Triumph Bonneville Bobber
Ten things you may, or may not have known, about this minimalist new stripped down Bonne
Pre-orders for the new Bobber have by far out-stripped early demand for the massively successful Thruxton R. Triumph have had to dramatically up their production schedule ahead of release to try and satisfy demand.
Despite the old-time looks, an extensive electronics suite including switchable traction control, modern ABS and different riding modes, mapped to the fly-by-wire throttle, are all standard on the Triumph Bobber.
Below the mid-mount ignition is what looks like an oil-tank, but is, in fact, a cover that hides the rear brake master cylinder reservoir, the recovery tank for the radiator and a few other bits and pieces.
You might think that its more stripped back ‘poseur’ style might suggest Triumph have detuned the 1200cc, 270-degree, eight-valve, parallel-twin back a little from the T120 but, in reality, the Bobber pumps out more power and torque than the highly successful T120, and reaches those peaks earlier in the rev range than the T120. Different cam timing and ECU tuning contribute to the differences and the new twin air-box layout that feeds the 42mm throttle bodies. 106Nm of torque peaks at 4000rpm, while the peak power of 76hp reaches its crescendo at 6100rpm.
Large diameter dual stainless steel, twin skin, slash-cut mufflers emit quite a charismatic bark, louder than you might think. The headers look great and the balance pipe cleverly hides a catalytic converter. This is one of the master strokes of the whole design, especially considering the massive fails the Japanese manufacturers repeatedly make in this area.
The fairly minimalist seat is adjustable both fore and aft through a plane of 35mm via a slotted seat mount, which doesn’t sound much, but makes a stark difference that helps shorter, or taller riders get more comfortable. Seat height on standard settings is a very low 690mm. The instruments are also adjustable for angle, which helps cater for riders of different heights, or for riders who change their bars to lower clip-ons, or tall ape-hangers. Both brake and clutch levers are adjustable for reach, something quite rare in this segment of the market.
Yes you can get luggage for the Bobber! Swing-arm mounted bags and panniers are on the way, in either olive or black, and in either waxed cotton or leather. The 9.1-litre fuel tank will somewhat restrict your touring range but with some right wrist restraint around 160km should be easily achievable. Cruise control is optional for those that do have some highway aspiration for their Bobber.
Avon make the rubber for the Bobber, the Cobra rear hoop measuring 150/80-R16. While the tyre is embossed tubeless, the spoked 3.5” rear rim is not designed for running tubeless, thus, like most of the modern Bonneville range, the Bobber runs tubes at both ends. Why? I can only imagine the reason would be cost reduction, as making quality spoked rims tubeless is not an easy and cheap process. The front hoop, like the rear, is the first Avon Cobra style tread pattern to be delivered in a radial carcass, measures 100/90-19.
16,000km service intervals are aimed at lower long term ownership costs, with valve adjustments every 32,000km but even that is an easy process due to easy access to the shims under the roller rockers. RRP is $18,000 + ORC, which equates to about 19k ride-away in Victoria. There is a $250 premium for the flasher paint schemes, Morello Red, Competition Green with Frozen Silver, Jet Black (Gloss), and a matt finish dubbed ‘Ironstone’. The Bobber in Ironstone is pictured below:
Competition? Harley’s 48, Roadster and Street Bob along with models like the Indian Scout are in the sights of the new Triumph. On paper, at least, it’s fair to say the Triumph trumps them on all counts, now let’s find out if that translates to the road….