Motorcycle Types Cruiser 2016 Triumph Street Twin - Bonneville Meets Modernity

2016 Triumph Street Twin – Bonneville Meets Modernity

2016 Triumph Street Twin Preview

2016 Triumph Street Twin - Bonneville Meets Modernity
2016 Triumph Street Twin

Since its debut in 1959, the Triumph Bonneville has symbolized the heart of British motorcycling. Triumph said the original Bonneville delivered “the highest performance from a standard production motorcycle.”

This performance attracted many of the world’s most iconic American celebrities, including actors James Dean, Steve McQueen, and Clint Eastwood, and musicians such as Bob Dylan.

The legend continued, keeping its iconic flare throughout the 21st Century. But even icons have to be reborn, and this is just what happened. Meet the 2016 Triumph Street Twin, one of five new Bonneville models released including the T120, T120 Black, Thruxton and Thruxton R.

The Street Twin proves that the youthful spirit has never fled from the Bonneville soul, the new bike taking over the reigns of the previous-generation Bonnevilles. The Street Twin arrives with the smallest engine of the new five-model lineup, the bike featuring a 900cc twin that produces 18-percent more torque than the previous 865cc Bonneville motorcycles. The others in the 2016 Triumph lineup – the T120 and Thurxton models – arrive with the equally as new 1200cc twin. And all engines are now liquid cooled, though the fins on the engine cases still help cooling at speeds.

Match this with modern-day technology such as ride-by-wire throttle, traction control that can be switched off, ABS, and a slip-assist clutch, and the 2016 Triumph Street Twin has truly helped initiate the Hinckley company’s new tagline: “Bonneville. Reborn.”

2016 Triumph Street Twin - Bonneville SilverAnd though the original spirit has never fled from that Bonneville soul, the new Street Twin was completely redesigned. It features not only the new 900cc “high torque” engine, but also a new chassis and suspension, and a lower seat height and refined rider triangle that caters to a wider range of riders – especially the newbies.

Powering the Triumph Street Twin – mated to a six-speed transmission – is the all-new eight-valve, parallel-twin engine that produces 59 ft/lbs of torque at 3200 rpm. The engine, delivering 18 percent more torque than the previous 865cc engine that arrived in the 2015 Bonneville lineup, should be the more streetable engine; the previous 865cc engine produced just 50 ft/lbs of torque but at much higher revs – 5800 RPM.

The Triumph Street Twin’s liquid-cooled engine – having a 270-degree smooth firing order – arrives with a new ride-by-wire system, which allows for smoother throttle response and a traction control (one level). The engine, along with it’s redesigned upswept stainless-steel exhaust, delivers 36-percent better fuel efficiency compared to the previous model. Regarding the liquid cooling, Triumph’s lead engineer was asked about the percentage of liquid cooling, but there was no direct formula – the engine is a mix of air and liquid cooling, and the engine fins were designed to provide further cooling at higher speeds.

The chassis was also tweaked and provides more travel, and is said to provide better handling in both urban and highway situations. The Triumph Street Twin’s suspension upgrades, combined with the lower seat, a redesigned seat with additional foam, and a more neutral riding position, is claimed to produce the “most accessible Bonneville ever.”

This accessibility also combines with modern ABS (not able to turn off), something that engineers claimed was a must for the Street Twin – a Bonneville targeting entry-level riders that seek more than is offered in a Ducati Scrambler or Harley-Davidson 883 Sportster.

2016 Triumph Street Twin - Bonneville RedTo further solidify its place in modernity, the Triumph Street Twin Bonneville arrives with some enhances styling, which includes blacked-out detailing, a redesigned fuel tank, and LED brake lights (LED headlights are standard on the T120 and Thruxton models).

Triumph has yet to release the price of the 2016 Street Twin Bonneville, but expect it to be around $9,000 – right inline with its main competitors, such as the Ducati Scrambler Icon and Sportster 883.

Following are the highlights of the 2016 Triumph Street Twin Bonneville:

2016 Triumph Street Twin Bonneville Colors:

  • Cranberry Red, with tank and wheel strips
  • Aluminum Silver with tank and wheel strips
  • Matt Black
  • Jet Black
  • Phantom Black

2016 Triumph Street Twin Bonneville Highlights:

  • ABS: The Street Twin’s variable anti-lock braking system enhances rider confidence, safety and control


  • Traction control: Taking advantage of the ride-by-wire system, the  switchable traction control system optimises the delivery of the Street Twin’s amazing torque


  • Slip assist clutch: Bringing a lighter touch and feel to the clutch to  make it easier to ride, and ride longer


  • Ride-by-wire: Enhancing throttle responsiveness, safety and feel


  • LED rear light: Incorporated into the classically-inspired tail set-up,  bringing a distinctive rear light pattern and power efficiency


  • USB charge socket: Headstock mounted USB socket provided so riders can charge up their essential devices


  • Engine immobilizer: With a transponder integrated in the new Street Twin key


  • Single gauge cluster:

    • Gear position indicator
    • Odometer
    • Two trip settings
    • Service indicator
    • Range to empty
    • Fuel level, average and current MPG
    • Access to turn off traction control and ABS features
    • Clock
    • Optional tire pressure monitoring system and heated grips.

2016 Triumph Street Twin Bonneville Styling Highlights:

  • Cast wheels, finished in black with pinstripe detailing
  • Elegant fuel tank with contemporary decals and stylish chrome filler cap
  • Compact indicators
  • LED rear light with distinctive light pattern
  • Compact headlight with a signature Triumph bulb cap cover badge
  • Elegant upswept brushed stainless steel silencer
  • Sculpted black side panels, with contemporary Street Twin graphics
  • Minimal black painted mudguards

Triumph also offers a new range of accessories that allow for further personalization, including kits that are dealer installed and retain the factory warranty. The kits – some featuring Vance & Hines exhaust, the company now partnering with Triumph, include:

The Scrambler inspiration kit

  • Brushed high-level Vance & Hines exhaust system (off-road use only)
  • Rear mudguard removal kit with compact rear light
  • Brown ribbed bench seat
  • Brown ‘Barrel style’ handlebar grips
  • Compact LED indicators
  • Brushed aluminum sump guard

The Brat Tracker inspiration kit

  • Brushed Vance & Hines slip-on silencers
  • Rear mudguard removal kit with compact rear light
  • Black ribbed bench seat
  • Compact LED indicators
  • Black “Barrel style” handlebar grips
  • Brushed sump guard

The Urban inspiration kit

  • “Ace” style handlebars
  • Brushed Vance & Hines slip-on silencers
  • Compact LED indicators
  • Short tinted fly-screen
  • Signature single pannier, in waxed cotton and leather

Note: availability of the Vance & Hines silencers, rear mudguard removal kits and indicators are governed by local market legislation.

2016 Triumph Street Twin Photo Gallery

Ron Lieback
Ron Lieback
One of the few moto journalists based on the East Coast, Ron Lieback joined the motorcycle industry as a freelancer in 2007, and is currently Online Editor at Ultimate Motorcycling. He is also the author of "365 to Vision: Modern Writer's Guide (How to Produce More Quality Writing in Less Time).

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