More capable than ever, the 2012 Triumph Bonneville T100
continues to highlight the vintage-style standard bike segment, earning praise for its legendary lines and extensive use of chrome.
Just like the original, the new model features a traditional fork with rubber gaiters, chromed spring shocks, dual peashooter exhausts, an analog speedometer, a long, flat seat with a non-skid strip for the passenger as well as a side-mounted ignition switch.
While staying true to classic British motorcycles from the '60s, the Bonneville T100 benefits from the latest advancements in fuel injection, braking and suspension systems.
|The 2012 Triumph Bonneville T100 continues to highlight the vintage-style standard bike segment. (Photo: Sébastien D'Amour/Auto123.TV)
The 865cc parallel twin-cylinder may look old, but it actually uses an electronic fuel injection system that's niftily housed in fake carburetors to preserve the unique look of the machine. The 5-speed transmission has been specially calibrated to handle the generous torque of the engine. In reality, the Bonneville T100's performance (67 hp at 7,500 rpm) compares favourably to modern standard-type middleweights.
The engine fares pretty well in most conditions, delivering a healthy dose of torque at medium revs and producing little to no vibrations. It comes alive at just 1,500 rpm, yields strong accelerations from 2,000 to 6,000 rpm, and gives a final push right before being cut off at 8,000 rpm.
The long, soft seat of the Bonneville proves surprisingly comfortable for both the rider and passenger, perched at 775 mm off the ground. And it doesn't matter how big or tall they are. The riding position is either upright or slightly leaning forward if you move your butt back toward the centre of the seat.
Legs spread, knees pressed against the tank and both hands on the wide handlebar, you feel comfortable and eager for a long ride, even though the lack of wind protection keeps you from exceeding 120 km/h for an extended period.
Handling the T100 is so effortless it becomes almost second nature. Despite a displacement of 865 cc, this bike can serve as a learning tool for beginners and then provide years of satisfaction. It feels lightweight and remarkably nimble, making for really fun times in the city where you can easily thread your way through traffic. Meanwhile, the smooth suspension cancels most if not all bumps and cracks in the road.
|Handling the T100 is so effortless it becomes almost second nature. (Photo: Sébastien D'Amour/Auto123.TV)