Jun 06, 2023

2023 Husqvarna FS 450 Supermoto First Look

Husqvarna has announced an updated FS 450 supermoto racer for 2023. The competition-focused FS 450 has a new and lighter SOHC engine, new chassis, improved ergonomics and new bodywork in white-and-grey graphics. MSRP has not been released, however, it is expected to available at authorized Husqvarna Motorcycles this month (November 2022).

Photos Courtesy of Husqvarna

The following is a press release from Husqvarna…

All-new for 2023, the FS 450 from Husqvarna Motorcycles features the latest technology and premium, competition-focused components for unrestricted supermoto performance. Expertly developed to be a highly capable racing machine, the FS 450 is finished with redesigned bodywork and graphics for improved ergonomics and a fresh, modern appearance.

A new frame, subframe, and suspension combine to further enhance overall handling and enrich the on-track experience for riders of all abilities. Assembled skillfully with quality, supermoto-specific hardware including launch and traction control, a Quickshifter, strong and light wheels, as well as high performance brakes, the FS 450 is built for racing.

Powered by a new and lighter SOHC engine, which is repositioned in the chassis to improve mass centralization, the FS 450 is unquestionably the most powerful, best handling, and most complete supermoto machine on the market today.

The hydro-formed, laser-cut and robot-welded frame is expertly crafted. Constructed with specifically calculated parameters of longitudinal and torsional flex, the frame provides exceptional rider feedback, energy absorption, and straight-line stability. Additionally, the frame features forged brackets for mounting the newly designed skid plate, which is available as a Technical Accessory.

Rotational masses in the frame and the forged steering head connection have been repositioned. Together with the new shock mounting, which is no longer connected to the main tube, the anti-squat of the chassis has been significantly improved. Also, the wall thickness of the frame has been optimized to achieve improved reliability and specific rigidity in high stress areas such as the steering head and the shock mounts. Parallel frame mounts (same position on left and right sides) improve chassis flex characteristics, while stability characteristics remain unrivalled.

Another highlight of the new frame topology is that the footrest mounting positions have been moved inwards, resulting in less susceptibility to catching in deep ruts or when scrubbing jumps. The overall size of the all-new footrests has been increased, designed with the help of state-of-the-art Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD). The new one-piece steering head seal allows easier mounting in case of replacement or service and offers improved reliability.

The frame is finished off in a premium metallic blue powder coating. The standard frame protectors feature a new and improved topology, guaranteeing superior protection, durability, and advanced grip in any condition.

Using 60% polyamide and 40% aluminum, the two-piece subframe has a total weight of just 3.9 lb. (1.8 kg). With the help of computational dynamics, specific rigidity was engineered into the light and robust subframe, delivering outstanding handling and rider comfort.

The lower subframe spars and frame mounts are made from cast aluminum profiles to guarantee robustness and reliability where needed. The upper subframe is made from injection-molded polyamide, enabling specific flex characteristics and allowing a lightweight construction.

The hollow, cast aluminum swingarm is designed to offer optimal stiffness and reliability at the lowest possible weight. It offers a wide range of adjustments for the rear wheel, allowing for a shorter wheelbase on tight, twisty tracks, or a longer wheelbase for greater stability on faster flowing tracks. The chain adjustment markings are also visible from above to make for simpler adjustment.

In order to optimize and match the new chassis flex characteristics, a new 22 mm rear axle is fitted.

The 48 mm split air fork features a capsulated air spring and pressurized oil chamber for progressive and consistent damping. Oil and air bypasses reduce pressure peaks and, in combination with a mid-valve damping system, the fork provides exceptional feedback and rider comfort. A new hydrostop improves bottoming resistance through more progressive damping force in the last 40 mm of travel. Additionally, rebound is also reduced leading to the fork being lower on hard acceleration.

Settings are easily adjusted via a single air-pressure preload valve, as well as via easy access click adjusters for compression and rebound. Additionally, the air pump needed to adjust the fork’s air pressure is provided as standard.

Made from high-grade aluminum, the 16 mm offset CNC-machined triple clamps provide a precise geometry of the fork clamps to ensure perfect alignment of the fork tubes and highly responsive and smooth fork action. The upper triple clamp is stiffer and works in harmony with the front forks offering superior handling and stability. A 3-way handlebar adjustment is standard and allows for customizable ergonomics.

Newly designed, topology-optimized handlebar mounts provide increased grip surface for less handlebar twist at the same weight as the previous generation. Additionally, they allow for both rubber-damped and fixed mounting providing customizable handlebar flex.

The front number plate integrates a triple clamp protector that covers the lower triple clamp and protects it from wear caused by roost.

An all-new design results in a rear shock with less overall length and 100 g less weight compared to the previous generation, while keeping the rear wheel travel unchanged at 266 mm. The shock is matched to a revised linkage system with a new geometry to deliver the same progression as before but with the greatest possible traction and absorption. Combined with the new frame geometry, it improves the ground clearance of the linkage and is therefore less susceptible to damage when bottoming out.

The new, Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) optimized main piston in the shock improves initial comfort and provides strong hold-up. Differently sized flow holes allow the shims to open more easily and reduce the overall stress of oil flow and pressure on the shims. Reduced weight also means less moving mass, resulting in lower forces on the main piston.

A fully hand-adjustable dual compression control concept allows high and low-speed settings to be changed by hand. Together with the newly designed rebound adjuster, which is hand or tool adjustable, riders are now able to adjust their shock settings without tools and without the help of a mechanic at the racetrack.

On top of the tool-free setting adjustment possibilities, a new preload adjuster is introduced bringing increased resistance to dirt intrusion. A new two-piece spring retainer allows for quick mounting without splitting the shock.

With its low-friction SKF linkage seals, the WP XACT rear shock provides advanced damping characteristics for unsurpassed traction and energy absorption. A pressure balance inside the shock ensures consistent damping, resulting in superior rider comfort and feel.

Exceptional stopping power is guaranteed by Brembo brakes, featuring a 4-piston radially mounted caliper and pump in combination with a 310 mm disc from Braking at the front. A single piston caliper and a 220 mm disc are fitted to the rear. The perfectly placed controls allow for optimal feel and balance under extreme conditions.

The ProTaper handlebar is second to none for function and style. Manufactured to exacting standards, the handlebar features class-leading fatigue resistance at a minimal weight. The handlebar bend further increases comfort with an optimal pressure point on the rider’s hands.

The ODI lock-on grip on the left side does not require gluing, while on the right, the vulcanized grip features an innovative integrated throttle mechanism. The assembly has easy free-play adjustment and, by changing a cam, throttle progression can be altered.

The all-new, CFD designed footrests offer a bigger surface for boot soles while being less susceptible to catching on deep ruts, take-offs when scrubbing or track barriers. The result is better control of the bike in all conditions. This was achieved by a new, narrower mounting concept integrated in the frame design, which also reduces weight.

Designed for easy and intuitive operation, the new map select switch comes as standard. It activates traction and launch control, selects between two engine maps (aggressive/smooth) and activates the Quickshift feature. Map 1 is the standard map for linear, predictable power, while Map 2 is a more aggressive map for added throttle response and more explosive power output.

The new Quickshift function (upwards only) can be activated or deactivated via the map select switch. The function works only when upshifting, interrupting the ignition for a fraction of a second. This allows upshifting while the throttle is fully opened without the use of the clutch lever. A sensor on the shift drum registers the force from the shift lever, sends the signal to the Engine Control Unit (ECU) and the ignition timing is interrupted. To prevent unintended shifts and false neutrals, the function is only active from second to fifth gears.

With the engine at idle, launch control is engaged by pressing the traction control and Quickshift switch simultaneously. Both symbols will start flashing to indicate the launch control is active. This function limits the amount of power to the rear wheel, improving traction and preventing loss of control under hard acceleration. Once the rider shifts up a gear, the launch control will deactivate automatically. Additionally, the Quickshift function is deactivated while launch control mode is engaged.

Traction control is engaged by a switch marked ‘TC’ and functions by analyzing throttle input from the rider and the rate at which engine RPM increases. If the RPM increases too quickly, the Engine Management System (EMS) registers a loss of grip and reduces the amount of power to the rear wheel ensuring maximum traction. This is a distinct advantage in wet or muddy conditions.

The new combined start/stop switch on the right side of handlebars allows for easy, intuitive starting and stopping of the engine.

The Keihin EMS is specifically designed to be smaller, lighter, and faster at processing data. It integrates launch control for perfect starts, selectable engine maps via the traction control switch on the handlebar as well as the Quickshift function. Combined with the gear sensor, power delivery is tailored for each gear.

A new Rollover Sensor (ROS) cuts the ignition in case of extreme crashes, adding another level of safety to the new generation FS 450. Additionally, the new hour meter now comes with an integrated FI status LED and a fuel level indicator.

The FS 450 features a 44 mm Keihin throttle body. The injector is positioned to ensure the most efficient flow into the combustion chamber, and to ensure optimal throttle response the throttle cable is mounted directly without a linkage providing more immediate throttle response and feel.

The exhaust system is expertly designed to deliver leading performance at the least possible weight. The header pipe features a flow-designed resonance chamber integrated into the header pipe. The header pipe is designed and manufactured in two pieces to be as compact as possible. The position of the join allows it to be removed without having to remove the rear shock. Further innovation allows for a short, compact silencer without increased noise levels. The silencer is crafted from lightweight aluminum and is stylishly finished in a black coating that highlights its premium quality.

Along with the benefit of an easy electric starting system, a Li-Ion 2.0 Ah battery is fitted to the FS 450. The Li-Ion battery weighs approximately 2.2 lb (1 kg) less than a conventional lead/acid battery, so the convenience of electric starting is delivered while minimizing overall weight.

The radiators are expertly crafted by WP using high-strength aluminum. CFD optimization is used to channel air through the radiators more efficiently and provide optimal cooling in any condition. The cooling system is integrated into the frame allowing for improved cooling by channeling coolant through the frame while eliminating the need for additional hoses. A large center tube running through the frame reduces the pressure at this point in the system allowing for a more consistent coolant flow and now includes an internal thermostat for added reliability.

Additionally, the radiators are mounted close to the center of gravity for improved handling agility.

The new 1.9-gallon / 7.2-liter polythene fuel tanks incorporate a threaded filler cap and an integrated fuel pump. A new one-piece fuel pump with integrated filter provides improved fuel supply and allows the tank to be emptied further at low fuel levels. The external fuel line is specifically positioned to make it less exposed and susceptible to damage.

The CFD optimized airbox is designed with precisely positioned inlet ducts to prevent air deformation and ensure maximum airflow and filter protection. The air filter is easily accessed, without tools, by removing the left side panel. Easy maintenance is guaranteed by the Twin Air filter element and filter cage design, featuring a simple fail-proof mounting system for a secure and accurate filter installation.

Black 16.5”/17” Alpina spoked wheels on the front and rear respectively, are lightweight and strong. They are complemented by Metzeler Racetec SM K1 125/75 R420 and 165/55 R420 slick tires for maximum grip, traction, and agility.

The FS 450 features bodywork that clearly showcases Husqvarna Motorcycles progressive approach to offroad motorcycles while striking white and grey graphics stylishly adorn the Swedish-inspired design.

An improved rider triangle for better knee contact, especially when riding in the standing position, inspires confidence for riders of every ability and enables them to perform at the highest level for extended periods of time. The slim contact surfaces on the bodywork allow the rider to move the bike around more easily on track and improve the overall handling and agility of the bike.

The flat seat profile, combined with a high grip seat cover, delivers superior comfort and control in all conditions. A recessed pocket under the seat, just above the airbox, allows gripping and lifting of the bike.

The SOHC engine is the perfect example of the advanced engineering techniques used by Husqvarna Motorcycles to create a powerful yet controllable engine with an overall weight of just 59 lb. (26.8 kg), equaling a weight reduction of approximately 300 g compared to the previous generation.

Mass centralization is key to the engine design, enabling chassis engineers to position the engine closer to the center of gravity for greatly improved handling and maneuverability. This was achieved by tilting the engine 2° backwards, which meant positioning the sprocket 3 mm lower. Together with the benefits of mass centralization and reduced weight, the anti-squat behavior of the chassis was significantly improved.

Attention was paid to the serviceability of the new FS 450 engine. Drain bosses for fluids and added service markers on the engine (▲) clearly show where to use washers, making maintenance and service easier than before.

The redesigned SOHC cylinder head is incredibly compact and lightweight, with a short profile and the camshaft located as close to the center of gravity as possible. Parallel frame mounts significantly improve handling and agility.

Lightweight valves are actuated via a rocker arm and feature timing specifically designed to deliver precise levels of torque and throttle response. The diameter of the intake valves is 40 mm, while at the exhaust it is 33 mm. A new valve cover reduces the number of mounting screws (only two needed) and a single oil-spray jet guarantees efficient cooling while keeping weight low.

A new fine punched cam chain, low-friction chain guides and the low-friction DLC rocker arm coating offers optimum efficiency, reliability, and durability. Attention was paid to maintenance tasks with lock positions for the cam chain to improve the serviceability of the valve train.

The lightweight aluminum cylinder is an engineering masterpiece, featuring a 95 mm bore. The CP bridged-box-type piston features anodized annular grooves, adding durability and longer service intervals while weighing only 327 g. The compression ratio has been increased to 13.1:1 for an improved peak performance of more than 63 hp.

The inertia produced by the crankshaft has been carefully calculated to deliver optimal traction and rideability from the powerful 450cc engine. The crankshaft is specifically positioned to harness the rotational mass at the ideal center of gravity, resulting in a lightweight feeling and agile handling. A plain big-end bearing comprising of two force-fitted bearing shells ensure maximum reliability and durability, guaranteeing long service intervals of 90 hours.

The crankcases are designed to arrange the shafts and engine internals in the ideal positions to offer the best-possible handling. Additionally, the position of the clutch shaft keeps the clutch above the oil level resulting in decreased drag and increased efficiency. A new steel oil pump gear and repositioned oil jets increase the overall oil pressure, resulting in increased resistance against overheating and improved durability.

High-pressure die-cast production processes keep overall weight to a minimum, resulting in thin wall thickness while retaining reliability.

The redesigned lightweight 5-speed gearbox is produced by Pankl Racing Systems and ensures the highest level of durability and reliability. A weight-optimized shift shaft reduces the operating force required for gear changes, and the gearbox also features a revised transmission ratio (29:72). The new Quickshift sensor is positioned on the shift drum, allowing clutchless upshifts. The function can be activated/deactivated via the new QS marked button on the map select switch, located on the left side on the handlebar.

The new gear lever features a design that prevents dirt build-up and keeps the lever tip in its original position even in the toughest conditions. An advanced gear sensor selects a specific engine map tailored for each gear.

The FS 450 features a SUTER anti hopping clutch, which prevents rear wheel instability and hopping when braking hard into the apex of a turn and ensures maximum control and perfect supermoto-style drifting. The Brembo hydraulic system guarantees perfect clutch action.

Available now from local Husqvarna Motorcycles dealerships is a concise selection of high-quality, supermoto-specific Technical Accessories. Each component on offer is designed to enhance performance, reduce weight, or add durability to the FS 450 machine.

Akrapovič “Evolution Line”

The Akrapovič “Evolution Line” exhaust system improves torque and performance while its high-grade titanium construction offers a considerable weight saving, which aids the already agile handling of the FS 450. The header pipe is optimally routed from the exhaust manifold for improved power delivery while the silencer creates a rich exhaust note that complies with all current FIM and AMA sound regulations. Close Course Competition Use Only.


Complete seat with a high-grip cover. Featuring a unique wave surface that holds the rider in place under hard acceleration, the seat allows for complete freedom of movement. Constructed to the same height and profile as the standard seat the ergonomics remain unaltered for a familiar feel. The blue and yellow cover compliments the FS 450 styling perfectly and is tear resistant for a long-lasting appearance.

Supersprox Stealth Sprocket

Ride further for longer with the Supersprox Stealth Sprocket. Unique in design, an aluminum center section reduces unsprung weight and is riveted to a ring of steel teeth, which ensures maximum durability. Offering at least a three times longer service life when compared to a traditional aluminum sprocket, the Supersprox Stealth Sprocket is incredibly long-lasting and extends the serviceability of the entire drivetrain. Close Course Competition Use Only.

Rekluse Outer Clutch Cover

CNC-machined from high-strength aluminum to offer increased protection against impacts, the Rekluse Outer Clutch Cover is low in weight and makes a bold statement with its Factory Racing team inspired finish.

Factory Racing Frame Protection Set

Protect the frame without effecting the slim ergonomics of the FS 450 with the Factory Racing Frame Protection Set. Manufactured using state-of-the-art injection molding technology ensures a thin but robust set of guards that are easy to install and available in black or blue for a customized look. A grippy outer surface enhances control of the motorcycle.

Photos Courtesy of Husqvarna2023 Husqvarna FS 450 Supermoto Technical highlightsFeatures and benefitsFramePolyamide-reinforced aluminum subframeSwingarmWP XACT front fork with AER technologyCNC-machined triple clampsWP XACT rear shockBrakesProTaper handlebarGrips and throttle assemblyFootrestsMap select switch, traction and launch controlStart/stop switchEngine Management System (EMS)44 mm throttle bodyExhaust systemElectric start and Li-Ion batteryIntegrated cooling system and radiatorsFuel tankAirbox and tool-less air filter accessWheels and tiresBodyworkEngineCylinder headCylinder and pistonCrankshaftCrankcasesGearboxSuter anti-hopping clutch Technical AccessoriesAkrapovič “Evolution Line”SeatSupersprox Stealth SprocketRekluse Outer Clutch CoverFactory Racing Frame Protection SetEngineDisplacementBore x stroke Compression ratioStarter/batteryTransmissionFuel systemControlLubricationGear ratiosPrimary ratioFinal driveCoolingClutchIgnition / Engine ManagementFrameSubframeHandlebarFront suspensionRear suspensionSuspension travel frontSuspension travel rearFront/rear brakesFront/rear rimsFront/rear tiresChainSilencerSteering head angleTriple clamp offsetWheelbaseGround clearanceSeat heightTank capacity, approx.Weight without fuel, approx.Click here for more Husqvarna motorcycle reviews and news.