Triumph Motorcycles is one of the most iconic and recognisable brands in motorcycle culture. Their journey hasn’t been easy but these days, the current Triumph lineup is packed with great bikes.
I recently had the Scrambler 1200XC to play with for a couple of weeks, which is now what we seem to call a road-adventure crossover motorcycle.
It’s powered by the 1200cc parallel twin (Euro 5 compliant) Bonneville engine which produces 90PS/ 89bhp (66.2kW) @7,250rpm and 110 Nm @ 4500 rpm. These aren’t huge figures and the bike isn’t particularly fast. I thought the Ducati 1100 Scrambler for example felt faster. However, this bike isn’t about outright power figures, this bike is far more than that, it’s a great package.
Let’s talk about specifications.
Suspension is excellent and uses fully adjustable Showa 45mm upside-down forks with 200mm of travel, and Öhlins fully adjustable piggy-back long-travel rear suspension units with twin springs, giving 200mm of rear-wheel travel.
Brakes are by Brembo and are twin 320mm discs on the front with M50 monobloc callipers and radial master cylinder. The rear brake is a single 255mm disc with a 2-piston floating calliper. Switchable ABS is standard too. These offer great feel and more stopping power than you’ll ever need.
The Scrambler 1200XC has a 21” front wheel fitted with 90/90-21 tyre and at the rear, there is a 17” rim with a 150/70 R17 tyre.
Our bike came on Metzeler Tourance tyres which are good and grip well on the road, and if you venture onto the loose will do you a good turn. The 21” front takes a bit of getting used to but works well.
Although the Scrambler is retro in styling, it's a thoroughly modern motorcycle and as such, has modern electronics. You have 5 riding modes to choose from (Road, Rain, Sport, Rider Configurable and Off-Road) and switchable traction control.
Triumph have fitted the Scrambler with a ride-by-wire throttle and the throttle feel and response is excellent. There's also a neat and clear TFT display with multifunctional instruments.
The My Triumph Connectivity System is an interesting feature too. Through a free app, Triumph say it "delivers a whole new generation of motorcycle connectivity designed to offer an enhanced rider experience with a host of class-defining connectivity features"
You can access features such as;
- The world’s first motorcycle integrated ‘GoPro’ control system.
- Triumph’s first ‘turn-by-turn’ navigation system built with Google – the first Google partnership with a premium motorcycle manufacturer
- Music and phone operation
- Class-defining capability for enhanced rider experience.
It works with a wide range of phones and intercoms. I didn't get a chance to really try It all out but it looks mighty impressive.
Service intervals are a whopping 10,000 miles (16,000 km) /12 months service interval, whichever comes first. Not bad at all.
I think Triumph’s Scrambler 1200 XC is a very good looking bike. I love the retro styling and you can feel the decades of history and the provenance of the Triumph brand.
Looks aside, the bike rides very well. On-road it is really easy to ride although the seat height at 840mm is significantly higher than Ducati scrambler for example. It’s forgotten when you’re on the move though.
The suspension feels high quality and does a great job. The Scrambler never crashes or bounces, the road holding is superb.
Build quality is excellent too. I’m a little ashamed to say I wasn’t sure what to expect, but this is a well-built bike, easily on a par with any of the Japanese manufacturers, better than most even.
For me, the jewel in the crown is that Bonneville engine. It’s a gem and is one of the most characterful and charismatic engines I’ve come across. It is absolutely unmistakable as a Triumph engine and feels great. It’s not fast in Scrambler trim, but it is punchy and responsive and lots of fun. Together with a great chassis, this is a really fun bike.
It makes the most sublime sound from the cool, stainless steel shotgun exhaust and I can only imagine what an aftermarket exhaust would sound like.
The Triumph Scrambler 1200 XC starts at £12,.000 on the road