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2009 Triumph Bonneville SE First Ride

Thursday, April 2, 2009
The 2009 Triumph Bonneville is the flagship model in the Triumph Modern Classics line. The 2009 Triumph Bonneville and Bonneville SE (above) join the previous T100 model to headline the British manufacturer's Modern Classic line.
In 1959 Triumph celebrated its top speed performance exploits on the famed Bonneville Salt Flats by affixing the Bonneville moniker on an all-new motorcycle model. Flash forward a half-century and the British marque has endured rises and falls, and the trusty Bonneville endured too. An iconic motorcycle from Triumph’s past, the Bonneville remains a flagship model, anchoring the English firm’s nostalgic Modern Classic lineup.

Triumph revamps the classic line for 2009 by equipping its 865cc Parallel Twin with electronic fuel injection. Along with a handful of smaller changes, the British brand also expands the Bonneville model family to three. Motorcycle USA was on hand for the Modern Classic press launch, sampling the retro wares in New Orleans.

2009 Triumph Bonneville SE

Defining the Bonneville in modern motorcycling terms is problematic: 50 years ago it was cutting edge performance, in present trim it falls somewhere between cruiser and standard. The most recent incarnation of the Bonnie, the T100 (2001 – present), is a modern interpretation of the 1968 Bonneville and has proven quite popular with older return
2009 Triumph Bonneville SE
Motoring through the French Quarter, the Bonneville SE is well suited to use as an urban cruiser.
riders looking for the bikes they rode in their two-wheeled youth. But Triumph is also targeting the entry-level crowd too, with Triumph Marketing Manager Jim Callahan describing the model as “one of the most accessible Triumphs.” Enhancing that accessibility are the new Bonneville and Bonneville SE.

The difference between the standard Bonneville and the SE is mostly cosmetic, with the SE sporting a fuel-tank badge with hand-painted pinstripe and aluminum engine cases. A tachometer is also added to the SE version. After straddling the Bonneville SE in the New Orleans French Quarter, however, the changes from the T100 version are more concrete. The new Bonnies change tack in two significant ways, wheel size and riding position.

Seven-spoke 17-inch wheels replace the more traditional looking 19-inch wire-spoke rims. Aiding in the handling department, the smaller hoops also offer a much wider tire selection - our test units sporting Metzeler ME24 rubber (110/70 front, 130/80 rear). Seat height has been lowered 1.4 inches to 29.1 thanks to the smaller wheels, a lowering of rear suspension travel by 6mm and a new shape of the seat itself – the foam thickness reduced. The handlebars are relocated 22mm further back and 21mm lower, reducing the reach for smaller-statured riders, who are sure to appreciate the lowered seat. Other changes include the incorporation of fenders borrowed from its Thruxton and Scrambler siblings, as well as the Thruxton exhaust pipes – which replace the T100’s pea-shooters but still leave room for luggage, as many Bonneville owners use their rides for short touring duties.
The new Bonneville handlebars are lower and closer to the rider.The Bonneville seat height has been lowered via smaller wheels and less rear suspension travel  as well as a newer shape to the seat itself.
The Bonneville handlebar and seat have been lowered to make the entry-level cruiser even more accessible.

Although our 6’1” frame felt cramped with the pegs and bars, the riding position seems ideal for smaller riders. Our brief riding time makes us suspicious of the new seat’s comfort factor, however, feeling stiff and less cush than expected. Adjustable brake and clutch levers are a valuable feature and the mirrors have been moved out to provide better view of behind. The instrument display with analog speedometer fits in with the overall vibe of the Bonneville and the SE version, with analog tach to match the speedo, looks best.

In practice the new Bonneville makes for a fine urban cruiser. Darting up and down the historic streets of the French Quarter, the first impression of the new Bonneville is how light and small it is – confirming Triumph’s claim that the new wheels and fenders contribute a 19-lb weight loss. The sensation makes it quite easy it is to ride, at lower speeds in particular. Aided by its light clutch pull and the precise 5-speed gearbox, the Bonneville makes a successful case as the ideal entry-level mount in the Triumph arsenal.

Cutting through traffic on the larger surface streets and freeways, we head eastbound on Highway 90 en route to Mississippi’s gulf coast. The smaller wheels do make the new models feel light and quick and the 865cc Twin flutters along without trouble.

Undergunned compared to the typical cruiser powerplant on American roadways, the Trumpet’s Parallel Twin is still a fun ride. The power is quite easy to control, again ideal for the entry-level crowd. With a respectable lower end, we found ourselves parking the throttle in the upper half of the revs between 4000rpm and the 7000rpm redline to take advantage of some top end zip.
2009 Triumph Bonneville SE
Fuel injection on the Bonneville and Modern Classic lineup was developed with Keihin, with Triumph packaging the system into a twin carb housing.

The Modern Classic’s headlining move to electronic fuel injection conforms to EPA emission regs, the new system claiming to be five times cleaner than the older carbureted version (the EFI promising better fuel efficiency too). Triumph introduces EFI with a twist, however, packing the injectors into a twin carb façade – with functional two-stage fuel-enriching choke lever. Knowing the EFI was coming, a new fuel tank was intro’d in 2008 with room for the fuel pump. Developed with Keihin and tuned by Triumph the electronic fueling provides near seamless power delivery - the only nit to pick being a slight jerk of hesitation when briskly re-applying throttle after rolling off.

Sound emissions will not be an issue for the polite purr of the Bonnie, unless riders choose one of the aftermarket exhaust options from Arrow. The partnership between Triumph and the Italian firm has expanded into the Modern Classic lineup and the bombastic bellowing of the Bonnies sporting Arrow 2-into-2 and 2-into-1 systems are character altering to say the least. The systems deliver up to a 60% weight savings on the stock pipes. And although we’re told peak horsepower claims aren’t much bolstered with the addition, first-hand experience of the pipes confirms the powerband feels beefier.

2009 Triumph Bonneville SE
The Bonneville SE is a very easy bike to ride, making it well suited to its entry-level and returning-rider demographic.
Heading into the bayous along the coast, there aren’t any turns worth evaluating the Trumpet’s cornering abilities, just a couple bends in the road to wiggle through. Severe thunderstorm warnings squash peg-scraping intentions and cut our ride day short. All we can say for certain is the 41mm Kayaba fork and twin rear shocks are not adjustable, except for rear preload, with potholes and other significant road imperfections accompanied by a harsh jar on more than one occasion.

The dual-disc (one front, one rear) braking system is more than adequate. The single 310mm disc front delivers a confident feel and the floating 2-piston Nissin calipers are effective but not grabby. The 225mm rear, also pinched by a two-piston Nissin unit, performs its ratio of the stopping equation rather well.

The classic lines of the new Bonnies deliver in the style department, at least in our opinion. The only caveat is the faux carb looked less clever the longer we examined it… but, hey, we’re paid to complain. Overall, the new Bonneville is a fine mount, one we enjoyed immensely. Our only regret is not enough time in the saddle for a more thorough evaluation.

The standard Bonneville is available in black and white, retailing for $7,699. The SE is available in all black or two-tone blue and white, sporting an $8399 asking price.
2009 Triumph Bonneville T100
The Triumph Bonneville T100 plods along with more retro looks, sourcing the 1968 Bonneville as styling inspiration.

2009 Triumph Bonneville T100

The Bonneville T100 stays in the classics lineup because it’s a popular model and aesthetically, the eldest Bonnie does claim higher points in the authentic looks department – mainly because of the spoked wheels and peashooter cans. Take away the EFI addition and the T100 is mostly unchanged from 2008, with a few tweaks, like chrome engine covers and rubber fork gaiters. The T100 is also available in a limited 650-production run of a 50th anniversary edition.

Sampling both the T100 its Bonneville siblings back to back, the changes are apparent. The larger spoked 19-inch wheels do affect handling, with the smaller Bonnie quicker to turn in. Riders close to or cresting the 6-foot mark may prefer the T’s handlebar placement and higher seat, as we did.

Triumph reps tell us that Bonneville owners are quite loyal to their machines, often replacing with identical units after riding their old Trumpets into the ground. Riders wishing to stick with the older aesthetics of the T100 for 2009 will have to shell out $8,799.
2009 Triumph Thruxton
The sportier ergos of the Thruxton contrast its Bonneville sibling, but a new handlebar actually mellows out the riding position of it clip-on predecessor.

2009 Triumph Thruxton

What a difference the handlebar placement and a more aggressive riding position make! After jumping off the Bonneville SE we were at the helm of the Triumph Thruxton café racer for only a few minutes, but they were the most exhilarating of the whole ride. The Thuxton’s forward-leaning riding position is fun in small tastes, but as one test rider quipped – the cafés you race between should be less than 10 miles apart, because comfort is not the Thruxton’s forte. That said the new 2009 handlebar with risers is far less severe than the predecessor’s clip-ons and the riding position is at least bearable.

2009 Triumph Bonneville SE
The army green Scrambler with aftermarket Arrow pipes was much coveted during out press launch ride.
Certainly many riders will be happy to sacrifice comfort for the sleek lines and better performance of the Thruxton – particularly if they select the Arrow-piped version we sampled. Future owners will love the Thruxton’s Arrow pipes, but their neighbors will not – this is doubly true if the easily modified internal dB killers “accidentally” fall out. The 2009 Thruxton is available for $8,599 in Jet Black or Tornado Red.

2009 Triumph Scrambler

Rounding out the 2009 Modern Classics is the Triumph Scrambler. Sourcing the same EFI Twin as its siblings, the Scrambler just looks like a fun machine. The military green scheme and 2-into-1 Arrow pipe adorning the test unit in our riding group was often bickered over when it came time for riding swaps.

Again, our time aboard the Scrambler was limited but the upright position and high bar deliver a great active feel and the Scrambler’s tires make riders flirt with the possibility of dirt roads. It’s the most adventurous of the Triumph classic line and a lot of fun to ride. The Scrambler costs $8,499 bone stock and is available in Jet Black and Matte Khaki Green.
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2009 Triumph Bonneville Specs
2009 Triumph Bonneville SE
Engine: Air-cooled, DOHC, Parallel Twin
Displacement: 865cc
Bore x Stroke: 90 x 68mm
Claimed Horsepower: 67hp at 7500rpm
Claimed Torque: 51 lb-ft @ 5800rpm
Fuel: Multipoint sequential EFI
Clutch: Wet multi-plate
Gearbox: 5-speed
Frame: Tubular steel
Swingarm: Twin-sided, tubular steel
Wheels: 7-spoke cast aluminum, 17 x 3 front - 17 x 3.5 rear
Tires: Front 110/70,Rear 130/80
Front Suspension: Kayaba 41mm fork, 120mm travel
Rear Suspension: Kayaba twin shocks with adjustable preload, 100mm travel
Front Brake: Single 310mm disc, Nissin 2-piston floating caliper
Rear Brake: Single 255mm disc, Nissin 2-piston floating caliper
Instrument display: Analog speedo and tach
Length: 84.3 in
Width: 29.4 in
Height: 43.3 in
Seat Height: 29.5 in
Wheelbase: 57.2 in
Rake/Trail: 27º/106mm
Dry Weight: 440 lbs
Fuel Tank: 4.2 gallon

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missrider   January 29, 2015 10:24 AM
I read this article in 2009, bought the bike and the rest is history. The bike has over 70,000 miles all by my riding in North America. The only way I can share my experiences is by posting my website/blog as there are too many stories find me at MISSRIDER.COM On June 20,2015 this bike will complete my North America tour by taking me to Alaska. Thank you Bart Madson for sharing the article that inspired to take the leap into purchasing one of the best motorcycles in the world.
Brian Aiken -Snatchy throttle  September 13, 2010 07:09 AM
I have a 2010 America. Snatchy throttle still a problem and the dealer still shrugs their shoulders.
Bob Conner -Bob the Brit  June 20, 2010 07:22 AM
Hi Guys - jst found this blog while browsing. I live midway between Meridan and Hinckley and have known Triumphs all my life. Now at 5ft 5inches tall and 74 years old I am taking delivery of my second Bonnie this week. Over the years I have ridden bikes of all shapes and sizes and despite my age I do NOT hang about on the open road. The Bonnie suits me fine and I can't recommend this bike enough for riders of all shapes, sizes and ages
el`tel -yo bonnie  April 28, 2010 09:40 AM
had my 2009 black bonnie efi for nearly 1000 miles now.... after returning from many years without (yes, i`m over 50)... absolutely love it.. never able to afford one when I was younger.. also had a thing for the 750 & 850 commandos.. couldn`t afford them either.. Great bike to ride more than adequate in all departments... yes may not be top end of everything and the early(real) bonnies were great, but that was then and this is now... want a faster bike?, buy a faster bike... for the price its excellent.. the main thing its a Triumph!.. hope Norton go the same way...
cashman -new rider  April 23, 2010 06:19 PM
I will be taking the MFS course in a couple of weeks and then hope to buy my first bike. Many advise starting with a 250 but they just feel small for me at 6 ft 200lbs. I love the look of the bonnies but I'm not sure if it is too much for a new rider. What do you think? thanks
Shawn -Arrow Exhaust for a Triumph Bonney  March 1, 2010 11:31 AM
Pardon the ignorant question but I am a rookie rider. I am looking at getting new pipes/exhaust for my triumph 08 bonney. It was recommended that arrow was the way to go but looking for more specifics ie; 2 in 1 exhaust vs 2 in 2 etc. What is better? Im looking for more sound and power. Any recommendations would be appreciated.

SER (serving in Iraq)
Steve Z -05 T100  January 21, 2010 02:57 PM
I bought my 1st Triumph, a 1969 Daytona 500 while in High School. Since then have had a 1971, 1978 and now a 2005 T100 which I bought new in 2005. Its been riden on the daily comute to work as well as several 1500 mile vacations. Currently its covered 22000 miles and never given me any problems. The bike covers the interstate highway to get out of town quick and the is a pleasure to ride on the mountin curves. Just a great all around bike.
Howard W Tate -Best Bike Ever  December 22, 2009 11:15 AM
I bought a 2008 T100 new this Spring. I liked it better than the 2009 because it has carbs (less likely to completely fail than EFI electronics). The bike is perfect for me in every way. I'm 55 and grew up loving the looks of parallel twins, especially Triumphs. But I owned Hondas because of their unbeatable quality and superior performance. Devotees of the old Meriden Triumphs aren't too fond of the seemingly Japanese-inspired new Bonnies. But the combination of looks and engineering in the new Bonnies meant love at first sight for me. I'd rather be riding it than writing about it but it's below freezing outside right now and I don't ride on ice.
Been Around the Block -Bonneville T100  December 16, 2009 08:09 PM
Had all kinds of bikes from age 16 to 35. BSAs, Hondas, Benellis even the odd Hodaka. Getting back into bikes 20 years later I find the Triumph Bonnie to be ideal, after a couple of quick fixes; TORs, air removal, snorkel removal and new carb jets, you really feel (and hear) the difference. If your serious($$$) street racing days are over, buy this bike. ( It isn't slow) I ride it to work every chance I get, everyone who sees it loves it.
LDK -Bonnie engine whistle  December 5, 2009 05:45 AM
2007 Bonnie with the Triumph roadster screen. Anyone experience a shrill whistle at a narrow rpm range (35mph 3rd, 45 4th, 55 5th). a few mph's either side the harmonics change to and almost ok i'll keep the bike level.
conchscooter -2007 Bonneville  December 1, 2009 02:23 AM
I have 35,000 miles on my Bonneville including one Saddle Sore 1000 on a standard saddle and the bike has been utterly reliable and comfortable for me.I have only removed the air injection for my carburetted bike, the engine is otherwise standard. I have a Parabellum windscreen and Triumph fabric saddlebags, a Renntec rack with a top case on it as this is my daily rider. It is not tricked out at all yet people still notice the classic looks. With a Loobman chain oiler I am riding the original chain and spriockets and they still look brand new. The Bonneville is probably the best machine for pleasure, reliability and fun I have owned in 40 years riding and it is totally trouble free.
Mathew -The Bonneville  September 11, 2009 09:37 PM
i'm in India, and I WANT ONE !!!!!!!!!!! Triumph, please come to India, please. please.
Roy H. Jersey -2009 America  August 18, 2009 06:56 PM
I bought my America after a demo ride. Added bags, wind screen,pipes and some chrome.About 1,200mi. since last month.Nice comfortable ride, very well mannered on the back roads.I also experience a slight throttle lag with the fuel injection though if the revs are down and you crack it. I don't get Triumphs reasoning behind taking the same engine and detuning it so the America makes 54hp while the other Bonnies go as high as 67hp ? Riding two up I could use more horses..
donkane -speedmaster 2007  July 18, 2009 07:47 AM
this babe is the dogs b's for driving in a straight line and is very managable on fast bends, great lift through the gears but struggles to pull past the ton.fair enough. at speeds below 20 miles an hour and esp below 8 miles an hour she's a pig. I find my self riding with the clutch half open to avoid stalling or kangaroo. I also need to keep the revs up and the brake on to stop her running away and loosing control.I really love her but she's a bitch that has dumped me twice in 6 months at less than 10 mph. I'm off to Prague for 5 wks and will do about 4k miles.... if i stay on!!! Am I the only one???
Harry -New Bonnie  July 17, 2009 05:42 AM
I Have already 2.000Km on my new Bonnie '09. It is the perfect bike for a newcomer. I' ve sold a '99 Thunderbird which was a great bike, more rough in operation, harder to handle, stiffer to ride. The Bonnie is confortable, fun to ride and smooth. I've still haven't decided whether a like the new wheels or not. More 80's look which is not neccesarily bad and one advantage. More options for tyres.
Jim Fry -2009 Triumph Bonneville SE  July 10, 2009 12:06 PM
While many may disagree, I can't help but believe this 2009 Bonneville SE is the most gorgeous Bonne yet! As a kid, I spent much time admiring the '67 & '68 Bonnevilles ( with an occasional ride), but this new bike is a notch up on these bikes in terms of good looks. Would love to ride one and compare the handling and response to the older classics... I can feel the butterflies starting to flutter!!
J. O. Luken -2010 Bonneville SE  July 5, 2009 07:17 PM
I now have 75 miles on my 2010 Bonneville. So far, I am very happy with the bike. After riding (wrestling?) a BMW 1150 GS for a year, I was looking for something lighter, simpler and more nimble. Within the first 100 yards of my Bonneville test ride, I knew this bike was just about perfect for my age (early 50’s), size (175 lbs and 6’) and performance requirements. I am constantly impressed with the following. Looks. It’s a beautiful bike. Crowds gather around it. Smoothness. The engine is buttery smooth throughout the entire rev range—almost like my kid’s dirt bike. I got the SE so I could have a tach, but in retrospect you don’t need a tach with such a predictable engine. Shifting. Snick. Snick. No clunking. I could probably just forget the clutch, but probably won’t do that. It starts right up with no fuss and settles into a very civilized but unique melody. Muted staccato?? This is no speed demon but then why would you need to go fast on a bike that looks this good. Fit and finish are excellent. I’ve been looking for the cut corner or cheapo component and have yet to find either. Again….a solid, simple bike made for riding rather than wrenching. At rest, the seat feels flat and hard. However, in motion the seat seems to work as it forces you to meld somewhat into the tank and then lean slightly forward into the handlebars, but not the kind of crouch that kills the wrists. Relaxed crouch. It kind of urges you to squeeze and then lean as the road twists. Others have complained about the suspension. I don’t agree. The ride is reasonable. My only complaint so far is the limited turn radius.
Bucky Mulligan -A few percentiles..  July 2, 2009 05:12 PM
"Be it bike tests, feature stories or racing reports Madson is just glad to be one of the 3% who found a career using their English degree." One has to then assume that the 1% crowd has their Master's Degrees in said discipline. Bucky Mulligan Canada
Marty Sperber -Sprocket Change  June 25, 2009 05:21 PM
Ian Spinney - when you changed the sprocket, did that require a new chain, or just an adjustment on the tensioner? How did the change affect low speed acceleration?
Lucky Bonnie -Snatchy Throttle  June 13, 2009 02:12 AM
I too wish Triumph would put out an updated TORS map....the throttle response is horrendous...a head jerking experience to say the least. Unfortunately when you mention the problem to the dealer they just say "oh, I don't feel any snatchyness at all". Yet every single person who has the TORS map complains of it. I am sorry now that I bought the bike.
Bob757 -09 Triumph Wheels  June 10, 2009 11:56 AM
Have to agree - why put more modern (70's) wheels on a 60's style bike? Love the looks but will wait for 2010 to see if they go back to more congruent styling. Otherwise, will have to buy a used 08.
Dennis -Rider weight  May 29, 2009 09:59 AM
I hate to admit it but I weigh about 240. No problems with the SE handing it.
Buckeye -Rider Weight  May 28, 2009 06:32 PM
Does anyone know how the 2009 SE would handle a heavy rider, 250# or so. Thanks, Buckeye
Dennis -New SE owner  May 27, 2009 10:58 AM
I've got about 1100 miles on the Bonneville SE now. There are a few observations I can make. The seat is very firm but shaped well. It might be a problem after a couple of hours continuously in the saddle. I rode the 2008 T100 which was uncomfortable after 10 minutes.The T100 seat felt like it had a sharp ridge running down the center from front to back. The SE handles better than the T100 by nature of it's sharper rake and 17" wheels. Sometimes it feels like to turns too quickly! It's small size and light weight make it very easy to maneuver in and out of the garage and around parking lots. The rear shocks are quite stiff as stated in the review. I'm looking for replacements. There is also no readily accessible storage of any kind on the bike. The engine is pretty smooth though I find myself looking for a 6th gear. The SE is getting about 45mpg. My biggest complaint is that the speedometer is off, way off. An indicated 75mph on the speedometer is only 65mph on my GPS. I've checked it against other vehicles and they confirm it to be inaccurate as well.Another guy in town has the same problem on his new SE. So far Triumph does not want to deal with the issue even though the speedometer is not up international legal standards. I can't help but wonder if Triumph just took the speedo off one of the bikes with the 19" front wheel and stuck it on the SE. That would certainly explain the erroneous readings is puts out.
Marko -Bonny T100 2009 seat  May 25, 2009 05:23 PM
The t 100 seat seems awfully firm in the show room - can anyone tell me how comfortable it is in real world riding conditions? I've heard the word "plank" used to describe the comfort level!
Alvaro Aparicio -Triumph Bonneville SE 2,009  May 18, 2009 05:57 PM
I have owned 44 bikes since I was 16 years old. Puch 250 SGS, Ariel Square Four 1,954 or 56. Aermacchis, Harleys, BMW's,all the Jap brands, Buell Ulyses, Moto Guzzi Breva etc. etc. Recently I sold a Dyna Super Glide and boutgh my first Triump Bonneville 2,009. This and a Suzuki V Strom 650 c.c., are the best ever owned. They do everything well. The V-Strom is for the long haul but the Bonnie is for city conmuting and for a pleasent cruise in winding paved roads at 65 or 75 mph. Congratulations Triumph peopple, this bike its a jewel.
Bike & Mike -SE?  May 15, 2009 10:04 PM
I'm a bit baffled at the reasoning behind the decision to add modern looks to a retro styled machine. I've been riding a Hinckley Bonneville since I bought it new in '02. The elimination of the restrictive intake box, some free flowing exhaust and a rejet of the carbs punched it's midrange markedly and went a great way towards endowing it with the character of the originals,...along with an additional 10 rear wheel HP. They're great bikes,..retro or otherwise, but the looks of the SE leaves me cold,.... as does the implications of yet another snatchy fuel injection system to overcome. I'll keep the '02.
Bill Glaze -Bonneville  May 14, 2009 06:24 AM
As an owner of a '71 Bonneville, (Owned it since new) and not wanting to wear it out on Interstates, (it has over 65,000 miles on it) I got a new, (in 2007) T-100 Bonnie. Fine bike; no problems. I look for dependability and reliability first, handling a close second. Great in both classifications. To friends who suggest I should have gotten a Harley or Gold Wing, my comment is fairly short: "I wanted a cruiser, not a battleship." Seat looks uncomfortable, but is good for all day; ride is more than acceptable, handling close to my '71. Bought itbefore fuel injection came in; I wanted (and got) carburetors. Easy to work on, and cheap. Over 50 mpg.
HappyBonnir -The new 09's  April 28, 2009 04:13 AM
Ian Spinney -Thruxton  April 20, 2009 12:04 PM
Kevin Fogarty - add the 19t front sprocket and Norman Hyde silencers and you will see a marked improvement in top end cruising and power, plus rich exhaust note that will .make your friends want to sell their Jap bikes pronto
bipedal -Triumph  April 17, 2009 04:22 PM
Great read, thank you.
Phil Lampman -Triumph Bonnies  April 17, 2009 02:53 PM
Ever since I've returned to riding after a 25-year hiatus, I've loved the modern Bonnevilles, especially as I tentatively resumed my skills. As I rode more and more, my skills imprreoved and I went to an early used Speed Triple and then to Ducatis, which I adore. My question is - and I'm not trying to provoke and argument here - is why I should buy a Bonnie instead of the Ducati 696 which is only a couple hundred dollars more? The Ducati has more power, better brakes, etc.
Kevin Fogarty -Thruxton  April 11, 2009 07:30 PM
I returned to Triumph, by buying the 2009 Thruxton. 1k miles into this bike now, and I realy like it. I have owned sport bike, cruisers, and touring models.Please, give this bike some more engine character (top end power), and I would have no complaints at all. In fact the only time I think of needing more power, is when I am chasing full dress Harly Davidsons.The flip side to this, is that having to chase makes the ride more fun.The bike will cruise the interstate at 80 mph at about 4k rpm without any issues, all day long, just don't expect to pull away from a tractor trailer at 80mph as fast as you might on a sv1000. This bike is way more comfortable at speed than it is in the show room, at least for me.
Joannah -Piano  April 9, 2009 12:35 AM
I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don't know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often. Joannah http://keyboardpiano.net
Paul -easy to ride  April 7, 2009 02:02 PM
I've had my '05 T100 for three years now, and find it fun to ride. The power isn't eye opening, but its got more than I can use, and when riding the curves its easy to get on the throttle without worrying about spinning the rear wheel. Those who really want more can replace the cams, pipes and carbs and pick up 20HP. Best feature - its looks. Second best - light weight and handling. Third - it does EVERYTHING pretty well: commuting, curves and touring.
Bart Madson -Choke Correction  April 6, 2009 11:10 AM
JonCG, you are absolutely correct. Got off the phone with Triumph and the choke a funtional two-stage fuel enricher. I apologize for the error - the text has since been ammended.
Jay Mack -The Tank  April 5, 2009 07:24 PM
It would look sooo much better without the seam on the bottom of the tank.
JonCG -new Bonnie  April 4, 2009 01:52 PM
Okay, the choke lever on the new EFI Bonnie actually works (rather than being for show, as article). The new Bonnie is a great bike and turns in to corners much faster than the old model. Buy it with the Arrow 2:1 pipes to lighten the load, get the EFI reflashed, fit ikon shocks and new front springs and you've got light weight and reasonable power!
rob -bonnieblack  April 4, 2009 08:35 AM
I am on my 2nd Bonneville, (my first being a 2005 T100) and I absolutely love the bike/brand... my Bonneville eats 1200 sporties for lunch... being only 5'7" I wish that the Bonneville did sit a bit lower... I have aftermarket BC D&D pipes that sound sweet at higher rpm's... I do wish the BonnevilleT would get an upgrade to at least the 1000cc level... nothing but complements when I'm on my Bonneville, (mostly from HD riders, ironic)... "how's she ride?" they ask, "Like a bat out of Britain!" I reply....
Nferr -Bonnie  April 3, 2009 11:41 AM
I'm on my second Bonnie T100. Great all-round bikes and a blast to ride. Motorcycling like it used to be. I've had sport bikes, sport-tourers, cruisers, the Bonnie is by far my favorite.
SBE -New Bonnies  April 3, 2009 10:18 AM
Had an '01 Bonnie. I loved the inviting , undemanding, unpretentious nature of that bike. I loved the looks but the 790cc motor was pure milquetoast. The motor needs a work over by Triumph. With the new T'bird 1600 up and running they could punch out the 865s to 1000cc and dump about 15 lbs off the motor.How about implementing the 1600 motor accross the range? Lighter faster better would sell more Bonnies. A great community has sprung up around the Scrambler on advrider.com. How about a 675 Scrambler?
Randy -OK bike, better with mods  April 3, 2009 08:17 AM
I had a 2001 for a while. For sure spend some money on a decent pair of shocks (like Ikons) and (maybe) Racetech the forks and you will improve the handling AND ride a LOT. I did these mods and basically cured the harsh wallowing ride, coming up with much more poise and comfort at brisk speeds. Even if you don't ride fast you will appreciate the poise and comfort of the improved suspension. The engine can be brightened up a little but there's no getting around it's "adequate" nature without spending big bucks. I'm still intrigued with going the whole route with one of these bikes, maybe a Thruxton. I think these are OK bikes, having owned a "real" Bonneville too I'm not offended by the styling but the engine is just too mild. Ride an aircooled 2V Ducati to see what this could have been like. The Bonney's midrange and topend is so anemic in comparison. Maybe don't ride a Ducati, be happy with what you know!
benroe -bonnies  April 2, 2009 11:25 PM
I had an America and it was a fast ride with some mods. My bros 1200 sportster could not beat it in a drag race!! But cruiser riding did not suit my tastes. I loved the marque so much I bought a 675 and I absolutely love that bike too. Now I just need another Triumph to go along with my 675. I am thinking one of the new bonnies would be a great addition to the family..
3ddavistriumph -New TRIUMPHS,  April 2, 2009 09:52 PM
The most adveturesome motorcycle company is TRIUMPH. I believe the new TRIUMPH learned from the old triumph company mistakes, Keep it interesting, , modern and a variety for all models,The Daytona,5 The Rocket, The New Bonnie, The Scrambler, the Tiger, The Thruxton. I have a 2007 THRUXTON and TWo Classic Triumphs to boot. My Thruxton is my remarkable and yes I had to raise the bars with aftermarket LSL bars, but once that was done it is very comfortable and enjoyable. Now I just need to talk the wife into letting me get a new scrambler. TRIUMPH culd teach harley and the jap companies a thing or two...for they have become so boring. ..
SAMxrl -Bonnie- not Clyde!  April 2, 2009 09:06 PM
Job well done-Triumph!! The new revised SE model looks so much sharper than the classic version. Cleaner lines and better handling is an added bonus too. I doubt Triumph will convert the sportbike set (the 675 fills that niche) but riders looking for something besides the usual feet first cruisers will find this model an excellent option. What a novelty, a manufacturer actually listening to it's customers and designing their bikes to fit. Keep it up Triumph!!
charles johnson -hello  April 2, 2009 04:29 PM
I have a 2006 triumph speedmaster and have been very happy with it it remindes me of the old triumphs and B.S.A.s I rode years ago,my speedmaster has only about 4000 miles on it and has proformed very well but I wish that I could find someone who would have in stock the red oil pressure lens cover. as everyone tells me that I will have to buy the compleat speedo necell...all and all Im very Impressed with the speedmaster..thank you cpj.
New Rider -Good start to bring these bikes into the new century  April 2, 2009 03:03 PM
There's no doubt that these are great lookers and the EFI is a welcome improvement. It would be great if they were able to cut some weight and add some performance to make these true competitors to the Ducati GT1000. Some go to accompany the show.
StratoTele -New Bonnie's  April 2, 2009 02:30 PM
I ,too, would much prefer the Scrambler with Arrow exhaust,but, any of the new Bonneville models would be a nice ride!.....If only there were Triumph dealers in this area of the country!