2016 Triumph Bonneville T100: First Ride Review

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British motorcycle manufacturer Triumph introduced the Bonneville line-up in the 1960s. Named after the famous Bonneville Salt Flats, where Triumph broke the land speed record for motorcycles in the 1950s and 60s, the Bonneville range is the best selling series of motorcycles for the iconic British bike maker till date.

The T100 sits in between the Street Twin and the T120 in the Triumph range. The T100 offers best of both the sides, i.e. enough power and a lot of elegance.

We took the Bonneville T100 for a short spin in the city and on the open tarmac to see how the bike performs and here's what we have to say! Read more to find out.

At the first glance, the T100 does not look like a bulky litre-class motorcycle and doesn't  grab a lot of attention.

But, it does turn heads, thanks to the dual tone paint job it comes in. The T100 we were testing sported a Fusion White and Aegean Blue paint job, which, further enhanced the T100's retro look.

Speaking of which, the bike sports a round headlamp which hosts halogen bulbs instead of LEDs or DRLs. It also features 18-inch front (100mm tyre) and 17-inch (150mm tyre) rear spoke wheels.

The T100 gets a twin-pod analogue instrument cluster which has a tachometer and a speedometer. The cluster also gets two small LED screens, one of which is the fuel meter and also shows the distance to empty and the second screen plays host to two trip meters, an odometer, real-time clock and a gear positioning sensor.

The fuel tank along with the rubber tank pads and the Triumph badge looks pretty neat on the T100. The bike also sports a longer wheelbase (1450mm i.e. 5mm longer) than its siblings. The full chrome Peashooter pipes produce a rich deep exhaust note and add to the retro styling. The tail lamp is a full LED unit.

Speaking a bit about its modern nature, the T100 comes loaded with some of the latest technologies such as - traction control which can be disengaged completely, ABS, an immobiliser and ride-by-wire. Heated grips, however, do not come as standard.

Powering the T100 is a 900cc, liquid-cooled, parallel twin engine. The engine produces 54bhp and 80Nm of peak torque that kicks in at just 3200 rpm. The engine is mated to a 5-speed gearbox and uses a chain drive.

The torquey nature of the engine means that the T100 is smooth to ride even while tootling about at higher gears at low speeds. However, overtaking will require the rider to shift down a few gears. The clutch is light and helps in stop-go traffic conditions.

Speaking of traffic, you might feel a bit of heat bothering your thighs when riding in crowded cities, but, hit the open highway and everything becomes very cool and calm.

The refinement of the engine is felt while cruising between the 100 - 120km/h mark. However, as the revs build up, the vibrations set in slowly and gradually. The T100 catapults from a 0 to 100 km/h in under 6 seconds and will keep on pulling forward till it hits 165km/h.

The T100, despite weighing 215 kilogrammes feels really nimble to ride in the city. The bike features telescopic forks in the front and twin shocks at the rear. The suspension setup does a brilliant job in soaking up the bumps and potholes with ease. 

However, at high speeds, the ride can get quite uneven on bumpy roads due to the soft suspension setup.

The T100 with its flat seat (790mm height) and centre positioned footpegs offers a comfortable riding posture. Even the pillion sits comfortably and buyers can opt for an optional backrest.

The Bonneville T100 handles corners quite well, however, leaning in too much into a corner will result in the low-set footpegs getting scraped. 

Braking duties are handled by a single 310mm floating disc, with Nissin 2-piston floating calliper in the front and a 255mm disc at the rear. The disc brakes coupled with ABS help the T100 offer adequate braking power allowing it to bring itself to a stop from fairly high speeds easily.

The Bonnie delivered a mileage of around 20 km/l in the city and around 26 km/l on the highway. Coupled with the 14.5-litre fuel tank the T100 provides a range of around 350km on a single tank of fuel! Now, that's impressive.

Promeet Ghosh Thinks!
At INR 8,55,000 ex-showroom Mumbai, the Triumph Bonneville T100 is one of the most practical performance motorcycles on sale on Indian shores. If you find yourself riding on the highway most of the time, then the bigger T120 will make more sense,

If you are hunting for a motorcycle which has an old-school aura along with the latest modern tech, then the Bonneville T100 is the perfect choice of bike for you.

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Read more on: #triumph
Story first published: Sunday, May 14, 2017, 1:26 [IST]
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