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  • December 23, 2015
  • J. Hernandez & Solo Moto
  • Courtesy of Triumph
  • 114 Comments

2016 Triumph Street Twin: MD First Ride

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Triumph has built a diverse, successful line-up of motorcycles. Adventure models, high performance nakeds and sport bikes live alongside the British brand’s heritage bikes. The Bonneville models are arguably the core of the brand, and they have been completely redesigned for 2016. Courtesy of modern emissions standards, the fuel-injected Bonneville engines are now liquid cooled. The least expensive Bonneville is the new 900cc Street Twin that we had a chance to ride at the press launch recently. This is an entirely new motorcycle, both engine and chassis.

Although a member of the Bonneville family, “Street Twin” is the name on the side covers, but the family resemblance is unmistakable. This is the entry level model, and the target is motorcyclists looking for a comfortable, easy-to-ride machine with distinct British style. The styling of the Street Twin is certainly classic, but there are modern elements as well. An uncluttered, minimalist look largely devoid of chrome offers a subtle, elegant profile that Triumph hopes will fit well with current trends.

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The chassis and engine characteristics are also new in that Triumph really focused on making this bike easy to ride, and a solid base for customization and versatility (commuting, touring, play riding, etc.). With a starting price of $8,700, this is the model Triumph hopes will draw new enthusiasts to the brand, including younger riders.

As I first sit on the Street Twin, it is clear that this is a compact motorcycle that is low, narrow and light (Triumph claims a dry weight of 437 pounds). My position on the bike tells me Triumph is trying to improve the ergonomics by moving the rider a bit forward and creating a rider triangle that feels very neutral. As I pull away from a stop, I immediately feel comfortable and in control. The seat looks thin, and does not feel to have an overabundance of padding.

The Street Twin handles well … feeling decidedly more nimble and dynamic than the previous Bonneville. Neutral and balanced, it is capable of attacking twisty roads with confidence. The bike seems to do exactly what you intend it to, with stability and predictability.

The suspension offers a good compromise between control and comfort, as well. A stiffer frame allows Triumph to exploit this compromise so that the rider doesn’t feel road bumps harshly, yet there is no sense of wallowing as the pace increases. Unlike the rest of the bike, the brakes are unchanged, including the Nissin calipers. Coupled with ABS, the brakes seem more than adequate for the performance offered by this bike, and the ABS seems to do its job without feeling too intrusive.

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New wheel and tire sizes grace the Street Twin. The rubber includes a 100/90 R18 in front and a 150/70 R17 in back branded Pirelli Phantom Sportscomp. Motivation is provided by that new, liquid-cooled 900cc twin that now fires courtesy of a 270° crank and puts out substantially more torque (18% according to Triumph), but very modest peak horsepower (55). The usable rpm range is brought down with peak torque at only 3,230 rpm and peak horsepower at 5,900 rpm.

Those tire sizes undoubtedly contribute to the nimble yet stable handling, while the new engine pulls smartly down low (not much reason to keep the revs out of the 2,750 rpm to 4,750 rpm range). So what we have is a light, easy-to-ride machine with good power where most street riders need it, but certainly not ready for the drag strip. Triumph also boasts about a substantial, 36% increase in fuel efficiency, so there is a good dose of practicality, as well.

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None of this is meant to imply that the Street Twin is not a fun motorcycle to ride. The new firing order means the engine is both smooth and full of character. It sounds nice, as well. Without the need to rev the engine high, it contributes to a relaxed, controlled sensation, but can still make good progress when asked (Triumph claims a top speed in excess of 100 mph).

The Street Twin offers a ride-by-wire throttle as well as traction control. Together with the ABS brakes, Triumph is using sophisticated electronics to further improve rider safety and confidence. In our test ride, both the ABS and traction control were invisible (i.e., did their job without becoming a distraction to the rider).

So we think Triumph has hit its target with the Street Twin. Inexpensive, simple, yet elegant aesthetics, smooth operation with lively handling, and excellent fuel economy form a compelling package. Available in Jet Black for $8,700, other color options are priced at $9,050. Take a look at Triumph’s web site for additional details and specifications.


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114 Comments

  1. David says:

    Several websites list novice rider specs of 50 hp and 500 lbs being the max for new riders. Pop a different exhaust on it and change the fuel map and I’m sure they’d do a lot more. However they wouldn’t be too beginner friendly then power wise. As a new rider the Speed Twin seems to be perfect, <50 HP or close enough, <500 lbs, ABS brakes with Traction control, tubeless tires, <10K price in Canada and a bunch of accessories. I believe they even are wired for a quick addition cruise control by adding the buttons. Everything on my list, just need the $$$ now.

  2. Sam says:

    I have a 2012 Triumph Rocket 3 Roadster and it has adequate Horsepower, torque and speed and gets right a 40 mpg+ at most times. I had a new 2010 Triumph Scrambler and it was barely adequate in any performance parameter at all and it barely got 40 mpg because the throttle had to be held open so often.

    I applaud Triumph and the other builders for their expanded lineup for new riders. All of these bikes offer a great place to start the motorcycle experience, cheaply and economically.

    If you want performance, I believe Triumphs new 1200 twins will provide that in a nice package.

    • Joe Bogusheimer says:

      Good posting.

      Like others here I am just a little disappointed because I like the clean, simple looks of this bike so much (moreso than the 1200 Bonneville models). And I’m sure the performance of this bike would be “adequate”, only sometimes when I’m riding I like to unleash “more than adequate” power, and these bikes just don’t have it. But they’re fine for what they’re supposed to be – good looking retro runabouts. If you want to shred rear tires or cross the continent, there are probably better bikes to choose from, although I’d think you could do just about anything you wanted on one of these new Street Twins.

  3. Heretic13 says:

    If you want to build a retro bike, lose the radiator. Sorry, you can’t have both. That goes for Triumph as well as the Scout and any other “retro” with radiators. You want today’s performance? Don’t go retro.

    • Selecter says:

      Well, this looks awfully “retro” to me. And it has a radiator. So… yeah, it kinda does look like if you want today’s performance you can go “retro!” One can most certainly have both – it’s sitting right there in the picture above these comments!

      And how is the Scout “retro”? It’s about as modern-looking as cruisers get!

  4. Bob L says:

    Am I the only one who would like to see Triumph reshape the tank (maybe just a bit smaller) and lose the seams? As good as this bike looks, it could be that much better. JMHO.

    • Bob says:

      The tank seam on the Hinckley Bonnevilles has been a point of contention among Triumph purist since day one. I’m not crazy about it, but it ain’t a deal killer. As for tank shape, things went South when Triumph went to fuel injection around 2009 and had to enlarge the tank to incorporate the fuel pump without loosing tank capacity.

    • todd says:

      The tank seams look fine to me. What I wish they’d change are the headlight brackets, the dorky oval tail light and the single instrument looks wonky, it needs to be to one side with an equal-sized tachometer next to it.

      • Terry Leach says:

        I queried the lack of a tacho option on the new Street Twin with Triumph UK and they basically cited technical reasons for not having a tacho but indicated they may yet look into making a tacho available. I’ve suggested to them that even a faux “tacho” housing that just contained idiot lights/whatever might be a solution. The other good news for ppl wanting the retro look is that spoked wheels are available as an option for the ST.

    • Jeremy in TX says:

      I like it personally, and the tank seams don’t bother me. But I am not one of those people looking for a “period-correct” design. I usually like retro designs not because they look old but because they look simple and purposeful. I’d like the bike better with a USD fork, centered monoshock and revvier engine, but that opinion probably gives most fans of the current bike a shiver.

    • JVB says:

      Why is everyone always whining about seams??? Take care of your fuel, and rusting out at seams is not a problem. Next thing you’ll want no radiator, more power, and a price under $7K.

      I’m not trolling here, but Jeez.

  5. Jason says:

    This bike down seem down on power but it might still be fun to ride.

    I’ve ridden two bikes that seem to me to have the ideal power deliver for a road bike. The first was a Honda CBF1000 that my wife and I did a tour on in Europe. 100 HP / 70 lb-ft and a nice wide powerband. The second was a F800GT I rented in Canada. 90 hp / 63 lb-ft and again a nice spread of power. Both got excellent fuel economy to boot.

    • MGNorge says:

      Different strokes for different folks! Just as there are many different cars, boats and planes, etc., not all are at the top of the performance charts and designed the way they are for a reason.

      If people don’t like the power output of these Triumphs then they’ll either not buy them or seek ways to boost their output. Triumph will either find an audience or will rearrange things until they do. There are plenty of bikes for everyone, choose your steed.

    • nickst4 says:

      Too right about the lack of a direct relationship between power and fun! Among my bikes is a Cagiva Gran Canyon with a detuned 900 Ducati motor that produces an embarassingly-low output not so different from this Triumph, but that is such a lively ride! And that’s with my having raised the gearing quite a bit too. It has small valves that obviously increase intake charge velocity to give tremendous torque and rideability in the range I use. The bike is a gem, and the Speed Twin might be the same.

  6. todd says:

    I think the motor is good for 85 hp if you can remove a rev limiter and allow it to spin to 7500 rpm. The Yamaha TDM900 is a 270 degree parallel twin and it safely spins to 7500. I imagine the low power/rpm rating is to be able to get the thing past emissions requirements. The aftermarket will probably offer an optimized ignition map or Someone will find that snipping the blue wire will allow the full range of the engine. There’s no reason why it couldn’t continue with its 60 lb-ft to that relatively low rpm, in fact, allowing it to breather a little quicker might improve peak torque as well (giving even more power). 60 lb-ft is pretty mediocre for a 900.

    Don’t dismiss the bike just yet, allow some time for the ceremonial uncorking.

    • Curly says:

      I suspect you are exactly right unless Triumph blessed the cylinder head with pinky diameter intake ports. The bike as it is reported in the press seems to be a good enough real world ride already. The aftermarket will be on it before they hit the dealerships and improve the power.The stock tuning really does seem to be an emissions related thing that we can expect to see a lot of in the future.

    • MGNorge says:

      “60 lb-ft is pretty mediocre for a 900.”

      60 lb/ft of torque seems to be right in the ballpark for 900cc. With the Triumph’s rather mild state of tune I’d bet that most of that is available over a pretty good spread of rpm making it a very relaxed and easy ride.

    • Jeremy in TX says:

      The Street Twin has an approximately 80mm stroke, same as the Buell XB9S, so 7500 rpm would be about the absolute limit assuming it already has light enough conrods and pistons to go there. The reviews I’ve read said the engine is done at 6000 rpms, though, so that means that the power curve is the result of cams, intake tuning and timing rather than the rev limiter. I fear it would be expensive to add some excitement to the engine, especially if the valves are small.

      The Triumph mill is a parallel twin cruiser engine with a dull, narrow powerband which – I think – is what their intended customer wants.

      • todd says:

        Dang, I absolutely hate dull, low reving, narrow power band cruisers. I never quite understood why manufacturers did that. If you give the engine the ability to breathe it’s only going to improve performance. I’ve ridden liter-bike fours that have breathtaking torque (more than v-twins) yet are still able to rev well over ten grand. There is nothing as versatile and flexible as a broad power band, high reving engine that gives you the option of cruising at a sedate rpm or letting it scream in excitement. It must be some sort of marketing perception thing. I believe some people think that, if a bike has high horsepower, it must be hesitant or difficult to ride slowly at low RPMs. On a two stroke 500 for sure but it is just not the case on bikes today.

      • todd says:

        Don’t forget the Buell was a (long) pushrod motor whereas these Triumphs are DOHC. 7500 rpm means only a 20m/s piston speed. The Audi A4 has a 25.2m/s piston speed. The Buell is likely limited by those pushrods.

        • Selecter says:

          Piston *speed* is only half of the equation here. Piston *mass* is going to be a huge factor, as is the force the pistons exert as they change directions. I’m going to make the not-too-huge logical leap and guess that Triumph isn’t going out of their way to make a sub-$9000 bike with a big, loafing engine have the lightest internals possible, nor is the crank going to be the strongest or most well-balanced. I’d guess, though, that head flow is the limiting factor, and the low RPM cap is a result of there simply being no reason to spin the engine up any further. Even if you could, you’d bet diminishing output, and put unnecessary stress on the reciprocating parts where it benefits nobody. You could probably make an old Nailhead Buick spin to 6000rpm if you tried… but it’s completely pointless to do so, as they promptly stop making power at just over half that engine speed. No flow…

          I’m warming up to the Street Twin a bit, low peak HP figures be damned. I had figured that this would be even heavier than the current boat-anchor Bonneville, but all indications now point to it being a bit, and possibly significantly, lighter than the current model. So, they’ve done some engineering work on this, thankfully. My fear was that it would simply be more of the old, with some water cooling plumbing bolted on. This seems to not be so! The fact that I’ve been riding a 600-lb, two-wheeled tractor lately also makes the low peak HP easier to swallow…

          • Terry Leach says:

            That’s an interesting technical assessment of the new engine . There’s probably a host of factors as to why Triumph haven’t chased a lot of HP but my guess is that the average BAB who will take to this bike are no longer interested in blinding speed or rampant acceleration so much as rideability.

      • MGNorge says:

        Boys! Boys! I hardly expect someone buying one of these is doing so because they think they are dull. Just like Camry owners don’t buy them thinking they’re dull and yet there is no end to the number of people who point a finger at them as being so.

        Now, if after buying one of these they think they’re dull then it’s their fault for not doing their homework.

        A Camry is not a Lexus LFA nor is it a GS F and it’s not intended to be. Lamenting that this Triumph doesn’t rev out to 10 grand and beyond and produce triple digit horsepower seems like nothing more than placing your power wants in the wrong bike. I agree that its power rating seems low but labeling it as dull and then scratching your heads as to just who these appeal to is….well, go ask them. The Moto Guzzi V7 will never be labeled as being a powerful bike and yet they’re popular in the line-up. I hardly think owners went in thinking they were dull.

        • todd says:

          I have nine motorcycles that have less than triple digit power. In fact, they probably all average out to a little less than this Triumph. It’s just that most of my bikes are much smaller (lighter/more “flickable”) and probably get better mileage.

          The triumph does look great even if it’s too big for its britches.

          • Terry Leach says:

            Three cheers for smaller, lighter, flickable bikes. The world went mad for more cylinders, more cc’s, more weight (as a by-product) but arguably less fun. Good to see something of a resurgence in sub 500 cc bikes but still feel there’s a heap more potential in this category.

  7. ABQ says:

    I appreciate that they would make the new Bonneville more practical, and economical on fuel. The reason many of us get a bike is to save on fuel, while having some fun. I just don’t see the use of a motorcycle that gets worse fuel economy than four cylinder cars. Here Triumph has given us the daily driver of our dreams.
    I want to see what they do with the America…w/floorboards, windshield, bags, 5 gallon tank…

  8. Hot Dog says:

    Nice gaiters, I’ve always liked them. I don’t like the look of a single disk on the front, it seems unfinished. Lots of low end grunt and 55 hp will still wrap around a power pole, won’t it? I like this bike, it makes sense in a nonsensical world.

  9. Norm G. says:

    ladies and gentlemen it’s that time of year. once again for your viewing pleasure I present…

    (wait for it)

    the “riding of the Santas”…

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=efw5UiKumQI

  10. Gary says:

    Love the looks. Nothing like a Bonneville. But 55 HP out of a 900 cc motor is the wrong kinda retro. Here’s hoping the 1,200 cc motor has significantly more muscle.

  11. JT says:

    $9000 for 55 hp, I think they are learning from HD.

    Sorry, I will not spend that kind of money for that amount of HP. If I was in the market, I would cross shop the Honda. The fit and finish of the Honda is excellent. I think Triumph missed that mark here and that is coming from a person who has a Hinckley Triumph in my garage.

    • Brian says:

      It’s interesting to me that people so strongly correlate horsepower to price. I don’t really know what I’m talking about, and I’m sure people will correct me….but it seems to me that absent exotic materials and/or manufacturing processes, there’s probably very little reason why the 1200cc version of this will cost more than the 900cc. We’ve just been “trained” to accept that power/displacement increases are worth a substantial hike in base price.

      Is there really $1,000 more in an FZ-09 than an FZ-07? Or $,4,800 more in a Versys 1000 than a Versys 650?

      The fact that nobody seems to question this seems, to me, the biggest “scam” the manufacturers have going

      • Jeremy in TX says:

        The cost to produce something and the value it has to the consumer are two completely different things. Power is desirable to many people, so they are willing to pay more to have it. The fact that it may cost only incrementally more to produce the machine with that extra power isn’t really relevant to the value the consumer places on that extra power.

        • Tom R says:

          AKA Free Market Economics. No “scam” involved.

        • Brian says:

          No doubt the economics are more complicated than just one engine or one product line (e.g., higher-margin products subsidizing lower-margin products)…and certainly manufacturers can and will charge what the market will bear.

          And yet at the same time, if it were a fully competitive situation in this regard shouldn’t we expect to see a manufacturer break ranks and offer that extra 20hp (or whatever) at something closer to the actual extra cost involved in bringing it to market?

          In my opinion, we’ve recently seen something like this with the FZ-09. Remember how much of a shock that was? All the mags were like, “Holy cow, how can they offer something with this much power at this price?” A more recent, perhaps better, example would be the Scout Sixty.

          I doubt Yamaha/Indian have discovered some magical formula for decreasing motorcycle manufacturing costs. More like they decided: screw it, we’re gonna break with the industry standard pricing model, and in doing so make a big enough sales/publicty wave to offset what we would have made by tacking an extra $X on to the price of the bike.

          • Jeremy in TX says:

            Ultimately, a manufacturer needs a certain return not just to survive but to justify the amount of money it invests it getting its products into the consumers’ hands. The “fully competitive” situation you mention often presents itself in this country through the lack of choices – i.e. the competitive selling price of the machine would have to be too low to produce the margin required – evident when you look at European market offerings vs the here.

            Bikes like the FZ-09 are a gamble (as are all new models I suppose) – Yamaha gambling that power has more value to the bike’s target market than refinement or up-spec components and that the lower price point will create enough demand for the bike that the return can be achieved through volume and “soft” returns like more people on Yamahas, brand buzz, etc.. That is exactly what you describe in your last paragraph. So competition is at work, but it can take years for manufacturers to respond with new products.

  12. The Spaceman says:

    An almost 40% increase in fuel economy vs the outgoing model? If a car company did that it’d be headline news. I have to wonder: was the previous line that inefficient, are these bikes substantilly lower powered, or did Triumph pull off an engineering miracle?

    • Larry K says:

      I have a 2007 Bonny with DynoJet kit and slightly more open mufflers and one tooth larger on countershaft and can’t get over 36 MPG (US, Cali gas) riding perfectly reasonably. I’m not the only one either.

      • Rudedog4 says:

        I have a 2012 Bonneville SE, I typically get low forties if I flog it on the highway. If I’m riding more sedately on non-limited access highways, between 35 and 55 or so, I get over 50 mpg. It gets along very well in that environment, but it also goes nicely on the highway. I’d love to test ride the Speed Twin to see how it compares, especially if it gets substantially better gas mileage. I’d love to have a new 1200 Bonny, too. So many bikes, so little money.

  13. Martin B says:

    Triumph have made two great achievements with this bike. They have recognised what the most useful part of the powerband is, and have optimised the bike for that use. And they have priced the bike low enough to compete with similar European and American models.

    Torque: This is the force that gets you down the road with little apparent effort. The lower down the rev range the torque appears, the more useful it is. This is the secret to Harley’s success, not the pirate dress idiot parade of wanna be criminals. The Street Twin has torque in spades. This makes it easy to ride, from all reports. Screaming high revs might work on a race track, but think of all that petrol and rubber going up in smoke. The Triumph is more environmentally friendly.

    The look. Look at the bolts in the cylinder head. This all seems to be an air cooled bike from the 1940s, or maybe the 1950s. Ok, 1960s, with the unit twin construction. But there is real heritage here, and the cooling fins are functional, not just an artistic conceit. Look at the side cases. How much more authentic do you need? This is the real thing, despite the Thai build.

    And the Street Twin handles. There are some companies with an innate ability to truly optimise ride and handling. I’m thinking the Peugeot 505. I’ve had two in the past. Triumph have always found that sweet spot between lightness and stability, that ensures thoroughbred handling and all day comfort.

    So do I like this bike? Hell, yeah.

    • Provologna says:

      A superb torque curve + 55hp is OK, and certainly better than a mediocre torque curve + 55hp. A superb torque curve + 75-ish hp is better. Much better.

      I wonder if Hinckley stopped at 55hp only to increase the gap to the coming 1200.

    • todd says:

      Regardless of how much torque it is using to make the power it does, it never makes anything more than 55 hp. Power is what moves and accelerates the bike. A 55 hp bike will not be as quick as a 65 or 75 hp bike (of equal weight). A bicycle has twice the torque of the Triumph but does not make enough power to accelerate as hard as one.

    • Provologna says:

      Sorry to pile on. When I owned several late 70s Suzuki GS1000’s, one of my best riding friends had a gorgeous metallic glue ’76 Suzuki GS750C. A few times we exchanged rides for quite a spell, just to compare notes.

      Torque and power wise, especially the former, the liter bike walks away from the 750. But there’s a lot more to the overall fun factor. The 750 is a little lighter, w/less reciprocating mass, and both were more enjoyable than my 1000 in tight low speed corners, What really surprised me is that I liked the top end sting on the 750, while the 1000 had such a flat torque curve that it was was boring by comparison.

      Just a long winded way of restating my wish that Triumph might have considered more power being worth it, even if it required a worse torque curve.

      In the Triumph’s favor is its weight and agility, which both seem good, especially for a 900.

      Back to the Suzukis…one of my GS1000’s had a Wiseco 1100cc forged piston kit. That sucker made so much torque it would practically pull your arms from the socket, and that bike was not boring.

      • todd says:

        It would still be a 900 so torque would not be sacrificed for power. You would just allow the thing to spin a higher RPM and get more use out of each gear. There’s nothing that sucks more than a “torquey” low reving engine and its associated narrow power band. Give me all the RPMs you can and I promise I will make use of all of them.

  14. oldridertom says:

    Wow. Two MD reviews in a row on entry level bikes and the majority of commenters belly up to the keyboard and slag these models. I feel an experienced rider who doesn’t like the paint, handlebars, horsepower, riding position, etc. of these types of machines needs to realize that they are not the intended market. All the manufacturers make bikes of higher specifications that they will gladly sell you. The idea of both the Street Twin and the Scout Sixty is to get newer riders into the showroom and onto a bike. In my experience these folks need bikes without glaring flaws that give them the pleasure of owning something special. These bikes (Scrambler included) are potential home runs and I believe they will make lots of folks happy, from owners to dealers.
    I feel better now.

    • todd says:

      No one should ever consider a 900cc bike an entry level bike. As far as I’m concerned, Triumph do not have an entry level bike. They are targeting this to the Boomers, the core market that gave Triumph such great success through the Bonneville line. If Triumph were after the entry/beginner market, they’d come out with something to compete in that market, i.e. KTM 390, BMW 310, etc. A Tiger Cub 350 single in Roadster and “Scrambler” trim would be just the thing to peak the interest of the youngins.

      • oldridertom says:

        Not sure about your level of experience in this area, but I have been teaching beginners for 20 years or so and have witnessed many new riders finishing a course and immediately buying the large bike of their dreams and doing just fine. The whole thing about starting on tiny “learner” bikes does not reflect the reality of what new motorcyclists are doing and have always done. Ask your fellow riders how they progressed at the early stages of their own riding history. A lot of these folks will tell you that they wouldn’t now learn the way they did then and will steer friends and family into starting small and gradually moving up. Classic case of “Do what I say, not what I do.” Myself, I appreciate and enjoy most bikes including “learner” bikes and know from experience that most people want the thrill of riding the dream bike of the moment and are not concerned about the “proper” progression to becoming an accomplished rider.

  15. cyclemotorist says:

    I love the styling. I cannot understand all the complaining. It’s not a competition bike so the power is perfectly adequate.

    • Random says:

      Man, this is clearly a RACEBIKE. Obviously needs lots of HP.

      Sarcasm aside, this bike has had stellar reviews from many sites. Seems to have lots of torque. Harleys seems to be great in the city with all that torque, but appear painful due to ride position. Problem solved.

  16. Scotty says:

    I think for the intended market its absolutely spot on. I’d consider one myself if I wasn’t such a Guzzi fanatic. Particularly the styling AT LAST has caught up with the V7s.

    Could see myself riding around Europe or Australia or the USA on one of those. Couple of throw over saddlebags, sleeping bag and a mat and I’d be set. Just like I was on the SRX600, and the SZR660, and now (but with hard HB luggage) on my Breva 750.

    • Bob says:

      I had an SRX6 that I bought new in ’86 and she was certainly a sweet lady. I also had an MuZ Scorpion (660) and it was almost as sweet. Now I am hoping to get myself a Guzzi. Funny how some people appreciate the same things. I like this new Triumph as well as the whole new Bonneville line.

      • Scotty says:

        Yes Bob I cant help thinking..”if I had to explain the appeal of these bikes to you, you wouldn’t understand anyway”. 🙂 Ted Simon went around the world without backup and he did OK on a pretty low powered bike. So did the Mondos.

      • Cycleruss says:

        I too had a MuZ 660, put 35,000 miles on it.
        Also have owned 3 Guzzis, and 3 BMWs.
        Have a 2010 Bonneville now, this Street Twin interest’s me.
        I like more torque, great for passing, without having to downshift and wind out the motor.
        May own one a few years down the road.

  17. Frank says:

    I like it. Great looking, smartly improved, sensible, and modern. You want more, get the 1200. I’ll take the red one.

  18. teelee says:

    To low horsepower plus a real crummy company, Don’t buy this brand because the dealers are dropping them fast. Triumph wants control of the dealership with all there demands. Company people act as there are a lot smarter than you. A company with socialism at heart.

    • Scott says:

      You have issues.

      • VFRMarc says:

        Spelling, for one.

      • teelee says:

        The issue I have is when I buy a brand of bike [3] and then my 2 dealers drop the brand then there is something wrong with that picture. Both dealers say the same thing, Triumph trying to dictate to them what they buy,when to buy it and how many. Requiring certain brand of flooring-certain displays-certain posters hanging in the showroom. Having to stock unwanted clothing and accessories over and beyond what the dealer thinks he needs. Taking away profit made on the bike if certain things are met. Having to send in your profit and loss statement every 90 days. It just goes on and on. My spelling or my grammar may not be up to your standards but I have a well paying job and money is not a problem. I buy many motorcycles every year and Triumph will never get another dollar of my Money. Dealers are dropping the brand all over the USA as I have friends in the dealer commercial financing and they are tell me this. Don’t buy a Triumph, your dealer will be dropping the brand

        • Scotty says:

          “Many every year” – hardly a typical motorcyclist then.

        • Tom K. says:

          When I first heard Teelee go off on Triumph, my troll radar spiked. But now I’ve changed my mind, I believe he is quite sincere, and who knows, may even be correct in his assertions.

          Does anyone know the number of Truimph dealers, by year, for the past ten years, in the U.S.? If there has been a significant dropoff in the past few years, then he may bave a point. If not, then his stance is either anecdotal, or his bias was brought about due to a bad experience in a dealership or something – which takes us back into troll territory (I myself am inclined to slam a dealer, not the entire brand, for something like that). Not being able to determine which, I’ll shut up now. Can anyone disprove what he is saying? Because he sure does say it a lot – if nothing else, I’m giving Teelee points for perseverence.

          • teelee says:

            Thank you Tom, I am 100% correct about what Triumph is doing to the small dealer. If any one questions it please go to the small dealer and ask them. Small dealers are 20 or less employees that sell 40 to 60 Triumphs a year. In 1995 Triumph started back in this country with small mom and pop dealers to build the brand, now the brand has grown Triumph only wants dealers that can sell 75 bikes a year or more. I should say that Triumph wants all dealers but with there force it on you attitude small dealers can not make money with the brand. Therefor 2 of my dealers said screw you Triumph and I no longer have a close dealer. Its not the bikes its those Brits. More info to come.

          • Scott says:

            “It’s not personal, teelee. It’s just business.”

          • Tank says:

            I have a friend that has a Yamaha, Suzuki and Kawasaki dealership. I asked him why he didn’t sell Hondas and he told me something similar to what teelee is saying.

          • Dave says:

            It is Triumph’s prerogative to make requirements of dealers. If your dealers are smaller then they may not be able to commit to what Triumph requires in order to be a certified dealer. Are there now *no* Triumph dealers in your market? Chances are, Triumph is putting their bikes into a dealer who’s committed to succeeding with the brand and not one that wants to carry them to as a 3rd or 4th niche brand.

            At any rate, this is not something Triumph is doing “to” dealers. They know that shipping small numbers of bikes all over the country will hurt their profit as well. The dealer can choose to commit or walk away from the brand and continue selling whatever they believe will make them successful.

          • teelee says:

            Dave, you don’t ditch the girl you brought to the dance, if those smaller dealers have been with Triumph since 1995-96 when people were unsure of the brand and pushed the brand along you just don’t up and make the cost of keeping the brand out of reach for smaller dealers. Its ok for Triumph to require new dealers to step up but to require old dealers to make unwanted changes to the layout of there stores just because Triumph wants it is unreasonable.

            Triumph has equal freight cost on all shipping of motorcycles so no extra costs there. If the dealers parts account is current and paid on time then its no cost to Triumph. Most motorcycles dealers are independent businesses and most believe that they the owner will do the best for there store and they are dropping the brand. They are a niche brand. Yes, dealers who sell this brand need to be “committed” if they keep the brand. Sure sounds like you work for Triumph

          • Dave says:

            You’re talking about feelings, not business. If Triumph sees that their brand has outgrown smaller dealerships then again, it is their prerogative to ask for growth commitments. This is not an abnormal practice. Sometimes dealers just don’t grow with their vendors.

            Look around. Premium brands that are successful always consolidate their dealer network. How often do you hear comments complaining about thin dealer coverage with European moto brands? It’s not an accident, it’s a business choice.

            Don’t forget, Triumph is a British company, not Japanese. It is harder to sell a product from a country with a strong currency into a country with a weaker one. Costs aren’t the same.

          • teelee says:

            Dave, one definition of premium brand is of high value. The value for a motorcyclist that has a brand is to have local dealers. Triumph closing stores because of unrealistic demands brings the value down. I warn potential buyers of this brand to explore other choices. Go to your small Triumph store and you will see blue/gray displays and that will have to be by 2017 black/white displays all at the dealers cost. I can’t make this stuff up so go check it out for yourself. Rosen

          • Dave says:

            Tesla is a premium brand and they have no dealers.

            “Triumph closing stores because of unrealistic demands brings the value down.”

            To you, maybe. To Triumph the goal is to have their products sold by motivated, professional dealers, thus delivering “value” to a discerning customer. Customers who buy premium products also have expectations of the professionalism of the places they buy them from and I’m sure Triumph are smart enough to determine how far a buyer is willing to travel to purchase.

  19. beasty says:

    Nice looking motorcycle. I’d like to test ride one. Nice move by Triumph on the tire sizes, and a good job on the radiator design.

  20. PN says:

    Looks okay. Kinda soft and a bit too rounded. Not something I’d choose to ride though.

  21. Fastship says:

    The legendary Bonnie has always been a big hit in America with the export model contributing to the brands heritage but here in the UK it was always the working mans’ speed machine; often his only means of transport meagre wages ploughed back into his machine to make it a true “ton up” bike and they and it came to define the café racer, rockers (mods v rockers et al) and their owners the archetypal biker, a heritage which the modern hipster ruthlessly mines until it’s inevitably declared passée and they move on to the next fad.

    Triumph themselves trade heavily on this heritage “(these bikes)… live alongside the British brand’s heritage bikes. The Bonneville models are arguably the core of the brand…” but they are no longer made in England and you will search in vain for that sticker that once sat proudly (often peeling off!) on the oily side panel. The original rockers are pensioners now and America is no longer the far off place you would never hope to visit.

    These bikes are made in Thailand now and irrespective of their qualities they are a dead end, a mockery of the the original Bonnie and all that went with them and why men my age with a lover of genuine bikes now plough our money into the very latest high tech Ducati.

    Death to hipsters, long live the Queen!

    • Scott says:

      Alright, then.

    • Butch says:

      The same reason I wouldn’t but a Ducati Scrambler : Not made in Italy, made in Thailand.

    • mickey says:

      Honda CB1100..1140 cc I4, almost 90 hp, 65 ft lbs torque, triple disc brakes, 6 speed trans, dual analog gauges, gear indicator, trip computer, period correct looks, MADE IN JAPAN, can be bought for the same money…just saying

      • Alex says:

        Are the valve check intervals really every 6,000 miles on the CB1100?

        • KenHoward says:

          It’s every 8,000. And it’s expensive. I don’t think anyone is seriously going to be cross-shopping the CB1100 (if Honda even still sells it) with the Street Twin, unless they consider how many individual parts they are getting for their money as representative of value.

          • mickey says:

            really? because a lot of the CB1100 owners on the CB1100forum are still and have also been Bonnie owners. Myself included (2003 100th anniv edition T-100 in Lucifer orange and silver)

            But I was simply saying if 55 hp isn’t enough, and if you don’t want a Street Twin or Ducati Scrambler because they were made in Thailand and weren’t made in their country of origin or design the CB1100 cures all those ills with 50% more horsepower and design and built by Honda in Japan.

          • Brian says:

            Check the used market. Or the leftover new market. For some reason, theyd didn’t sell very well…but IMHO they’re leaps and bounds ahead of something like this.

            Not that there’s anything wrong with this.

      • Tim says:

        I’m a big fan of the CB 1100. Given how little the leftovers are selling for, I’d have one in my garage if I had the space for it. The fit and finish on the CB 1100 is much superior to any other retros I’ve seen.

    • Selecter says:

      Being an American, I couldn’t possibly care less what foreign country the bikes come from. They’re all (H-D and Polaris excepted) from a foreign country. A Bonnie that’s not build in England or a Ducati that’s not built in Italy is all the same to me.

      Even worse, if I think “Made in England” for a Bonnie, I think of the leaking clatter-traps from the ’60s. When I think of the “Made in Thailand” Bonnie, I think of an economical, overweight, but fundamentally durable, fuel-injected, and reliable machine. I’d actually pick the Thai product, given the choice. One obviously can’t say that all UK-built Triumphs are bad, given the scope of time and different corporate ownership we’re looking at here,(I had a T509 that was mediocre at best, but a TT600 that was stellar!), but that association still sits with me personally. YMMV.

      Ducati’s offshore manufacturing experience still has to bear out its overall competence, but Triumph’s has proven to be remarkably good.

  22. FN says:

    Triumph has done a good job with the new bikes. These bikes will sell like hot cakes especially the T120 and the Thruxton R. Horsepower is not an issue with these bikes as they are not a performance bike. I would estimate the new T120 will have around 75 – 80 Horsepower but it will have tons of torque and world class style. Well done Triumph !!!!!

  23. VLJ says:

    I have to believe the 55 hp thing is a misprint. How can this new, liquid-cooled, larger motor produce twelve fewer hp than the old air-cooled 850? 55 claimed hp equates to something like 48 rwhp, which seems ludicrously anemic for a modern liquid-cooled 900. I mean, come on, that’s Moto-Guzzi V7 territory, and that’s an ancient air-cooled 750.

    Something is definitely rotten in Denmark…errr, Blighty…okay, Thailand. Whatever.

    • John says:

      That’s the weird thing for me. Seems a modern, low tune 900cc engine would still hit 75hp by accident alone.

    • mickey says:

      The dyno charts I have seen on the 865 Bonnies show a peak of 60 hp @ 7100 rpms.. This one is revving lower and therefore produces less peak horsepower.

    • Grover says:

      Oh, you have to buy into the “torque is better” thing. Me, I’d rather have 100 hp and a little less torque to spice up my ride than a 500 pound bike with 55 hp.

  24. Jeremy in TX says:

    It’s a beauty, but I am definitely not excited about the cruiser engine tuning.

  25. Jabe says:

    When I look at this machine I wonder how the American cruiser became so popular. I am anxious to see the 1200.

  26. Gham says:

    If I could have two bikes I would give the Speed Twin a very close look,I really like it.

  27. Tank says:

    I would’ve rather had hydraulic valves instead of liquid-cooling.

  28. Butch says:

    Why can’t they squeeze as much hp from the 270 as they do with the 360 degree crank ?

    • Bob says:

      There is no inherent difference in horsepower between the 270 and 360 degree cranks. The difference is in the state of tune, which is milder to put more grunt in the bottom end of the power curve. Note that the 865cc air/oil cooled twins use both versions of the crank and there’s no appreciable difference in power.

      • Butch says:

        The air cooled Bonnie (360) makes 68hp while the Scrambler (270) makes 58.
        Why tune out 10 hp ?

        • mickey says:

          Butch dyno charts I find rate the 360 Bonnie at 58-60 hp

        • Bob says:

          The 270 degree crank came about in the 865cc Cruiser models, the America and Speedmaster. I think it was done to give the engine an exhaust note that was more like a V-twin than a parallel twin. That crank found it’s way into the scrambler because the uneven firing intervals of the 270 degree crank are said to yield better traction in the dirt, if it was actually ridden in the dirt. Both 360 and 270 engines have the same compression ratio and cam duration/lift specs, and make the same power. I’ve owned both, and the power delivery feels different, but neither was quicker than the other.

  29. Mike Simmons says:

    I like it! The Triumph designers “get it”. I hope Honda is paying attention.

    Mike

  30. Bob says:

    A dry weight of 437 lbs compared to about 470 for the 865cc models? I’d love to know where they removed the weight.

  31. Dave Joy says:

    If it wasn’t for the pathetic dealership availability I would buy one tomorrow!

  32. mickey says:

    There is a market for nearly full size easy to ride bikes under $10K.Even with 55 hp or even less. The old Triumph Bonnevilles and all Moto Guzzi V7’s fall into this class and are/were the bread and butter of those two mfgs. The W650 also fit in this category when it was being imported and even in Europe it’s still being sold and has less HP than the Street Twin.

    They should do very well.

    For me though, on looks alone I’d have to go with the T-120 vs any of them, even if it does have a radiator now.

  33. My2Cents says:

    I totally agree 55 ponies is too little and even 70 might be a little light. But the bike looks right and with some café bits it would look sweet.

  34. Denny says:

    Only 55 bhp at peak? That’s pathetic. My ’03 Hornet 900 (traded recently) had 100hp from same displacement. Two-cylinder of that volume should have at least 70 HP; then I might start to pay attention.

    • Half Baked says:

      BFD I have a 500 2 stroke single that makes over 60hp and weighs less then 230lbs.

    • Dave says:

      Peak hp comes @ 5,900rpm. This engine’s redline is so low it doesn’t even need a tachometer. Peak hp meanns very little to the riding experience this bike (and almost all Harley’s) delivers. Comparing it toa Japanese I4 is missing the point entirely. Different bikes, different rides.

  35. TF says:

    Very nice. Being a long time Bonneville fan, I can’t wait to try one……especially the T120!