Positioned as the most affordable Triumph yet, with punchy yet unintimidating power. It combines a rider friendly size, with premium details and class leading tech. Its poised stance boasts Triumphs classic heritage styling but with a modern twist.
I had the honour to try out the new mid-weight roadster Trident 660 on the Tenerife first ride launch. Here’s my thoughts.
Review based on a day’s riding in Tenerife with both dry and wet weather and I’m of course a female riding the Triumph Trident 660 so hope if gives a good woman’s perspective too.
The Trident is powered by a 660cc three-cylinder liquid-cooled, dual over head camshaft, 660cc inline-triple cylinder engine making 81bhp / 79.9 horsepower at 10,250 rpm and 47 lb-ft of torque at 6,250 rpm. You’re looking at 90% of the 64Nm peak torque spread across the majority of the rev range. This results in a punchy and agile ride. Responsive power of the line
It’s derived from the Street Triple’s venerable powerplant, however while it’s the first 660 to appear on a Triumph here in the UK, it’s a capacity that’s been used on Australian spec Street Triples for restricted licence holders for the past few years.
Ok, but how did it feel? It was smooth, already ready no matter the gear or the speed and with enough power to get you grinning. Enough to have a lot of fun but not get you in trouble.
With the Trident 660 being aimed at new riders looking for their first big bike, Triumph are offering an restrictor kit, which limits peak power to just under 48bhp for A2 licence holders but can be removed when the rider moves onto a full A category licence. This is a bike to grow with.
It just feels like an absolutely ideal bike for someone trying to build confidence, maybe a first bike and it’s also possible to make if A2 licence compliant for learning and having it grow with you.
As a British brand with far rooted heritage Triumph have worked to integrate that more traditional look with a modern touch. I’d describe it as clean and gently aggressive but with retro lines. Retro touches include the sculpted knee cut outs on the fuel tank and the classic round headlamp. The design language is certainly softer and more traditional than that of its more aggressive rivals and comes with 4 colour choices. (Crystal White, Matt Jet Black & Matt Silver Ice, Sapphire Black and Silver Ice & Diablo Red.)
The rear of the Trident 660 has a pretty minimalist look to it. There’s only a slither of a seat with the LED brake light integrated, while the number plate hanger, mudguard and indicators are mounted on the fabricated steel swinging arm to create the ‘floating’ effect which tends to polarise traditional motorcyclists.
An all-new tubular steel chassis and cast aluminium swingarm have typical roadster figures, with a 55.2-inch wheelbase and 24.6-degree rake.
Built by riders, for riders, Triumph also offer an extensive range of accessories for the Trident 660, from enhanced styling, boosted comfort or space, extra tech, security, or your own personal touch. All accessories are life tested to withstand the conditions you’ll face and come with a two-year, unlimited mileage warranty.
A sleek underslung 3-into-1-exhaust system produces the triple-cylinder howl that us Triumph fans adore. You’re smiling the moment it fires up. I also noticed that when riding along the purr was just lovely.
Clearly made my Triumph. Nothing on the bike had me questioning or worrying about the quality but with just a day riding a more long term test would really be needed to answer this.
With the 660 powertrain being a tested offering in the Australian market and a variant on the Street Triple it’s not a new unknown.
Triumph have nailed creating an agile yet totally unintimidating mid-weight offering. It’s 189kg weight and 805mm seat height mean it’s really confidence inspiring. The sculpted tank and very narrow stance make for one of the lower options in the class. I’m 172cm and could easily plant both feet flat with a bend knee. A 14-litre fuel tank has been designed for this model with the waist of the bike where the tank meets the saddle of importance to allow ease of access to and from the machine
The addition of riding modes, another class leading option, brings confidence no mater the conditions. I’m both happy and sad to say I got to test the rain mode in the wet [sad as it meant we got wet]. By switching the modes I could feel the variation in throttle control through the ride-by-wire system.
Slip-assist clutch met expectations for a light clutch, certainly beneficial for riding fatigue, especially in urban environments. The clutch was not adjustable unfortunately, a down for smaller hands but I did find the lever perfectly manageable. The brake however was adjustable.
With the clutch it’s worth nothing that the Trident can be fitted with an optional factory up/down quick shifter, which isn’t offered by its direct competition. This is a tested technology available on other Triumphs and something that certainly aids the thrills of quick shifting but also reduces clutch fatigue.
Triumph Trident 660 ground clearance is 132mm.
Pushing the class to new levels the Triumph boasts some good tech.
The all-new TFT/LCD dashboard, not shared with other models in the Triumph range, looks cool. It has a minimalistic and uncluttered design – clean and simple. It also brings plenty of additional features when paired with the optional ‘My Triumph Connectivity System’, which can be connected to a smartphone to give integrated sat-nav, phone and music control, while action camera users can pair their GoPro to the system and control it through the left hand switchgear.
As a generation with the phone glued to my side I love the connectivity system connecting both my phone, Cardo Intercom and GoPro. Great tech. The screen is really easy to ready and mega minimalistic. It just feels uncluttered posing the information you need at an easy glance.
Thanks to the modern throttle-by-wire, the Trident 660 boasts two pre-set riding modes, Road and Rain, which alter throttle response and rider aid intervention. It also includes adjustable traction control, which can be switched off if desired. ABS, as per Euro 5 standards cannot be turned off.
Rain mode is also a nice option to build confidence on the bike, in any conditions, as it reduces the throttle response. Great for new riders.
Class-appropriate 2-piston floating Nissin callipers work with 310mm floating rotors, and a single-piston Nissin calliper grabs onto a 255mm disc. Brakes straight and hard, giving you confidence to power on.
Suspension duties are handled by a non-adjustable 41mm inverted Showa fork and Showa shock featuring spring-preload adjustment only. Compared to the traditional fork found on most bikes in this class, the inverted fork is a step up, although costs were still saved with the lack of adjustment.
I felt really smooth riding, some off the larger potholes gave a shudder but with my weight it gave a comfortable ride. The lovely seat also helped.
High-quality Michelin Road 5 120/70 and 180/55 rubber is mounted on cast aluminum 17-inch wheels. Michelin Road 5 tires are a significant improvement when compared to the OEM rubber available in this class. They felt sold and confident in both dry and wet riding.
Basic immobiliser as standard but as with most bikes additional security would be recommended. Triumph do security accessories with unlimited warranties so gives an on-brand option.
It’s a mid-weight bike so don’t expect touring capacity. You’re probably looking at a rucksack unless you get Triumph accessories luggage. There are limited points for die down straps.
Pitted against the likes of the Suzuki SV650, Yamaha MT-07 / XSR 700, Kawasaki Z650 and Honda CBR650R, the Trident 660 has its work cut out for it. However, the Triumph offers plenty of up-spec componentry, 5 stand out unique features [see video] and features for a few hundred dollars above most of its competition.
I’ve not tested this but the pillion seat is there, ideal for perching on.
The Triumph Trident will cost £7195 when it goes on sale in January 2021, in line with Honda’s four-cylinder CB650F, roughly £500 more than the twins from Kawasaki and Yamaha.
It makes the Trident the cheapest bike in the Triumph range, at £900 below the previous entry level model, the Street Twin.
Summarise this bike in three words? Confidence inspiring fun. As Triumph’s most affordable option it’s dived straight into the mid-weight roadster class with some blinking fun energy. I think it’s a game changer. Big thumbs up.
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