The Thruxton has become a fine, classy café racer.
Triumph Thruxton R
Anyone looking for relaxation is sure to find it in the saddle of the Bonneville T120.
Floating caliper brakes and rigid brake discs are completely sufficient for the Bonneville.
Excellent imitation of the Amal carburettor, right down to the brass-colored knurled lid.
As with the historical model: retaining strut at the front over the mudguard.
The lockable, chrome-plated screw cap identifies the Bonneville tank.
HT means high torque – plenty of torque …
… Which the Bonnie actually offers for relaxed cruising.
The Clubman hump looks much better though.
And yes, there is also an optional double bench seat.
Triumph, Paul Barshon
Curves are her element.
Nice instruments, polished triple clamp, Big Piston Fork. Classic meets modern.
Clear glass headlights with LED daytime running lights and Triumph logo as a design touch.
Exhaust system with a seductive line.
Megaphone and motor cover with a brushed surface.
Under the “Monza Filler Cap” …
… hides a lockable screw cap.
HP stands for high power.
Triumph Bonneville T120
Triumph Thruxton R and Triumph Bonneville T120 in the driving report
With the presentation of the Triumph Bonneville T120 and the Triumph Thruxton R, the British are rolling out two new models that really rock.
Triumph Thruxton R
The tension and the impatience are literally palpable as the crowd of journalists into the saddles of the meticulously lined up Triumph Thruxton R swings. Finally. Gentlemen, start your engines. The top model of Triumph’s “New Classic” series invites you to go out on the country side.
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Triumph Thruxton R and Triumph Bonneville T120 in the driving report
The cooling fins of the Triumph Thruxton R are not just for show
As with its predecessor, the newly designed 1200 engine cover has a pre-unit look that skilfully fakes separate housings for the engine and gearbox. The technicians have outdone themselves when it comes to hiding the injection system; it looks deceptively similar to Amal carburetors from the 60s. The slim megaphone silencers with their brushed stainless steel shells look gorgeous, and the cylinders still stretch their cooling fins in the airstream. Head wind? The Triumph Thruxton R 1200 is a modern, water-cooled design. But the cooling fins are not just for show, they should actually do their part for cooling – and to ensure that the cooler could be small. It nestles inconspicuously in front of the front frame tubes. No water hoses can be seen, the water pump is in the engine.
A push on the starter, and the Triumph Thruxton R sounds full-bodied, but well muffled from the two tailpipes. 270 degrees crank pin offset give the newly designed twin a robust touch. So what does it have to offer? And what the landing gear?
Much sportier than its predecessor
Three quarters of an hour later. First stop. Helmets off – broadly grinning faces appear all around. The first stage, and the Triumph Thruxton R has already rocked. And huge. She cultivates her sporty attitude much more than her predecessor. Want to be able to do more than just look pretty. It stands on 17-inch wheels. Fully adjustable upside-down fork with radial monoblock brembos and floating 310 mm discs are the current standard for athletes. And even if it dampens the rear with stereo struts, it does so with fine Öhlins goods and a decent 120 mm of travel. Also fully adjustable, a matter of honor. And only the basic chassis data with a short 90.8 mm caster and a steep 67.2 degree steering head angle, all of this smells like a veritable country road burner. And it is, the Triumph Thruxton R. The Café Racer throws itself effortlessly from one lean angle to the next. Your 222 kilograms, according to Triumph, feel more like 200 with a full tank. There is no flashy 180 tire emblazoned on the rear wheel. The restriction to a 160 proves a sense of proportion. Digestible for handling.
The spring elements are excellent at parrying bumps and also absorb short edges without undue hardness. And they are tightly coordinated so that there is no agitation in the framework when you are sporty. The tank is wonderfully narrow, only if you slide close to the handlebars will your knees hit the bulges. Nevertheless, the Triumph Thruxton R fits like a glove and puts you in an unbelievable mood when cornering. From 2000 rpm the twin can be accelerated. From 3000 rpm he tenses the muscles. Light-footed, willing, lively and powerful, it turns up to the limiter, sounds sonorous but never intrusive. A third less centrifugal mass than the Bonneville makes shooting easy for him.
Modern street athlete in a classic guise
Its two balance shafts do a great job. Still, the twin doesn’t look synthetic. The gears rest crisply but precisely. In terms of electronics, the Triumph Thruxton R has the essentials on board: ABS, traction control that can be switched off, three driving modes that only differ in throttle response – Rain, Street and Sport. The latter can confidently be chosen. Load changes are noticeable, but not annoying, the twin hangs nicely directly on the gas. As a minor annoyance, we note that when the ignition is switched off, the display in the cockpit is always reset to the kilometer display and the mapping back to “Street”. And would rather be happy about the smooth anti-hopping clutch and the finely adjustable and powerful Brembo monobloc pliers. The Triumph Thruxton R is a modern street sports car with a classic look. And it would come as no surprise if Ducati pondered whether the Sport Classic models and the little-loved air-cooled two-valve engine had been sidelined a little too early.
If the Triumph Thruxton R is not yet individual enough, Triumph offers around 160 accessories as well as three so-called inspiration kits. A Track Racer Kit (2250 euros), including a half-shell, Vance & Hines slip-on mufflers and short stern. An equally equipped Café Racer kit (1650 euros), which instead of the half-shell contains a small disc and a leather tank strap. And a performance race kit for the racetrack. With open end pots, fairing, sharp camshafts and washable K&N air filter.
The maintenance intervals will be extended to 16,000 kilometers, the price for the new Triumph Thruxton R is 14,500 euros. With this she hits the BMW R nineT precisely, which with the Thruxton R is now blowing a very sharp wind in her face. If you don’t want to invest that much, you can use the Thruxton. For 12,500 euros it is not quite as classy with a bit simpler equipment, but with a more classic look. And the same lively 1200 twin.
Triumph Bonneville T120
… Which the Bonnie indeed offers for relaxed cruising.
The Triumph Bonneville T120 is also powered by the new 1200. As a roadster with an upright seating position, she prefers relaxed driving pleasure. Its drive is accordingly designed for powerful pulling power. That he had to leave ten horses in the stable for this is not tragic. 80 hp should still be enough. In return, its maximum torque of 105 Nm is already available at a relaxed 3100 rpm. Lower compression than the Thruxtons (10: 1 instead of 11: 1) and tamer camshafts as well as significantly more centrifugal mass on the crankshaft give it the right character. The accessory program or an inspiration kit (1590 euros, including with Vance & Hines exhausts, engine covers and quilted seat) can be spiced up.
The chassis is practically identical to the sportier Thruxton. Spring elements and brakes are the same as in the basic Thruxton. However, it rolls on narrower tires, in front in 18-inch format. Just looks better in a classic guise. The look of the Triumph Thruxton R and the Triumph Bonneville T120 is as different as their driving behavior. It’s hard to believe that it’s basically the same engine and chassis. Thanks to their different lengths and the larger front wheel, the spring elements ensure a completely different chassis geometry, which is significantly more stable, with a longer caster (105.2 mm) and a flatter steering head angle (64.5 °). The longer swing arm extends the wheelbase to 1450 mm.
Companion for a relaxed life
The Triumph Bonneville T120 does not achieve the precision and stability of the Triumph Thruxton R’s extended canter. After all, it brings 21 kilograms more weight. Rims and swingarm made of steel instead of aluminum take their toll, as does the steel rear mudguard, the retaining bracket or heavier brake discs. The Thruxton’s greed for curves cannot be matched despite narrower tires. She needs a clear impulse on the handlebars to fall into a lean position and then to pull her lanes with a clean line. However, you can feel a stronger erection moment than with the sporty sister. The fork responds finely to unevenness and thus provides a lot of comfort. For the sporty pace, however, it is too softly tuned and the harmony between fork and shock absorber is missing somewhat. She prefers the enjoyable, brisk country tour. The relaxed seating position goes well with this. The handlebars sit at a comfortable height, the low footrests ensure a very relaxed knee angle. And that the fearful nipples create furrows in the asphalt early on. The Pirelli Phantom may have the profile from the 80s, but their grip is beyond any doubt during such actions. The brakes, which are equipped with floating calipers and rigid discs, do not shock with unpredictable bite and provide sufficient deceleration.
As you would expect from a roadster, the two-cylinder engine gets down to business even from the deepest of locations. Even in fourth gear, the speed can drop to 1600 rpm, he toiled his way up from the speed cellar again. Its comfort zone is between 2200 and 4500 rpm, where it delivers a lot of punch. Turning higher he can do with, but then his temper decreases again. Compared to the Triumph Thruxton, the Triumph Bonneville T120 has a noticeably longer gear ratio, which lowers engine speed and fuel consumption, but so does the torque in the last gear. But if you prefer relaxed swinging over small country lanes, you will get over it and enjoy the low-speed pounding of the twin. And don’t mind the more pronounced load changes and the subtle pushing of the engine when the throttle valves are closed. Rather, enjoy the relaxed strolling and swinging curves and the powerful acceleration of the twin at the exit of the curve. Anyone looking for a companion for a relaxed life is right here. The Thruxton is responsible for sporty thrills. This is how the new T120 remained completely Bonnie. Prettier and stronger.
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