All the Duels – Kawasaki W800 Vs Triumph Bonneville SE: the grannies are resisting – The charm of “ vintage ”

Kawasaki W800 Vs Triumph Bonneville SE: Grannies Are Resisting

All the Duels - Kawasaki W800 Vs Triumph Bonneville SE: the grannies are resisting - The charm of `` vintage ''

Your ZXG-R cost you 6 license points? Madame no longer supports the passenger seat of your ugly roadster? You might be ripe for a neo-retro machine! Comparative test of two “ real fake ” old motorcycles well in their time !

The charm of “ vintage

In a world that is not necessarily very cheerful, where everything is accelerating at high speed, a certain nostalgia is being felt more and more … and not only among seniors! It is precisely on this wave that our two motorcycles of the day are riding.

The Kawasaki W800 and Triumph Bonneville add an arrow to their quiver by focusing more on driving pleasure than pure performance. Paradoxically, neo-retro motorcycles correspond perfectly well to our time: that of repression maximum vigilance !

By schematizing a little, we could say that this type of motorbike offers a particularly tempting cocktail: the undeniable charm of the "old ones" supported by the comfort, reliability and safety of the "moderns". But who, Japanese or English, offer the tastiest mixture? ?

The return of the W to Kawa

If sales of this type of motorbike remain relatively modest, the stopping of the friendly W650 in 2007 still left many bikers unsatisfied. The little Kawasaki has also had a nice career on, just like its little sister, the 250 Estrella..

Now equipped with injection to pass antipollution standards, the W is making a comeback in 2011 (read our)

Contrary to what its trade name might suggest, the new W800 cube makes 773 cc, but fortunately keeps its vertical twin-cylinder air-cooled. Its very retro line remains close to its predecessor … and that’s good !

Competition for Bonnie

Apart from the non-invasive presence of the Moto Guzzi V7 Classic, the Triumph Bonneville – with its SE and T100 variations – has until now occupied almost exclusively the neo-retro motorcycle market. However, it has not fallen asleep on its laurels, since it has evolved in small steps over the years before undergoing a big facelift for its fifty springs, in 2009 (read).

To the chagrin of some purists, it was precisely that year that she abandoned her wire wheels and her sausage pots. Miss Bonnie has become less typical to conquer a younger clientele: after its many Tiger, Triumph launched its first "Cougar"! Fortunately, the T100 and all its retro fittings remained in the catalog..

The Bonneville in our test, for its part, is in its two-tone SE version recognizable by its brushed aluminum crankcases, its tachometer and its chrome tank logos..

The small and the large

Yet heavier and larger displacement, the Bonneville seems small next to the W800. And we notice the Japanese all the more that it is covered with chrome and that its finish is remarkable..

Unlike the Triumph, the Kawa has very little plastic: the majority of parts, starting with the mudguards, are in chromed steel and only the tank logos are in plastoc. On the other hand, the W800 will not leave you a great choice in the colors: it will be this English green / gray … and then that’s it !

Despite her orange dress, Miss Bonnie is more discreet and her finish, although correct, still remains a notch below that of the W800.

Both nevertheless enjoy a fairly impressive sympathy capital, both from bikers and uninitiated. At each stop, their vintage side evokes a "cool attitude" which immediately makes them sympathetic..

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