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2009 Triumph Daytona 675 Comparison

Friday, March 20, 2009
2009 Triumph Daytona 675 - Wallpaper
Triumph Daytona 675
Horsepower: 108.51hp @ 12,100 rpm
Torque: 49.36 lbs.-ft. @ 10,400 rpm
Weight: 409.4 lbs w/fuel, 378.4 lbs w/o fuel
Superpole Time: 1:21.77 (Atlas)
¼ Mile: 11.30 @ 133.25 mph
Top Speed: 159.45 mph
Overall Ranking: 6th-place
No doubt a host of small changes can make a big difference. While the naked eye would have a hard time seeing the difference between last year and this year’s 675, on the track and street they are miles apart. And in a good way. Check out the Triumph Daytona 675 First Ride for information on the technical updates on this year's model so we can focus on how it stacks up against the competition here in the shootout.

The same very capable Inline-Triple engine sits between those aluminum frame spars and now features three more horsepower and a two more lb-ft of torque. Also changed is a taller first gear, for improved shifting, while suspension tweaks and slightly modified styling round out the major changes. To us this hardly sounds like enough to make much of a difference, but after riding the Triumph, our minds quickly changed. We went the extra mile to bring you the sights and sweet sound of the Triple in our Triumph 675 video review so don't miss it.

It really is a shame a lack of trackside support held the 675 from performing at its full potential at the racetrack. Triumph was unable to send a technician to turn wrenches for us and unfortunately the mechanic we hired to fill the void backed out the day before the test. That left the MotoUSA crew responsible for tending to the Trumpet the best we could between the madness of conducting an event of this magnitude. Luckily we have an extremely capable group of riders with plenty of racing and set-up experience, which allowed us to get it close. And once in the ballpark the Triumph managed to impress a few of our test riders both at the track and on the street.

I must say, the “several small updates” Triumph made do equate to a much better overall package. The taller first gear is a godsend in the slower turns at Streets and additional horsepower and torque are kind of like having too much money - it never really hurts.
Even without much set-up time Atlas still put the Triumph in the 1:21s come Superpole time
Aggressive geometry made for a quick-handling 675. Here's Atlas warming the tires in preparation for his Superpole run. The Triumph did surprisingly well.

“The Triumph motor is one my favorites, it truly combines the rev of an Inline-Four with the torque of a Twin,” says shootout veteran Chuck Sorensen. “Lots of low-end grunt and then a sweet spot of useable power between 8,000 to 13,000 rpm. Someone coming off a Twin will adapt to this bike quickly, while a four-cylinder rider will figure out that they can be in a taller gear through a given corner and use the grunt to their advantage. This motor does not feel as if it has the sheer horsepower as some of the Japanese bikes, but the question is – do you need all that power to go fast on a given course?”

“Triumph has the torque, a great sound and pulls nicely,” adds Dhien. “For sure the motor is the strong point of the Triumph.”

Though it boasts the second-highest horsepower (108.5 hp) and torque (49.3 lb-ft) as well as tipping the scales at under 410 lbs full of fuel, our trip to HPCC out in the Mojave desert produced some surprising results. When the dust settled at the end of our performance testing the 675 didn't fare as well as we expected. Its weak and numb-feeling clutch made launches difficult during drag strip runs and as a result, quarter-mile times suffered a bit. It recorded a best run of 11.30 @ 133.25 mph, compared to the class-leading Ducati, which tore off an 11.09 @ 134.37 mph. And even though that doesn't seem like much, in this extremely close group it put it dead last. When it came time to put it to the top-speed test, the British Bomber was quite a ride. WIth the upper fairing shaking and the least wind protection of the group the best it could muster was 159.45 mph, once again the slowest of the group and was the only truly unstable bike at those speeds - downright scary even.

Those Euros love under-seat exhausts
One of the least complicated cockpits  in top-speed runs the speedo  bottom center square on the tach  proved hard to read. Though how much to you really want to know you re going 165 mph
If the Triumph rear end was a painting it would be a Minimalist Abstract piece
The 2009 Triumph Daytona 675 is very clean by design and although it lacked a bit of attention to details in some areas it still is a good looking motorcycle.
Says kid-racer Frankie Garcia: “The bike has a solid motor. It’s strong off the bottom with a ton of torque, but it doesn't have much top end. It comes off of slow corners good, but in the faster corners it seems like I had to shift way too early.”

While nearly all praised the easy-to-use power and rideability of the three-cylinder engine, the chassis received mixed opinions, some of this due to its set up. The shock was stiff and would pump on corner-exit while the front was overly soft, giving an unequal balance. For those who didn’t push quite as hard, as well as for street riding, this wasn’t too far off. It was when the pace picked up that the lack of set-up time showed through.

“I really was into the Triumph, I dig its chassis and fickability a lot,” comments newly-appointed Road Test Editor Adam Waheed. “At the tight and twisty Streets of Willow it did great as it’s effortless to throw from side to side. The engine is awesome and has plenty of torque; it's easy to wheelie – it really is best suited for technical racetracks.” 

Sorensen adds that while it feels pretty good, the 675 suspension still could use a few tweaks in stock trim: “The rear shock seems to be set up a little stiffer compared to the front. It kept the bike on its nose going into and through the corner. It absorbs most bumps and tracks true on the gas at the exit of the corners though.” 

Despite that the Triumph's set-up never was perfect, we were able to get it good enough to lay down a 1:21.77 during Superpole. That bested even the mighty Honda and is a very respectable time at the technical Streets of Willow circuit. 

Overall the 675 was praised for its stability once leaned on its side almost as much as it was for the engine – solid and great feedback made for a machine that yearned to be pushed, and pushed hard. But when it came to the brakes, the Brit fell short. Being it is one of only two of the bikes with steel-braided brake lines, this proves that it's a sum of all parts, not just one particular item, which makes a good set-up.

As I m sure you ve noticed  Waheed hates doing wheelies. He s always been the conservative type
Waheed claimed the Triumph forced him to do wheelies and ride like a hooligan. We're not sure if we believe him...
“The Triumph brakes are good enough for its total package, but do they have the bite and progressiveness as some of the other bikes? Maybe not,” says Sorensen. “If I owned this bike I would upgrade the master cylinder, pads and go from there.”

On the street the 675 made up some ground that it lost at the track thanks to its meaty mid-range and ability to draw the inner-hooligan out of even the most civilized street riders. It received universal praise when it came to quick jaunts through the canyons on the Triple. The engine is one of the most versatile of the group – tons of torque and easy to use – as is the chassis. Do you want to know our main complaints with the Triumph on the street? The seating position is still awkward and makes for fast discomfort, as does the hot underseat exhaust.

“From the moment you climb on the Triumph it feels similar to the Ducati in that they are thin in the middle and have high, flat seats and low bars,” says Hutchison “This made the riding position more track-oriented than accommodating for commuter or daily-driver duty, though it's less aggressive than the Ducati. And both the 675 and 848 employ underseat exhausts which look the business but are not always the greatest arrangement for street riding comfort.”

Overall, if you dare to be different, look no further than the Daytona 675. In no way, shape or form does it look, feel or act like anything else out there, which gives the well-qualified machine character in spades. But when it comes to this wickedly-close group, in the overall rankings the Triumph 675 brought up the back of the pack. 

Triumph Daytona 675 Final Settings
(measured from stock)

(+clockwise, -counterclockwise)
Compression: +2.5 turns
Rebound: -2 turns
Preload: +1 turn

Compression: -1.5 turns
Rebound: -1.25 turns
Preload: Stock

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2009 Triumph Daytona 675 Video
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2009 Triumph 675 Shootout Gallery
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Triumph Daytona 675 Highs & Lows
  • Character
  • Sharp Handling
  • Great Sound
  • Base Set-up 
  • Craftsmanship
  • High-speed Stability

Scoring Breakdown
Keeping it real and making sure the scoring is dead-on
Both the objective performance numbers and subjective rider opinions are all scored equally. We used our hybrid Formula-1 based scoring system to judge each and every category, with 10 points for first, eight for second, seven for third, six for fourth, five for fifth and four for sixth (some categories are sub-divided into two, but when added make the same total as the rest). Points are then totaled and positions determined.

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Paul White aka Britbike -A&P Tech.  June 5, 2010 09:23 PM
Triumph has always been the best and always will be.
Joel -2009 D675 rider  May 10, 2010 09:21 AM
I just went 166 MPH on a small straight away. I LOOVE my daytona I cant even put into words how much i love it more that any other ss bike Thank you
Rondo -Why the fighting?  April 29, 2010 06:18 PM
Love my Daytona, don't race it, but after years of riding the Japanese sport rides, I'd never trade it.
john -m  March 24, 2010 11:58 PM
let's face it guys your daytonas are pices of crap.
tc -setup  March 12, 2010 06:50 PM
sound like they had the 675 set up all goofy. Remember that the power needs to be uncorked on most of these bikes. Suspension needs to be sprung to rider weight, sags set, compression/rebounds set, fork heights, ride height, tire pressures set to rider/track temp, brakes can glaze....basically, these tests are goofy! Just about any of these bikes could have won. I like the size and profile of the 675, it is very raceable, streetable and cool!
Smoke -Scary at top speed BS  March 5, 2010 04:51 AM
The only things shaking at top speed are helmets with bad aerodynamics, dude, get a new one, or go buy some balls :) I go for the top speed on mine every day, so I might know if it feels dangerous or not, isn't it strange you're the only one EVER complaining about that problem ? On a more serious note, maybe there was a setup problem or something faulty making it unstable. Having factory support is a joke.
Logan -Go Your Own Way!  October 3, 2009 04:02 PM
As being an owner of 2008 Triumph Daytona 675 SE with 12,000 HAPPY Miles! I would never trade my bike or even think of selling my bike for a Japanese bike. The Japanese bike is just ugly and they seem to get uglier every year. The Triumph is sexy, narrow, unique and by far has the sexiest engine note ever!! First off its riding position is SUPER SPORT it's not a commuter or Sport Touring! So quit bitching about the riding position it's that way because of weight transfer and lets the rider move from side to side faster. Sorry Triumph builds one of the best Super Sport Bikes out there I think your testing is skewed! GET TEST RIDERS THAT DONT JUST RIDE JAPANESE BIKES EVERYDAY! TRIUMPH RIDER FOR LIFE
troy -why not 750 then?  September 24, 2009 09:35 PM
All you whingers with 675s, "michael" if you knew anything about bikes you'd know 164 indicated speed is probably less than 154, if you keep going on about how 675s beat the 600s it'd only be fair if they reviewed it against the gsxr 750 seeing as the 848 is in there, the 750 is same as the 600 with more power and 2kg heavier.
Matt -Limited Edition 675 (white & blue)  September 13, 2009 06:33 AM
from dirt to road to track i've always been a honda man (still love them)... from next week the new SE Limited Edition will be parked in my shed in Australia. 6th place, what a load of BS!!!
Shaswata -Streets of Willow Or Willowsprings Raceway???  September 6, 2009 02:52 PM
Which track's laptime are shown in the inset below the top picture? It will be helpful
michael -propaganda  September 4, 2009 08:22 AM
This is bull... i have the daytona 675... top speed is DEFINITELY not.. 159mph.... it records how fast you go on it so i can prove it... ive done 164 and it wasnt topped out yet... Ive gone balls out with the 2009 gsx 600 (which had a lighter rider than me by 40 lbs)... and the Daytona is without a doubt faster... especially after 1st gear.... THIS IS ALL PROPAGANDA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! All the magazines and comparisons between the bikes are controlled... all saying the Jap bikes are better...when they arent... My bike is bone stock and it beats out the Jap 600's.... Enough of this crap... get on one and prove it...

elias -675 daytona kills all 600 cc bikes  June 29, 2009 11:02 AM
thats because its three and not four cylinders. it is 167kg and has 127 hoursepower on tiers. simple maths guys. 167 is to light for the japan to make 4 cylinder competitor for 2009 at least!
Chad -Dyno'd mine today  May 28, 2009 08:07 PM
Did a couple of dyno runs now that the engine is at about 500 miles and already had a first oil change at 150 miles. Couldn't get the torque specs because the spark plugs aren't accesible without removing the fairings, but hp readings were 109.04 and 109.25. I'm pretty happy with that, particularly since my butt dyno marks it as just dang fast!
Marcus -675 Horsepower  May 6, 2009 02:43 AM
Hi One of our riding group has taken his brand spanking new but well run in 2009 675 onto a Dyna Pro T62 Dyno at a track day. For not much cash his bike was run up 4 times and averaged 111.3 and 50.6 at the back wheel. We have another guy waiting on his new 675 - he's going to dyno his as soon as he's got it run in - keep you informed.
Chad -Daytona  May 5, 2009 07:02 PM
126 bhp at the crank. I've heard as low as 103 at the wheel.
Albert -Daytona Results  April 22, 2009 11:42 AM
My apologies for my previous post. It was completely inappropriate. You can delete it if you want. It's just that I was all set to get the Daytona and now debating whether I should rethink. Please don't underestimate your power to sway the buying public. With it comes great responsibility, Spidey.
Henry -The ZX6R  April 21, 2009 07:58 AM
Well I got to try out the new ZX6 and I have to say a very impressive bike. out the box its pretty good. but the torque and power delivery of my Daytona just trumps all that. Even when I was riding the ZX6 my buddy was having a blast on my Daytona....So I thinks hes a little jealous.
Albert -Daytona Results  April 18, 2009 03:36 PM
How come 2009 manufacturer specs show 126bhp and 53-lbf torque but you were testing a bike with 108bhp and 49-lbf. Without the Triumph support team, are you sure you know what a Daytona 675 looks like? Were you testing one??
Fernando -seriously?  April 15, 2009 08:12 AM
This review is so unfair to the triumph, every other review done by every other cycle mag has it in the top 2 spots(usually #1) and you guys have it second to last? Amazing, smells biased as hell to me. A bike that light, with that much torque, comes in at the rear?..
Timur -Bogus.  April 12, 2009 10:56 PM
You guys are a funny bunch. Just looking at 08 articles where Triumph is portrayed in a much cooler light I can tell you were pissed at the manufacturer and sabotaged your self. I had picked up your magazine from a friend and it caught my eye but I will not bother to buy it if I feel I'm being misled because you guys are pissed. Be Professional dam it!!!!
Marcus -Skewed Results  April 7, 2009 03:05 AM
Hi Brian Why? That makes no sense whatsoever. The bike manufacturers work WITH the tyre manufacturers to make sure that the tyres compliment the chassis and suspension. The corollary for your statement is that the choice of tyre is irrelevant as long as they are all the same. As far as setting up the bike per rider - why do they need manufacturer input at all? You won't get it and nearly everyone buying these bikes will NEVER EVER see a manufacturer representative to set up their bikes on a track day - even if they go racing it will be down to them. So - my argument - if I have one - is that this comparison is interesting but actually totally irrelevant to anyone buying these bikes. If you want one - go test ride it and find what floats your boat - this particular comparison (apologies to motorcycle-usa) starts wrong by trying too hard. 99.9% of their readers are going to make a decision based on standard set up and standard tyres. If you know of a shop where they will swap the tyres for you and have someone from hoyamkawsuztriduc standing by to set up the suspension for you personally then you are blessed by the gods.
Brian -What???  April 3, 2009 09:30 AM
I'm not sure what Marcus is complaining about but when you do a test to compare bikes, especially at the track, you need to use a control tire, which they did, and you need to set the rider sag followed by rebound and then finally compression, That is what they did!
Marcus -Results  March 26, 2009 05:58 AM
I'm really sorry - but these results are almost non-sensical. When any of us try these bikes or compare them they are straight from the dealer - as sold. That's where you should START your comparison. Why then do you go to all the bother to get the MANUFACTURERS to set them up for you? (Bar Triumph - which in one way you could see as the one bike that had a real test) The rest of us - the real world buyers in this whole scenario - have to set them up ourselves - so why not you guys? I'm sorry - but this test sort of loses it's validity across the board. You might argue that you are trying to test the full potential of the bikes. Well that falls down at the first hurdle - because then all the aftermarket racing add-ons come into play and you start on the long climb towards engine blueprinting, porting etc - carbon fibre everything etc So - next time - please - take a standard bike as sold and work it out for yourselves. The rest is just meaningless when bikes are this close in ability.
Henry -Daytona  March 21, 2009 11:34 PM
Well it's sad to see the Daytona in last place, but no worries. Everybody has their opinion. My friend just bought an 09 ZX-6R, so I will have my opinion. I dont think I will be trading my bike for the ZX-6R anytime. Great job with the Comparo. Keep it up!