TRIUMPH TIGER 900 GT PRO (2020 - on) Review

Highlights

  • A decent step up over the previous Tiger 800
  • Clever new engine tech adds character
  • GT Pro is pick of the range for road riders

At a glance

Owners' reliability rating: 5 out of 5 (5/5)
Annual servicing cost: £100
Power: 94 bhp
Seat height: Medium (32.7 in / 830 mm)
Weight: Medium (437 lbs / 198 kg)

Prices

New £12,800
Used £12,000 - £12,800

Overall rating

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

The 2020 Triumph Tiger 900 has big shoes to fill. For many the Triumph Tiger 800 was the adventure bike ideal; lighter and more manageable than larger capacity adventure models, but still capable of big two-up distances, daily commuting or light trail duties.

Since its launch in 2010 Triumph have made 85,000 of the 800s. It was significantly revamped in 2014 and 2018, but this time round they started from scratch. The new 900 is a completely fresh motorcycle.

The design brief for the new bike meant it needed to be more agile, but more stable too. More powerful, but lighter. Better on and off-road, more comfortable, with longer range, reduced servicing costs, better equipment and a wider range of accessories. That’s quite a wish list.

The new bike makes a really impressive package, and the GT Pro is arguably the pick of the bunch for riders who’ll never venture off tarmac. Revised engine characteristics and extra power make it more engaging and better for pillions than the old bike, and the chassis dynamics are better all round, but maybe the most impressive thing is that, despite sharing no components with the outgoing 800, it still feels like a mid-range Tiger, just a better mid-range Tiger.

Watch Triumph Tiger 900 video review on MCN

Ride quality & brakes

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

A glance suggests that not much has changed with the chassis – the main section is still a tubular steel trellis, but the rear subframe is now removeable and made of aluminium. A crash damaged subframe will no longer write off the bike.

The new frame and new fuel tank have also allowed the bike a narrower waist and added an extra litre to the fuel capacity. On the GT, the two position seat offers 810 or 830mm seat heights, but because it's narrower at the front, the standover stance is improved to make life easier for shorter riders. And if you really need it there is a low seat option too (760-780mm).

Despite the changes the riding position feels very similar to the old XR models; you sit into the bike, but the bars are now slightly closer to the rider. The new screen has five-position adjustability with a 50mm height range using a simple push and lift arrangement. It works really effectively and it's easy to imagine doing long days on the bike.

The really clever part of the chassis is more to do with weight distribution. Customer demands for more ground clearance, greater stability and more agility seem impossible to square, but splitting the radiators allows them to be moved higher, allowing the engine – itself re-packaged with a smaller sump and reduced oil capacity – to be moved forward.

So, although the engine’s mass is lower in the frame to drop the centre of gravity, ground clearance is better too, thanks to that smaller sump.

The result of all this smart packaging is that the 900 GT is utterly stable at speed, but has better low speed agility than the 800. It’s a neat trick, and it means that the GT can switch from speeding down smooth A roads to scratching along a badly surfaced and twisting B without drama.

But that’s also helped by the electronically adjustable shock absorber fitted to the GT Pro. On a pot holed Moroccan route or on the equally lumpy North Circular, you just tweak the ride from the comfort of your saddle and without slowing down.

Triumph's claimed overall weight of 198kg is dry, so the bike will be a chunk heavier than this fully-fuelled and ready to go.

Triumph Tiger 900 GT Pro front wheel

Engine

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

The really clever part of the new engine is the crankshaft. Every previous Triumph triple, right back to the pre-Hinckley Trident in 1968, has featured a 120° crank layout. The new Tiger has a 90°-90°-180° arrangement of the crankpins that Triumph are calling a T plane crank. This allows a firing order that feels and delivers power more like a twin.

Cylinders one and three fire close together, then a pause then the second cylinder, then a pause, then repeat. The theory is that this makes the engine more tractable at low speed, improving agility. It sounds different too.

When combined with an increase in capacity of 100cc, it means that the new engine delivers more torque and better response at lower rpm, with more power across the rev range. On the road the 900 feels more characterful than previous Tigers, there’s a more visceral feel throughout the range, but impressive mid-range performance (and Triumph quote a 10% increase in torque across the rev range compared the old 800).

Throttle action is smooth, even from a closed throttle and there’s decent mid-range shove, so you don’t need to rattle the gear lever to make progress, though that’s no hardship with the excellent quickshifter that’s fitted as standard to the Pro models. The whole powertrain is 2.5 kilos lighter than the previous model, and further clever engineering means that it is more compact too.

Triumph Tiger 900 GT Pro engine

Reliability & build quality

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

Overall build quality looks convincing, but there are some flimsy looking bits of plastic on the bike, like the covers on the accessory kit fog lights. Triumph reliability and build quality are usually strong. Oil capacity is reduced because of the smaller sump, but that shouldn’t affect reliability.

We don't have any Triumph Tiger 900 GT Pro owners' reviews at this time. 

Value vs rivals

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

The air filter can now be accessed without removing the tank, which now doesn’t need to be removed until the big 12,000 mile service, saving a lot of servicing time.

The mid-capacity adventure sector is crowded but the well-equipped Tigers look like decent value against the BMW F850GS (prices starting at £10,170) and KTM 790 Adventure (£11,299). Yamaha’s Ténéré 700 is cheaper, but doesn’t have bells, whistles and power of the Tiger.

Equipment

5 out of 5 (5/5)

All but the budget 900 come with a high level of equipment and electronics; the dash screen is an easy to read seven-inch TFT instrument with a range of display styles and heated grips, cruise control and mobile phone charging are standard as is the reassuring cornering ABS and traction control. The GT also has four riding modes.

In addition the GT Pro gets that electronically adjustable shock absorber, quickshifter, LED fog lights, centre stand, tyre pressure monitoring and heated rider and pillion seats. It’s a seriously well-equipped motorcycle, and that’s before you start ticking boxes in the fat accessory catalogue. Trekker and Expedition kits are available according to your choice of hard luggage options.

Triumph Tiger 900 GT Pro paniers and top bag

Specs

Engine size 888cc
Engine type Liquid-cooled, 12 valve, DOHC, in-line 3-cylinder
Frame type Tubular steel frame, bolt on sub frame
Fuel capacity 20 litres
Seat height 830mm
Bike weight 198kg
Front suspension Marzocchi 45mm upside down forks, manual rebound and compression damping adjustment, 180mm travel
Rear suspension Marzocchi rear suspension unit, electronically adjustable preload and rebound damping, 170mm wheel travel
Front brake Twin 320mm floating discs, Brembo Stylema 4 piston Monobloc calipers. Radial front master cylinder, Optimised Cornering ABS
Rear brake Single 255mm disc. Brembo single piston sliding caliper. Optimised cornering ABS.
Front tyre size 100/90-19
Rear tyre size 150/70-R17

Mpg, costs & insurance

Average fuel consumption 55.4 mpg
Annual road tax £93
Annual service cost £100
New price £12,800
Used price £12,000 - £12,800
Insurance group -
How much to insure?
Warranty term -

Top speed & performance

Max power 94 bhp
Max torque 64.17 ft-lb
Top speed -
1/4 mile acceleration -
Tank range -

Model history & versions

Model history

The first Triumph Tiger 900 was launched in 1993 and was in the vanguard of the large trail bike movement that would become the immensely poplular adventure bike market. That bike eventually grew and evolved into the Tiger 1200 with the 'middleweight' Tiger 800 filling out the range. This Tiger 900 is the next generation of that smaller capacity model.

Other versions

There are five models in the new range, the basic version (£9500), the GT (£11,100) and the GT Pro (£12,800) have cast wheels with a 19 inch front wheel and road tyres. The Pro version also has an electronically adjustable shock absorber. The Rally (£11,700) and Rally Pro feature wire spoked wheels with a 21 inch front, Pirelli Scorpion Rally tyres, longer travel suspension, greater ground clearance and wider handlebars.

  • Triumph Tiger 900 Rally Pro review on MCN

Owners' reviews for the TRIUMPH TIGER 900 GT PRO (2020 - on)

1 owner has reviewed their TRIUMPH TIGER 900 GT PRO (2020 - 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 900 GT PRO (2020 - on)

Summary of owners' reviews

Overall rating: 5 out of 5 (5/5)
Ride quality & brakes: 5 out of 5 (5/5)
Engine: 5 out of 5 (5/5)
Reliability & build quality: 5 out of 5 (5/5)
Value vs rivals: 4 out of 5 (4/5)
Equipment: 4 out of 5 (4/5)
Annual servicing cost: £100
5 out of 5 Red beauty
01 June 2020 by Zsozso

Version: Korosi red

Year: 2020

Annual servicing cost: £100

Very Easy to handle. Turns, brakes, accelerates perfect. Good lights. Comfort level is high! Very good balance. Looks great.

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

Bull.

Reliability & build quality 5 out of 5
Value vs rivals 4 out of 5
Equipment 4 out of 5

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