Triumph Getting Busy

Image source: Triumph UK

In the past couple of weeks, Triumph has been extremely busy giving vague and not-so-vague clues as to new bikes that are on the way. And the news is all extremely good.

The first hint we got was a moody video teasing the Speed Triple RR. Very little could be gleaned from the video, apart from the fact that there was a fairing in there somewhere. This led to all sorts of rumours that Triumph was re-entering the Supersport class or perhaps even the superbike class.

Image source: Triumph UK

Now, a second video appears to suggest that it will have a single-headlight, half fairing to turn it into a sort of modern cafe racer. The frontal aspect resembles the MV Agusta Superveloce but there is no way of telling if there are any styling changes to the rear of the bike. It’s likely that the mechanicals will stay exactly the same, having only recently been completely updated.

Next came news of a new Tiger Sport model, based on the Trident 660 running gear. Now, normally, when new models are being tested on the public roads, this happens in out of the way locations and all we might get are, at best, grainy spy shots.

Image source: Triumph UK

Not this time. Triumph released proper studio shots of the still-disguised Tiger Sport 660, properly whetting our appetite. Further details are sparse but, looking at the brief video and the studio shots, the Tiger Sport 660 will run on 17-inch wheels fitted with Michelin Road 5 tyres, using Showa suspension and twin front discs clamped by Nissin calipers. The Tiger Sport 660 will join the growing middleweight adventure/sport segment, currently inhabited by the Aprilia Tuareg 660, KTM 890 Adventure and Yamaha Tracer 700.

Surely this way of revealing a new bike is the way to go: the more we anticipate a new model, the bigger a splash it will make when it finally arrives. Just another way Triumph is really taking the fight to its rivals.

Lastly – and still on the Tiger theme – came news of the vastly upgraded Tiger 1200, an upgrade that has been keenly anticipated for quite some time now, by both dealers and customers.

Image source: Triumph UK

Again, details are sparse, even if images are not, but a Triumph spokesman had this to say:

“The word ‘transformation’ simply doesn’t do it justice. Designed to deliver the new ultimate large-capacity adventure ride, the incredible Tiger 1200 will bring every advantage in one all-new motorcycle family. Now significantly lighter than its closest competition, with an astonishing transformation in weight, the new 1200 will combine the triple powered engine advantage with a new dimension in class-leading agility, control and handling.”

That’s bold talk but the sort of message that needs to be heard if the Tiger 1200 is to play in the same league as the BMW GS and KTM 1290, the current benchmarks.

Again, the announcement raises more questions than it answers. For example, will the engine get the new T-plane crank? As first seen in the Tiger 900, the new crank, with a firing order of 1, 3, 2, gives the best of both worlds: the low down grunt of a twin and the powerful top end of a triple. It’s a broad spread of power that makes the engine incredibly flexible.

More news on all three bikes will no doubt be arriving in the coming weeks, with full reveals likely to be at the EICMA motorcycle show in Milan in November. Expect them to be in the showrooms in the first quarter of 2022 at the earliest.

Harry has been obsessing about motorbikes for over 45 years, riding them for 38 years and writing and talking about them for 13 years. In that time, he has ridden everything from an Aprilia to a Zundapp, from the 1920s to the 2020s. His favourites are the ones that didn’t break down and leave him stranded. While he loves the convenience of modern bikes, he likes nothing better than getting his hands dirty keeping old bikes running, just as long as it’s not by the roadside! Old enough to know better and young enough not to care, he knows you don’t stop riding when you get old, you get old when you stop riding.