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2017 Triumph Street Triple RS: MD First Impression

What follows is a brief report from our friends at Solo Moto in Spain regarding time spent aboard the most powerful, and highly equipped, of the new 765cc Street Triple models, the 2017 Street Triple RS. There are three members of the new Street Triple family, including the 111 horsepower S, 116 horsepower R and 121 horsepower RS.

With each step, not only horsepower but quality of components increases. You can find all of the details in our earlier article, but the top spec RS that is the subject of this report features the highest state of tune ever found in a Street Triple with peak horsepower at 11,700 rpm and peak torque (57 pound/feet) at 10,800 rpm. Together with five separate riding modes (ranging from Rain to Track, and including a Rider Programmable), ABS brakes, adjustable traction control and quickshifter, the RS features the highest-specification Showa big piston front forks with full adjustability, as well as an Öhlins STX40 fully-adjustable shock, and the top drawer Brembo M50 radial mount four-piston front brake calipers.

Triumph chose Barcelona to present the new Street Triple 800 range.  The Street Triple has been the best seller of the English brand in its first decade of life. Triumph claims the new range of bikes are even lighter than their predecessors (claimed dry weight is 366 pounds).

We started early in the morning with a route through the Montseny, in the province of Barcelona, with the asphalt still damp. With these conditions, we activated the Rain mode, which does not limit the peak power, but only the way of delivering it – smoother – and the degree of intrusion of the safety systems (traction control and ABS), and we take advantage of the traction control.

As the day progressed, the roads became dry and we were able to try the other configurations, five in total: Rain, Road, Sport, Track and Rider Programmable. Plenty of adjustability for any level of rider skill and road conditions. The new 5-inch TFT screen legibly provides all of the information regarding current settings and adjustments, as well as typical instrument panel data.

The RS we tested, as stated earlier, features the highest state of tune found in the new 765cc triple (up from 675cc in the prior model). The revisions to the chassis not only reduce weight, but improve agility that can be felt both on the street and on the track. This bike is very quick. It absolutely rips on top – by comparison, the S model makes its lower peak horsepower and torque much further down the rev range.

At the same time, the RS makes good power everywhere, and drives out of corners without too much concern with gear choice.

After the morning testing on the street, we rode on the track at Catalunya. A huge track that rewards a bike with big power. The Street Triple RS gave us all that we could handle. Although the lack of wind protection made it hard to hold on, at times, the engine felt right at home on the big track.

First and second gear are taller than on the prior models, but gear spacing seems right for the power delivery, and the quickshifter that is stock on the RS meant the transmission did everything we asked of it quickly and seamlessly.

Changing directions, including through the chicane, was easy and felt like we were aboard a smaller displacement bike. At the same time, stability was good both on the straights and mid-turn.

Fitted with Pirelli Supercorsa SP tires, grip was outstanding on the track. In sum, the new Street Triple RS seems to be a bike without compromises between street and track with the stonking engine, top drawer suspension and brakes all tuned to work in harmony.

The new Street Triple RS is available in the U.S. at an MSRP of $12,500.  Take a look at Triumph’s web site for additional details and specifications.


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74 Comments

  1. Frank says:

    Complaints about dry weight, it may be a bit off not to put the wet weight but rest assured this is a very light motorcycle, easier to move out of my garage up a slight slope than a Superdream or ER500 whilst being very secure on the road (on proper road tyres not race spec tyres) despite this lack of mass. I agree with some others, with just a half fairing it would make an excellent tourer for those who don’t want to grapple with excess mass.

  2. jim m says:

    I’d sure like to see a fairing model with factory saddlebags and cruise for us older riders that are looking for lighter touring bikes that handle in the twisties.

  3. Bubba Blue says:

    First we turned left, then we turned right, there was good power, not enough wind protection, there’s sixteen different modes for those who go motorcycling in the driving rain without wind protection.
    Does it have self-cancelling indicators? Cruise control? Heated grips? I don’t know.

    You want a second opinion? I don’t care for the looks, too.

  4. Tim C says:

    Needs a half-fairing.

  5. Daytona James says:

    “…the lack of wind protection made it hard to hold on”
    No hint of a Daytona version yet? (Ahem… Triumph – If you build, I will buy.)

  6. raymond says:

    You get a lot for the money (RS model). I am just waiting for it to show up at showroom so I can try it out in person before buying. A few issues still bothers me; the use of dry weight rather than curb weight (what are they trying to hide?), lack of dealership in my area (must travel 250miles), and the color; silver sub frame to ID it as top line model, really! Otherwise, great that Triumph spec this bike 3 ways so buyers can choose. RS is all dress up with top quality components (like the way I would have) saving me the time to upgrade the bike (and not knowing if everything would work well together); all with factory warranty!

    • beasty says:

      “the use of dry weight rather than curb weight (what are they trying to hide?)”
      They’re not really hiding anything, the dry weight just looks better on paper. Just add approximately 7lbs/gallon for gas and oil and approximately 8lbs/ gallon for coolant and you’ll be pretty close to the wet weight.

      • KenHoward says:

        So, obviously, the manufacturer IS obscuring the real, i.e., the exact wet weight of a road-ready bike for those who are quick to focus on – and commit to memory – the printed statistic (or don’t know the difference?). My old SV650 had an often-quoted “376 pound dry weight,” but an actual 430+ pounds wet. Yeah, the dry weight “looks better” – with no coolant, gasoline, oil, shock fluid, battery water, and who knows what else. Nope, nothing deceptive at all…

        • mickey says:

          some mfg posts the wet weight with the gas tank 90% full. Can’t remember who it is but how ridiculous is that?

          • Larry Kahn says:

            As long as everyone used the same method that would be the most real world useful.Or maybe half-full tank.

    • kevin says:

      I’d prefer wet weight standard to be with 2 gallons of fuel vs full fuel. I’d hate to see a manufacturer put a 4 gallon tank when they could easily fit a 5 gallon tank because they don’t want their wet weight used against them in a comparison.

  7. CF9 says:

    Having the previous model and knowing the value it brought, this is a no brainer. I can only struggle with the thought of selling my str 675 as it is only a small alteration in styling, be it more modern (Round headlights are not modern and every manufacturer is killing them off except on the retro bikes, cruisers, and the sv650. Enough), and the power/sound of the 675 is still intoxicating. This bike offers a level of refinement and componentry you won’t find from japan or europe and you will never see something like this out of the US, for this price. Please stop with the “lack of wind protection” comments as this is easily defeated with the forward riding position the geometry places you in. 3 years I have not had a problem with wind on this particular bike with the original pointy flyscreen. If you stop talking yourself out of stupid headlights and gratuitus wind discrimination you will fall in love more in love with riding.

    • todd says:

      Odd shaped headlights might be more modern, there certainly aren’t many examples from the past except for some old Suzukis. That does not get around the fact that these headlights look dumb. Modern doesn’t have to look dumb and if I bought one of these I would put a round headlight (or two) on it.

    • Ryan Craig says:

      To me it’s not the shape of the headlights, but the awkward way they sit out in front of the forks. As if they belonged to a fairing which has been removed, but are still sitting on the fairing support. Which is what they were originally styled after – streetfighter bikes made from stripped down sport bikes.

      As for wind protection, there’s clearly not enough for my tastes and riding style. But that’s just a personal preference for sport-touring use in all weather. I have a half-faired Fazer 8 which has fairly minimal wind protection with the stock screen, on which I install a larger screen for touring use and/or cooler weather.

      • Dino says:

        I was thinking the same thing.. the lights themselves are not the real problem, it’s the tiny mount that the while cluster just out from. Like a volleyball on a golf tee, just looks wrong.

        Somebody could come up with a little “fairing” that wraps around the headlight mount, and you would have a great bike that didn’t look like it had the head of a praying mantis

        • Dave says:

          Another poster pointed out something I hadn’t considered before. As “ugly” as it is to some, a possibly very real benefit is that it removes a great deal of swinging weight from the steering assembly. Of course, it’s the 21st century and much of that weight could be eliminated with LED’s.

  8. Auphliam says:

    I really like this bike, but I wish Triumph wouldn’t have had all the press testing only the RS. Every impression out in the media is of only the top model, with everybody’s varying opinions about how the base and mid models might perform in comparison. Unless they plan to employ the BMW sales model of making base models a rarity, a little real world perspective on those would be nice.

    • todd says:

      In the hands of 99% of the riding population, there will be no difference except for that sinking feeling that you “cheaped out”. That may be what Triumph is after, they probably don’t plan on selling many of the base versions.

      There’s always the up side of buying the lesser models or any cheap/old bike for that matter; being faster than others riders in spite of what you ride.

    • Stuki Moi says:

      The RS a bit of a conundrum. M50s are a nuisance on the street. Unless your bike has a race stiff front end, and you spend so much time on the track you have to acclimatize to your street ride every time you get on it. Then the quarter of a pinky to endo may just make some sense.

      OTOH, the Big Piston Showa is the finest front end ever to grace a street bike, and it only comes on the RS. Not sure about the Ohlins rear unit on the RS, but in my experience, most who speck Ohlins suspenders (uh, cough, Daytona….) do so to gain track advantage. IOW, too stiff for street use….

    • Guy says:

      Because the other models aren’t out yet. They will be tested at a later date.

  9. Frank says:

    I have a 2013 675 and was interested in the 765 with the half fairing which seems to have been dropped. I have the std cowl plus small laminar fairing on mine which looks lovely with the stock headlights to my eyes. getting the lamps off the forks does help the front end’s feel which along with the non ABS brakes has fantastical solidity and stability, the most impressive bit of the bike IMO… yes the three cylinder engine is great but actually found the twin cylinder torque of the F800R more impressive at road speeds. As far as road riding goes in cold UK race spec tyres are a dangerous disaster in the making, mine runs much better on Avons. Overall do not think I will upgrade at the moment, the 675 already does it for me.

  10. Mick says:

    I see that Triumph is still a member of the lie weight club. There should be a law against that. A dry motorcycle cannot be ridden. And just how “dry” is that bike when it is at the dry weight?

    That and 54 foot pounds at 10.5k? In 2017? Sorry, but my 2004 air cooled Ducati two valver makes 84 at 5k. I am not seeing progress here.

    • Dave says:

      What air cooled Ducati is that?

      “On Barnett’s Dynojet dynamometer the DS1000 engine ground out 86.8 rear-wheel horsepower at 8,000 rpm and 65.5 lb-ft of torque at six grand. The torque graph is quite flat, with roughly 50 lb-ft or more from 3,000 through redline.”

    • Max says:

      You’ve been confused by the hype like everyone else. Engine torque is a meaningless number to a rider. The torque you feel at the rear wheel is due to gearing.
      Power is what you feel. And on the Triumph at 10.5k rpm it’s making:
      Power = (torque*hp)/5252 = (54*10.5k)/5252 = 108 hp@10.5k rpm

      Your Duc is making:
      (84*5k)/5252 = 80 hp@5k rpm

      So yes, the RS would inhale your old Duc down any straight.

      • Mick says:

        The Duc makes about 90, horsepower continues to climb with RPM after the torque peak.

        There are no straights on a good Corsican road. The roads are VERY tight and reward a grunty engine as you are always coming out of a fairly “low speed” corner. Corsica is like enduro single track for street bikes. Total bucket ride.

        • Dave says:

          You’re 32hp down on a 50lb lighter bike (Ducati M1000 = 416lb dry), with better suspension and brakes, with a sophisticated traction control system. The M1000 is a great bike, but there is nowhere in the world that the Duc wins against an equal rider on this.

          • mickey says:

            Street triple is a dry weight add another 30 pounds for a tank of gas, fork oil, trans oil, so it probably close to 400 wet.

            Depending on the tightness of the course, the Triumph may not be able to take advantage of it’s hp advantage

            Still due to better bralkes, better suspension compliance and. Electronic aids I think the Triumph would most likely win.

            It’s not always the bike with the most horsepower, but often the bike with the best overall package… See MotoGP for examples.

          • todd says:

            Mickey, power pretty much always wins when all else is equal, in spite of torque. The bike with more power has more rpm which comes with lower gearing which means more drive out of corners.

            Small capacity, high powered bikes excel in tight courses as the whole course can be ridden in a single gear. The flexibility of a high revving, lightweight bike is what makes sport bikes so desirable for track days and racing.

          • mickey says:

            Tell that to Honda and Ducati who build the most powerful motoGP bikes but who’s riders complain about the difficult to ride super powerful motors who are often beaten by the less powerful but easier to ride Yamahas.
            Suzuki did pretty well with a much underpowered bike the last couple of years as well. It takes a combo of power, handling and braking to win consistantly.

    • Jeremy in TX says:

      Put this Triumph up against your Ducati in a straight line, on a twisty road or on a race track, and you will see what progress looks like. (Hint: Progress will have a striking resemblance to the Triumph when viewed from behind at a considerable distance.)

      • Mick says:

        Challenge accepted. Race is in Corsica. Good luck.

      • Norm G. says:

        BRING IT…!!!

      • Provologna says:

        Yes, absolutely.

        Back in the 70s (19, not 18), my buddy had a Sandy Kosman tuned Suzuki GS1000, 1100cc w/Mr. Turbo kit. Sandy said it made at least 150hp.

        People used to mention how soft on power was this particular bike at lower RPM. The owner used to say, “What do they think this thing is for?” (pointing to the shifter).

        The other major handling advantage of the 765 triple vs. 1000cc twin is often ignored: reciprocating mass. The lower it is the less is gyroscopic effect which tends to force the bike to maintain whatever is its current angle relative to the pavement. IOW, the less is gyroscopic effect the quicker can the bike transition from full lean on one side vs. the other. The 1000 certainly has huge disadvantage in that spec.

        With both riders of equal high performance skill, the 765/1000 race would end a few seconds after it started, and I’d bet significant money on that outcome.

      • Provologna says:

        Yes, absolutely.

        Back in the 70s (19, not 18), my buddy had a Sandy Kosman tuned Suzuki GS1000, 1100cc w/Mr. Turbo kit. Sandy said it made at least 150hp.

        People used to mention how soft on power was this particular bike at lower RPM. The owner used to say, “What do they think this thing is for?” (pointing to the shifter).

        The other major handling advantage of the 765 triple vs. 1000cc twin is often ignored: reciprocating mass. The lower it is the less is gyroscopic effect which tends to force the bike to maintain whatever is its current angle relative to the pavement. IOW, the less is gyroscopic effect the quicker can the bike transition from full lean on one side vs. the other. The 1000 certainly has huge disadvantage in that spec.

        With both riders of equal high performance skill, the 765/1000 race would end a few seconds after it started, and I’d bet significant money on that outcome.

    • stinkywheels says:

      I love my old Ducs, I like the Triumphs. I love to hear about inhaling bikes on the straights. Buy a used Busa and inhale a Triumph and save 7k. I don’t get a thrill from straight lining, buuut trying to keep the front end down exiting corners while using my right wrist traction control really makes the willie tingle. I’ve ridden the 675 Daytona and really liked it, just not enough to sell my 1100 Hyper. I’m sure an extra 125cc would help though.

      • Max says:

        He was making the point that there wasn’t much progress in power since the time of his Duc. He was comparing power between Duc and Trump. Both are small, light, nimble packages that compare well aside from the fact the Trump makes a ton more power over its rev band.
        Busa doesn’t have anything to do with these machines.

    • Stuki Moi says:

      While a dry motorcycle cannot be ridden, a fully tanked motorcycle doesn’t remain fully tanked for long if ridden, either…….

      I’d say the most informative weight to quote, would be including everything sans fuel. If you include fuel, you’ll always, at least partially, simply be comparing tank sizes.

      • Max says:

        And oil sumps and radiator capacities.

        • todd says:

          And no brake/clutch fluids, license plate and frame or air in the tires (seriously). Sometimes the battery is not included either since that is a dealer installed item and brand/weight/specs are considered unknowns or variables. Dry weights are taken from theoretical nominal CAD models because they can be measured with the click of a button. It’s reeeeaaallllly hard to ride a CAD bike.

  11. David Miller says:

    First ever comment.
    I wish all articles that have someone on a bike gave at least thier height.
    am I alone?
    I like,I think,once I read about ET on the front of the bike and looked again I can’t unsee it!

  12. JPJ says:

    This is going to be a great bike. Not just in sales for Triumph, but for those who vote with their wallet and purchase one. Three model choices, so your buy in will be just what you want. As stated, Brembo, Ohlins, Pirelli SP’s. These are not cheap add-ons. All with good useable power, and ergonomics. My friend has a 675 Triple R. It’s a great bike, that Triumph has only improved.

  13. marloweluke says:

    Wondering how big the test rider shown in the pictures is. Looks like a rather small female. The old street triple was quite small and I don’t think this one is any bigger. Would a full size male fit on it? Hopefully they follow this up with an RT version that is a little roomier for my 6’3″. I would consider replacing my Sprint RS with an RT version. I wouldn’t consider these naked options.

    • Neil says:

      Look for your legs to feel cramped in no time. I never scraped a peg on my Nighthawk 750. Peg heights are ridiculous for the street. Is that all I am doing is scraping LA canyons? No.

  14. Raymond Hon says:

    I grew up riding Japanese bikes so I really wanted to get the fz09 but after trying it out, it just felt cheap. At least Triumph offers various level of “up grades” to choose from so I dont have to piece together a bike…Some might find that fun, for me, I rather have the factory put together a proper bike that I can buy off the lot with warranty. I ll try out the RS when it becomes avaible here in US and if it fits me and its well built, I m taking the plunge and buying my 1st British bike! Stay tune…

  15. Jeremy in TX says:

    I think it is time for Triumph to do something about the headlights. They make the bike look dated.

    But that is my only criticism of this very impressive bike.

    • Jdilpkle says:

      Triumph should have a big eyelash option for those headlights. They look a little, shall I say, “dainty”.

      …but I owned a Roulette green bug-eyed Speedy – what do I know.

      Hey Jeremy, how are ya doin!?

    • Jdilpkle says:

      Triumph should have a big eyelash option for those headlights. They look a little, shall I say, “dainty”. Other than that. I’m sure its great. Torque is a mans best friend.

      …but I owned a Roulette green bug-eyed Speedy and three Buells – what do I know.

  16. Stratkat says:

    in that side view it looks like the kid taking E.T. for a ride in the basket of his bicycle!

  17. iwc3714 says:

    I don’t mind the shape of the headlights. They just stick out too far from
    the forks. Every once in a while I see those round eyed Street/Speed
    triples and they look so vintage.
    But beyond the lights, Triumph should be given props for such a well executed \
    design.

  18. mickey says:

    There are design elements I don’t care for (guess there will be until I am worm bait someday), but you can’t be dissapointed in the power, handling, suspension, or weight. Dealerships are still kind of thin but if you live on the west coast or east of the Misissippi, it shouldn’t be too hard to find one. Sounds like a great bike.

    Personally I would probably go for the FZ-09 even though there are design elements I don’t care for on that either. Power is good, fueling is improved, suspension is improved, it’s light enough and cheap enough and there is a good Yammie dealer right down the street.

  19. VLJ says:

    Beautiful instruments display. Beautiful bike, period, except for the headlights.

    Oh well, at least those headlights work well. Anyway, the bike is so good that a set of goofy-looking headlights is a small price to pay for such overall excellence.

    Of course the same can be said for the new FZ-09, though this pricier new Triumph is surely faster and just plain better than the more affordable Yamaha.

  20. Tom R says:

    “Triumph claims the new range of bikes are even lighter than their predecessors (claimed dry weight is 366 pounds).”

    Oh man, what a porker! They have to get the weight down on these things. Start using helium in the tires, and carbon fiber wheel weights…

  21. Mindspin says:

    “Triumph chose Barcelona to present the new Street Triple 800 range.”

    Are they calling it an 800 or a 765?

    I hope that’s not the whole writeup it’s awfully short. This bike seems very impressive and everyone else is waxing poetic about it. I’m selling my Street Triple Rx thinking I didn’t want a naked sport bike anymore, but this may change my mind. The level of spec on the RS is VERY good. Kudos to Triumph on outfitting it with premium components rather than making excuses as to why they didn’t. I’m even still interested in the S and R models regardless of how awesome the RS obviously is. $12,500 is not bad at all for the level of equipment.

    My Rx was $11,199 and didn’t have any of these premium items save a quickshifter. I hope the S starts at under $10,500 to stay competitive. Can’t wait for a test ride! The biggest problem with my 675 was lack of grunt and this new engine sounds like it solved that. The 675 engine in the 2013+ Daytona was much better and I was disappointed it never made it to the naked bike, but all is forgiven now. I just hope that Triumph now gets around to making a sub 500cc budget sport bike.

  22. Neil says:

    I’m thinking more new FZ09 myself. Or the Kaw KZ900. I think for the money the FZ10 also gets my eye. A guy in OZ has done a couple of Youtubes of his FZ10 and he loves it. That crossplank motor is a thing of beauty.

  23. McClain says:

    Love it in principle, but those headlights, ugh. Can they just be round like the old days? Those look so much better than the ugly bug-eyes

  24. kawzies says:

    Too expensive

    • Selecter says:

      I’m trying to think of a less expensive motorcycle with equivalent suspension and braking gear, but I’m not able to come up with one. Everything else with equipment like that is a dedicated supersport bike (making it a pretty marginal street bike) or is the Super-Deluxe version of another street bike… and is more expensive.

      I won’t buy one, but considering the equipment levels, $12,500 isn’t a startling number.

      • Mindspin says:

        Agreed. I’m glad people are seeing the value rather than just the price. The Daytona 675R was an amazing value even at its $14k price tag for the level of equipment, and this RS is even better. Triumph these days is showing the industry how it’s done when it comes to value for money, and build quality. The other Euro brands are overpriced by comparison.

      • tuskerdu says:

        well stated.

      • dt 175 says:

        2003 SV 1000…

        • Selecter says:

          So they made an SV with an Ohlins shock, Big Piston forks, and monoblock brakes?

          The SV was a good bike. But nowhere near the spec (or performance) that this bike presents…

      • Tim C says:

        Where’s that Hyosung guy when we need him?

        • Jeremy in TX says:

          Probably reading the comparison test between the Hyosung and the Honda over at MO and furiously lighting up their discussion board.