2013 Triumph Street Triple R First Look

October 2, 2012
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 updates its popular middleweight streetfighter for the 2013 model year. The British marque gives its Street Triple and up-spec Street Triple R a chassis update, shaving a claimed 13 pounds. The little S3 also gets a facelift, with the styling dominated by a new right-side exhaust.

2013 Triumph Street Triple R
Triumph reveals its 2013 Street Triple R streetfighter at INTERMOT – featuring lighter chassis and revamped styling.

A new aluminum frame and high-pressure die-cast subframe headline the list of changes. Triumph promises the new chassis sheds weight courtesy of fewer pieces and less frame welds. In the looks department the most dramatic change is the relocated exhaust – the twin undertail configuration swapped for a low-slung right-side exhaust and its massive single silencer. Though it looks bulkier, Triumph claims the new exhaust position contributes to improved handling traits by centralizing mass and lowering the center of gravity with its weight redistribution.

The new frame and exhaust contribute to the 13-pound weight reduction, the Street Triple now listing a 403 pound curb weight. The revised chassis also alters steering geometry on both versions. The standard bike sweeps in rake to 24.1 (from 24.3) with trail growing to 99.6mm (from 95.3mm). The R version features a more prominent 0.5-degree rake angle adjustment moving in to 23.4 while trail extends to 95mm (from 92.4mm).

The Street Triple R continues to differentiate from its sibling with up-spec suspension and brakes. The 41mm inverted KYB fork offers no adjustment on the standard model, with the R benefitting from full three-way adjustability. The rear monoshock on the latter model also offers preload and rebound adjustability. Braking is a similar situation. Nissin components grace both versions, but two-piston sliding calipers pinch a 310mm rotor on the standard, while four-piston radial mount units halt the Street Triple R. Switchable ABS comes standard on both models.

Reading the list of changes to the 2013 Street Triple, it’s easy to overlook its most distinctive feature – the 675cc Inline Triple. Derived from the Daytona 675 Supersport, nothing appears to have changed in the little S3’s powertrain. Despite the new exhaust, peak power claims remain 105 horsepower and 50 lb-ft torque, identical to the 2012 specs.

The distinctive S3 bug-eye lamps of yore are long gone, the little Triple continuing with the 2012 swap to the angular twin headlight configuration. The R continues to ooze its up-spec-ness with flashes of red in the subframe, pinstriped wheels and radiator shrouds with R moniker. The R model also sources a blacked-out fork, with the standard a flashier gold color. Both the standard and R versions will be offered in Phantom Black and Crystal White, with the former also offering Caribbean Blue and the later Matte Graphite colorways.

As usual Triumph will offer plenty of accessories for the stripped down standards, including various bodywork options. Long-time exhaust partner Arrow will offer a slip-on system. A ‘plug-and-play’ quickshifter option is available as well.

Triumph expects the first models to arrive in US dealers beginning in January 2013. An announcement on pricing is promised by the end of October.