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– 2012 Husqvarna TC499 Review
2012 Husqvarna TC499
The performance revolution. Nothing will ever be the same again at Motocross tracks. Revolutionary design, top performance and CTS system. The courage to face your limits is inside you.
After receiving a serious shot in the arm in the power department, the 2012 TC449 is ready to flex some muscle on the track! Husqvarna’s premier class motocross/GP-racer gets a substantial overhaul in the motor and chassis departments aimed at taking it to the next level of competition.
Husqvarna TC449: a different style
The new TC449 explores beyond the horizon, perfecting the concepts introduced last year: tank below the seat to improve the centre of gravity, airbox high in the frame to take in fresh and clean air, and above all, the swing arm pivot coaxial with the gear box output shaft, reducing almost to zero the effects of chain drag.
A NEW BREED
Husqvarna has always strived to innovate and bring new ideas to the world of off road motorcycles. Now, as always, the motorcycle brand with the longest tradition in the world in the Off Road sector is fully committed to the ongoing research and development of the perfect off road bike: easy to use, ready to race and easy to maintain.
The design of the new 449/511 range outstrips that of other off road models and stands out immediately for its looks, exclusive layout and cutting-edge technology.
DESIGN AND LAYOUT
The line is completely new: slim, svelte and refined. The single piece side panel runs from where traditionally the fuel tank would be, all the way back to the rear mudguard, allowing the rider free and unhindered movement. There is no chance of snagging boots or jeans on the edges of the panels with this design.
Besides the aesthetic and ergonomic aspects, the new design also makes maintenance easier as the air filter, rear shock and throttle body can all be accessed with ease. The long seat, which runs from the rear mudguard to the steering head, offers completely free longitudinal movement.
Aesthetics, technology and serviceability too: the graphics on the side panels are applied using the ‘In Mould Design’ technology for increased resistance to wear and the 2 litre fuel pump housing is transparent so that the remaining fuel level can be easily monitored.
MASSES AND CENTER OF GRAVITY
The idea behind the TE 449/511 range is ‘mass centralisation’ – to keep the weight of the bike concentrated as close as possible to the centre of gravity and to design a chassis which adapts perfectly to the demands of competitive Enduro racing. The crux of this concept is the union of the rear wheel swing arm pivot point and the gearbox output shaft sprocket. This solution, which Husqvarna calls CTS (Coaxial Traction System), eliminates the variation in the length of the chain during rear suspension movement, minimising the effect of the final drive on the bikes handling.
This solution allows a longer swing arm whilst still retaining a wheelbase similar to our competitors, ensuing greater traction, which for Enduro means tangible advantages.
The chassis layout allows the modern DOHC engine to be mounted closer to the centre of the bike, whilst tilting the cylinder further forward allows a long and straight air intake path at the same time as keeping the centre of gravity as low as possible. This has also meant that the throttle body and fuel injector nozzle can be mounted in the ideal position.
Again, continuing the theme of mass centralisation, the two part fuel tank design provides a total of 8.5 litres capacity in a low mounted 2 litre pump housing and a 6,5 litre under seat main tank.
The under seat fuel tank layout permits the airbox to be located in a protected and fluidodynamically favourable position above the engine with the actual air intake being at the height of the steering column, in a raised and sheltered position to minimise the intake of dust or water.
The air filter box has an elongated intake manifold and a newly designed air intake to provide greater breathability for the sponge filter, which is easily removed thanks to a hinge system in the airbox.
The battery is located adjacent to the under seat main fuel tank to again centralise the mass.
The TE 449/511 bikes are equipped with a cutting-edge 4 valve dual camshaft engine which has been significantly improved thanks to the experience gained by Husqvarna in its many years of offroad racing.
Fuel delivery is managed by an electronic injection system with a Keihin 46 mm diameter, double flap throttle body which provides progressive and predictable throttle response. All components are top of the range – the bike even comes with two exhaust silencers: the Euro 3 compliant silencer fitted as standard and a steel Akrapovic Racing exhaust, developed in collaboration with the Slovenian company to maximise the potential of the engine, whilst minimising the weight.
The gear ratios for both the Enduro and MX versions have been completely changed: the Enduro now uses a 6 speed transmission and the ratios have been modified on the basis of the experience gained during Salminen and Tarkkala’s races. The ignition timing has been optimised with maps specific to the two different capacities and exhaust systems.
The TE 511 version has been achieved by increasing the cylinder bore from 98 mm to 101 mm, with the stroke remaining at 59.6 mm. The effective displacement has therefore been increased to 478cc.
The clutch is controlled hydraulically, offering a smoother and more progressive action with greater consistency also under stress.
The motorcycle has a high energy electronic ignition and, thanks to the powerful battery and fuel injection system, a supplementary kick start is not necessary.
HANDLING AND PERFORMANCE
Naturally, Husqvarna’s long experience in Enduro racing has played an important part in the development of these new motorcycles. The challenges posed by the conception of geometry and by the general concept of the motorcycle itself were linked to the tough demands of riding in the most severe and extreme conditions. The result is a surprisingly effortless and smooth ride along with agility and outstanding steering stability.
The perimeter design chassis is made of high strength steel tubing. The geometry of the rear suspension is revolutionary, with a new linkage mounted on top of the alloy swing arm.
This solution offers many advantages: it increases the ground clearance, improves general reliability thanks to the reduced exposure of the components and makes maintenance easier.
But there’s more: dynamically, by exploiting the advantages of the double cradle frame made in high strength steel tubing, the roughness of the ground is absorbed more gradually, attenuating the stresses on the rider.
The advantages when jumping are also remarkable with the recoil effect of the rear wheel being significantly reduced and the smoothness of the suspension is particularly perceivable on rougher and more difficult ground.
COAXIAL TRACTION SYSTEM
A real refinement in the field of chassis design and exclusive to the TE/TC 449/511 range is the CTS, the Coaxial Traction System. This system represents an evolution compared to the one adopted on the BMW G 450X. The solution, which originally used a single swing arm pivot spindle, now has two independent semi spindles which reduce the stress on the swing arm and facilitate the replacement of the gearbox sprocket.
The advantages of the CTS system compared to the traditional systems are huge. During the suspension movement along the whole stroke, the chain is not subject to any change in length.
The tension of the chain remains constant regardless of the swing arm position, while the chain and sprockets benefit from reduced wear. An important positive effect on the riding characteristics is the marked reduction of the impact of alternating the load on the transmission.
This aspect has been studied by a spin-off company of the University of Padova called Dynamotion which has proved that the CTS improves traction in the various stages of acceleration and consequently during also the vertical movements of the suspension on rough terrain.
The result is better traction during acceleration and surer, more confident gear changes. More in general, the values obtained by adopting the CTS have a much more uniform trend in all conditions, leading to improved ridability and stability of the motorcycle.
TOP OF THE RANGE COMPONENTS
The new TEs are equipped with the most advanced components in the Off Road sector. For the front brake, there is a Brembo system with floating caliper and 260 mm wave rotor, while the rear brake consists of a floating calliper operating on a 240 mm rotor.
The suspension is entrusted in full to the specialists of Kayaba, with 48 mm forks, adjustable for compression and rebound damping and a Kayaba rear shock absorber designed specifically for Enduro use with settings optimised in collaboration with the racing team.
The tapered diameter handlebars, original equipment hand protectors, compact and efficient instrumentation, shockproof plastic engine / chassis guards, rear mudguard with incorporated racing number plate holder and led rear light complete the fittings.
TE449/511 are also the sole standard enduro bike on the market equipped with full Akrapovic exhaust system.
A range of Husqvarna Special Parts will be available, developed by Husqvarna to provide the best combination of lightness, durability and performance to allow Husqvarna fans to personalise their bikes and offer them the ingredients for racing success.
The motorcross version stands out not only for the normal MX chassis changes (no lights, 19″ rear wheel etc) but above all for the engine which has been specifically tuned for MX use, delivering significantly more power than the Enduro version.
The timing and camshaft profiles are completely different as is the compression ratio which has increased to 13:1 instead of 12:1 in the Enduro version. The electronic injection system still uses a 46mm Keihin throttle body but is fitted with a single flap instead of the Enduro twin flap version to provide a sharper, more aggressive throttle response. Additionally, the TC449 is fitted with a dual mode switch on the handlebars, which allows access to two different fuel injection / ignition timing maps to provide a softer power delivery for low traction conditions.
The titanium exhaust system with carbon fibre tipped silencer has been developed specifically by Akrapovic and the five speed transmission has specific ratios for use in MX. The suspension is provided by Kayaba with multi adjustable sealed cartridge front forks matched to a Kayaba fully adjustable rear shock.
2012 Husqvarna TC499 Features and Benefits
The TC449 is equipped with a cutting-edge 4 valve dual camshaft engine which has been significantly improved thanks to the experience gained by Husqvarna in its many years of offroad racing. The motorcross version stands for the engine which has been specifically tuned for MX use, delivering significantly more power than the Enduro version. The timing and camshaft profiles are completely different as is the compression ratio which has increased to 13:1 instead of 12:1 in the Enduro version. The electronic injection system still uses a 46mm Keihin throttle body but is fitted with a single flap instead of the Enduro twin flap version to provide a sharper, more aggressive throttle response. Additionally, the TC449 is fitted with a dual mode switch on the handlebars, which allows access to two different fuel injection / ignition timing maps to provide a softer power delivery for low traction conditions. The titanium exhaust system with carbon fibre tipped silencer has been developed specifically by Akrapovic and the five speed transmission has specific ratios for use in MX.
The idea behind the TC449 is ?mass centralisation? ? to keep the weight of the bike concentrated as close as possible to the centre of gravity and to design a chassis which adapts perfectly to the demands of competitive racing. This solution, which Husqvarna calls CTS (Coaxial Traction System), eliminates the variation in the length of the chain during rear suspension movement, minimising the effect of the final drive on the bikes handling.
CTS – Coaxial Traction System
A real refinement in the field of chassis design and exclusive to the TE/TC 449/511 range is the CTS, the Coaxial Traction System. The advantages of the CTS system compared to the traditional systems are huge. During the suspension movement along the whole stroke, the chain is not subject to any change in length. The tension of the chain remains constant regardless of the swing arm position, while the chain and sprockets benefit from reduced wear. An important positive effect on the riding characteristics is the marked reduction of the impact of alternating the load on the transmission. More in general, the values obtained by adopting the CTS have a much more uniform trend in all conditions, leading to improved ridability and stability of the motorcycle.
Massive horsepower needs careful handling. Best to let off steam on the track. Traction and manoeuvrability: these are the objectives of the TC449 and its revolutionary mechanical design. The tank has moved below the seat with the fuel cap to the rear and the air filter box is located directly behind the headstock, making the bike more balanced and a different shape, definitely more user friendly. The bodywork has integrated graphics (InMould technology) enhancing design and function, finally resolving the problem of adhesives that peel off under the power wash. Moreover, the graphic design on the new TC449 has been completely revised, and the aesthetic makeover extends to the frame, which is now black and the rims, now anodized silver.
The frame has also been changed at the steering-head area, reinforced with chrome-moly 25CrMo4 steel plates. The rear seat rail and engine supports have also been similarly strengthened. Given the improved rigidity of the frame, the preload of the Kayaba suspension was reset: the fork has a harder setting and the monoshock damps more slowly. It is softer at the start of the stroke, and has a new progressive spring.
To lighten and simplify the electrical system, the 2012 Husqvarna TC449 has had the entire wiring completely redesigned.
Engine: ignition to the future.
The ultra-modern twin cam four valve engine is fed by a Keihin electronic injection (46 mm throttle body), but that is not what is so special about it. The air intake path is much more linear than other bikes in the category, and allows impressive performance to be achieved easily. The dry sump crank-case utilises two lubrication pumps, intake and outlet; the sophistication of the engine can also be seen in the choice of bore/stroke ratio: 98 X 59.6 mm. It was decided to equip the TC449 with electric start, because anyone, even a champion, can lose precious seconds kick starting after a simple slide. Evolution never looks back, and even the modern mechanical design has been improved on the new 2012 TC449.
The radiators have been upgraded to improve the cooling efficiency, and the filter box breathes better thanks to a higher volume air intake. Engine performance has been raised by adjusting the valve timing and revising the two mappings for ignition/injection (now also selectable with the engine running). Mid range torque has been improved with a new intake manifold.
These changes do not affect the bike’s reliability. On the contrary, the 2012 version engine undoubtedly has a more durable crankshaft, with galvanizing and high-resistance DLC treatments of the piston rod and rod bearing.
2012 Husqvarna TC499 – North American Specifications/Technical Details
MSRP Price: $7,999 USD
Wheelbase: 58.66 in.
Overall Length: 86.93 in.
Overall Width: 32.28 in.
Seat Height: 37.91 in.
Rake: 25.8 degrees
Trail: 3.98 in.
Ground Clearance: 13.19 in.
Total Weight (Dry): 238.1 lbs.
Fuel Capacity: 2.11 gallons
Oil Capacity: 1.27 quarts
Double beam, double cradle and high resistance chromoly steel frame (round and elliptical). Light alloy sub frame
FORK – Kayaba 48mm closed-cartridge fork featuring 11.81 inches of front wheel travel. Upside down (USD) telescopic fork features fully-adjustable compression and rebound damping.
SHOCK – Kayaba Progressive single shock with 11.8 inches of travel. Features adjustable spring preload and fully-adjustable rebound and dual (high/low-speed) compression damping.
Front: Braking 260mm wave rotor, Brembo dual-piston floating caliper; hydraulic actuation.
Rear: Braking 240mm wave rotor, Brembo single piston floating caliper; hydraulic actuation.
Front: 1.60×21 Excel rim, 80/100-21
Rear: 2.15×19 Excel rim, 110/90-19
Type: Single-cylinder, dual overhead cam (DOHC) four-stroke
Head: 4 titanium valves in radial arrangement operated by DOHC
Bore x Stroke: 98 x 59.6mm
Compression Ratio: 13:1
Starting: Electric start
Clutch: Wet multi-plate with hydraulic control
Cooling: Liquid, 2 radiators
IGNITION: CDI electronic with variable advance
FUEL SYSTEM: EFI with Keihin D46 throttle body
LUBRICATION: Dry sump with two oil pumps, cartridge and oil filters
TRANSMISSION: 5 speed
2012 Husqvarna TC499 – Australian Specifications/Technical Details
AU MSRP Price: See dealer for pricing.
Type Single cylinder, 4-stroke, DOHC, 4 valve
Bore 98.0 mm
Stroke 59.6 mm
Displacement 449.6 cc
Compression ratio 13 : 1
Lubrication Dry sump with two oil pump rotor and cartridge filter
Ignition C.D.I. electronic, with adjustable advance
Spark plug type NGK CR 9EKB
Spark plug gap 0.7 mm
Fuel systen Electronic injection feed, throttle body KEIHIN D46, single flap, soft/hard map switch
Clutch Wet, multi-plate type, hydraulic control
Driving disc number 6
Driven disc number 6
Type Double beam and double cradle high resistance Cr/Mo steel; light alloy rear frame
Front suspension KAYABA USD telescopic hydraulic fork with advanced axle, compression and rebound stroke adjustment
Fork leg diameter 48 mm
Fork travel 300 mm
Rear suspension KAYABA Progressive link with single hydraulic shock absorber; spring preload adjustment, compression (high and low speed) and rebound adjustment
Rear wheel travel 300 mm
Front brake 260 mm fixed disc “wave” type with hydraulic control and double piston floating caliper
Rear brake 240 mm fixed disc “wave” type with hydraulic control and floating caliper
Rim front 1.60″ x 21″, light alloy
Rim rear 2.15″ x 19″, light alloy
Tyre front 80/100-21″ MICHELIN Starcross MS3 M/C 51M / PIRELLI Scorpion MT 32
Tyre rear 110/90-19″ MICHELIN Starcross MS3 M/C 62M / PIRELLI Scorpion MT 32
2012 Husqvarna TC499 – International Specifications/Technical Details
MSRP Price: See dealer for pricing.
Dimensions, weight, capacities
Min. ground clearance13.19in
Kerb weight, without fuel238.1lb / 108kg
Fuel tank capacityU.S. Gallons 2.11 / Imp. Gallons 1.76 / 8lt
Transmission oilU.S. Quarts 1.27 / Imp. Quarts 1.01 / 8lt
TypeSingle cylinder, four stroke
Displacement27.44cu.in / 449.6cc
Water radiator No. 2
TypeDry sump with two oil pump rotor and cartridge filter
TypeC.D.I. electronic, with variable advance (digital control)
Spark plug typeNGK CR 9EKB
Spark plug gap0.0275in
TypeElectronic fuel injection
Brand and typeKeihin D46
TypeWet, multiplate type; hydraulic control
Number of driving discs6
Number of driven discs6
TypeConstant mesh gear type
Number of gears5
Transmission sprocketTeeth 15
Rear wheel sprocketTeeth 53
Brand and typeRegina 135 RX 3 (5/8″x1/4″)
TypeDouble beam and double cradle high resistance Cr/Mo steel (round and elliptical section); Light alloy rear frame
TypeUpside-Down telescopic hydraulic fork with advanced axle; compression and rebound adjustment
Fork legs dia.1.89in
Travel on legs axis11.81in
Front fork manufacturerKayaba
TypeProgressive “Soft Damp” type with single hydraulic shock absorber; spring preload adjustment, compression and rebound adjustment (compression stroke: double adjustment)
Shock absorber manufacturerKayaba
FrontFixed disc, “Wave” type, with hydraulic control and double Ã˜24 piston floating caliper
RearFixed disc, “Wave” type, with hydraulic control and floating Ã˜26 piston caliper
FrontMichelin Starcross MS3 M/C 51M / Pirelli Scorpion Mid-Soft MT32
RearMichelin Starcross MS3 M/C 62M / Pirelli Scorpion Mid-Soft MT32
Clutch gearTeeth 22
Torque limiterTeeth 36/20
Primary gearTeeth 32
Battery12V – 3Ah
Timing system TypeDOHC, 4 valve