Last month, Triumph leaked some tantalizing details and a few photos of its all-new Tiger Explorer, but it left us with many questions. Luckily, Tiger released more information at the Milan motorcycle show to help us fill in the gaps.
The first thing we all want to know about is that motor. Just how big is it, anyway? It displaces 1215cc, with oversquare 85mm by 71.4mm bore and stroke numbers–the same stroke as the Sprint, Tiger 1050 and Speed Triple. That means a similar peak horsepower figure of 135 at 9300 rpm, with an extra helping of torque–89 ft.-lbs. at 7850 rpm. It’s the most power in its class (and should mean around 110 hp at the wheel after subtracting the 15-20 percent the driveshaft will rob) and uses a new ride-by-wire throttle system. That enables the use of switchable traction control, ABS and even standard-fitment cruise control–something we usually just see on the big full-boat baggers and tourers.
The chassis gets lots of nice features, too. An inverted long-travel 46mm front fork is adjustable (the release doesn’t say for what), as is the linkage-mounted rear shock, which is equipped with a remote preload adjuster. The front brakes are four-piston Nissin calipers (not radial, sadly), and cast wheels sport Metzler Tourance radials, a 110/80-19 in front and a 150/70-17 in back. The tube-steel frame allows a reasonable 31.6 to 33.7-inch range of seat heights. And to keep long-distance riders happy, there’s a 5.3-gallon fuel tank and a real-live centerstand to help you with those mid-Mongolia flat repairs. Gassed up and ready to go, Triumph claims the bike weighs in at 539 pounds–not too bad for this genre.
And those aren’t the only touring-friendly features. The instrumentation includes an ambient temperature gauge (because we all like to know how miserable we are) with a freeze warning, and there’s a pizza-oven capable 950-watt alternator, adjustable windscreen and handlebars, as well as a power outlet next to the ignition lock. Accessories include enough hard luggage for 25 gallons of storage capacity, heated grips and seats, and fog lamps.
Just looking at the spec sheet, it looks like Triumph brought a serious contender into the escalating adventure-bike wars. And if (as Dirck and I think) Triumph is working on a luxury sport-tourer or tourer built around this motor and driveshaft, BMW may have something new to worry about. Triumph’s model line, which not long ago was just a few machines, is now starting to look pretty well-rounded (just lacking a fun, lightweight, entry-level Single or Twin, something like a 21st-Century Tiger Cub). Colors for the new Explorer will be blue, graphite and black, but we still don’t have pricing and availability for USA customers.