Driving report Triumph Thunderbird Commander-LT

Driving report Triumph Thunderbird Commander-LT
triumph

Driving report Triumph Thunderbird Commander-LT

Driving report Triumph Thunderbird Commander-LT

Driving report Triumph Thunderbird Commander-LT

Driving report Triumph Thunderbird Commander-LT

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Powerful, muscular and with typical double headlights: The Commander wants to set the tone from now on.

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Straight, round, no frills: the rear silencers make beautiful music.

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Noble, massive and a real eye-catcher: polished fork bridge and handlebar clamp.

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She is committed to comfort. From 60 km / h, just click into sixth gear and let your mind wander.

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Generous running boards, each with a sanding pad mounted below.

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The chrome-framed cockpit on the tank is informative and chic at the same time.

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In contrast to the Commander, the LT has Avon whitewall tires and spoked wheels.

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The two bags with tri-oval taper are significantly longer than those of the sister.

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The chassis smooths potholes and bumps perfectly. Only transverse joints do not filter the stereo struts optimally.

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Whether stereo strut or belt guard: The Triumph has fine materials.

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Not only does it look good: A lot of time has been devoted to the bench design. With success!

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Triumph Thunderbird Commander / LT in the driving report

Try coziness

Sensual lolling about on two wheels is increasingly becoming a lifestyle. It goes without saying that the British want to keep getting involved in this market. With the Triumph Thunderbird Commander / LT, they are now making the Thunderbird series much more muscular and touristy.

Such a cruiser is not for everyone. Understandable, because here a lot of mass meets a low seat height, a long wheelbase and little lean angle. From a rational point of view, this construction makes little sense. But beware! Anyone who nods in agreement should stroll briskly into the garage at home and wonder how much sense it makes to buy a front-wheel drive mini SUV? Exactly, this is not about meaning, but about sensuality! And to be honest: In addition to the SUV, there would be such a big triumph THunderbird LT or a martial commander do really well, right?

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Driving report Triumph Thunderbird Commander-LT

Triumph Thunderbird Commander / LT in the driving report
Try coziness

Newly designed bridge frame made of steel

Because sheer power is not a feat and you already know the engine, the transmission and the belt drive from the Thunderbird Storm, Triumph was also hard-working. The steel bridge frame was redesigned and optimized for a low seating position and a low center of gravity. From now on, the engine functions as a supporting element. The airbox and the swing arm had to be modified accordingly. The massive Showa telescopic fork with a diameter of 47 millimeters is new, the sliding tubes of which are encased in a fine stainless steel cover. This created additional space to discreetly clear all kinds of cables and Bowden cables from the driver’s field of vision. You have to be fussy to discover a few colorful cables behind the covers of the Triumph Thunderbird.

The stereo struts, like the fork, accommodate comparatively long springs, which means that the chassis should be very easy to swallow, without lacking sufficient stability. In any case, there is no lack of visual and haptic detail work. That can be judged while standing. No matter where you knock: what looks like metal on the Triumph Thunderbird is metal.

Driving report Triumph Thunderbird Commander-LT

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In addition, the Triumph Thunderbird Commander and Triumph Thunderbird LT offer sufficient reasons to visit the garage at home even on rainy winter days. Milled cooling fins, the chrome-plated engine cover, the polished upper triple clamp or even the finely crafted standard levers: You can see yourself really happy with numerous details. And even taking a seat briefly promotes general satisfaction. According to Triumphs, a seat cushion has never been developed for longer. What sounded like pure marketing during the presentation in San Diego, California, is easy to believe after a 300-mile test drive. The integrated lumbar support makes unwinding kilometers a pure pleasure, the fine contouring of the upholstery and its two-layer substructure fit the rear part like comfortable underpants.

The first differences between the model sisters reveal themselves in the ergonomics. The handlebar ends of the Triumph Thunderbird LT protrude a bit further towards the driver, which makes the sitting posture more comfortable than the Commander. On the latter you either have to move very close to the tank in order to be able to hold the handlebars with slightly bent arms, or you have to accept that the arms are pushed through and the upper body is forced into a slightly hunched position. Both variants are comfortable in their own way. In a direct comparison, however, the LT offers the more balanced concept here.

You can also tow cars with this drive

The Triumph Thunderbird Commander rests on cast aluminum wheels with Metzeler tires (front 120/70 R19, rear 200/50 R17). In addition to another exhaust system, the model sister comes as standard with elegant spoked wheels, radial whitewall tires from Avon (front 150/80 R16, rear 180/70 R16), leather saddlebags (completely removable), an easily removable windshield and the central single headlight including two additional headlights begin.

The chrome-plated running boards with exchangeable rubber pads are identical in both. Not only do they offer a lot of floor space, they also have a nice gimmick: underneath them there are replaceable sanding pads that successfully protect against unsightly scratches. Anyone who tries it – as the extensive test drive showed – will, however, already grind the grinder down after a few days of wild cornering. Because despite the high weight of 348 kg (Commander) or 380 kg (LT), both can be wagged wonderfully quickly over winding, narrow streets.

The transmission can be operated precisely, even if it bangs quite a bit when changing gear at irregular intervals. The clutch operation still requires acceptable manual force. If the engine is allowed to start at low speed, every combustion hammers a powerful, delightful, but by no means too loud sound wave from the two mufflers. Subjectively, the Triumph Thunderbird LT even seems a tad louder, which is probably due to the protection provided by the windshield. Despite the low speed, the drive increases its power continuously and without hiccups. If you let the gas stand up to 3550 revolutions, it catapults you forward with up to 151 Newton meters. At 5400 tours the twin balances a maximum of 94 hp on the crankshaft. Undoubtedly: With this drive you can also tow cars – or your own mini-SUV, if it should get stuck.

The successful coordination proves that the engine shows neither pronounced load change reactions nor harsh response behavior. As the engine speed increases, the twin’s acoustic appeal diminishes, but thanks to two balancer shafts, vibrations are held back over the entire engine speed range.

Chassis actually swallows every bump

And the landing gear? That does a great job. It actually swallows every bump. Only hard transverse joints are passed on to the driver’s back unfiltered. But it convinces with sufficient stability, even with a more committed driving style. The amazing handiness of the machine is paired harmoniously with the neutral steering behavior. Only in fast corners can you feel the crowd pushing towards the exit of the corner. Should you ever be too fast, you can rely on the four-piston brake system from Nissin including ABS. This really delays the delay, but requires a lot of gripping in an emergency.

Anyone who wants to try the enjoyable floundering around in the future and like to make themselves comfortable in the home garage on rainy winter days will have a great partner at their side with the two new Thunderbird models. However, one should know that this partner has its price.  

Technical data Triumph Thunderbird Commander (LT)

engine
Water-cooled two-cylinder four-stroke in-line engine, two balance shafts, two overhead, chain-driven camshafts, four valves per cylinder, injection, Ø 42 mm, regulated catalytic converter with secondary air system, 540 W alternator, 12 V / 18 Ah battery, mechanically operated multi-plate oil bath clutch, six-speed gearbox , Toothed belt, secondary ratio 2.214.

Bore x stroke 107.1 x 94.3 mm
Displacement 1699 cc
Compression ratio 9.7: 1
rated capacity 69.0 kW (94 hp) at 5400 rpm
Max. Torque 151 Nm at 3550 rpm

landing gear
Bridge frame made of tubular steel, telescopic fork, Ø 47 mm, two-arm swing arm made of steel, two spring struts, adjustable spring base, double disc brake at the front, Ø 310 mm, double-piston floating calipers, disc brake at the rear, Ø 310 mm, double-piston floating caliper, ABS. Cast aluminum wheels (spoked wheels with aluminum rims) 3.50 x 19; 6.00 x 17 (3.50 x 16; 5.50 x 16)

tires 120/70 R 19; 200/50 R 17 (150/80 R 16; 180/70 R 16)

Dimensions + weights
Wheelbase 1665 mm, steering head angle 59.9 degrees, caster 135 (133) mm, spring travel f / r 120/109 mm, seat height 700 mm, empty weight 348 (380) kg, permissible total weight 580 (600) kg, tank capacity 22.0 liters.

guarantee two years
Colours Red, black (blue / white, red / black)
price 16,540 (17,740) euros
Additional costs 450 euros

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