New Motorcycle Review – 2012 Triumph Tiger 800 / 800XC — Motorcycle Magazine

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Triumph Tiger 800

New Motorcycle Review – 2012 Tiger 800 / 800XC

Tiger – Triple The Fun

Let me take this to sincerely thank my editor, in for respecting my deep admiration for the Triple motor. When a invitation came for a two-day, test of the new 800 and 800XC in Southern he offered the trip to me.

True, the mentioned something about a sleeping bag, and quarters for a but I know Steve was just about giving you, reader, the best possible, thorough test of this machine by sending yours I’d tested the Tiger 1050 a of years ago, and liked it so that I completed an Iron challenge on it and shed tears I had to hand in the keys. So I was pretty about trying out its smaller, sibling.

Prior to the press Steve brought back a Venom Yellow Tiger 800 Daytona Bike Week for a test. While he rode it for a quick evaluation (June), I’d dibs on using the bike as my commuter for several months the California press ride, me time to learn the nuances of the that only someone who with it would discover. a bike is one thing; taking of routine maintenance, gassing up a few times, washing nooks and and caring for it usually uncovers information about the motorcycle otherwise would go unnoticed.

The 800 (predecessor to Triumph’s new 1215cc Explorer) is an obvious competitor to GS line. And while the 800 aims at the who likes a sporty ride a fair ability to venture off the path, the 800XC model is with the occasional off-roader in

Both have wide and foot pegs that the rider’s feet directly to offer a sit-up position comfortable for all-day riding and allows for easy standing and Peg rubbers can be pulled off and stowed the seat to expose grippy for standing footholds. But the main between the two are suspension travel, height, wheelbase, and the wheels

The standard 800 gets street-oriented Scorpion Trail tires on cast aluminum, 10-spoke 19″ in front and 17″ out back. The XC I tested with Bridgestone Battle rubber on a big 21″ front 36-spoke wheel and a 17″ 32-spoke out back. The XC 40mm more suspension in front and 45mm more in

Wider bars and taller height, along with a longer wheelbase that the XC less rake and more completes a package that a great standard into an capable bike.

The new Tiger’s liquid-cooled, 12-valve, in line engine is cradled by an all-new steel trellis frame a twin-sided cast aluminum Styled to appeal to the minimalist who a utilitarian, versatile adventure painted bodywork is limited to the and front fender. The torquey falls right in line all the other Triumph Triples ridden, offering strong, immediate power.

It’s responsive to the slightest of the throttle, making mid-corner tricky. Even a minor results in a fair amount of end dive, upsetting the suspension. I had to zone in on using silky-smooth movements to maintain a nice But who’s complaining about too much power?

Climbing the six-speed gearbox is easily and accomplished, and maxing out the Tiger’s 94 at 9300 rpm is just plain old Ripping down the road hot, you may expect the exhaust to be screaming, but this cat is quiet than a tinny, hollow stemming from detonation in the I normally don’t care how my sounds, but this particular annoyed me.

Triumph offers an exhaust slip-on for $800 reduces weight and is said to an additional 4 to 5 hp, but also alleviates the detonation sound without much volume to the exhaust itself. (I also rode the prior to Triumph’s recall on the engine management software, created some engine glitches at low speeds. I wasn’t the one who recognized the potential for danger our Tiger stalled during after stopping at intersections. after the ECU download, the engine ran smoother, and I didn’t experience any stalling. Thank goodness for

Braking on the Tiger 800 is superb, twin discs up front and rear disc clamped by piston floating calipers on ABS is an $800 option and can be switched but it’s not easy and can’t be on the fly like on some of the Tiger’s

Tiger Tweaking

I spent time with the XC on Southern twisties and fire roads, and for a bit more front end dive, in corners, I actually preferred the tall riding position to the which could be considered a cramped for taller riders. But versions offer seat adjustment, with two height-adjustment located under the rider’s The bars can be raised or lowered with no tools.

One bar adjusts the seat height, while the adjusts the rear of the seat. The comes off easily by turning the key in the tail section. This the passenger pillion off, a small tool kit and some for gloves or paperwork.

Push the seat toward the tank, and removed to reveal the battery and compartment. The owner’s manual tucked away in its own spot the seat pan itself.

Another feature to help customize the ergonomic preference is the Tiger’s which can be turned 180 degrees, the bars 18mm farther and 8.5mm higher. The brake is also reach-adjustable, but the clutch is not.

A BMW-style powerport on the steering stem, next to the switch. With the Tiger’s 645 generator, this comes in handy for powering things small compressors, heated and handlebar-mounted accessories.

With readers in mind, I spent of my saddle time at the press riding an 800 mounted with forms of luggage. Billed as a you can ride anywhere, Triumph is to take you on an adventure with of luggage options. The company’s panniers ($800) add significant to the Tiger’s form; they are to sway with the bike’s — like the Sprint GT’s — in to stabilize the load for best

These bags took a beating from some who ate dirt while riding too on  soft, off-road trails. I saw sets of bags flung of their mounts, plastic flying, making remounting the impossible without bungees and tape. This could be a problem if you’re out in the middle of alone. There’s a large, top box ($550 with mount that doesn’t increase the width.

Triumph Tiger 800

Other Triumph bag include a large, duffel-style tailpack ($220) with inner-reinforced material that’s specifically for the 800, logos But mounting your own bag is easy: bungee hooks to any number of on the large luggage rack the passenger seat and oversized rails. There are also cool, Tiger-specific tankbags that allow easy to the fuel filler area.

In there are almost 50 Triumph accessories available for the Tiger and they’re all covered by a two-year

As mentioned, the press group a lot of time traversing Southern dirt, which is certainly not my of ground cover. While of the guys rode ahead, their fortitude for this I stayed toward the back, the throttle and brakes slowly and Not feeling comfortable with the searching for traction and finding when there was an opportunity to get on pavement, I took it, and I wasn’t the one.

The real fun for me began when we to some wonderful roads fast twisties and drastic in elevation. I’d already known the Tiger’s road handling was so I pressed hard and the few of us who chose over sand were flying. The bike’s frame and stayed firm and planted, and of ground clearance meant we could go as fast as we really to, even in the really tight

The one drawback to the stock Tiger is that its small windscreen offer much help at The wind buffeting it creates the thought of a long, big-mile ride unbearable. Taller are available.

Living with the I realized that the utilitarian suits me just fine. it is a bit of a pain because there much bodywork to cover all the nuts and bolts. Fingers get sore trying to clean all the areas on the engine and under the Conversely, getting right to the in order to make repairs is because there’s no bodywork to first. Oil changes are particularly even without a centerstand.

The sits up pretty tall, and the plastic chin fairing has that allow the oil to drain without removing it. Chain are equally as simple. You only an axle wrench on one side of the to loosen the rear wheel to the adjustment. Some bikes a wrench on both sides, makes for an awkward fight to those nuts.

I found fuel fillings to be a annoyance. Two small, welded bars inside the tank you from damaging the plastic pump with the gas nozzle. of this setup, you have to get the right angle on the nozzle to splatter.

And the filler cap that backward makes it tough to see you’re doing if you like up from the driver’s seat I do.

Triumph scored high with me once again, the 800 triple proving to be an all-around fun Whether you are into more expeditions, or just tossing it your local backroads, the will get you there with a plastered all over your   RB

By Tricia Szulewski, Photos by Nelson and Tricia Szulewski

published in RoadBike March/April

Triumph Tiger 800
Triumph Tiger 800
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