We are heading into cold winter months and the prospect of renewed pandemic restrictions, but Triumph Motorcycles is reminding us to look forward to the new year with the announcement of the 2021 Triumph Trident 660 motorcycle.
The Trident revives a classic Triumph name that reflects its use of a three-cylinder, 660cc engine in a simple, stylish, lightweight (417 lbs.) and affordable ($7,995) machine that will let enthusiasts look forward to spring and the opportunity to enjoy some socially distant miles in the saddle.
The 80-horsepower triple aims to combine the best attributes of its twin-cylinder and four-cylinder rivals in the middleweight category explains Triumph chief engineer Stuart Wood.
“A triple combines the low-down and mid-range performance of a twin with the top-end performance of a four-cylinder engine for usable and responsive performance all the way through the rev range,” he says.
“For me, what great for the Trident are the character and feel of that power delivery,” Wood adds. “The Trident gives you 90 percent of its peak torque across almost all of the rev range. Add to this the lovely sound a triple makes and you get a really unique character.”
Compared to Triumph's other current triples, the Trident’s engine features 67 new components, including a new crankshaft, new pistons, and a new clutch, as well as new cam profiles and bespoke intake and exhaust systems to differentiate it.
Triumph launched its three-cylinder tradition when it grafted an extra cylinder onto its traditional 650cc parallel twin in 1968 and won five consecutive Isle of Man TT races. Since then, the company has enjoyed its greatest success with this type of engine, from the bare-knuckled Speed Triple in the so-called “streetfighter” category to the engines Triumph supplies as the standard powerplant used in the Moto2 racing series.
These days a great engine and cool styling aren’t enough for customers. They want modern tech too, and the Trident delivers, with standard safety tech along with a gauge cluster that provides numerous rider information functions.
“You have a great deal of safety and control technology as standard, with features you just don’t get with any other bike in the class,” Wood explains. “You have two riding modes, switchable traction control which is tailored for each riding mode, and a ride-by-wire throttle, which is all class-leading. It allows the bike to be set up to suit the conditions and give you really great confidence and safety.”
This leads to the Trident’s advanced rider information system in its instrument display. “We have these fantastic new multifunctional instruments with color TFT display which also allows you to add Triumph’s unique connectivity system which gives you turn-by-turn navigation, unique GoPro control, plus phone and music operation,” Wood says.
The fork is a Showa inverted unit and the Showa shock absorber incorporates adjustable pre-load. The Trident rolls on lightweight 17-inch aluminum spoke wheels wrapped in Michelin Road 5 tires. Brakes are Nissan two-piston sliding front calipers with dual 310 mm discs and a single-piston Nissan rear caliper.
The bike is scheduled to arrive in dealers by late January, so if you’re motivated to get an early start on Spring or just want to kick 2021 off with some action, flip open Triumph’s book of options for the Trident and select the available internally wired heated handgrips to keep your fingers warm while riding.