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Triumph THRUXTON Retro Motorbike Review

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MCN overall verdict rating is 3

The Triumph Thruxton is a great looking retro cafe racer, which just doesn't have the punchy power you'd expect of a big twin. It also sounds dull, boring almost. Compared to buying a well restored Triton 650 for the same money, the modern day Triumph Thruxton is a weak imitation of genuine cafe racer cool.

Engine

MCN rating rating is 3
Owners' rating rating is 4

The Triumph Thruxton has a healthy 69bhp, which is well up on the Scrambler/Speedmaster power output from the same mill, but the Triumph Thruxton doesn't have the punch that a big twin should have somehow. The bike sounds like it's being strangled by its quiet exhausts - a Triumph Thruxton should bark, and bite.

Ride and Handling

MCN rating rating is 3
Owners' rating rating is 3.5

For a moderately heavy bike, the Triumph Thruxton handles OK, but it doesn't convince the rider that this a genuinely sporty thing to ride, apart from the `full-on' racy riding position. Suspensiosn is too soft and adjustable for preload only. When pushed hard, the Triumph Thruxton goes all mushy.

Equipment

MCN rating rating is 2
Owners' rating rating is 3

It's got carbs - how authentically old school is that? OK, as you'd expect, the Triumph Thruxton is a bit lacking in creature comforts, but even a stripped down, 21st century cafe racer should have a bigger fuel tank and a second front disc brake.

Triumph Thruxton (2003-current)

Detail Value
New price £7,349
Dealer used prices
£4,870 (2008) - £7,100 (2014)
Private used prices
£4,340 (2008) - £6,390 (2014)
  View full used price info
Engine size 865 cc
Power 69 bhp
Top speed 115 mph
Insurance group 13 of 17
  MCN ratings Owners' ratings
Overall rating is 3 rating is 4
Engine rating is 3 rating is 4
Ride & Handling rating is 3 rating is 3.5
Equipment rating is 2 rating is 3
Quality & Reliability rating is 3 rating is 4
Value rating is 2 rating is 4

Quality and Reliability

MCN rating rating is 3
Owners' rating rating is 4

The finish is OK on the Triumph Thruxton, but this isn't a motorcycle which you would ride every day to work, all year round. There are too many little bits and pieces on the Triumph Thruxton which don't weather too well and even though it's a cheap bike, it could be better finished.

Value

MCN rating rating is 2
Owners' rating rating is 4

Buy a retro Ducati or Harley-Davidson and you'll always find a queue of buyers when you're ready to sell it. Buy a Triumph Thruxton and your options are more limited. Fact is, you have to be an absolute Triumph devotee to own this slow, underbraked and uncomfortable motorcycle. Find a Triumph Thruxton for sale

Insurance

Insurance group: 13 of 17

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Model History

2003: Triumph Thruxton 900 launched.

Other Versions

None.

Specifications

Top speed 115 mph
1/4-mile acceleration 13.2 secs
Max power 69 bhp
Max torque 53 ft-lb
Weight 205 kg
Seat height 790 mm
Fuel capacity 16.6 litres
Average fuel consumption 45 mpg
Tank range 150 miles
Annual road tax
Insurance group 13 of 17
Engine size 865 cc
Engine specification 8v, twin, 5 gears
Frame Steel cradle
Front suspension adjustment Preload
Rear suspension adjustment Preload
Front brakes 320mm disc
Rear brake 255mm disc
Front tyre size 100/90 x 18 in
Rear tyre size 130/80 x 17 in

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Owners' Overall Rating rating is 3.5(14 reviews)

  • Head turner

    setts

    Average rating rating is 4

    Show Details

    Overall
    Ride and Handling
    Equipment
    Quality and Reliabilty
    Value
    Engine

    I've had 15,000 fantastic, trouble free kilometres on my 2006 Thruxton. Certainly the standard power, handling, weight and braking does not compare to modern 900 cc Jap bikes. After all it is a 2 cylinder, carb fuelled air cooled bike with twin rear shock suspension. The fundamental faults, sans the weight are relatively easy to fix. And then you have a fantastic personal motorcycle that really turns heads. Go on be different...

    20 August 2007

  • classic cool

    hardtop

    northampton , UK

    Average rating rating is 3.5

    Show Details

    Overall
    Ride and Handling
    Equipment
    Quality and Reliabilty
    Value
    Engine

    This is a really cool bike honest.the look is just right (in black of course)loud pipes are a must for it to feel old skool. the noise is just perfect!! it makes the hairs on the back of my neck stand up each and everytime i start it up. Power is smooth and progressive but not stunning (last bike was a blade)95mph and its running out of puff but it gets there in such a fun way you wont mind. B roads are the best place for it really but motorways are ok just as long as you dont mind people gawping as you thunder past. The brakes are naff no feel or power this for me is the weakest part of the thruxton and its shame.Most bikers dont realise its a quickish bike in fare hands so some will laugh it off until you are right up there chuff when they mysteriously move over to let you past (funny that !!)its not everybodys cup of tea but its mine

    08 May 2007

  • great all rounder

    Anonymous

    Average rating rating is 3.5

    Show Details

    Overall
    Ride and Handling
    Equipment
    Quality and Reliabilty
    Value
    Engine

    3 years and 10,000 miles later I cannot think of another bike that works as well for me. I wanted a b road bike and my licence needed me to slow down. I needed a machine that would be fun at real world speeds and that I could wring out flat out through the gears without risking a jail term. In other words I wanted a bike that makes 100 mph feel fast and not just somewhere you flash through between 2nd and 3rd gear. The Thruxton is that bike. In performance terms it's equivalent to a jap 400. In handling it's distinctly eighties and probably a match for an LC down a b road, but anything more modern would leave it for dead. So it defies comparison with anything made in the last decade. But with the almost obligatory noisy exhausts it sounds wonderful and delivers a wonderfully retro riding experience. So the good points? Reliable, despite my flat out riding style: nothing went wrong in 10,000 miles. It makes sensible speeds feel exciting, looks great and sounds excellent at full throttle. The Thruxton is also cheap to run and insure and (given that I had a Hayabusa before) the tyre life amazed me. It also depreciates incredibly slowly and is comfortable over a distance. The bad points? The styling may be pure 60's but the handling is stuck in the 80's. The suspension goes off within a few thousand miles if you hack around bumpy b roads. There are a couple of niggles. Where do Triumph designers live that they don't consider a lockable fuel cap a necessity? ..and if they are not saving weight perhaps they could fit a main stand. Otherwise a great ownership proposition as long as you prefer to ride without a pillion and don't mind dumping the race leathers for black ones and looking as retro as your bike.

    26 March 2007

  • Looks good, Build not so good

    garfieldpez

    Average rating rating is 3.5

    Show Details

    Overall
    Ride and Handling
    Equipment
    Quality and Reliabilty
    Value
    Engine

    Lets face it, if your looking at one of these your NOT buying it for 1)Comfort 2)Top speed! This bike is one of the best looking bikes i have ever owned, everyone comes to talk to you about it because it looks like an authentic 60s cafe racer! The ride is a litte uncomfortable at low speeds but once the pace heats up its pretty good. Riding the bike is a dream it corners solid as a rock (think ZX7r or any older Kwaks) not the quickest but predictable and goes where you want it to. The engine is lovely straight from tick over to the red line is one linear power curve, no matter what gear and what speed just open the throttle. Build quality is not the strongest point of the Thruxton, both speedo and rev counter started leeking and both engine cases started to look very poor after 90 miles of poor weather use, but at least triumph were quick to sort my bikes problems under warranty. Overall its a great bike as long as your not looking for a zx10r or Busa or R6 or anything like that its the engine character and looks that sold this bike to me and will to plenty of others too!

    12 March 2007

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pete7k

pete7ksays

2008 Thruxton - my new bike

I am often a little disappointed by reading journalist's reviews of bikes in general, and non sports bikes in particular. I own a Yamaha TDM900 (my 4th) and have rarely seen more than grudging acknowledgements of 'practicality' and little else applied to this splendid bike. Now getting better that MCN has on on the test fleet. (Thank you MCN) Since retiring at 60, I had been looking for a Thruxton for some time having decided reliving my old Triumph days pof the 60's by buying an actual early 60s Bonneville is too expensive and they never stopped properly, or were as reliable as I wanted. I finally found a genuine 2008 Thruxton which had the standard Bonneville bars and nice pipes I wanted fitted by the dealer before delivery. It also had only 312 (yes 312!) miles on the clock and a good price sealed the deal. I bought it. I have put about 250 miles on in the last couple of days and the bike is an absolute joy. Comfortable, compact, low (compared to TDM), good fun in the twisties (Cat and Fiddle today) and sounds exactly as a Brit parallel twin should. It also for some reason attract masses of attention from bikers and non bikers alike. To me, a 63 year old who started riding in 1965, it is the perfect machine to relive old days. I am keeping the TDM, whioh has full luggage, GPS etc, for serious touring and 2-up work. I now have a modern bike and a 'classic' for vastly less than the price of a real classic (good T120s are fetching over £10,000!!) Well done Triumph! My Thruxton is a British bike that is part of a comprehensive modern range that responded to a diverse market in a way that the old Triumph ( in the later years) failed to do. Pete

08 July 2012 21:18

NewAeon

NewAeonsays

Rating Vs. Bonnie

I'm interested in why this got a 3 star rating when the Bonneville and Scrambler got 4.

Bonneville gets 4 stars for value because it's "a cheap motorcycle to run and cheap to buy and Triumph Bonnevilles doesn’t lose much money past the original hit when bought new" but the Thruxton gets 2 because you probably won't be able to sell it because it's so uncomfortable..?

The Thruxton has the same brakes, except a 10mm larger front disc, and the same fuel tank as the Bonneville, but it gets 2 stars for value, compared to the Bonnie's 4, because, among other things, it should have better brakes and a larger tank.

Seriously? So is it not better to just buy a Bonneville and but clip-ons and a rear seat cowl on it, or is this just a complete BS review?

 

 

06 June 2012 20:20

ChrissyboyHurley

User's Badge

ChrissyboyHurleysays

2010 Thruxton

Just completed the first 100 miles on the clock and it's a dream. Lots of comments about it being underpowered! It may be as I've come from a Speedmaster but it seems fantastic to me all through the revs though I'm still keeping it on a tight leash- more than enough for UK roads. The new bars are comfortable enough but the best thing is it just turns heads, young or old everyone has something to say. I'm chuffed with mine.

10 May 2010 15:16

chopper07

chopper07says

Unique

I keep looking at this one and it keeps calling my name.  There are no true standards anymore.  Most crusiers style worship at the alter of Harley and Davidson.  It seems that Dirt Bikes and Sports Bikes are trying to mate and form some weird uncomfortable hybrid that will be forgotten in the sands of time.  The Bonneville was never forgotten.  The Thruxton seems to be the ultimate Bonny (sort of a off the shelf / out of the box customized  Bonneville).  Cafe Racer looks and real world riding position and performance.  Yeah, take your Japanese / Italian Plastic Rocketship to 160.  You'll either be pushing up daisys or signing lots of endorsements (traffic tickets here in America). 

03 November 2008 08:45

mjj338

mjj338says

Thruxton

I joined MCN today and I agree with tou, a Triton is the max to put in your livingroom, but a Thruxton is to ride , without oil leaks, and shure you arrive where you want at the time you want. the Triton is a dreammachine, the Hinckley Modern Classics are made for the road.

25 October 2008 22:13

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