New to the XC are steel-spoked wheels with aluminum rims that are designed to use tubeless tires, which can drastically simplify puncture repair compared to tubed tires. Wheel sizes remain the same 19-inch front and 17-inch rear as the non-XC’s cast-aluminum hoops – no 21-incher up front like the KTM Adventure that is better able to roll over off-road terrain.
To guard against tip-over damage, the sweet and powerful three-cylinder powerplant gets protection from tubular-steel framework, while an aluminum sump guard shields from below. Hand guards are standard equipment on the XC. Dual fog lights streaming 55 watts each provide extra nighttime illumination. Expect an additional 15-20 pounds on top of the regular Explorer’s 570 ready-to-ride pounds.
Otherwise, the XC is identical to the Explorer we recently tested in our upcoming adventure-touring shootout – stay tuned to see how it stacks up to BMW’s R1200GS, Yamaha’s Super Tenere, Moto Guzzi’s Stelvio NTX and KTM’s Adventure. We loved the Explorer’s 1215cc Triple and its standard-equipment cruise control. Also standard are traction control, switchable antilock brakes and shaft drive. All Explorers have 10,000-mile service intervals and an unlimited-mileage two-year warranty.
The 2012 Tiger Explorer has a starting MSRP of $15,699. No XC price info from Triumph yet, but it should be safe to assume it will carry a $1000 price premium over the non-XC, just like the 800cc Tigers.