2011 Triumph Speed Triple First Look

October 5, 2010
Bart Madson
By Bart Madson
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Bashing away at the MotoUSA keyboard for nine years now, Madson lends his scribbling and editorial input on everything from bike reviews to industry analysis and motorcycle racing reports.

Triumph debuted its 2011 Speed Triple at Intermot.

Triumph defined the streetfighter category with its iconic Speed Triple. Now the British firm refine the S3 with its latest version sporting a new chassis and uprated engine. The British marque unveiled its tweaked Speed Triple at the Intermot Bike Show.

Internal architecture for the S3’s Inline Three is unchanged – still holding the familiar 1050cc dimensions (79mm bore and 71.4mm stroke). Triumph claims, however, that it has wrung out 7% more torque from the powerplant. That ups peak power claims to 81 lb-ft, with peak horsepower still 128 ponies.

The biggest change in the chassis is an all-new aluminum twin spar frame. The single-sided swingarm design is retained, though re-styled. Showa suspension units adorn the front and rear, with the 43mm inverted fork adjustable for rebound and compression. The rear shock offers adjustment for preload, rebound and compression. A new rear wheel changes from 5.5 inch to a six inch width, now fitting a 190/55 tire (the previous version sourced a 180/55 rear).

The new chassis alters steering geometry. Rake is now 22.8 degrees and trail 90.9mm (from 23.5 degrees and 84mm). Wheelbase stretches almost a half-inch to 56.5 inches (from 56.1 inches), with overall length an inch-longer too at 82.1 inches. Seat height is a sliver lower (2mm) at 32.6 inches.

The 2011 Triumph Speed Triple
The most distinctive styling change to the new Triumph is its headlamps, with new angular shapes replacing the traditional bug-eye lamps of past models.

In spite of losing a half-liter of fuel capacity, which drops the tank from 4.8 to 4.6 gallons, the new design claims a four-pound heavier curb weight than its predecessor at 481 pounds.

Brembo brakes return up front, with radial-mount, four-piston calipers pinching 320mm discs. A single Nissin 2-piston caliper clamps on the single 255mm rear. This year’s Speed Triple does offer optional ABS for the first time ever. Another first-time option for the S3 are tire pressure monitors.

Visually the most pronounced change for the Speed Triple is to its twin headlamps, a signature styling trait of many bikes in the Triumph line. Instead of the simple, round bug-eye lamps of past models, the new S3 sport new angular lights. Maybe it’s just us, but the new lamps will take some getting used to. The new lighting units also hold the tach and speedo instrument console, with this year’s model delivering more instrumentation options including a lap timer and programmable shift light.

Track inspired specifications give the Speed Triple four-piston Brembo brakes  alloy handlebars  fully-adjustable 43mm upside down forks and a comprehensive instrumentation which includes a lap timer and a programmable gear shift light. The 2011 Speed Triple has optional anti-lock brakes for the first time and is available with a host of other accessories that let owners personalize the bike.The 2011 Speed Triple comes in three colors: Diablo Red  Phantom Black and Crystal White.
Triumph touts its new 2011 Speed Triple as producing 7% more torque with an all-new frame and revised steering geometry.

Other styling changes include a new piece of bodywork (we durst not call it a fairing on this naked beauty!), a small piece beneath the still prominent tubing of the frame. As standard operating procedure, Triumph will offer plenty of extra accessory goodies like a wind cowl and belly pan. Triumph also extends its close relationship with Arrow for optional pipes to replace the standard dual undertail stockers.

The Speed Triple will be available in Phantam Black, Crystal White and Diablo Red. MSRP is unavailable at this time.


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