Triumph Thruxton is arguably the most iconic Cafe Racer of all times. But beware, riding this bike will get you in trouble. If you don't like the celebrity-like attention, this bike is not for you. The Thruxton model was discontinued twice, and after some changes, it is back into the market. There are some new additions to this year´s model. Also, some revolutionary after-market accessories make the Triumph Thruxton a true 21st-century bike. Read on and find out everything you need to know about the queen of the cafe racers.
If the cool retro look of the Triumph Thruxton is your thing, then this incarnation of the sixty’s cafe racer will make you smile. Contrary to what most people think, cafe racers are not big noisy and menacing bikes. Quite on the opposite, you´ll find yourself driving a machine that people turn over to see. The soft roar of the engine is part of the fun and with 865cc; it is not short of power for the city. While it is not the rider´s dream when you flick the right wrist, there is plenty of torque to play around.
The first impression when you start the Triumph Thruxton on is not the best. There is a specific noise that is strange and quirky. Once it is on, it sounds very smooth, and indeed, the clutch is avoidable in gears two to five. The Triumph Thruxton has to be one of the smoothest rides ever. The slightly downward handle and the single seat make you adopt the classic position of the cafe racer. If you belong to my generation, you are immediately sent in time to the many awards this bike got in the sixties. The golden era of the cafe racers was dominated by the Triumph Thruxton, and your mind remembers it perfectly.
This range of bikes makes them the most suitable choice for those who want to feel the cool factor going to work. The occasional Sunday morning trip is also a great plan. Although most riders feel that the Triumph Thruxton 900 is more about the looks, it responds quite well. For those riders expecting a throttle like a sports bike, they are in the wrong segment. The Triumph Thruxton is all about comfort and retro-vibe. You will be pulled when you flick your wrist, but it is not a savage beast and is definitely not a racing bike.
The pleasure most riders do find in it is that the same bike that is good for commuting will take them on the open road. The well-designed single seat is very comfortable, and once you reach a certain speed, the gravitation effect is nice. The only downside of riding it is that it is too heavy for the torque and takes away some of the fun-factor.
Are you looking for the ultimate hipster look while riding? If that is your case, then look no further, this is the most fabulous bike you will ever see. The 1200cc engine on this incarnation of the Triumph Thruxton does look massive. It is definitely not a bike for beginners, and there is more torque most of us would ever need at hand.
The first thing that got me when I sat on the bike is the position it forces on the rider. Everything depends on the height of whoever is sitting on it, but my knees were suffering a bit, and I am no basketball player. Seat height in conjunction with the low bars makes it difficult to avoid the café racer posture. It is not suitable for everyone, and while the suspension is good and gets the job done, it is nothing to write home about. The Triumph Thruxton R is designed to be an open road vehicle with that kind of engine. Although that is the case, if you seat on it for some hours, you will definitely be sore. That being said, a friend of mine who is a lot smaller than me thought it was one of the most comfortable bikes he ever sat on.
The Triumph Thruxton R is a big motorcycle and sports big piston forks from Showa and Ohlin shocks. Also, the multiple riding modes, traction control, Brembo brakes and ABS set her apart from commuting bikes. The Parallel Twin engine has 8-valves and Triumph updated it to provide 68% more power than the old Triumph Thruxton did. The water- cooling system is somewhat hidden, and it is a complete marvel that they could fit it there.
Engine looks nothing but astonishing matching the matte tank and the golden shocks. If there is one thing we can say about this bike is that it does everything in style. On the downside, for me at least, the engine´s power is channelled by a dual set of exhausts that are almost silent. An aftermarket set will make it roar and sing, but with such a big engine one would expect a low-key roar proper of a big bike.
The R version of the Triumph Thruxton 1200 is everything that 1200 is not regarding rolling comfort. With a pair of 17-inch rims with the Diablo Rosso Corsa by Pirelli, the grip and manoeuvrability improve a lot. It also has 43mm big piston inverted forks by Showa and Öhlins in the back handle suspension very well. The difference in this department with the Triumph Thruxton 1200 is that it can be adjusted for perfect performance. Both bikes have 4.72 inches of travel in them. This ability to adjust the suspension is not a minor detail, especially when you are out on the road for a couple of hours. The lower bars for the café racer look can be tiring for the shoulders and the back.
On the braking department, the switchable ABS is convenient to avoid traction loss. The Nissin breaks on the rear wheel as well as the Brembo monoblock on the front do their job just right. The racing appeal of the Triumph Thruxton 1200 R is evident in every detail. The low weight matched with the big engine makes this bike an enjoyable ride. Opening the throttle and losing the clutch is quite an experience, especially when on the open road. On the downside, it is still as quiet as the Triumph Thruxton 1200 and has no low roar to accompany that big engine.
The new incarnation of the Classic café racer by Triumph comes with some very modern features. The ABS switchable breaking system is very up to date and so are the Showa and Öhlins shocks. A bike that only comes from 865cc onwards, it is not for the faint of heart. The three versions have the hipster-approved looks, but all feature a different approach.
Commuting to work on the Triumph Thruxton 900 is quite an experience since you will get all eyes on you. It is not a loud bike, but the looks are just stunning. The eventual Sunday morning ride on the open road is feasible, but the power of its bigger siblings is something to miss. Opening the exhaust and not feeling the big pull forward is a big deception for some riders. Commuting to work or making short trips is where this bike excels. The old-school meters with no gas indicator are retro-approved but also very useful. You can quickly identify speed and RPM at a glance while taking that hard turn.
The bigger version of the Triumph Thruxton café racer is a great addition for those looking for a little more. Experiencing the wrist turning and the motorbike racing off is something that most riders missed in the 900 version. The motorbike is a bit stiff in the suspension, and after a couple of hours of open road fun, the posture will leave you sore. Coupling a matte finish gas tank with a pair of inverted fork golden shocks is simply stunning. The Triumph Thruxton Café Racer is a machine that excels Performance-wise and has stunning looks. The only downside most riders complain about is the comfort.
The R version of the Triumph Thruxton fixes the comfort issue by adding an adjustable suspension to the package. ABS breaks are a great addition to the extra comfort, and the open road doesn´t seem such a bad idea with this version. For those riders who want extra comfort while pushing the limits, this bike is ideal.
The Triumph Thruxton line is not cheap. Considering the features on the bikes, the price is on the high side, but the competition has options that can definitely make you think. For example, the Ducati Scrambler is a great sports/racing machine for $5K less than the Triumph Thruxton 1200 R. Or even for those with a more sporty spirit, the Honda Africa Twin comes with a considerably lower price than the 1200 R too. The thing with the Triumph Thruxton specifically is that it is challenging to compare it to anything in the market. If you happen to be a café racer lover, then it is tough to find the shape and feel of that bike anywhere else so truthfully represented.
The price tag on the Triumph Thruxton 1200 is $12,899 while the Triumph Thruxton 1200 R goes for $15,000. The smaller version goes for $9,899. They are not cheap bikes, but they inevitably come with some powerful specs. The other highlight that attracts buyers is the classic legendary looks. Neo-retro bikes that mix past and present perfectly are more on demand than ever before.
The aftermarket accessories I want to show you in the video were tested on a Triumph Bonneville and had completely changed my way of seeing things. It is important not to overlook the road-safety aspect. The Smart Break Module portrayed in the video makes things way safer for riders. You will experience the same amazing results from the test video on every bike you own. I installed both devices in every single one of them and encourage you to do the same. Check the video below – you will like what you see!
Smart Break Module (SBM) – Shutting down the throttle of the bike will immediately make you go slower. In fact, most bikers on the road hardly ever step on the brakes but mostly use the engine braking. That is, at least, my own experience. This great little device senses the decreasing speed and the down-shifting. Once it does, it will engage your stop light immediately. It could avoid many accidents. I definitely feel more secure with it when on the highway or a big road. You can install it on your brand new Triumph Thruxton.
Smart Turn System (STS) – This is a very little fix that you can make to any bike. The little installed device will sense when your ride has done the turn and automatically turns turning lights off. It is an awesome addition especially for those of us who also drive cars. It will fit your Triumph Thruxton like a dream. Once you try it, you´ll do what I did and install it in every bike you own. Sounds interesting? Find your bike in the drop-down list below and submit your email for a special offer.
The Triumph Thruxton line is for those who love the retro look on bikes. It is not a sports machine, but you can think of it as a light-weight racing bike. It kept all the traditional values that we respect in classic motorcycles, however, I warmly welcome the addition of some modern touches. The thin line that divides the epic fail while recreating a classic from a good version is minuscule, and Triumph walks it in style. There are some downsides to some models like the lack of power on the Triumph Thruxton 900 and the stiff suspension on the Triumph Thruxton 1200. These are not minor details but do have a profound impact on buying decisions. Most riders will choose these bikes for the looks despite the price tags and specs. For those trying to go a little further, you can still add some features in the future.
What did you think of these bikes? Did you ever own or ride any of them? Let us know your experience and share it with your friends!