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Triumph SPEED TRIPLE 1050 R Naked Motorbike Review

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MCN overall verdict rating is 5

Based on the Speed Triple launched at the beginning of 2011, this high-spec R version has Ohlins suspension, lightweight wheels, Brembo monobloc brakes, cosmetic changes, a brand new gearbox and a 2kg reduction in weight. It’s added a dynamic new dimension to the hugely popular Speed Triple, turning Triumph’s feisty street-fighter into to a hugely competent trackday tool.


MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 0

The Speed Triple R has the same 133bhp, 1050cc, inline-three cylinder engine as the standard model, but uses a new-design gearbox, which will feature on the next generation of Triumph’s 1050cc triple engines. 10 of the 12 gears have been redesigned with new shafts, selector drums and selector shafts. There are now five, instead of four dogs on each new gear and the new shape and material offer a claimed increase in strength over the old design. Shaft spines are new and are formed instead of cut, reducing friction. The 6th gear ratio is now 3.4% lower.
The motor has loads of grunt, the power delivery is linear and easy to use and there’s enough oomph to easily see the naughty side of 150mph. On-track, the fuelling mid-corner at low speeds is a little snatchy.

Ride and Handling

MCN rating rating is 5
Owners' rating rating is 0

The Speed Triple R has new Ohlins NIX fully-adjustable forks and a TTX rear shock, which gives excellent ride quality and loads of feedback and confidence in the corners. Small changes to the damping settings make a noticeable difference to the ride and handling, which you don’t get on cheaper equipment. New forged aluminium wheels are 20% lighter than cast items, reduce inertia and help the Triumph turn and stop better. New Brembo radial monobloc calipers are race-grade and offer a 5% improvement in braking, according to Triumph.


MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 0

You don’t get any form electronic of rider aids, but the power delivery and chassis is so good, you don’t need them. Triumph offers a switchable ABS version for an extra £600. This R model also has a one-piece handlebar riser cap, carbon fibre radiator cowls and tank cover infil and mudguard pods, made by same company who produce carbon fibre parts for the Audi R8 and Lamborghini Gallardo Superleggera. It also has a red painted subframe and accents on the wheels, brake calipers and side panels and black-painted handlebars with an ‘R’ graphic.

Triumph Speed Triple R (2012-current)

Detail Value
New price £10,999
Dealer used prices
£8,860 (2012) - £9,790 (2013)
Private used prices
£8,010 (2013) - £9,070 (2012)
  View full used price info
Engine size 1050 cc
Power 133 bhp
Top speed 155 mph
Insurance group 14 of 17
  MCN ratings Owners' ratings
Overall rating is 5 rating is 0
Engine rating is 4 rating is 0
Ride & Handling rating is 5 rating is 0
Equipment rating is 4 rating is 0
Quality & Reliability rating is 5 rating is 0
Value rating is 4 rating is 0

Quality and Reliability

MCN rating rating is 5
Owners' rating rating is 0

The quality of the new chassis parts is unquestionable and according to reader-feedback in’s Bike Review section on the standard Speed Triple of this generation, there are no reported reliability or build quality problems.


MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 0

If you want a bike that can genuinely put a smile on your face, road and track, it’s worth the extra cash over the standard model. With its designer labels, it’s now as sexy as any piece of Italian exotica and all the ‘R’ parts alone would tot-up to nearly double the £2500 premium, if you bought them separately – that’s before fitting and figuring out how to set-up the suspension.

It’s cheaper than the Ducati Streetfighter, MV Agusta Brutale 1090RR and the Aprilia Tuono V4R APRC with all the electronics, but more than the Super Duke R and the non-APRC Tuono.

But, if you’re only going to ride the Speed Triple on the road, it’s probably not worth it, like, if we’re honest with ourselves, most special-edition R and SP model super nakeds and superbikes from any manufacturer. The Triumph looks the part, handles and stops brilliantly and has better ride quality, but you only really get these benefits flat-out on-track. The rest of the time, the standard version is more than good enough.


Insurance group: 14 of 17

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Model History

2012 – model introduced

Other Versions

Standard version


Top speed 155 mph
1/4-mile acceleration secs
Max power 133 bhp
Max torque 82 ft-lb
Weight 221 kg
Seat height 825 mm
Fuel capacity 17.5 litres
Average fuel consumption 41 mpg
Tank range 159 miles
Annual road tax
Insurance group 14 of 17
Engine size 1050 cc
Engine specification 12v, inline-three-cylinder
Frame Twin spar tubular aluminium frame and single-sided
Front suspension adjustment Fully-adjustable Ohlins 43mm upside down forks
Rear suspension adjustment Single Ohlins shock, fully-adjustable
Front brakes 2 x 320mm discs with four-piston Brembo radial calipers
Rear brake 255mm single disc with twin-piston Nissin caliper
Front tyre size 120/70 x 17
Rear tyre size 190/55 x 17

Owners' Overall Rating rating is 0(0 reviews)

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