Triumph Trident: A premium affordable middleweight

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Triumph has decided to enter the middleweight streetbike market in a big way, releasing the new Trident 660. This roadster combines a lot of what Triumph does best, but at a more affordable price point.

Triumph’s known for building stylish bikes, with high-end components, excellent fit-and-finish, and preferring to use three-cylinder engines. The company’s execs say that’s the pattern they used for the Trident, recycling one of the brand’s respected names from the past, and putting it on a machine that’s supposed to offer a lot of bang for the buck.

That three-cylinder engine, with obvious lineage from the 675, is the first triple in this mid-priced, middleweight bracket.

The Trident uses a 660cc three-cylinder motor. It’s similar to the 675 engine, but with more than 60 new parts. It’s tuned for torque, and Triumph probably wanted to cut some costs, too. According to the factory, max output is 80 horsepower at 10,250rpm, and 47 lb-ft of torque at 6,250rpm. Triumph says most of the torque is available through most of the rev range; this isn’t a peaky motor, designed for flashy output numbers at the expense of street performance.

There’s a stainless muffler as standard equipment. An assist/slipper clutch is also standard, and six-speed gearbox. Buyers can opt for an up/down quickshifter at extra cost.

Showa forks come standard, although they’re non-adjustable.

This is the first three-cylinder engine in this class of mid-weight, mid-priced 650s, as Kawasaki, Yamaha and Suzuki have twin-cylinder engines here, and Honda has its four-cylinder 650 series. Triumph claims its triple offers the best of both worlds, with decent low-end torque like the twins, and high-end power like the fours.

The Trident has a basic electronics package, with no IMU. There’s throttle-by-wire, with Road and Rain riding modes, traction control and ABS (traction control can be switched off, ABS can’t). There’s even a colour TFT screen. None of this is groundbreaking, but it’s not standard in the 650 street bike class. The Trident has LED lighting, as every modern bike should.

TFT dash is standard, and if you pay extra, you can opt for the My Triumph connectivity feature. Here, the TFT dash is controlling a GoPro camera.

The Trident has a tubular steel frame, with aluminum wheels. The front brakes use dual-piston Nissin calipers and 310mm discs; in back, there’s a single-piston caliper and 255mm disc. 

In their reveal presentation, Triumph’s execs made much noise over the Trident’s Showa suspension (upside-down forks, and linkage-equipped monoshock). Unfortunately, that front suspension is non-adjustable, and the shock is only preload-adjustable, but it’s still encouraging to see Hinkley make an effort to put proper components on the bike.

Proper Michelin tires, woot woot! Too bad Triumph didn’t go with the obnoxious dual-headlight looks of old, but that seems to be abandoned history now.

The Trident also comes fitted with Michelin Road 5 tires, another case of Triumph using quality kit, instead of cheaping out.

Fuel capacity for the Trident is 14 litres, and Triumph says wet weight is 189 kilos. Seat height is 805 millimetres, so this should be an easy-to-handle bike all-around, not too intimidating to most riders. In overseas markets, Triumph will also offer the option to restrict output, keeping the bike learner-legal (no such worries in Canada, though!).

Designed for pillion comfort, claims Triumph. Don’t expect to stick a larger pillion on there tooooo comfortably, though. This is no Road King.

Triumph says the bike’s seat is designed for passenger comfort, not just the rider. That’s smart, as many riders in this class are interested in practicality. Unfortunately, the pillion grab handle will cost you extra, but maybe not many riders want it anyway, preferring their significant other hang on tight as they accelerate …

All in, Triumph already has 45 accessories developed for this bike, and the aftermarket will probably step in soon as well.

A nice stainless silencer as factory-equipped. Don’t worry, Arrow or someone else will have an obnoxious silencer available soon enough.

The Trident will come in four different colour schemes. They should be available sometime next winter in Canada (assuming everything runs to plan), and pricing will start at $8,999.

That’s a very interesting price, as it puts the Trident in the middle of the Japanese competition. Furthermore, Triumph claims the Trident’s cost of ownership is actually less than competitors, partly because of longer service intervals (16,000 kilometers between major engine servicing). Also, the Trident comes with a two-year warranty as standard, more than some competitors, and buyers can add one or two years of extra coverage (at extra cost, of course!).

With all the uncertainty in the market, it’s hard to say whether Triumph has a guaranteed winner here, but it’s certainly trying hard to grab some market share it’s long ignored.

8 COMMENTS

  1. $8999.00 plus PDI usually about $500.00 [ or more ] plus shipping at about $500.00 [ or more as dealers love hidden costs ] 15% tax is $11500.00 to get it out the door. In contrast I bought a 2019 SV650 [ YES THE PROPER ONE WITH THE RED FRAME AND RIMS !] left over in the spring from PRO CYCLE in Dartmouth N.S. for $7300.00 out the door. A bike that looks and performs excellent. Triumphs add says compedively priced but I do not see it.

    • It’s a rare bike that doesn’t get PDI, etc. I love the good people at Pro Cycle, but I’d hardly consider a leftover bought in the middle of weird pandemic industry times as representative as the usual dealership experience.

      Suzuki kills it on pricing, make no mistake, but they also don’t have the same features as this bike. That’s not to say the SV is bad or antiquated at all. It’s a great bike, and that’s why it’s been in production for around 20 years. If you don’t want the features of a more modern bike, then it definitely makes sense. I know I’d be very happy aboard one, especially if I got one for $7,300 OTD.

  2. I realise the SV is a V-TWIN it always has. Class is neked/standard motor type is irrevelant as it is still x2 pistons going up and down. Talking about the twin compared to a tripple in the same cc displacement.

  3. Good looking bike at a more reasonable price. My only concern is that they’ll probably do with this one what they did with the Street Twin/Street Scrambler a couple of years after they introduced the current generation – install better brakes, better suspension and better engine internals – why didn’t they just do this right off the hop? Price wouldn’t have been that much more.

    • Agreed.

      I actually prefer this light. The Street and Speed lights, being frame mounted, have to stick out too far.

      It would be curious to compare the HP and Torque curves to the old 675 Street.

  4. Great looking bike.Good price too. I would like to see how it compares to my 2019 SV650. I hope the Harley folks are paying attention.

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