After breaking new ground with the release of the 1160cc-engined Speed Triple RS earlier this year, Triumph have done it again with the Speed Triple 1200 RR.
Breaking a naked bike lineage on the Speed Triple that extends back to the original version from 1994, the Speed Triple 1200 RR adds a bikini fairing. But fear not, naked bike fans, as the Speed Triple 1200 RR will be complementing the new RS, not replacing it.
A New Genre?
Officially revealed on 14 September, the Speed Triple 1200 RR has been described as a modern day café racer and is defined by its compact fairing, which does a remarkable job in hiding the new model’s resemblance to the RS that includes the frame, engine, wheels tank and most of the same rear bodywork.
Also playing a part here is the single retro-look headlight – a major departure from the twin ‘bug eye’ lights on the RS. There’s also a conscious effort to hide cabling and hoses, adding to the fairing’s sleek look, while carbon fibre infill panels in selected areas and a carbon fibre front mudguard give a modern touch.
The fairing means the RR is strictly speaking no longer a naked bike, but nor is it a fully-faired sportsbike. It really straddles both genres and was born from Triumph’s market research that found a lot of riders were looking for a bike that had high levels of performance like a sportsbike, but was still a road bike first and foremost, not a racebike dialled down for road use, as some fully-faired sportsbikes are.
What’s also notable on the RR is a major revision to the ergonomics, with the clip-ons moved down 135mm and forward 50mm compared to the 1200 RS – significant amounts in both directions. This is complemented by a less extreme change in the footpeg position – up by 14.7mm and rearward by 25.9mm – but the result is a more crouched, sports-like riding position and one that’s certainly more aggressive.
As it’s built off the 1200 RS, the RR’s seat height is the same as that model at 830mm and weight is almost identical, too, at 199kg wet.
Of course, bikes have been built that straddle the naked and sportsbike genres before, but arguably none have done so to such stunning effect as seen on the Speed Triple 1200 RR.
Looks aside, another of the talking points on the Speed Triple 1200 RR is its use of semi-active suspension technology, part of a high level of standard equipment.
The system chosen by Triumph was the Öhlins Smart EC 2.0 that electronically adjusts suspension settings on the 43mm NIX30 fork and TTX36 twin-tube rear monoshock, based on the riding mode selected. As the system is semi-active, it responds to road conditions and the rider’s riding style to make real-time adjustments to compression and rebound damping. It can be rider-adjusted on the fly, too.
Triumph says this system has been specifically tuned to suit the RR’s geometry, ensuring the optimum balance between performance, comfort and control.
Also standard are Pirelli Supercorsa SP V3 tyres, which are unique to the RR. Optional are track-only Diablo Supercorsa SCR V3 hoops.
The SP V3 rubber, along with the Öhlins suspension, are added to an RS-derived spec list that includes Brembo Stylema brakes with an adjustable MCS lever and linked braking, optimised cornering ABS, Triumph’s Shift Assist up-and-down quickshifter, advanced front wheel lift control, switchable traction control, fully adjustable cruise control, LED lighting all round, five riding modes, backlit switchgear, keyless locking/starting/fuel cap and a full-colour 5.0-inch TFT instrument screen with Android/IOS compatibility and MyTriumph connectivity.
The latter allows phone call and music control, turn by turn navigation and GoPro control, and even incorporates a lap timer.
The RR features five riding modes – Road, Rain, Sport, Rider-configurable and Track. The latter has minimal ABS and traction control intervention. The riding modes have multiple levels of intervention to choose from and can be selected and adjusted via the TFT instruments.
The engine for the Speed Triple 1200 RR is the same as that in the Speed Triple 1200 RS – a liquid-cooled 1200cc unit with dual overhead cams, four valves per cylinder and 13.2:1 compression.
Maximum outputs ae 132.4kW (177.6hp) at 10,750rpm and 125Nm (92 lb/ft) at 9000rpm – unchanged from the RS. The torque curve is described as being smooth and strong from low down in the rev range right through to peak revs.
This powerplant is matched to a six-speed transmission with the aforementioned up-and-down quickshifter, which was developed from Triumph’s Moto2 programme. Ratio progression has been optimised to match the power curve, aided by a slip/assist clutch.
If the predictions of Peter Stevens Imports are correct, the Triumph Speed Triple 1200 RR should be arriving in Australia before Christmas. This has yet to be confirmed and remains subject to several factors, not least of which is COVID interruptions to production and supply chain logistics.
When it does arrive, the 1200 RR will be available in two colour options – Red Hopper with Storm Grey and Crystal White with Storm Grey.
Pricing is yet to be confirmed, but predicted to be in the $30,000 range, plus on-roads, backed by a two-year, unlimited-kilometre warranty, with the option of warranty extension.
A range of accessories will be available from launch, including cosmetic parts and a range of functional features and fancier extras like sequential indicators. Further details on these will be announced closer to local release.