HRC already showed us its 2014 Honda CRF450 Rally race bike earlier this year at Mugello, during the Italian GP. Announcing a five rider team, Helder Rodrigues (Portugal, age 34), Sam Sunderland (U.K., 24), Javier Pizzolito (Argentina, 33), Paulo Goncalves (Portugal, 34) and Joan Barreda (Spain, 29) will race for Big Red in the 2014 Dakar Rally and other rally events.

Improving on its 2013 design, which in-turn was based off the Honda CRF450X enduro, HRC says that the 2014 Honda CRF450 Rally has improved engine output, aerodynamic performance, durability, and maintenance requirements. It will be campaign by the Team HRC factory team, and also be made available to other rally teams as a production racer.

The entry into rally race is a new step for Honda, and the Japanese OEM took last year to develop a competitive racing package. The new Honda CRF450 Rally race bike is the product of that learning experience, and Honda hopes to be a stout competitor this moment forth.

HRC will have stiff competition though, as Marc Coma will have a brand new KTM race bike for 2014, and Cyril Despres has defected from his Austrian squad to the Yamaha Racing factory team. As such, 2014 could be an interesting year for The Dakar, with three OEMs having a shot at victory at the rally’s end.

We still have some months before the 2014 Dakar Rally takes off, but we will get our first glimpse of the 2014 Honda CRF450 Rally race bike this month at the Morocco Rally, which starts October 13th.






Source: HRC

  • MikeD

    All those high resolution pics of the new GS Adventure are STILL playing tricks on my head.

    First thing that came to mind was BMW GS800 Desert Runner . . . thank you Honda for splattering HRC and Honda stickers all over it. LMAO.


    Make a class of 1.0L + , i want to see prepped GSs, SuperTens, Adventure 1290s, u name it.

  • Those are out there, just not run by factory teams. The 450cc rule was an effort to reign in KTM’s factory team.

    It didn’t work.

  • MikeD

    Thanks for the heads up Jensen, honestly i thought the motorcycle “sector” was only made of 450’s.

    I’ll try to spot’em TANKS. (^_^)

  • B.T.

    If Honda did a little this & a little that & made this bike a 1200, KTM & BMW would be shaking in their “over – priced” boots. I love this bike.

  • pooch

    Lovely. Tanks never rule the Dakar. Nothing over a 690 has won in the last 10 years and for obvious reasons.. Slug like 1200’s are simply too heavy and not manoeverable enough, let alone the gas mileage issues. There’s nothing anemic or anorexic about these 450 machines. But hey, some bikers out there are still size queens. LMAO

  • paulus

    I am glad A+R continues to ‘flirt with the dirt’… more of this stuff, please :)

    It would make a great dual sport

  • Damo

    I would kill for a street legal version of the Honda 450 in the states.

  • anders ‘ace’ eliasson

    What, no kick start!? I guess I’ll have to just stick with my old XR650R then :^) …


  • leepl

    Dakar rules say the max is 450cc: http://www.dakar.com/dakar/2013/docs/reglement-moto-quad-dakar-2013-VUS.pdf Though interestingly they allow for twin cylinders. I suppose there’s no advantage to be gained in a twin otherwise someone would have done it.

  • Bhupi

    I agree with Damo. I would love for a street legal version of this motorcycle. Or a KTM 450 for that matter :)

  • TheSeaward

    Throw some knobbies on the new SuperDuke. Nothing could go wrong.

  • tony

    think i found my new commuter…

  • kww

    would love for HRC to sell this light/windshield kit – I got a plated CR500AF that it would look better on…

  • MikeD


    Thanks for the PDF.


    Dear Pooch, that’s precisely why i would like to see the TANKS.

    I find it VERY entertaining the thought of seeing 500lbs + Motorcyles being ridden like a anorexic 450 Enduro.
    The same way i enjoy Big Rigs drag racing or circuit racing or running up Pikes Peak. Just for the heck of it, just because.

  • Gildas

    A 1200 CC bike would have trouble finishing a Dakar prologue… A bit like watching overweight dudes mud wrestling: fun in concept, fun to watch for a minute, but it would slow to an asthmatic paraplegic uncoordinated crawl on Valium after a few minutes. Horses for courses.

    Wasn’t the Africa Twin (NXR-750) and the Cagiva Elefant a 900? Both capable of over 200Kph off road?

  • Gildas

    Dakar Porn/fan boy aside, this is the first bike I’ve seen from Honda for a while that I would buy (one I pass my engineering exams and get a job).

  • MikeD


    Man . . . that was funny right there. LMAO. But i still think it would be fun to watch and the level of the hardware is up to the fantastic abuse(the bikes, not the fat dudes). Is cool, let’s agree to disagree.