TRIUMPH TIGER 800 XR (2018 - on) Review

At a glance

Owners' reliability rating: 4.6 out of 5 (4.6/5)
Annual servicing cost: £260
Power: 94 bhp
Seat height: Medium (31.9 in / 810 mm)
Weight: Medium (459 lbs / 208 kg)

Prices

New £12,050
Used £7,000 - £10,000

Overall rating

Next up: Ride & brakes
4 out of 5 (4/5)

With the Triumph Tiger 800 XR the Hinckley company haven’t broken the mould; this isn’t a huge step forward for the already excellent Tiger 800.

It’s smooth and more accessible, mainly due to new technology and riding aids. It’s comfier than before thanks to a new seat, a larger manually adjustable screen, heated grips and bars, even cruise control. The new TFT dash, back-lit switch gear and new graphics give it high level of spec for a middle-weight adventure bike. The Tiger is so impressive it makes you wonder why you would want anything larger, especially when you consider that it’s taking on pricier big capacity adventure bikes head-on at a tempting £12,050.

Watch our Triumph Tiger 800 XR video review

In 2017 David and Felipe Lopez spent six months turning a standard Triumph Tiger 800XC into the Triumph Tiger Tramonatana to compete in the Panafrica Rally.

Ride quality & brakes

Next up: Engine
4 out of 5 (4/5)

New Brembo stoppers were strong enough and up for the job. The ABS is conventional and not lean sensitive but under heavy braking the 43mm new Showa forks offer excellent support, and don’t plummet into the road like some adventure bikes do.

The handling is impressive, too, for this type of bike though at a quoted 208kg dry with an estimated wet weight of around 230kg the Tiger is certainly a middle-weight and not a light-weight. The three-cylinder engine is the primary source of the kilos and is carried slightly high in the chassis and, while you’d never describe the Tiger as agile, but it’s responsive yet stable.

Despite the road biased Metzeler Tourance tyres we even attempted some mild off-road on the XRT without drama, my only grumble being that you can’t change into the ‘Off Road’ mode or turn off the TC or change the ABS on the move.  It’s a little annoying having to stop and re-set the TC or ABS every time you hit some mild gravel.

Engine

Next up: Reliability
5 out of 5 (5/5)

At the heart of the Tiger is the sublime 800cc in-line triple. For 2018, capacity remains the same, as do the majority of the internals. Triumph claim they’ve ‘optimised’ the engine, and it now features a shorter first gear to improve responsiveness and acceleration and a lighter exhaust with a ‘better’ sound.

Peak power of 94bhp and torque at 58ftlb are identical to the previous model, however both peak slightly higher in the rev range, while Triumph will also be offering an A2 kit for all 800 models.

Reliability & build quality

Next up: Value
5 out of 5 (5/5)

On the top of the range model the level of finish and quality feel is premium. Brembo brakes, adjustable Showa suspension, multiple rider modes and rider aids, plus a full-colour dash gives the middle-weight adventure bike a top-level feel.

The engine and chassis is based on the already proven Tiger 800, therefore reliability shouldn’t be a problem.  

Value vs rivals

Next up: Equipment
4 out of 5 (4/5)

Triumph have catered for every budget, with the base model starting at just over £9000 – but it’s very basic. The bike tested, the £12,050 XRT is their premium model, it come fully-loaded but is nearly the same price of Triumph’s Tiger 1200 - starting at £12,400. 

There are four road models to choose from, all run a 19in front wheel and Metzeler Tourance rubber. Seat height are 810-830 unless otherwise stated.

  • XR £9100 – The base model, with LCD clocks, conventional lights, no rider modes, no cruise control, opt heated grips.
  • XRX £10,550 – Middle spec, day time running lights, four rider modes, heated grips, Brembo brakes, TFT
  • XRX LRH £10,550 – Middle spec, but lower, day time running lights, four rider modes, heated grips, Brembo brakes, TFT clocks, 760-780mm seat height.
  • XRT £12,050 – Top spec, back lit switch gear, LED and day time running lights, five rider modes, heated grips, heated rider and pillion seat, lighter alternator, adjustable Showa suspension, Brembo brakes, TFT clocks.

Equipment

5 out of 5 (5/5)

Triumph have made a large step forward with their electronic riding aids and technology and the new bike features up to six riding modes with a specific ‘Off-Road Pro’ setting for the XCA. Each mode changes the engine characteristics plus ABS and traction control intervention. You can also personalise and save each mode, for example removing the traction control (TC) in Sports mode.

To navigate the new modes, there’s a neat new dash and switch-gear (although the base model still has a basic LCD display), but the mid and premium Tigers  have an eye-catching full colour TFT display. The clocks are multi-adjustable -- you can change the layout and look -- plus the display pivots, allowing you to clearly see the screen stood up or sat down. The back-lit switchgear with a five-way joystick makes it easy and intuitive to navigate the new clocks.

A clever and easy-to-use five-way manually adjustable screen is all-new as are the ‘aero deflectors’ either side of the new lighter headlight. The ergonomics are similar to the old model, but the bars have moved back 10mm while a new two-way position adjustable seat adds adjustability and there’s still and optional lower model (see above). To increase comfort further, the XRT receives a heated seat for both pillion and rider as standard, plus heated grips and cruise control. A 12v socket and USB connection are a welcome added bonus.

Specs

Engine size 800cc
Engine type Liquid-cooled, 12v, in-line triple
Frame type Tubular steel trellis
Fuel capacity 19 litres
Seat height 810mm
Bike weight 208kg
Front suspension 43mm, Show forks adjustable for rebound and compression damping
Rear suspension Single Showa rear shock, for pre-load and rebound
Front brake 2 x 305mm discs with Brembo four-piston radial caliper
Rear brake 255mm single disc with single-piston caliper
Front tyre size 100/90 x 19
Rear tyre size 150/70 x 17

Mpg, costs & insurance

Average fuel consumption -
Annual road tax £93
Annual service cost £260
New price £12,050
Used price £7,000 - £10,000
Insurance group -
How much to insure?
Warranty term -

Top speed & performance

Max power 94 bhp
Max torque 58 ft-lb
Top speed -
1/4 mile acceleration -
Tank range -

Model history & versions

Model history

2010: Triumph Tiger 800 introduced

2015: Triumph Tiger 800 XR range introduced

2018: New model

Other versions

There are four rode models to choose from, all run a 19in front wheel and Metzeler Tourance rubber. Seat height are 810-830 unless otherwise stated.

XR £ 9100 – The base model, with LCD clocks, conventional lights, no rider modes, no cruise control, opt heated grips.

XRX £10,550 – Middle spec, day time running lights, four rider modes, heated grips, Brembo brakes, TFT clocks.

XRX LRH £10,550 – Middle spec, but lower, day time running lights, four rider modes, heated grips, Brembo brakes, TFT clocks, 760-780mm seat height.

XRT £12,050 – Top spec, back lit switch gear, LED and day time running lights, five rider modes, heated grips, heated rider and pillion seat, lighter alternator, adjustable Showa suspension, Brembo brakes, TFT clocks.

 

Off-road biased

Two off-road biased models l run 21in front wheel and either Bridgestone Battlwing or Pirelli Scorpion Rally rubber. Seat height 840-860.

XCX £11,250 - Day time running lights, five rider modes, heated grips, adjustable WP suspension, Brembo brakes, TFT clocks.

XCA £12,450- Back lit switch gear, LED and daytime running lights, six rider modes, heated grips, heated rider and pillion seat, lighter alternator, adjustable WP suspension, Brembo brakes, TFT clocks.

Owners' reviews for the TRIUMPH TIGER 800 XR (2018 - on)

5 owners have reviewed their TRIUMPH TIGER 800 XR (2018 - 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.

Review your TRIUMPH TIGER 800 XR (2018 - on)

Summary of owners' reviews

Overall rating: 4 out of 5 (4/5)
Ride quality & brakes: 4.8 out of 5 (4.8/5)
Engine: 4.6 out of 5 (4.6/5)
Reliability & build quality: 4.6 out of 5 (4.6/5)
Value vs rivals: 4.2 out of 5 (4.2/5)
Equipment: 5 out of 5 (5/5)
Annual servicing cost: £260
4 out of 5 Overall a great bike
17 July 2020 by Richard Eldridge

Version: XRX Low Ride Height

Year: 2019

Annual servicing cost: £185

Overall, great bike and ride. Lovely triple engine and good equipment level. Good value Some poor design and cheap parts - see below

Ride quality & brakes 4 out of 5

All good. Brakes could be stronger. Some minor vibrations at motorway cruise speeds.

Engine 5 out of 5

Brilliant ! Engine braking not as good as other bikes I’ve owned, but nothing to worry about.

Reliability & build quality 4 out of 5

Mostly excellent Rear shock is a cheap part with minimal adjustments. Adjuster is hidden behind frame. Freezes up between use, screwdriver slot and adjuster end worn very quickly. Some finishes such as connectors and some bolt heads don’t like uk weather ! Needs looking after - cleaning, ACF50, etc

Value vs rivals 5 out of 5

All seems reasonable so far

Equipment 5 out of 5

Everything you could need, without (IMO) unnecessary stuff like heated seats. Heated grip switch is too small for easy operation with gloves. For me, the oem screen causes lots of buffeting. An aftermarket one sorted it. Tft display on the small side - sorted in new 900.

Buying experience: Ex demo from a main dealer. Maybe didn’t get the best deal with the accessories I wanted. They drove a hard bargain. Bike was a good price though.

4 out of 5 Triumph Tiger 800 XRT
03 July 2020 by Mad Dog

Version: XRT

Year: 2018

Only let down was original stickers and badge not staying in place. However this was quickly rectified and Triumph have since improved QC in this area.

Ride quality & brakes 5 out of 5
Engine 5 out of 5

Great bike that is bullet proof.

Reliability & build quality 5 out of 5
Value vs rivals 5 out of 5
Equipment 5 out of 5

Buying experience: Excellent. Extensive test ride carried out before deciding to purchase. Dealership were easy to deal with and did everything that I wanted.

4 out of 5
05 June 2020 by Richard2112

Version: XRX Low

Year: 2019

A great bike and enjoying it overall. Plenty of performance even with only 94bhp. Light and manoeverable. Just the job solo. I take a pillion and luggage as well sometimes - on this model, essential to adjust rear suspension. As an 800, it sits at higher revs at motorway speeds than a litre class bike, but I’m ok with that. Dropped one star because of the finish quality - bolt heads, etc furring up already. About to treat with ACF50 to try and alleviate this problem. I’ve had other makes, much older, where this is less of an issue.

Ride quality & brakes 5 out of 5

There is a trade off when 2 up with luggage - need to take it easy leaning into bends, very easy to ground the pegs

Engine 5 out of 5
Reliability & build quality 4 out of 5

See above. Engine excellent, as is reliability.

Value vs rivals 5 out of 5

XRX with added extras you want better value than XRT

Equipment 5 out of 5

Everything you need. If I was to be super critical, the tft screen is a bit small - this has been put right in the new 900 Screen creates a lot of buffeting and turbulence, replaced with an MRA vario touring screen

4 out of 5 Top Touring and Everyday Bike
29 March 2020 by John Smith

Version: XRT

Year: 2018

Annual servicing cost: £300

Awesome package, a bit on the expensive side for top spec version and engine could use a bit more torque.

Ride quality & brakes 5 out of 5

Phenomenal suspension with lots of adjustment. Comfortable ride for all day touring. Brembos are progressive, not strongest brakes ever but sufficient.

Engine 4 out of 5

Smooth as anything but needs a wind on to get the most out of it. Peak power comes in high in the rev range. Would have been better to have more torque lower in the range.

Reliability & build quality 5 out of 5

Top notch equipment, nicely styled. Reliable engine.

Value vs rivals 3 out of 5

Typical annual service is more costly than some but lots of equipment to check.

Equipment 5 out of 5

All you could possibly need and more. Heated seats set this apart from more expensive models (e.g. GS)

4 out of 5 Top Touring and Everyday Bike
29 March 2020 by John Smith

Version: XRT

Year: 2018

Annual servicing cost: £300

Awesome package, a bit on the expensive side for top spec version and engine could use a bit more torque.

Ride quality & brakes 5 out of 5

Phenomenal suspension with lots of adjustment. Comfortable ride for all day touring. Brembos are progressive, not strongest brakes ever but sufficient.

Engine 4 out of 5

Smooth as anything but needs a wind on to get the most out of it. Peak power comes in high in the rev range. Would have been better to have more torque lower in the range.

Reliability & build quality 5 out of 5

Top notch equipment, nicely styled. Reliable engine.

Value vs rivals 3 out of 5

Typical annual service is more costly than some but lots of equipment to check.

Equipment 5 out of 5

All you could possibly need and more. Heated seats set this apart from more expensive models (e.g. GS)

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