Feast your eyes! Triumph has decided to release official photos of the new Tiger 800 and Tiger 800 XC (pictured at the bottom) in advance of the official unveiling next month. The photos show a narrow and apparently light dual-purpose machine, with the road oriented version featuring a 19 inch front wheel and the off-road oriented version featuring a spoked 21 incher. The beefy frame looks overbuilt (particularly, the welded on subframe) to deal with the rigors of off-road riding, touring, passenger and luggage.
This bike has generated tremendous interest, but the photos are all we have at this point. All of the official specifications will be released later, including pricing and availability information.
The large displacement dual purpose category is certainly becoming more popular here in the United States (it is already popular in Europe). This lighter, more nimble version of Triumph’s Tiger looks set to be a big hit, both here and abroad. We are pleased to see Triumph decided to put a 19 inch front wheel on the street version, similar to Suzuki’s V – Strom. This will give the bike a touch of off-road capability together with the ability to suck up bad street surfaces. Brakes, fit and finish all appear to be top-notch. The bike should certainly be quite light for the category, given the big head start Triumph had with the sportbike-based engine.
Triumph, along with Kawasaki, appears to be one of the few manufacturers willing to push new model development during the current poor economy, and it should continue to pick up market share as a result. Hinckley promises much more to come in the near future.