Minimum requirement – complete
It should be an ATV – with all-wheel drive. After all, you want to go off-road with it. Of course, the budget should be manageable. Can the seeker be helped? We looked at the CForce 450 S EFI 4 × 4 One.
Beginners find it particularly difficult to find their way around the wide variety of offers on the ATV market. The gap in acquisition costs is also wide. And then CF-Moto offers an ATV with all-wheel drive, differential lock, reduction gear and independent suspension. The whole thing at a price of just under 5,300 euros. Can that be what? In the Fürsten Forest near Osnabrück we checked out the entry-level model from CF-Moto a little. The results of the first driving tests surprised us too.
It has been a long time in the ATV scene when manufacturers overshoot the mark when it comes to model names. Where it says 450 doesn’t have to be 450 inside. It is no different with the blue test candidate, CForce 450 S EFI 4 × 4 One. The 450 is actually a 400. In the new L7e-B1 EU vehicle class (L7e-B1: all-terrain quad with greater than / equal to 180mm ground clearance, up to a maximum of 90km / h, no power limitation, switchable differential on the rear axle for all L-vehicle classes), the single cylinder tampers a total of 19 kW , that’s almost 26 hp, from 400 cubic capacity. Something should work there. The importer, the KSR-Group, states that the consumption is 9 liters per 100 km. However, we could not check this due to the test conditions.
In the sandbox
We do our first laps on a marked course. The subsoil: sand. And it swallows a lot of power. The ATV, which weighs 345 kg when ready to drive, is, who is surprised, quite difficult to get up to speed. Once it is in full swing, the engine size is rated as satisfactory. When we stop for the photos, we notice the odor from the drive belt, which we think is slightly above average, as does the heat development on the plastic cladding near the tailpipe. The trailer hitch and cable winch shown in the pictures at the front of the ATV are standard equipment.
The suspension, which is designed as a single wheel suspension, feels a bit stubborn and stiff. The tires could be a little more grippy in the sand for our taste. We would also like to see a plus in steering angle in favor of tight bends or turning maneuvers. There is a narrower but not uncomfortable bench that allows a sportier ride very well. For the possible two-person deployment, however, it is tight here. The same applies to the footrest area.
The CForce 450 S EFI 4 × 4 One is approved as an all-terrain quad according to the new EU vehicle class L7e-B1. This requires an open differential at the front and rear in the respective axle. Of course, this makes little sense for off-road use. Therefore, the built-in differential on the rear axle can be locked at the push of a button, especially for this use. But even when we are open, we make surprisingly good progress in the sand. We would not have expected that when we first tested the Cforce 450.
With the rear differential locked, the following test laps make it noticeably better on the soft ground.
The differential on the front axle can also be locked at the push of a button when the all-wheel drive is switched on. However, the steering forces now required are enormous. There is no power steering and so the good old muscles have to do 100% of the heavy steering work. Switching on is therefore only recommended for the few moments when the lock is really needed.
At the “jumping hill” we want to take off a little and test the suspension completely. But the CForce is not revving up enough to take off with all four wheels. The two front ones land with little comfort after the small hops that were possible. The weight of the ATV is again noticeable.
On solid ground
We are piloting the test candidate towards the concrete armored plate road. We are surprised again on the first few meters. If the 450er struggled a little over the track in the sand, it shows a completely different temperament on firm ground. The mass has to be set in motion with a bit of a run-up, but once the 20 km / h mark has been cracked, the single cylinder pulls forward quite quickly. Driving pleasure is guaranteed. The brakes could be a tad snappier.
And what about cornering? Finally, the requirement for vehicle class L7e-B1 to be on the road with an open differential against the background of driving safety has been included in the approval requirements. We are divided on the outcome. If it goes around the corner more quickly, the ATV tilts outwards. The inside wheel loses more and more grip on the road as it is lifted and begins to spin. The tire finally rubs unrestrainedly over the asphalt. At the same time, the forward thrust of the ATV collapses more and more. At this point, the forward movement only results from the previous swing. Even with a major shift in body weight, the result cannot be greatly improved. Overall, the ATV feels very easy to maneuver when cornering. No wonder. All four wheels, especially the two on the rear axle, run freely.
We switch on the rear differential (only when stationary!). The next curve immediately brings the aha experience. With a lot of grip on both wheels, the CForce now circles the bend as usual – of course, the steering forces that have to be applied to keep the ATV on course are greater. We don’t want to hide that here.
So there are pros and cons when using an open differential on the rear axle. The ATV rolls easily through the terrain when cornering. But also with the disadvantage that if you want it a little more jagged, one of the drive wheels that spins more and more without moving forward on the road. As I said, the outcome will remain ambivalent.
The seating comfort as well as the seat ergonomics are okay for us with this ATV. The handlebars can be adjusted to your personal taste by moving it further forwards or backwards. Luggage racks at the front and rear allow a payload of around 100 kg.