TRIUMPH TRIDENT 660 (2021 - on) Review
- Cheap to own
- Well equipped
- Street Triple DNA
At a glance
|Owners' reliability rating:|
|Annual servicing cost:||£90|
Overall ratingNext up: Ride & brakes
The Triumph Trident 660 is a breath of fresh air, just when you thought new bikes were getting ever more powerful, complicated and expensive. It makes a modest but very useful and fruity 80bhp, costs comfortably less than the base spec Street Triple S and even has 10,000-mile service intervals to keep your bank balance happy.
It’s a simple, characterful and grown-up feeling machine that’s happy commuting or scratching. Comfortable, engaging and so easy to ride you really don’t have to think about it, new riders will love it, but the experienced will find it also handles way better than any of its rivals. It’s fast without being tricky to manage, or too in your face and oozes low down punch, but the triple lacks the playfulness of Yamaha’s twin cylinder MT-07. Great build quality, generous detailing and cheap running costs are the icing on this middleweight naked cake.
But it’s more that. You can feel the same sporty DNA in its chassis and engine that’s made the Street Triple such a hit over the years, so while the Trident 660 does have a caring, sharing side, it also gets the blood pumping and puts a big smile on your face.
Triumph Trident 660 tested on UK roads
First published on 19 March, 2021 by Mike Armitage
It would appear Triumph have invented a time machine. Although significant poking and prodding fails to reveal a flux capacitor, there’s no question that their new Trident 660 is capable of quantum physics. As soon as you slide onto its seat, you’re transported back to 2008.
This is because the Trident sounds, feels and rides like the original 675cc Street Triple. That bike’s DNA is obvious. The first Street Trip’ was a gloriously usable, affordable and none-too-serious bike with fun at the head of its design brief. And on the A and B-roads of the UK's toughest road test, the MCN250 this exactly describes the new Trident.
Flicking and darting north on chilled but bone-dry B-roads the Trident’s sheer rideability is welcomely recognisable. I was lucky enough to be the first person outside Triumph to ride the original Street Triple in late summer 2007, when they allowed a sneaky test of a pre-production 675 for Bike magazine, and this new machine immediately takes me back.
You just jump on and enjoy. Steering is light and accurate, the chassis pointy and keen yet with steadfast secureness, and the engine fizzy, fun and flexible. Triumph say 90% of peak shunt is available across most of the rev range.
I’ve no reason to doubt them, and with short gearing the 660 snaps sharply through its six-speed ’box under acceleration and hauls out of villages in a tall gear.
Though it has ‘only’ 80bhp it’s plenty fast enough. The 80 horses arrive at 10,250rpm, which is about what the revvier and more powerful Street Triple S makes at the same revs.
But the Trident has livelier gearing so feels fruitier. Deactivate the TC, wrench the throttle in first gear and the handlebar smacks your forehead, and it’s as sprightly pulling away in second as a long-legged 765cc Street Triple is in first.
To hit the £7195 threshold, the Trident is built to a price. The red Showa stickers might make the single-function forks look fancy, but they’re from a crate labelled ‘value’ rather than ‘posh’. It’s where they found the rear shock as well.
Deep into the nadgery back lanes and ridge-riding twists of north Leicestershire and fully acclimatised, the gusto the Trident encourages sees the forks bottom out braking hard over bumps. The rear end lacks finesse when tramping on, reaching the limitations of its damping, and it needs a decent squeeze to get reassurance from the brakes.
On less-restrictive A-road sections the chassis and motor are equally smooth though, the Trident purring contentedly. There’s full confidence banking at speed, and it does surprisingly brisk top-gear roll-on overtakes.
Obviously there’s chuff-all weather protection, but the riding position is plugged-in enough to not be hard work. Mirrors are so-so and the left-hand switchgear has a slightly plasticky feel, though simple clocks and easy-to-suss controls are better than the messy displays and joysticks on pricier Triumphs. Or they are for me.
Yes, it’s the ‘starter’ Triumph. But you’d be hard-pushed to find a better bike for this cash.
Triumph’s Street Triple line-up is a long way from what the original bike offered in 2008. They’re not really the affordable, breezy-yet-capable road bikes they once were.
The Trident 660 squares the job up nicely. It’s exciting, spirited, cheeky-yet-well-mannered, reassuring and easy to use. Triumph’s new ‘entry level’ bike genuinely has the character of the original 675cc Street Triple.
Yes, there are bikes that are more powerful, faster, have more whizzbang features and better outright handling than the Trident. But they all cost more, without being better packages.
Competitively priced, cheap to run, handsome, accomplished and above all great fun, the new Trident 660 is the every-person middleweight – and I’d take it over the pricier and more powerful Street Triple S. And since that’s my favourite of the three Street Triples, this highlights just how ruddy lovely the new 660 truly is.
Watch: Triumph Trident 660 video review on MCN
Neevesy gives his definite verdict on the new Trident, direct from the launch event in Tenerife.
Ride quality & brakesNext up: Engine
Triumph already make a 660cc triple designed to be A2 licence restricted in the shape of the Street Triple S, so where does the Trident 660 fit in? Well, its name may evoke memories of the British firm’s old '60s and '70s triples, or even the first ‘90s ‘Hinckley’ Triumph Tridents that started their current renaissance, but it’s no retro.
The Trident 660 has been conceived to be even friendlier and more road focussed than the sportier Street Triple S. It’s a completely new model, which is a rare thing nowadays, from its tubular steel chassis, minimal styling and ride-by-wire electronics.
Granted, its engine, which is very different to the Street Triple’s, may have started life in the original Daytona 675 (with a brief appearance in the Aussie-only 2014 Street Triple 660), but it’s now crammed with so many upgraded parts its now barely recognisable, so you’d have to say that’s new too.
With its minimalist bodywork and more than a hint of a street-fighting stunt bike look to it, there’s an overriding feeling of slimness and stripped back airiness to the Trident 660 when you climb aboard. Cut-outs in the tank bring your knees close together for control and the riding position is more relaxed than that the sportier and slightly bulkier-feeling Street Triple.
There’s lots of legroom for the tall, despite the Triumph’s compactness, but its 805mm dual seat is low and slim enough for shorter riders to get feet flat on the floor, which is always a confidence booster. Tapered ali bars are nicely wide and arc back gently towards you, for a reach that’s on the comfortable side of sporty, which is good news for your wrists in traffic and on long trips.
On the move the Trident 660 is a bike of two halves. It’s light on its feet, characterful and easy to use as everyday commuter on the one hand, but on the other it’s a naked sportsbike with a Moto2 soundtrack, fruity low-gear acceleration and incredible poise and accuracy through corners.
It can do both of those things equally well because it weighs just 189kg ready to go and the chassis has the kind of balance its Japanese rivals still struggle to get right (most are too soft at the rear and harsh at the front). That’s squarely down to clever Triumph design, development and a talented team of test riders.
The Trident 660 is of course built down to a price, but there’s been no scrimping when it came to creating it. It’s had the same love, care and went through the same brutal regime as any new Triumph, including their Moto2 project. The Trident 660 has undergone over half a million miles worth of durability testing, 1200 miles of flat-out speed runs, 31 individual rig tests over 3440 hours, over 20,000 miles on track and 3300 hours on the road.
As a result, the suspension is well damped, sprung and never jars or wallows. Steering is light, natural and the brakes are full of power, feel and devoid of unwanted ABS intervention. Michelin Road 5 rubber grips in the wet, dry and across a wide temperature range, so always instils confidence. The Triumph is accessible, friendly and confidence inspiring. but it’s also so sure-footed you’d need to be going some to get it out of shape on the road.
EngineNext up: Reliability
Three-cylinder motorcycles are always lauded for their versatility, mixing the grunt of a twin with the long-revving excitement of a four. It’s why Yamaha’s MT-09 has been such a success and why Triumph had produced 600,000 triples by the end of 2020…and counting.
The Trident 660 has incredible thrust for its capacity and there’s meaty, but friendly power right through the rev range. It’s never fussy about what gear you’re in, it’ll pull cleanly regardless. 80bhp might not sound much in these 200bhp-obsessed days but it’s still a lot, especially with the motor’s shorter first four gear ratios, so when you give the triple a tickle it doesn’t hang around. Tuck down behind the clock for long enough with the throttle against the stop you’d see around 130mph.
Throttle, clutch action and gearbox are all as delightful as afternoon tea and while it has traction control and ABS, the Trident 600 is so sure-footed during our test we never trouble them, even in the wet.
Overall performance sits somewhere between Kawasaki’s 67bhp Z650 parallel twin and Honda’s more powerful 94bhp inline four-cylinder CB650R. The Triumph’s engine character ensures that it’s more visceral than both of them, but then there’s the MT-07.
Yamaha has a new version for 2021 which we haven’t ridden yet but the outgoing MT-07 was something special, selling by the truckload and winning awards and group tests since it arrived in 2014. In terms of handling and composure the Triumph has the Yamaha beat hands-down, but the MT-07 ‘s 74bhp parallel twin cylinder engine will always take some beating in terms of thrills and playfulness.
But the Trident 660’s engine is calm at low speed and cruises nicely on the motorway thanks to its tall fifth and sixth gears. It might only have a 14-litre fuel tank but averaging an indicated 60mpg that’s 185 miles between fill-ups.
Tech spotlight - Triumph Trident engine
Haven’t we met before?
Triumph’s Trident 660 motor isn’t the same as the triple powering the current, shorter-stoke 660cc Street Triple S. It’s actually a heavily reworked Daytona 675 lump with its stroke reduced from 52.3mm to 51.1mm, trimming capacity to 660cc. Power and revs are also dialled down from a track-tastic 123bhp@13,500rpm to a more road-friendly 80bhp@10,250rpm.
The engine has 67 new components, including crank, pistons, gudgeon pins, cylinder liners, cylinder head, cams, crankcase castings, sump, cooling system, radiator, alternator rotor and stator, air intakes, exhaust and slip and assist clutch for a light lever action.
Most usefully for a bike designed for everyday riding it has more grunt at lower revs than the Street Triple S with over 90% of its torque delivered from 3600rpm to 9750rpm. Its new gearbox has shorter first to fourth gears for more low-down thrust and a slightly higher fifth and sixth for more comfortable cruising.
Unlike the old Daytona 675 the Trident 660 has a modern ride-by-wire system to control everything from fuelling to rider aids and modes (Road and Rain).
Read more about the Trident's new engine and the bike's development here.
Triumph Trident: New rider-friendly
An A2 licence restrictor kit is also available to reduce power to 46bhp@8750rpm and torque to 44ftlb@5250rpm, which can be fitted by a dealer…and undone again when the time comes.
Reliability & build qualityNext up: Value
Paint finishes, equipment level and attention to detail are all top notch and you get a two year unlimited mileage warranty. The motor is now in such a safe state of tune Triumph have extended service intervals to 10,000 miles, making it cheaper to run. So, if you stick to the Trident 660’s service schedule over three years it’ll only spend 8.3 hours in the workshop having its first (600 mile) service and three annual services, including new brake pads, chain and sprocket and a brake fluid change. Triumph says its main rivals will spend 2.7 to 7.5 hours to longer up on a ramp and cost you more.
We don't have any owners' reviews for the Trident at this point, but you can leave one here.
During 2021 our Online Editor Gareth Evans is running a Trident 660 on the MCN Fleet. You can follow his progress here.
Value vs rivalsNext up: Equipment
It’s the cheapest bike in Triumph’s 2021 line up and has middleweight naked rivals like Honda’s similarly priced CB650R, the cheaper Kawasaki Z650 and class-leading (and again cheaper) Yamaha MT-07 firmly in its sights.
They’re the kind of machines adored by commuters, newer riders and the experienced who want something fun for the weekend without having to pay big bucks for the pleasure. Given the Trident’s performance, long service intervals, finish and equipment level it’s excellent value for money.
The rider’s eye view down is textbook, modern-day Triumph and everything you can see is neat, well finished and thought out: uncluttered switchgear, big, useful teardrop-shaped mirrors and an elegant single round clock with twin displays. At the top is a crisp white on black LCD readout displaying speed, revs and fuel level. The colour TFT screen beneath contains a clock, trips, gear position, set-up menus and when used with Triumph’s app displays turn-by-turn sat nav, music and call functions.
Elsewhere the Trident 660 bursts with the kind of detailing that makes its Japanese rivals seem quite ordinary: full LED lighting, self-cancelling indicators, an immobiliser, lightweight five spoke ali wheels, Michelin Road 5 tyres, an adjustable brake lever, Nissin brakes and a neat underslung exhaust that makes a nice tingly, triply noise for your ears to enjoy.
Showa forks aren’t adjustable, but for normal riding by average sized riders you won’t need to fiddle anyway. The rear shock has a linkage and is adjustable for preload, which you’ll need to ramp up for two-up work or carrying luggage.
One of its most distinguishing features is its cut-down back end, uncluttered by a number plate, mudguard and indicators, which are all mounted on the swingarm instead. Underseat plastics can be swapped for accessory pillion grab handles.
Fuel tank cut outs, complete with textured plastic pads and aluminium badges place knees closer together giving the Trident a narrow, controllable feel. Cropped Triumph logos appear on the more expensive black/silver, silver/red paint schemes.
Paint finishes are up there with the best Trumpets and the detailing continues with neat little badges and logos subtly contained within the tank knee pads, fuel cap, headlight, taillight, handlebar clamp and clocks.
Triumph has created a 47-strong range of accessories for the Trident 660 including a Bluetooth connectivity system, an up/down quickshifter, an underseat USB charger, scrolling LED indicators, tyre pressure monitor system, fly screen, aluminium bellypan, bar end mirrors, machined ali parts, heated grips and pillion grab handles. There’s also a quick release tail pack and tank bag, crash and paint protection, covers, cleaning kits, battery chargers, an alarm, tracker and locks.
|Engine type||Liquid-cooled, 12v, inline triple|
|Frame type||Tubular steel perimeter|
|Fuel capacity||14 litres|
|Front suspension||Showa 41mm USD forks non-adjustable|
|Rear suspension||Showa single shock, adjustable for preload|
|Front brake||2 x 310mm discs with two-piston Nissin calipers. ABS|
|Rear brake||255mm disc with single-piston caliper. ABS|
|Front tyre size||120/70 x 17|
|Rear tyre size||180/55 x 17|
Mpg, costs & insurance
|Average fuel consumption||51 mpg|
|Annual road tax||£96|
|Annual service cost||£90|
How much to insure?
|Warranty term||Two years|
Top speed & performance
|Max power||80 bhp|
|Max torque||47 ft-lb|
|Top speed||130 mph|
|1/4 mile acceleration||-|
Model history & versions
- 2021: Triumph Trident 660 introduced.
Owners' reviews for the TRIUMPH TRIDENT 660 (2021 - on)
6 owners have reviewed their TRIUMPH TRIDENT 660 (2021 - 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:||£90|
Version: Crystal White
Annual servicing cost: £100
Great engine with enough power to do anything. She's calm with a slightly muted throttle response low in the revs which is great for riding in stop and go surface street traffic. Great handling that makes it so much fun to flick in and out of turns. This is my second bike and I think this one is going to be in my garage for a long time.
Great all-rounder. Its nice and calm in stop and go traffic. Its really peppy and eager when you get some room and open the throttle. Its light and a joy to take it through the curves. It can do some light touring, although, I am looking at buying an aftermarket windscreen to help mitigate some of the wind at interstate speeds. The seat doesn't seem to be a premium ultrasoft butt saver but, I can go about an hour and a half on it without stopping.
Nothing bad to say about the engine. The triple really puts you in a sweet spot, you have the torque down low and you have some more high end then a twin. I think 20HP would really be icing on the cake but, the 80bhp is enough.
Quality is great. The bike is spotless. Everything is tight and well built. Nothing loose or questionable on the quality side. No issues on reliability, everything works as it should.
10,000 mile intervals sound great to me.
There are some small things that you can tell were intended to be a little less than premium to keep the price down. The components themselves are robust and stand up to the wear and tear, they just look a little cheap. Brake and clutch levers come to mind. The chrome or brushed foot pegs really clash with the rest of the style. Small plastic covers on the frame look kind of cheap if you look close.
Buying experience: Bought from dealer. Shopped around to get the best deal. I bought it $9,500 out the door. The other dealers I checked wanted $10,250 out the door.
Cons - Clutch none adjustable, had to replace Suspension hard and front unadjustable. Seat uncomfortable after an hour or so. Pros - light and flickable. Very forgiving. Excellent tyres, glued to the road. Rapid through the gears and an acceptable max of 130 mph. Excellent fuel consumption at 60 mpg which makes it suitable for touring. Aftermarket screen, luggage, gel custom seat available now.
Brakes are good ride is a little firm
Excellent pulling power
No problems at all so far after 3700 miles
First service is 10,000 miles
Quick shifter is great
Buying experience: I bought at a dealership it being a new bike to the market. The book price for a stock bike is £7200 but I like my toys and with optional extras it cost £9600
Annual servicing cost: £80
Mine was the fourth bike delivered by Triumph Newcastle and the dealership were brilliant all the way through the transaction. Specced it up a bit to just over £8000 and I've added aftermarket bar ends (thanks TEC Bike parts) and I'll be adding adjustable levers (TEC again). So far I can't fault it.
The ride is firm but that's how I like it and the handling is brilliant! Someone else said it in another review but late brake into a corner and power it out - really good fun. Oh, and the seat is very comfortable and a good height (5'9" and 31 inside leg). My 1050 Sprint was not comfy after 30 minutes but I could ride the Trident all day.
I haven't given it 5 stars just because I've had much more powerful bikes but it's the strongest 600+ I've ever ridden. The power is there from almost any speed in almost any gear so it's as good commuting as it is blasting down the lanes.
Obviously it's early days so reliability isn't tested. However, the quality is as good as any bike I've had in the past. The only niggle is I cannot get the bloody bluetooth to connect to my phone so I wish I hadn't bothered to get it.
Again, early days but providing the reliability is good, the running costs should be minimal.
Again 4 stars due to the extras, some of which could have been standard but they are trying to compete with the MT.
Buying experience: Newcastle Triumph were spot on. Nothing else to add.
IMO - Overrated British crap
Version: Sapphire Black
Annual servicing cost: £80
Rider position, levers , foot pegs , tank recess absolutely perfect for my 6 foot and 32 inside leg. The relatively low seat height works really well. This bike has been well thought out. My love for motorcycling has been re ignited.
OMG. The bike rides on rails , with a ‘ budget’ suspension. Late braking and turning in, no drama. I’m 105 kg kitted up and suspension has no problems. Brakes are brilliant , ABS hasn’t cut in , so it’s not intrusive. ( unlike my old MT07) Seat is fine , no numb bum after 60 mins.
Engine is a peach. It has a lovely exhaust sound, must be engineered in for Euro 5. Beautiful Induction noise starts up around 4,500 revs. Power is effortless, it just pulls and pulls. Engine spins up so quick, I’m seem to watching the revs all the time.
Only had it a few days , but the quality of build is very good . It look solid, all the plastics , metals, fasteners are well made . Loads of lovely Triumph logos on the various parts. Factory accessories are top quality , worth adding them to the Finance.
This will be the cost for the 600 mile service, not sure what it will be next year. Not a deal breaker for me, warranty needs a dealer service and I took out extended warranty. Service costs are all relative to what you purchase and why.
The digital screen has so many functions, easy to use , easy to see on the move. 20 pages in the manual to operate it, and its worth reading. Self cancelling indicators are great. LED lights are brilliant and bright. Add as much kit as you need.
Buying experience: Purchased from Fowler’s at Bristol. Absolutely top guys Mike and Phil , sorting out a purchase in lockdown is not easy. I didn’t even see the bike until I turned up to take it away. Has to be easiest , effortless purchase I have ever done. Cheers.
Annual servicing cost: £90
For Mid range grunt, quality, price, fun factor, very forgiving Against price of optional extras.
Ideal commuter or fun bike. I’ll try mini tours with it
Nice long stroke
New to the market this month so not applicable to date
Unknown at this time but every 10,000 miles
Tyres excellent rain or road mode standard fit heated grips optional but should be standard fit in the uk
Buying experience: I bought from my local triumph dealership, they couldn’t have been more helpful.Standard price was £7190 but when I spec’d it up it was in excess of £9,000