Triumph Tiger Explorer 1200
When we tested the new Triumph Tiger Explorer 1200, we found it to be an outstanding adventure bike for the street, but wanting on the dirt. Twisted Throttle out of Exeter, R.I. noticed the same thing, and has put together an Explorer that is as much a Tiger off-road as it is on.
With a set of Continental TKC 80 Twinduro heavy-duty knobbies supplying the traction essential for success in the dirt, Twisted Throttle set to make the Explorer durable enough to survive in the harshest of conditions.
“The biggest challenge we saw was actually more of an opportunity. The drive shaft is big and vulnerable,” Nate Bastein, Twisted Throttle Industrial Designer, says. “We have developed a skidplate that covers most of the unit. A much needed improvement if you plan to go off-road.”
“The Tiger went from 75-25, street-dirt, to around 40-60. It is still a big bike. The TKC 80 tires helped with traction, and handlebar risers offer the ability to stand up on the wide grippy pegs,” says Shawn Johnson, who assembled the bike. “Crashbars and skidplates give you the ability to take chances that a stock bike won’t let you take.”
A clever feature on the Twisted Throttle Tiger Explorer is the ability to fully remove the SW-Motech luggage. Rather than just allowing you to remove the panniers, leaving a large mounting frame installed, the entire system is removable in minutes thanks to quick-release fasteners. “You can ride to an off-road destination, set-up your camp, drop your luggage and go, Johnson says.
SW-Motech of Denmark played a large, active role in the building of the Triumph. “Several of the SW-Motech components were designed by us in-house,” Bastein says. “We have a very close relationship with them.”
Among the SW-Motech products on the Tiger Explorer are crashbars, skidplate, radiator guard, GPS mount, toprack, oversized footpegs, handlebar risers, mirror wideners, and the auxiliary light mount. MRA added its adjustable X-creen and R&G Racing Products added front axle sliders helps prevent damage in a fall.
Bastein is rightfully proud of the Twisted Throttle design work he did for the Triumph Tiger Explorer. “We increased comfort, protection, luggage capacity, and lighting – all things the bike needed a little help with,” he says. “We feel the things we did to the Explorer took an excellent bike and made it incredible.”
For additional information on Twisted Throttle, click here.
Photography by Matt Buck