Triumph Thunderbird 1600

By chris abel -

First rides & tests

 17 July 2009 17:35

Rode the new Thunderbird last sunday on country roads, the M65 and through Blackburn

I thought the motor and gearbox were excellent but the bike was let down by a few annoying features.

Firstly I expected a big twin to sound like one but it appears you have to buy sports pipes from Triumph for this to happen.

Why cant it have them as standard and then if you want it to sound like a moped you can buy pipes to suit yourself.

I need glasses to read but not to ride in and I found the speedo digits to small to see.

It would have been better mounted in the usual place and would have avoided taking your eyes off the road.

There is a small amount of vibration through the bars and far to hard seat at about 2700rpm onwards which can probably be sorted with a gel-seat.

The front brakes were good but I found the back brake very poor.

The handling was acceptable for such a heavy bike, it wallowed a bit on the back end on bumpy bends but I maybe have been spoilt as my current bike is a 1050 speed triple.

I thought the large very wide tank spoiled the looks of the bike just like the rocket 3 tank does.

I went to Youles Triumph with the intention of buying one and had it sounded like a 1600 twin should,I might have ignored the rest and be waiting eagerly for delivery.

I am off work next week and will go back for another look, Royce the salesman said they are going to put sports pipes on the demo bike,I could be persuaded.