2017 Triumph Bonneville T100

Editor Score: 87.25%
Engine 17.75/20
Suspension/Handling 13.0/15
Transmission/Clutch 9.0/10
Brakes 7.5/10
Instruments/Controls4.25/5
Ergonomics/Comfort 9.25/10
Appearance/Quality 9.0/10
Desirability 8.5/10
Value 9.0/10
Overall Score87.25/100

Triumph’s new Bonneville platform has already made a significant impact on the moto market in less than a year. Spearheaded by the 900cc Street Twin and followed closely by the 1200cc T120 Bonneville and Thruxton models, the retro-modern roadsters are selling as quickly as Triumph can build them, with strong sales forcing the company to add an extra shift at its factory to meet demand.

2016 Triumph Street Twin First Ride Review

2016 Triumph Bonneville T120 First Ride Review

2016 Triumph Bonneville Thruxton R First Ride Review

“This new platform was the biggest project for the Hinckley-era Triumph,” Miles Perkins, Triumph’s Head of Brand, told us this week, adding it required five years of development work. We recognized Triumph’s achievement by giving the Bonneville platform our 2016 Motorcycle of the Year award. Perkins says demand for the modern classics is a massive 68% higher than the company expected.

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The production challenges won’t get any easier after the introduction of this new T100 version of the Bonneville, which marries the engine of the Street Twin with the T120’s chassis and appearance. Other than the smaller motor, the key distinctions for the T100 are the move to a single-disc front brake, the absence of a centerstand and passenger grab-rail, and the loss of ride modes. Oh, and no contrasting seat piping (accessory seat shown here) and no standard heated handgrips as on the T120.

Triumph Bonneville T100

Keeping an eye out for the T100 Bonneville, essentially a T120 Bonnie powered by the Street Twin’s 900cc motor and minus a 310mm rotor and Nissin two-piston caliper.

So, if we boiled down the review of the T100, it’s basically a Bonneville lacking a couple of features with a Street Twin motor slipped inside, and the riding impression backs that up.

A rider is greeted with an exceedingly neutral riding position, with a manageable 31.1-inch seat height and a very modest reach to the handlebars. The torque-assist clutch is almost laughably light in its pull yet easy to modulate, and the 5-speed gearbox is precise. Throttle response is free of any glitches, making the lack of ride modes inconsequential.

Despite having 300 fewer cubic centimeters than the T120, there is plenty of squirt on tap from the T100’s 900cc eight-valve, single-overhead-cam parallel-Twin engine. Triumph was pessimistic when it claimed just 54 hp at its crankshaft, as we measured 52.6 hp at the Street Twin’s rear tire. Peak torque should be equivalent to the 57.8 lb-ft of the Street’s, but it’s the vast spread of twist that is far more impressive than the maximum value. The sound emanating from the peashooter mufflers is pleasingly deep and boisterous, even if its 270-degree crank summons a different tune than the 360-degree cranks of old.

Triumph Street Twin vs. Harley-Davidson Street 750 vs. Moto Guzzi V7 II Stone 

Triumph Bonneville T100

Lots of sweet finish details to unpack here, including functional cylinder fins helping an unobtrusive radiator shed engine heat, plus lovely brushed aluminum engine and throttle-body covers in addition to old-school touches, like the finning on the header brackets and the retro fork gaiters. Haters will hate the tank seam.

Although lacking a few of the T120’s features, the T100 is far from spartan. It boasts standard traction control and ABS to lend a hand if yours become inadequate, and it one-ups the Street Twin’s single-pod gauges for a pair of pods from the T120, which includes a gear-position indicator, fuel gauge, clock and trip computer, as well as a tachometer. A USB socket under the seat is ready to charge portable electronic devices. Heated grips and cruise control are available options, as are the adjustable levers and bar-end mirror seen on our test bike.

Triumph Bonneville T100

The fuel tank of the T100 is the same 3.8-gallon container as on the T120, but the T100 has its own badge design. The one seen here is actually another item from Triumph’s extensive accessory catalog. Note the rubber knee pads, attractive bullet-shaped turn signals and Triumph’s T/Union Jack logo in the headlight, all standard features.

The T100’s handling is very similar to the T120’s, of course, but it’s not quite the same. The absence of a brake rotor and caliper from its front wheel allows the junior Bonnie to initiate turns with less effort. The difference isn’t huge, but it is noticeable. Braking power isn’t up to the same level as the big Bonnie, but I was nevertheless pleased with the feel through the lever and ultimate speed retardation considering how the bike’s intended purposes.

The brake (and centerstand and grab-rail) missing from the T120 adds up to 24 fewer pounds for the T100, according to the dry weights claimed by Triumph. Subtracting two dozen pounds from the 542 lbs we measured with a T120 should result in a full-up curb weight of 518 lbs. Incidentally, the Street Twin scaled in at 478 lbs with its 3.2-gallon tank filled.

Heritage Lifestyle Characters Compete On Cool Factor

Triumph Bonneville T100

The T100 is a sure-footed handler that could rip up a canyon quicker if its footpegs were placed a little higher. Note period-replica Pirelli Phantom Sportscomp tires, a 100/90-18 in front and a 150/70-17 out back. The skidplate is another accessory item.

Also splitting the difference is the T100’s MSRP, which starts at $10,300. That’s $1,200 cheaper than a nearly identical T120, but it’s a $1,600 premium over the more contemporary-styled Street Twin. Triumph builds the Bonneville lineup in Thailand to reduce build costs, but there are probably more than a few Britons who can remember much shoddier Triumphs built in England.

2017 Triumph  Bonneville T100
+ Highs

  • Classic style from iconic brand
  • Attention to detail
  • Versatility
– Sighs

  • Slightly porky
  • Not made in England
  • Street Twin $1.6k cheaper

The T100 actually has three price points, starting with the Jet Black version and stopping at the two-tone versions (blue or orange) listed at $10,800. “Sophisticated urban style” is offered via the T100 Black model, which features dark engine covers, exhaust, wheel rims, mirrors and turn signals. Your choice of Jet Black paint or Matt Black for $10,550.

In the amount-of-motorcycle-for-the-dollar category, the Street Twin is a better value. But in the I’ve-always-wanted-a-Bonneville category, the value of the T100 can’t be beat.

Triumph Bonneville T100

In Gear

Helmet: Shoei J-Cruise
Jacket: Spidi Ring jacket
Gloves: Joe Rocket gloves
Jeans: Dainese Bonneville pants
Boots: Chrome Industries Blckchrm Combat boots

 

2017 Triumph Bonneville T100 Specification
Engine Type Liquid cooled, 8 valve,
SOHC, 270° crank angle parallel twin
Engine Displacement 900cc
Bore/Stroke 84.6mm x 80mm
Compression Ratio 10.55:1
Maximum Power (Claimed) 54 hp at 5900 rpm
Maximum Torque (Claimed) 59 lb-ft. @ 3230 rpm
Fuel system Multipoint sequential electronic fuel injection
Exhaust Chromed 2 into 2 exhaust system with twin chrome silencers (Black 2 into 2 exhaust system with twin black silencers for Bonnevill T100 Black)
Final drive X ring chain
Clutch Torque assist. Wet, multi-plate. Cable operated.
Gearbox 5-speed
Frame Tubular steel twin cradle
Swingarm Twin-sided, tubular steel
Front Wheels Wire 32-spoke – Steel Rims. 18 x 2.75in
Rear Wheels Wire 32-spoke – Steel Rims. 17 x 4.25in
Front Tires 100/90-18
Rear Tires 150/70-R17
Front Suspension KYB 41 mm forks, 120 mm travel
Rear Suspension KYB twin shocks with adjustable preload, 120 mm rear wheel travel
Brakes Front Single 310 mm floating disc, Nissin 2-piston floating caliper, ABS
Brakes Rear Single 255 mm disc, Nissin 2-piston floating caliper, ABS
Front Wheels Wire 32-spoke – Steel Rims. 18 x 2.75in
Rear Wheels Wire 32-spoke – Steel Rims. 17 x 4.25in
Front Tires 100/90-18
Rear Tires 150/70-R17
Width at Handlebars 28.1in (715mm)
Height Without Mirror 43.3in (1100mm)
Seat Height 31.1in (790mm)
Wheelbase 57.1in (1450mm)
Rake 25.5º
Trail 4.1in
Dry Weight 470lb
Tank Capacity 3.8gal
Tank Capacity 4.6 gallons
Fuel Economy (Claimed) 61.4 mpg
Instrument Display and Functions LCD multi-functional instrument pack with analogue speedometer, analogue tachometer, odometer, gear position indicator, fuel gauge, range to empty indication, service indicator, clock, 2x trip, average & current fuel consumption display, traction control status display, throttle mode status display, heated grip status (accessory) and cruise control ready – controlled by a handlebar mounted scroll button (accessory).

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Triumph Communities

  • JWaller

    It looks good. I’m still waiting to see a new Scrambler some time soon. I just got my 2006 Scrambler back out of the shop and it’s still one of my favorite bikes ever. I hope Triumph can do one even better.

    • DickRuble

      One reason for buying Triumphs, like HD’s, is the opportunity they give you to socialize extensively, repeatedly at the dealership while contributing significantly to the local economy.

      • Chuck Smith

        Ok, at least you exposed yourself as the troll you are. Now we can all go back to ignoring you.

        • DickRuble

          Fair enough.. move along.. nothing to see

      • JWaller

        I don’t know. Ten years of ownership and this is only its second time in the shop, but never at the dealership’s service center. The first time was to get it tuned up and running after sitting up for over a year when I went to Iraq. This time was for a valve adjustment I didn’t feel like doing. I was happier to contribute to the local economy by taking the bike in to an independent mechanic. Always happy to do my part.

    • Kevin Duke

      Not much longer of a wait, Nov. 8 at EICMA in Milan.

  • krishan adhikari

    the ABS on the street twin is a single channel unit, is it the same for T100?

  • DickRuble

    Too heavy for what it is. Why would anyone buy this instead of an FZ-09 or even an FZ-07?

    • Old MOron

      Kevin reports that “The T100 is a sure-footed handler that could rip up a canyon quicker if its footpegs were placed a little higher.”

      And JB showed that the Street Twin has chops.

      http://www.motorcycle.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/12/120915-2016-triumph-street-twin-ap1_3220-422×633.jpg

      Maybe the Yammies are cheaper and sportier, but the Trumpets seem sporty and stylish enough to attract buyers.

      • therr850

        Is that the infamous Peter Egan?

        • Old MOron

          No, no, no. Peter Egan would never wear skinny jeans.

          • therr850

            Just wondering. Peter recently did a road/tour test on a Triumph for Cycle World I think and this kinda looks like him.

          • Old MOron

            Oh, sorry. I thought you were teasing JB by comparing him to PE. I wanted to pile on by teasing him about his jeans.

            That photo is of our own MOron, John Burns. You’ll find it, and an excellent narrative, here: http://www.motorcycle.com/manufacturer/triumph/2016-triumph-street-twin-first-ride-review.html

          • therr850

            Thank you for clearing that up. I have been under the impression JB was younger, not a grey beard, as myself.

            I reviewed your link,,,, and your discussion about mixing tire plys. Don’t know how many articles in bike magazines I’ve read that have said, “DO NOT MIX BIAS AND RADIAL PLY TIRES ON YOUR BIKE!” But then, in the sixties, when radials were first introduced to the US, we were told they would not work on older suspension equipped cars. They would cause all kinds of handling problems. I did it anyhow on a 1947 Chevrolet Coupe and that car had never driven straighter or ride better. (wives tails?)

          • denchung
          • DickRuble

            Always wondered what the tail of the wives tails was about.

          • therr850

            I’d explain it but this site isn’t X rated.(heeheehee)

    • Tanner

      Indeed. I test road the T120 which is this with a bigger engine. It was pretty awful. It needs to lose 130lbs.

      • DickRuble

        Thank you! I sat only on the T120 and balanced it. Didn’t ride it. But it was enough to know if felt portly.

    • Bmwclay

      Some people get tired of those cookie cutter, origami style bikes that force you to race everything on wheels. I missed out on the originals back in the sixties when I was 17 and had no money. I am not going to miss a second chance! Say goodbye to my K1300S and 1150GS. (R100S stays though)

      • DickRuble

        I’d say ride the Triumph, twice, before you trade in your K1300S.

        • Bmwclay

          Good point on the R100S, it is fast but has 40 year old technology. In regard to the K bike, I love it but at 70 years young, I am looking for something more mellow yet modern. Maybe the new Honda CB 1100?

          • DickRuble

            How many miles on the K and what state are you in, if I may ask?

          • Bmwclay

            16 K in Ca.

          • DickRuble

            Why not just customize your R100S? Put some inverted forks up front, some ohlins in the back, upgrade the brakes to some new top of the line brembo, bigger carbs, new exhaust.. what else is there technology wise that you would be missing?

    • Born to Ride

      Because the FZ09 is hideous, and the FZ07 is a nice bike at a great price, but it’s rather juvenile in its styling and appeal. And it’s aesthetic will be dated in a year or two. These classic triumph motorcycles never go out of style.

      • DickRuble

        Don’t know about hideous. I like the 2015 version, especially in yellow. It also happens to have incredible ergo’s for someone over 6’2. Styling gets you only so far. Power and torque falling off the cliff at 5000rpm are a bigger turnoff to me.

        • Born to Ride

          This is very true. I too wouldn’t be able to live with a 500+ pound motorcycle that makes 55 hp, however the T120 and Thruxton make reasonable power albeit through a narrow rev band. I’m waiting for a Street Twin R model to remedy this problem. Also at 5’10” with shoes on, I’m basically the median ergo setup that I imagine most OEMs shoot for.

    • Scott Silvers

      Have you LOOKED at an Fz09? Trump wouldn’t even grab that P…..

      • DickRuble

        Enlighten us.. what’s wrong with the FZ-09? I’ve looked at the Triumph Thruxton and the FZ06 but not the FZ-09.

        • Scott Silvers

          I am….most people attracted to the T100’s nostalgia tripp, don’t really care about the extra weight, or reduced power. This bike is not about flattening eyeballs or dragging elbows

          • DickRuble

            Ok.. case closed

    • Andre Capitao Melo

      Completely different categories.

  • Old MOron

    “In the amount-of-motorcycle-for-the-dollar category, the Street Twin is a better value. But in the I’ve-always-wanted-a-Bonneville category, the value of the T100 can’t be beat.”

    As I read your article, I was wondering, “Why should I buy a T100 instead of a Street Twin?” And you summed it up perfectly.

    But the T100 does seem porky. Any idea where the extra weight comes from?

    • Kevin Duke

      Extra compared to what? The old Bonneville wasn’t light, and this one has more displacement, a radiator, coolant, plumbing, a beefier frame and plenty o’ chrome.

      • Old MOron

        “Subtracting two dozen pounds from the 542 lbs we measured with a T120 should result in a full-up curb weight of 518 lbs. Incidentally, the Street Twin scaled in at 478 lbs with its 3.2-gallon tank filled.”

        I don’t see anything hanging on the T100 that should make it 40 lbs heavier than the Street Twin. Do you know where those 40 lbs are hiding?

        http://motorcycle.com.vsassets.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/102616-2017-triumph-bonneville-t100-5228.jpg
        http://motorcycle.com.vsassets.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/12/120915-2016-triumph-street-twin-img_0600-583×389.jpg

        • Born to Ride

          My vote is that the majority is in the wheels, tank, and fat steel rear fender.

          • Kevin Duke

            Exactly! Also peashooter mufflers, an extra 0.6 gallon of fuel and a tachometer.

        • CruisingTroll

          It’s their estimate, and the author stupidly failed to account for the difference in the engines. A 900cc Twin is, everything else being equal, going to weigh less than a 1200cc Twin. It’s probably 25lb lighter than this estimate here, and 15-20lbs heavier than a Street Twin.

      • Larry Kahn

        FYI weighed my stock 2007 865cc T100 on two bathroom scales, full tank, 505 lbs.

  • Tanner

    I tried the T120 – I thought it was a heavy, slow cow with an unpleasant sounding engine. This thing must be worse.

  • Born to Ride

    What I want is a street twin styled bike with the Thruxton R engine, suspension, and brakes. I like the Thrux, but would never have the heart to change the beautiful brushed clip ons and top triple, and I’d much prefer the standard ergonomics on a bike like this.

  • Gabriel Owens

    Meh. Who wants this?

    • DickRuble

      Didn’t take long for you to come up with a negative comment…

      • Gabriel Owens

        Does it make your little Ruble wiggle?

        • Born to Ride

          He’s upset that you beat him to it.

  • JMDonald

    Porky not made in England. That is all I need to know.

  • DickRuble

    Tires? Same bias ply/radial mix?

  • blueson2wheels

    A charming retro bike can be slow without being heavy. See, e.g., Moto Guzzi V7. But you get much more support with Triumph, that’s everything to some folks.

    • Jens Vik

      Much more support? That all depends where you live, I guess. The Guzzi brotherhood will always help you out 🙂

  • SRMark

    A right proper motorcycle. A bit pricey for what you get but more garageable than a Harley. Certainly something to consider come Spring.

  • Steve C

    Lovely bike. But makes about the same HP as my 75 Guzzi T3, weighs about the same,I sure brakes and suspension are better and it is 40 years newer, no shaft though.Would look good in the garage that’s for sure.
    I think the small Guzzi’s are closer to the original Bonny in feel and performance without the vibes.

  • lennon2016

    The T100 is good-looking, but the base price on it is prohibitive when the T120 is $1200 more with appropriate power-to-weight figures, full “piping” and “grab rail” and “standard heated grips” and superior (presumed) value retention. (Try it out. Buy both, when both are available, then wait 2-5-10 years and see what you get for either. The difference at original sale will seem laughable. “I was unloading more than $10k on a bike and I was worried about a grand??”) Triumph are unloading so many variations based on their new powerplants that it baffles. Should’ve been “The T100 became the T120, boomers” and that’s it. Their whole pitch for the street twin was accessorization and make-it-your-own. Why not just intro a Bonneville package for it? Instead there’s a new SKU which has abundant customizations too, granted mostly skin deep. The Street Twin is a mostly-technically-superior competitor to the Ducati Scramblers, 883 Irons and Yamaha Bolts of the world. Now Triumph has to pitch a similarly-powered bike for a price that gets into territory where 100+hp, ride-moded bikes are many. How far can “but it’s so purrty…” take a company? Cue the journalistic trope: we’ll have to wait and see.

  • Martin Buck

    This bike is all about the emotional response. I have an internal meter that stays at near zero for most bikes. It swings wildly when I see a great Guzzi, and this bike pegs the limit. If I could buy this, I would probably keep it in my living room and drool over it all day long. Friends would shun me, I would lose my job, my family would leave. I’d be like Richard Dreyfuss in Close Encounters of The Third Kind. I would be afraid to ride it lest some hint of smut besmirch it in our progress through the blissful countryside. Polishing would turn into caressing, and then unspeakable thoughts would go through my fevered mind. This way lies madness. Take it away from me. Save me from myself.

  • JMDonald

    I have been thinking about this bike for a few days after reading this first ride review. Yes I wish it were lighter. Yes I wish it was made in England. Yes I wish it cost less. A T120 with assorted Thruxton parts is the Bonneville I really want. But that’s me. There are a few things that could be better. That doesn’t prevent me from liking this bike. Another time another place I would have loved to own one. If the guys in Hinckley are reading this the Triumph I really want is the Tiger Sport. Bring it to America. I would gladly buy the first one. This T100 is a nice bike. The positives outweigh the negatives.

  • LogicDude

    I love my 2006 883 Sportster, but with that configuration it will always come up short on specs compared to a Bonneville from this century, and with the liquid cooling in the Bonnie now it is even more pronounced. This is very tough to resist, thought he Sporty has a few charms of its own that are hard to beat, as it has some amazing “sweet spots” in the rpm+load plane. I am amazed that even Triumph (not to mention Yamaha) can’t seem to figure out how to hide the tank seam. Does Harley hold a patent on doing that or something?

  • Rob Mitchell

    The bike looks good can’t be much to ride by the lack of smile on the rider, or is he making like a 10 year old and frowning thinking we’ll think more of him?