Yu HirataAll-Japan National factory Yamaha rider Yu Hirata has been racing the 2018 Yamaha YZ450FM all season. 

2018 factory YZ450FYou can be sure the push button electric start will be will come on the production 2018 YZ450F model. How do we know, the next picture will give it away. 

2018 factory YZ450FNot only does Yu Hirata’s YZ450FM not have a kickstarter, it doesn’t even have a plug where the kickstarter should be. The new cases have been made without the kickstarter assembly. That is a lot of work, time and money not to be put into production for 2018. 
 2018 factory YZ450FThe 2018 factory Yamaha YZ450FM up close. 

2018 factory YZ450FWithout looking at the 2017 model you wouldn’t think much has changed with the 2018 factory YZ450FM model. Yamaha didn’t throw the baby out with the bath water. They kept a similar look and its reverse style engine. When comparing the 2017 YZ450F below, you can notice that the frame is much straighter and thicker coming up to the head tube. The engine mounts have moved much father down on the frame. The engine also looks as if it has been tilted forward as well. 

2017YAMAHAYZ450f157The 2017 Yamaha YZ450F for comparison. 

2018 factory yz450f-5781The gas tank has a more compact look to it. 
 2018 factory yz450f-5756There are airbox vents so the engine can get more air, which also make the sounds much louder when riding. 

2018 factory YZ450FAn up close look to the left side of the engine. The engine looks like it has to be shoehorned in to fit in the new frame.