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Although it has been around since 2007, the Triumph Street Triple is a bike people always seem to want to know about. They're rare enough that you don't see them all the time, common enough not to feel like an unobtainable exotic, and so popular with their owners that you naturally want to know more.
Even before I spent much time on one, the Street Triple was on a very short list of bikes whose owners I assume are smarter than most. It doesn't make the most power and it isn't the sexiest, but as a package it seems like a wonderful combination of a brilliant engine, small size and weight, and high-spec components. It's a bike I'm constantly asked about and, after falling in love with what the Yamaha FZ-09 could be, I knew I needed to really spend some time with the Triumph.
The Street Triple base model comes with a (switchable) ABS braking system as standard equipment, both front and rear. The R version (the model we tested) adds upgraded suspension, with a KYB inverted fork that's adjustable for preload, rebound and compression damping and a rear monoshock with a piggy-back reservoir that's adjustable for preload, rebound and compression damping. (The standard version only offers preload adjustment for both front and rear.
The frame on the bike is an aluminum beam twin spar that has incorporated the intake duct through the head stock for higher efficiency. Weight has been reduced by 13 pounds and shifted forward so that 52 percent is now on the front wheel. The Street Triple R and Rx Special Edition have sharper geometry than the standard model, with 0.7 degree steeper rake angle at 23.4 degrees and 4.6 mm less trail at 95 mm, giving the bike a sportier feel.
The stopping power of the Street Triple comes from twin 310 mm floating rotors for the front, matched with Nissin two-piston sliding calipers for the standard model, while the higher two models come with a faster acting four-piston radial-mount caliper. All models come with a single 220 mm disc and single piston caliper rear braking system.