The Triumph Bonneville SE delivers… two wheel fun!
I doubt you will ever read anything less than excellent about this motorcycle.
Throwing a leg over the Triumph Bonneville SE feels like your traveling back in time to the glory days of British Twins that paved their way into the history books. The 20th Century incarnation channels the soul of the past with current technology and modern engineering that’s been refined over years of development to a classic design that will never goes out of style.
I specifically chose this bike to review because of its upright riding position and obvious high emotional content in its styling. I needed a machine to lift my spirits, bring back my “moto mojo” and to remind me that the best stress fighter is a damn good, fun motorcycle. This bike did just that and more…
Named after the Bonneville Salt Flats, the site where Triumph broke numerous land speed records in the 1950’s the 2012 version is dialed in with a fuel injected 865cc parallel-twin engine and electronic fuel injection actually hidden inside what appears to be a pair of old style carburetors that appeared on the model years gone by. The engine, being a traditional vertical twin with a 360 crank, has the strong, flat torque curve of the “old” bike, but without the vibration thanks to two balance shafts. While looking very much like the old twin, inside are hidden two overhead cams and four valves per cylinder. There is even a “dummy” push-rod tube in front of the two barrels which serves as a drain for the valve gear on top. Such a perfect example of modern engineering bowing to “old school” feel.
The seat, handle bars and foot pegs are essentially positioned in the same places as the original model, but have been moved in small increments over the years to improve rider comfort.
The wheels, tires and suspension also maintain that classic Triumph look, but have been updated to provide nimble, confidence-inspiring handling that makes the bike a joy to ride regardless of your experience level. I like the lightweight 17 inch alloys, matching tacho and speedo, polished engine covers and traditional chrome tank badge. It’s offered with the traditional two-tone paintwork with a hand painted pin striping, megaphone silencers and short mudguards.
I had the opportunity to connect with Greg Heichelbech, CEO,Triumph North America and get his observation on women riders. I was told the feedback from ladies was extremely positive and he affirmed, “They really enjoy the Bonneville for its classic design, comfortable riding position, ease of use, and confidence-inspiring ride. It’s a bike that’s great fun to ride whatever your skill or experience level happens to be. We’re hearing the same thing from women riders about the Triumph America, which is a more traditionally styled American cruiser that’s similar in size to the Bonneville.”
He expressed overwhelming support for women joining the sport and is thrilled that they’re connecting with what Triumph has to offer.
I then inquired as to what direction Triumph is headed in and tried to get a glimpse into where they’re headed in the future and he explained, “Triumph will continue to develop and make motorcycles that women find aesthetically appealing and fun to ride. In addition to our Bonneville and America models, women who prefer sport bikes like our Street Triple streetfighter and Daytona 675 supersport models. The ergonomics of these bikes, especially the Street Triple, fit women quite well, and the three-cylinder engines provide power smoothly for an enjoyable riding experience.”
The new Bonneville SE delivers all of the “emotion” of the old ride, but without the bite of compromised engineering of the past or oil on your socks. It offers an agile package, superb handling and a timeless style of unique two wheel fun appealing to both new and experienced riders. For more information: www.triumphmotorcycles.com
Triumph Bonneville SE - US Specifications/Technical Details
Engine and Transmission
Type Air-cooled, DOHC, parallel-twin, 360º firing interval
Bore/Stroke 90 x 68mm
Fuel System Multipoint sequential electronic fuel injection with SAI
Exhaust Stainless steel headers, twin chromed upswept silencers
Final Drive X ring chain
Clutch Wet, multi-plate
Oil Capacity 4.5 litres (1.2 US gals)
Chassis, Running Gear and Displays
Frame Tubular steel cradle
Swingarm Twin-sided, tubular steel
Wheel Front Cast aluminum alloy 7- spoke 17 x 3.0 inch
Rear Cast aluminum alloy 7-spoke 17 x 3.5 inch
(Whoo hoo! Rollin Fun!)
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