2007 Triumph Speed Triple - Prepared For Takeoff
Super Streetbike's Got An Exclusive First Ride On Triumph's Highly Anticipated Street Triple, And We Found That The Naked Version Of The Highly Acclaimed Daytona 675 Really Flies.
The Street Triple floats down country backroads nicely.
The cock of the walk takes a rest at a local watering hole.
Even soggy corners get gobbled up.
Sonsky makes the call to confirm rumors of a hot new naked in the hills near Hinckley.
The exhausts closely resemble those of the larger Speed Triple.
A restyled Daytona 675 dash tells the tale.
The grazing sheep weren't too concerned, but you'll be happy to know the Street Triple can hang with the big bikes.
Though there are a lot of borrowed parts, the Street Triple creates its own identity.
Even the slightest scratch means it goes in the trash.
We feel sorry for whoever gets that motor.
The public expected a naked Daytona 675, but Triumph had other ideas. The end result is a smaller Speed Triple in appearance with the sportbike handling characteristics of the 675. It's sort of the best of both worlds for naked-bike enthusiasts.
We've all been excited for naked models of flagship sportbikes in the past. The funny thing is that the manufacturers have simply cried wolf so many times that most of us don't pay much attention any more. Detuned motors thrown in heavy frames with some straight bars slapped on is far from an unfaired edition of the real thing that we'd like, yet that's usually what hits the market.
An unclothed model of the award-winning Daytona 675 was certainly expected, but would it just be yet another softened sportbike or something that we could actually get geeked about? Thankfully, the Brits went against the grain and designed a bike that will give the naked middleweight class a swift kick in the shorts.
The Daytona 675 is such a bad ass in comparison to its company in the 600 class that even a slightly softer version for the street wouldn't be bad-provided it wasn't dumbed down too much. When we first spotted the Street Triple in the production line we noticed the lower spec front suspension and brakes and naturally expected the worst though. To make matters worse the seat height is slightly lower and after getting a leg over it seemed that yet another disappointment was about to expose itself.
We're happy to report just the opposite however, because though the initial signs seemed perhaps a bit bleak they were soon forgotten. Just seconds after pulling away on the rain-drenched English tarmac it was obvious that the Street Triple was going to behave more like its Speed Triple big brother than some anemic and feeble cousin of the Daytona. The basic anatomy of the borrowed 675 frame and swingarm are exactly the same, and though the seated position is obviously more upright than a sportbike it remains aggressive for this style.
Triumph UK's Product Manager, Simon Warburton, chimed in a quick quip regarding the one-inch lower rearsets when he mentioned that the pegs will touch down on the street, but you'd have to be hitting it pretty hard to worry about such matters. Old Simon's known to be pretty handy on a bike though, so we kept his advice in mind.
There was just enough of the seemingly perpetual English dampness on the roads to keep ground clearance limitations from being explored, but we pushed enough to allow the Street Triple to defend its seemingly low-spec front end. The brakes are beyond competent and don't struggle whatsoever to slow the package down, thanks largely to the same pad composition and rotors used on the Daytona. While the nonadjustable forks would be an issue on trackdays, during our spirited backroad ripping we couldn't really fault it, and it was actually better behaved than the fully adjustable Speed Triple. Simply for sake of appearance we'd consider sourcing a trashed 675's front end at some point to really get the most from the bike if trackdays or serious stunting is in its future-and with this motor they should be.
Though the motor has been retuned for better lower-end torque it doesn't struggle in the least and actually seems to pull just as hard as the 675. Wheelies in the first three gears should be expected thanks largely to the reprofiled cams that allow for improved bottom end and midrange.
Running with bigger bikes on twisty canyon roads will likely see the Street Triple out in front thanks to its 675 chassis that's extremely rigid and behaved-which is typically uncharacteristic of the other bikes in this class that can feel sloppy and confused at times. Despite the swingarm pivot point set 2 millimeters lower in the frame than on the 675, the rolling chassis remains largely unchanged.
But the $675 question seems to be who this bike is really designed for. Does a friendlier seat height and softer suspension mean that this is just a strong entry-level bike-designed with a female rider in mind? Absolutely not. Though the motor obviously isn't quite as mad as the larger 1050cc Speed Triple, it retains the torquey character that will loft the front wheel easily and help rip away from traffic lights as easy as any liter bike. The airbox snarl is one of Triumph's most impressive yet, and with some aftermarket pipes this thing will sing like nothing else on the road. The smaller cubes also mean that insurance rates will be a hell of a lot friendlier too.
Unlike the early spy shots seen in January of 2006, the bike has been redesigned and released as its own entity-not simply a stripped-down 675. There was consideration and preparation during the early stages of the 675's design and prototyping to allow it to donate itself to a naked version in the future. Such items like the fairing brackets were designed to be hidden so that when the 675 took its clothes off it would remain clean and tidy. But it was largely due to Triumph Italy's suggestion that the Street Triple should echo the Speed Triple instead of the 675. The bigger bike is a classic in Italy, and this smaller sibling should follow suit.
At first glance the dual exhausts suggest the Speed Triple's influence, and though they're mildly different they hint that this bike is more "little Speed Triple" than "naked 675." Lighting duties are split from the two donors with the rear coming from the 675, but it's the directly passed-down Speed Triple headlight and flyscreen arrangement that really give the Street Triple its stance and attitude.
With it's competitive pricing at $7999, it's a sensible option for riders looking for an alternative to a supersport 600, yet something still competent to provide thrills and cause some commotion. The very spirit of the Speed Triple has been captured in a smaller and more nimble package that will certainly catch out quite a few unsuspecting plastic-clad race replicas.
Under the Influence
The Street Triple very closely resembles the Daytona 675, but with a softened riding position and lower ride height. An early clay model spy shot shows its shape coming together.
Weight: 367 pounds
Max power: 108hp@11,700rpm
Max torque: 51ft.lbs.@9,100rpm
Top speed: 135 mph