TRIUMPH THRUXTON 1200 R (2016 - on) Review
- Handling and braking exceptional
- Beautiful attention to detail
- Long service intervals
At a glance
|Owners' reliability rating:|
|Annual servicing cost:||£210|
Overall ratingNext up: Ride & brakes
The styling and attention to detail lavished on the Triumph Thruxton R is second to none.
- Related: 2020 Triumph Thruxton RS review on MCN
- Related: Triumph Thruxton TFC revealed
- Related: Triumph Thruxton R vs Norton Dominator SS
The parallel twin engine is slightly lacking in character but nothing that a set of loud pipes wouldn’t rectify and many owners favour refinement over character anyway. The R’s handling is right out of the top draw thanks to excellent brakes, suspension and chassis balance. The electronics marry the whole package together.
In October 2019 Triumph announced a £1000 "personalisation contribution" towards optional extras to make your bike your own. And in February 2019 the firm announced a Triumph Thruxton 1200 R Black to accompany the standard model.
If you're interested in its heritage, you can find out what happened when MCN put the current Triumph Thruxton R up against the original model.
You're able to download your own copy of the owners' manual for the Thruxton R here. There's a lively community for this bike on the Thruxton R owners' page on Facebook, or alternatively there's the Triumph Forum.
Ride quality & brakesNext up: Engine
The Thruxton models have the same geometry and wheelbase as the Speed Triple, which shows you how dedicated Triumph has been to ensuring they handle properly. These are no style queens, it’s all go as well as show. The R version adds Ohlins shocks and Showa BPF to the party with Brembo brakes for even more sporting prowess. The clip-ons are a little uncomfortable over distance and the seat is firm but acceptable for a cafe racer.
EngineNext up: Reliability
Triumph’s 1200cc parallel twin is a very quick engine and spins up rapidly thanks to a lightened crank when compared to the T120 models, but it is refined and calmed down thanks to a good electronics package. This is no brute, it’s an elegant motor with bags of refinement rather than pure brute force.
Reliability & build qualityNext up: Value
Triumph has lavished huge amounts of time and effort on the Thruxton and the level of detail and finish is excellent, especially the little touches such as the seat’s inbuilt stand that stops you scratching the paint when it is removed. The motor’s service intervals have been extended to 10,000 miles, which is also good news.
During 2016 MCN ran a Triumph Thruxton R on the long-term test fleet, and found it a comfortable, reliable companion.
Value vs rivalsNext up: Equipment
The standard Thruxton is good value, but the Thruxton R is incredible value for money when you look at its spec list. Its main rival is the BMW R nineT Racer, but also goes up against the Ducati Scrambler Cafe Racer and at the budget end of the spectrum, the Suzuki SV650X.
The R is the higher specification bike but both models get traction control, three power modes and ABS as standard. The dash includes a gear indicator and fuel range as well as the usual information. A pillion seat and pillion peg hangers are an optional extra.
|Engine type||Four-stroke, liquid-cooled, parallel-twin|
|Frame type||Tubular steel|
|Fuel capacity||14.5 litres|
|Front suspension||41mm conventional, non-adjutsable fork (Showa BPF on the R, fully-adjutable)|
|Rear suspension||Twin shocks, adjustable spring preload (Ohlins on the R, fully-adjutable)|
|Front brake||2x310mm two-piston calipers (four piston Brembo monobloc on the R), ABS|
|Rear brake||220mm disc, two piston. ABS|
|Front tyre size||120/70 R17|
|Rear tyre size||160/60 R17|
Mpg, costs & insurance
|Average fuel consumption||50 mpg|
|Annual road tax||£93|
|Annual service cost||£210|
|Used price||£6,800 - £9,500|
How much to insure?
|Warranty term||2 years unlimited mileage|
Top speed & performance
|Max power||96 bhp|
|Max torque||82.6 ft-lb|
|Top speed||135 mph|
|1/4 mile acceleration||-|
|Tank range||150 miles|
Model history & versions
Owners' reviews for the TRIUMPH THRUXTON 1200 (2016 - on)
10 owners have reviewed their TRIUMPH THRUXTON 1200 (2016 - on) and rated it in a number of areas. Read what they have to say and what they like and dislike about the bike below.
Summary of owners' reviews
|Ride quality & brakes:|
|Reliability & build quality:|
|Value vs rivals:|
|Annual servicing cost:||£210|
Annual servicing cost: £250
Great: smooth engine with a lot of torque, good sound, great looks, reliable, low costs Not so great: lacking feel front-brake, over-damped front fork, uncomfortable seat during long rides
the bike is at it's best on twisty roads riding 50-80 mph, not comfortable at bumpy roads due to overdamped suspension (1200R), I need a break every hour
great engine with lot's of smooth torque the whole range, 97 bhp more than sufficient, 3 riding modes useful, a little nervous on the throttle on bumpy roads
well built, light corrosion after 28k miles, foggy dashboard replaced under garantee
moderate servicing costs
Buying experience: I bought my bike second hand from a dealer, who sold the test bike for the motorcycle magazines for the Dutch Triumph importer,
Great retro looking bike that’s always gets attention and will keep up with your mates with sportsbikes!
Brakes ace, suspension is hard on some broken British back roads.
Full of torque but on/off throttle is poor until you get used to it. And there is lots of vibes felt at the bars.
Reliability been fine but bare alloy finishes leave a lot to be desired.
More than enough for style of bike.
Annual servicing cost: £100
Outstanding machine, ridiculously beautiful, wicked fast and handles like a Daytona.
If it weren't for the front brake issues, I would rate it a 5. Not all of them have it, but it is annoying and potentially dangerous for an inexperienced rider. The brakes bite HARD and have not experienced any fade. One tank of fuel, (about 150 miles) and I need a break. The bike rides firmly, even with the suspension dialed down, and the riding position, while I prefer it over upright riding, is not for everyone.
Glorious. Smooth, tractable, and torque, torque, torque! The 270 degree crank makes the thing sound a bit un-Triumph like, but it is a highly refined unit. Downshifts are rarely needed. Just roll and go.
Broken shift rod and still dealing with oddly spongy front brake. No complaints otherwise. Build quality is chart topping.
I do my own work, had the dealer reset the service wrench for me. Changed oil at 500 and again at 3000. Have only had to tension the chain once. All torques in spec.
The polished upper triple is beautiful, if a bit of a pain to keep looking good. The clocks are great, and the displays for other things like clock, rider mode etc are easy to use and useful. The Rosso Corsa Diablo tyres are not long for this world but are perfectly suited. I have a set of Dunlops on it now, and they are every bit as good (I am not an an aggressive rider). Seems like they may go more than the Corsa's 4500 mile stint, cut short by a flat. I have added a phone holder, heated grips, case guards, sport pillion pegs and Triumph nylon panniers. I have also purchased the two-up comfort saddle (it's great) and the low-rider saddle, which seems no lower to me than standard, but has a nice cross embroidery. The throttle spacers for Ducati are also highly recommended.
Buying experience: Best dealer experience ever. I made a fair offer and it was accepted with little haggling. They delivered the bike with just 1 mile showing.
Annual servicing cost: £300
A cracking update to the previous air cooled model.
The suspension on the non-R model like mine is basic but performs well on the road. It seems to strike a good balance between firm and absorbent.
Grunty and it sounds lovely with the standard exhaust system fitted. I've left it well alone and I reckon it's the bike's best aspect.
The servicing figure is New Zealand Dollars.
Modern electronics that are easy to understand and use. There's no more to say really.
Annual servicing cost: £171
I had a new 2004 "Series 1" Thruxton when they came out and over 4 years spent far to much on it, trying to make it the bike I wanted, but never got there. My 2016 model Thruxton R is the bike I was trying to make, and a whole lot more. Triumph has captured the look, the feel and the soul of a 1960s Cafe racer, yet delivered it in a bike that handles as well as a Street Triple and with a glorious paralel twin. What is not to like?
The ride quality is, when compared to the stock 2004 model, as different as night and day. Other than my Tiger XC I've never ridden such a comfortable bike.
Ride by wire throttle controls can be less than smooth, especially at small throttle openings. This one is good: not perfect, but good. I have V&H US Specification cans. they sound glorious with the db killers in, with them out a bit on the noisy side.
The black plastic ring round the Ohlins body has, at 3200 miles, become scored and looks unsightly. Triumph replaced the rear shocks, without argument, supplying new 2017 model version that doesn't have this plastic collar.
Heated Grips: work, and elegantly integrated into the controls. Fly-screen: reduces wind load well between 50 and 80 mph. Essential.
Buying experience: Bought as a 12 month old used bike from the dealer.
Amazing, brakes, suspension and engine. Surges forward from 3000rpm.
Changed the suspension to the comfort settings which improved ride and handling on typical winding roads. Brakes are excellent and very reassuring.
Love the instant surge of the low revving high torque engine. Plenty of power for wheelies and flying out of corners.
Excellent materials and beautiful touches. So far survived the February salt and responds well to cleaning.
Still under warranty.
Heated grips are excellent. The dual comfort seat could be more comfortable for a passenger.
Version: Thrust on R
The engine is strong and refined, making it easy to access the power on tap. It also sounds great, particularly during acceleration and overrun; a very evocative sounding British twin. The handling is sharp and stable at all speeds. Pirelli corsa tyres add good adhesion to the road surface. Most of all, it's just about the best looking bike on the road.
Great handling and brakes, drops into corners with ease and the Pirelli tyres do the rest. The motor needs about 3000 revs to start pulling strongly but at that point it really comes on tap. This feels perfectly matched to the handling of the bike, which when combined with those powerful Brembos, just inspires confidence in myself to use the full potential of the bike. That confidence has led to me beginning to explore the out reaches of tread on the sidewall of those super sticky corsa tyres.
Very smooth and enough power to win the traffic light drag race. The motor sounds great, just like an old fashioned British twin, with plenty of crackle and pop on overrun. The standard pipes are fine but would potentially sound even better with updated cans. I'm looking forward to riding the bike after it's first service when I can push the motor into the upper reaches of it's rev range. Early performance from the motor, up to about 4000rpm suggests to me that it has a lot more to offer; can't wait.
Only had the bike for two weeks, so early days yet.
No servicing costs or repair costs yet, only two weeks old. I'm getting well above 50mpg and with service intervals at 10,000 miles the bike will be cheap to run. Insurance was also good value at £224 for fully comp.
The switches are all in the right place and easy to use. Having three engine modes helps on occasion. Self cancelling indicators would be useful; being old I keep forgetting to cancel them. I added a small fly-screen to the front, a dual comfort seat, for my old butt, and of course rear pegs to go with the dual seat. (The dual seat looks good - honest). the "Info" button is easy to use and toggles through all the information about the bike that you'll ever need to know. I just keep an eye on the speedo to be honest. The clutch lever and brake lever have good adjustment, for different sized mitts. The Olins & Showas offer infinite adjustment to the suspension, combined with Brembos for only and extra £1300 over the standard Thruxton; great value!
Buying experience: I bought Mike bike from Drew at Bevans Motorcycles,Triumph dealership, in Cardiff. A great bike shop with really decent and helpful staff. My sincere thanks to Drew.
Version: Thruxton R
Combination of handling, brakes and modern elactonics serving a wonderful engine. I'd recommend a test ride, as my requirements will be different from anyone else.
I could ride this bike as a commuter, or for a sunny Sunday run. At a stretch you could tour no problem. Limiting factor is the low fuel light at around 120 miles.
Lovely engine, smooth with a nice burble on the standard exhausts. Even pops a little on the over run! Lovely.
The bike is only 2 weeks old, with 250 miles so far too early to tell. However the components look top spec, and well finished.
Good on fuel, shows 57 mpg during running in!
My bike is standard at the moment. The best texture is the ability to change mode on the fly.
Buying experience: Having placed a holding deposit in November 15, I was lucky to be one of the first to receive my bike in mid May 16. The dealer was helpful, and the whole process easy and quick (PCP)
This is the best cafe racer on the market. Handling is agile, braking is excellent, and power output is strong. Seating and ergonomics are just about right for 5'9" - 5'11" rider. The bike may be the best looking on the market.
Dual Brembos up front are spectacular. The bike does not come with a pillion seat. It is an option which I will not buy. I usually commute to work about an hour each way. I have never felt uncomfortable. The riding position is aggressive but not torture.
This engine pulls hard. It may not have the highest HP in its class, but it has tons of usable torque, which makes power usable in daily riding situations. Traction control, ABS, and three rider modes also make for exhilarating rides.
The quality and build is excellent. Well approaching other european bike manufacturers. The only issue I found was a tendency for the bike to stall during the break-in period.
The 500 mile service is free. The next scheduled maintenance is a at 10,000 miles which is about 3 years for my riding.
Awesomely smooth. Tons or torque. The bike pulls. It will wheelie. I am thinking about the Vance & Hines slip ons since the stock pipes are a little on the quiet side for my tastes. The grips are a little small for my hands but this is easily upgradable. The only thing I don't like about it is the seat. There is a stitching across the back of the saddle which makes it uncomfortable to slide back into a full tuck.
Buying experience: Purchased the bike from Triumph of Philadelphia. They are a knowledgeable Triumph dealership. The bike came in at the end of April about two months later than originally scheduled. There was a huge demand for these.