. 
  • Displacement: 449cc  
  • Bore x Stroke: 72.0 x 55.2mm  
  • Horsepower: 50 hp @ 9,500 rpm (factory claim)  
  • Torque: 28.8 lb-ft @ 7,600 rpm (factory claim)  
  • Transmission: 6-speed, cable-actuated slip/assist wet clutch   
  • Final Drive: Chain  
  • Wheelbase: 53.9 in.
  • Rake/Trail: 24.5 degrees/3.7 in.
  • Seat Height: 31.3 in. 
  • Wet Weight: 364 lb (factory claim)  
  • Fuel Capacity: 3.7 gal.  
  • Fuel Consumption: 42.4 mpg 
  • Estimated Range: 157 miles

The post 2024 CFMOTO 450NK Review | First Ride appeared first on Rider Magazine.

Source: RiderMagazine.com

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