Triumph needed to get it right first time with the T595 Daytona. Back in the sportsbike-crazy ’90s, nothing less was going to cut it. With Honda’s FireBlade having set the standard, being good was never going to be good enough. Outstanding was the only way to be.
Happily, the British bike-buying public was so sold on the idea of the forthcoming machine that Triumph’s order books filled up fast in late 1996, months ahead of the first machines being delivered at the start of 1997.
While the Blade was an inline four, Triumph opted for a triple. The brand had some heritage to look to here in that the “old” Triumph company’s valedictory bikes had been triples, the T150 and T160 Tridents, and the three-cylinder architecture had been core to the revived marque’s roadsters.
The engine developed for the T595 made a rear wheel 107bhp, putting it on a par with the FireBlade. Power is only part of the story, of course. Fuelled up and good to go, the Triumph gave away around 20kg to the Honda. To T595 riders, that hardly mattered.
A revamp and a redesignation came for the Daytona in 1999, its new 955i tag reflecting its actual capacity. The overhaul mostly consisted of a fuel injection update, better ground clearance and suspension, plus some styling tweaks.
Today, the Daytona has yet to get off the bottom of the depreciation curve. They’re insanely cheap and you’d be mad to pass up on this much performance for so little money.
What are they worth?
Basket case £500-£800
Modern ethanol-rich fuels can play havoc with the plastic tank if left to sit in it for too long, causing it to swell, go out of shape, and fuel to leach under the paint.
Every Triumph of this generation carries a health warning regarding the starter clutch. Check for easy firing.
Engine case leak
Oil oozing from the right-side engine cover is usually caused by it getting around one of the bolts. Remove and re-seal.
Early frames were polished but these were superseded, and early ones replaced, with powder coated chassis after the tubework on a crashed dealer demonstrator failed and Triumph issued a recall.
The metallic paint is a pain to match to correct damage. In fact the panels were often poorly matched to each other when the bikes were new.
There's lots of both Triumph T595s and Triumph 955is available now on MCN Bikes for Sale!