Triumph India wants to leave no stone unturned in being the bike maker of choice for riders willing to shell out a premium for an exquisite set of wheels. Keeping its old-world charm and legacy intact is Triumph’s Bonneville range of parallel-twin motorcycles, which combines 1960s/70s design cues with modern technology.
The Bonneville range currently comprises the entry-level Street Twin at one end, and the range-topping T120 and Thruxton R at the other end of the spectrum. Slotting between the Street Twin and the T120 is the new T100, which offers adequate power and performance, retro styling and all-purpose capability.
DESIGN & STYLING
The T100 is unmistakably British, unmistakably classic. Its thinly-padded seat, an analogue-digital instrument console, wide set handlebars, dual-colour paint scheme, peashooter exhaust and wire-spoked wheels all exude a 1960s vibe, while its saddle height of 790 mm is a boon for shorter riders, as one is able to plant boot feet comfortably on the ground while the bike is at standstill.
The T100’s instrument cluster provides basic information like speed and engine rpm, and also has indicators for fuel level, gear position, an odometer, and mileage-related information. Switchgear is ergonomically laid out and is of superior quality, while the handgrips are comfortable to hold. The bike’s 14.5-litre fuel tank is adequate for longer rides and occasional weekend trips. Devoid of short-lived styling trends and gimmicky knick-knacks, the T100 is a simple machine that manages to look quite good.
ENGINE & TRANSMISSION
The T100 uses the same 900 cc, liquid-cooled, 8-valve, SOHC, parallel twin that’s also used on the Street Twin, which produces 55 hp at 5900 rpm and 80 Nm at 3230 rpm. With the use of ride-by-wire throttle management, Triumph has ensured that power delivery and refinement are beyond reproach, and the bike feels relaxed and comfortable at most speeds, though going very fast isn’t really its forte.
The engine is mated to a 5-speed gearbox, which is precise and slick, and ably complements the smooth and linear flow of power across the engine’s rev range. Acceleration through the gears is super smooth and low- and mid-range performance remains the key strength of the T100 motor.
CHASSIS & SUSPENSION
The T100 uses a tubular steel double cradle chassis, coupled with a tubular steel swingarm. Its 41 mm KYB telescopic front forks and preload adjustable twin shocks at the rear do a good job of soaking up bumps and potholes, though at higher speeds (100 km/h and above), the softly set-up suspension can sometimes struggle to cope with bumps and potholes . The bike’s 213 kg kerb weight can also be a challenge for some riders, though the bike doesn’t really feel very heavy once it’s on the move.
With its 1450 mm wheelbase, the T100 feels stable when ridden on wide open highways and remains manageable in stop and go city traffic. There’s no wind protection here, of course, which means it’s not the best choice for long distance touring, but if you’re prepared to live with a bit of wind blast, and enjoy riding at a relaxed pace, long weekend trips on this bike should be a breeze.
BRAKING & ELECTRONICS
In terms of braking power, the T100 uses a single 310 mm floating disc at the front and a single 255 mm disc brake at the rear, while ABS is standard. Braking power is quite adequate, with appreciable ‘feel’ at the lever and good stopping power. The brakes don’t fade under hard braking and the bike remains confidence inspiring even when brakes are applied hard on wet, tricky road surfaces. Switchable traction control provides an extra safety net as well.
Other notable bits on the Triumph T100 include an integrated engine immobiliser, a USB power socket, LED DRLs and an LED tail lamp.
Priced at Rs 7.78 lakh, ex-showroom Delhi, the T100 offers a fine mix of classic British styling, combined with modern day features and performance and all-around competence. For mature riders looking for a high-quality motorcycle that looks good, is likely to be very reliable and offers a lot of riding pleasure, the T100 could be a pretty interesting choice.
TEXT AND PHOTO: Anwesh Koley