2012 BETA RS Review


The American BETA 2012 dual sport 450 RS has been designed for the U.S. market, making them street legal as well as capable of handling some extreme off-road riding. Most dual sport motorcycles are designed with an emphasis on riding city streets with the occasional light trail riding however this is not what the BETA was designed for. It is more than capable of entering a competitive enduro competition and taking all the other bikes to school.

The single cylinder, four-valve, four stroke, 450cc engine in the 2012 BETA 450 RS has more than enough power and strength to take you over mountain tops, rugged roads and as well as riding the city streets in comfort like a roadster. The engine has a redesigned cylinder head to reduce engine noise and increase reliability. This was accomplished by reinforcing the camshaft bridge, vale retainers and cam chain tensioner. The clutch is a smooth shifting and durable component with its upgraded primary gear and springs, letting you shift in higher stress conditions without missing a gear. The redesigned engine uses a six-speed manual transmission that handles high temperatures, extreme shifting stress and high torque very well, making it reliable both on and off-road. The Keihin carburetor is efficient at providing the proper amount of fuel to the engine without flooding it.

The suspension on the 2012 BETA 450 RS is a premium system with a Marzocchi inverted fork in the front and a twin sided swing arm with a single Sachs shock absorber in the rear. The plentiful amount of travel at both ends ensures that this bike can handle the most extreme of off-road terrains. In addition to the cushion the suspension provides for off-road riding, it is still a dual sport set up making it very comfortable to ride on the road.

New For 2012

  • A redesigned engine camshaft set up to increase horsepower and torque at all speeds and rpm levels.
  • The oil volume has been increased for added engine lubrication, reducing vibration and friction, letting you push the engine harder and making it last longer.
  • 1.77 inch Marzocchi front forks offer the best ride for a dual sport bike.
  • The chassis has been redesigned to include more mounting points that increase strength for less flex and stability.
  • A new online option called the BYOB program lets you ""Build Your Own BETA"", allowing for the ultimate customization experience

2012 BETA RS Specs

  • Model: 450 RS
  • Engine Type: BETA-built single cylinder, four-valve, four stroke
  • Bore and Stroke: 3.74 inches and 2.50 inches
  • Compression ratio: 11.95:1
  • Valve Train: Dual overhead camshafts (DOHC)
  • Induction: Keihin carburetor
  • Ignition: Electric
  • Transmission: Six-speed manual
  • Final Drive: O-ring chain
  • Fuel Capacity: 2.1 gallons
  • Estimated Fuel Economy: N/A
  • Brakes (Front): Nissin caliper with a 10.24 inch hydraulic disc
  • Brakes (Rear): Nissin caliper with a 9.45 inch hydraulic disc
  • Suspension (Front): 1.77 inch Marzocchi inverted fork with adjustable compression and rebound dampening
  • Suspension (Rear): Twin sided swing arm with a single Sachs shock absorber, adjustable rebound dampening and hi/low speed compression
  • Wheelbase: 58.1 inches
  • Rake: N/A
  • Trail: N/A
  • Seat Height: 36.6 inches
  • Curb Weight: 249 pounds (dry)
  • Tires (Front): Michelin Enduro R21
  • Tires (Rear): Michelin Enduro R18


  • FMF Powecore 4 Moto Slip on that slides on to the exhaust to give a deeper and richer sound than the stock exhaust system.
  • A Leo Vince titanium exhaust system completely replaces the stock exhaust system to give the bike more horsepower by increasing air flow as well as a much more aggressive sound.
  • There is an option of a Rekluse EXP manual clutch to decrease shifting time an increase response when accelerating or decelerating.
  • A cooling fan kit can be added to the engine to help reduce engine temperature if you feel that you will pushing this bike up mountains and steep trails more often than riding city streets.
  • The BETA Racing water pump kit increases water flow throughout the most venerable parts of the engine, reducing temperatures and destructive conditions that lead to increased wear and tear.
  • Sharkfin Rear Brake Disc Protection can be fitted to the rear rotor to protect from oncoming rocks, branches or hard hits from ruts and holes that are inevitably going to be encountered while riding off road.
  • BETA racing silicone radiator hose kit not only adds some color to your bike, making it more personable but they are made from a higher strength material, making it harder for debris to bring your bike to a stop. The last thing you need to happen while riding off-road is walk you bike all the way back.
  • Clutch slave cylinder guard helps protect the venerable clutch mechanism from any hard hitting debris while at the same time added a bit of style to the cast aluminum part

Key Competitors For The 2012 BETA RS

  • Kawasaki KLR 650
  • BMW G 450GS
  • Suzuki DR-Z 400S
  • Husqvarna TE450
  • KTM 450EXC