Culture – Motorcycle retrospective: Triumph Tigers from 1936 to 2018 – Used TRIUMPH

THE TIGER IN THE RETRO

Motorcycle retrospective: the Triumph Tiger from 1936 to 2018

Culture - Motorcycle retrospective: Triumph Tigers from 1936 to 2018 - Used TRIUMPH

The arrival of the new Tiger 800 and 1200 seriously improved for 2018 prompts you to dive back into the long history of trail type motorcycles at Triumph. A look back at a saga that began in the 1930s with this MNC retrospective.

Tiger 70, 80 and 90 (1936)

Did you know that the very first Triumph Tiger was a 70, 80 and 90cc single cylinder engine motorcycle released in … 1936? That this old "tigress" below (!) Won three gold medals at the International Six Days Trial (ISDT) – the ancestor of ISDE – before being militarized under the name "3HW" during WWII? No ? To be honest, MNC ignored that too !

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It was at the bend of a slide quickly displayed by Triumph during the presentation of that the Journal Moto du Net came across this information worthy of interest for all lovers of motorcycle history. Especially fans of Hinckley’s production, always hungry for knowledge about their favorite brand !

Culture - Motorcycle retrospective: Triumph Tigers from 1936 to 2018 - Used TRIUMPH

And if this history deserves to linger, it is first of all for its record duration: with 81 years on the clock, the "Tiger" line is the longest in the history of the brand, far ahead of the Bonneville whose the beginnings date back "only" to 1959. Enough to claim "the richest and oldest adventure story than any other brand", underlines Triumph.

Boastful, the English? Not that much: just imagine that the very first BMW GS – the R80G / S – did not arrive until 1980, almost 45 years later! If the English Tiger is breaking its fangs today on the R1200GS – like all its rivals, moreover – it can on the other hand proudly bulge its chest thanks to this pioneer status !

Tiger T100 (1939)

Discovered in 1939, the Tiger T100 is a very pretty motorcycle with a more marked all-terrain appearance than its predecessor. Powered by an air-cooled 498cc twin cylinder, it starts with a kick and receives bellows on its fork. 

Culture - Motorcycle retrospective: Triumph Tigers from 1936 to 2018 - Used TRIUMPH

The long, thick, flat saddle exudes comfort, while a center stand comes standard. Today the T100 would probably be considered a "neo-retro-Scramblo-vintage" and would certainly sell very well with lovers of classic style. !

Tiger T110 (1954)

Back to less "TT" lines on the 1954 Tiger T110, whose air-cooled 649cc parallel twin cylinder took it up to 110 mph (around 177 km / h), a rather flattering speed for the time..

Culture - Motorcycle retrospective: Triumph Tigers from 1936 to 2018 - Used TRIUMPH

This version with which Triumph continues to participate in ISDTs will evolve to offer more versatility over the years, until the 1957 Tiger Cub T20c which the manufacturer considers his first model to be as comfortable on the road as on all- ground.

Tiger Trail (1981)

The Hinckley Tiger is more discreet during the 60s and undergoes only one update the following decade in the form of the Tiger 100 in 1973. Triumph returns to the business in 1981 with the Tiger Trail to rush into the new fashionable trend: motorcycles inspired by the rally-raid and the famous Paris-Dakar.

Culture - Motorcycle retrospective: Triumph Tigers from 1936 to 2018 - Used TRIUMPH

The English brand does not hide it: its Tiger Trail is in direct competition with the BMW R80G / S unveiled the previous year. The beginning of a long duel between the English Tiger and the German "Gehesse", still in force 36 years later! This Tiger is illustrated in the hands of Tony Beaumont during the Rallye des Pyrénées.

Tiger 900 and 955i (1993)

John Bloor now presides over the destiny of Triumph and intends to return to the trail segment with the Tiger 900 presented at the Cologne show (Germany) in 1993. Its main asset lies in its 885cc in-line three-cylinder, well-designed architecture. up to date to consolidate the brand’s identity. 

Culture - Motorcycle retrospective: Triumph Tigers from 1936 to 2018 - Used TRIUMPH

With 84 hp, the Tiger 900 boasts the highest power in the segment and comfort worthy of a good road bike. High and heavy (more than 250 kg all full!), It requires on the other hand a solid grip in off-road where are appreciated its robust engine guard and its suspensions with high travel.

The Tiger receives the 3-legged injected Speed ​​Triple T509 in 1999, then steals its 955cc block two years later. Its power then reached 105 hp and its weight … 255 kg! Always so comfortable, it confirms its road orientation with its height-adjustable saddle, its dashboard rich in information and its more enveloping windshield. 

Culture - Motorcycle retrospective: Triumph Tigers from 1936 to 2018 - Used TRIUMPH

Its round double optic gives it a globular look, while its large 24-liter tank is barred with a triple claw meant to illustrate its feline nature. Effect guaranteed with its unforgettable acidulous apple green color ! 

Tiger 1050 (2006)

In the mid-2000s, Triumph gave up on the idea of ​​going to tickle the "Queens of the desert" like the Africa Twin: its Tiger 1050 is more of a leggy roadster than a real trail. Its 17-inch spoke wheels, single-arm and inverted fork confirm this bias..

Culture - Motorcycle retrospective: Triumph Tigers from 1936 to 2018 - Used TRIUMPH

Lighter and more powerful – its three-cylinder engine develops 125 hp – the Tiger 1050 invites sporty driving … on the road only. Its capabilities are limited in off-road, if only because of its 120 mm and 180 mm tires with road profile ! 

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This dynamic positioning is reinforced by the first Tiger "Sport", again improved. A year later, the Tiger Sport and its 3-cylinder snatched from the Speed ​​Triple still offered its excellent services against a check for € 14,000..

Tiger 800 (2011)

As good as it is on the road, the Tiger Sport leaves a gaping hole in the range: no motorbike from the English manufacturer is able to cope with off-road, including on rolling roads. Triumph remedied this in 2011 with the Tiger 800, available in two families (XC spoke and XR spoke).

Culture - Motorcycle retrospective: Triumph Tigers from 1936 to 2018 - Used TRIUMPH

Very well equipped, robust and balanced, this bike is a credible alternative to the BMW F800GS and other Suzuki V-Strom 650. The recipe is popular since it is "one of the best-selling Triumph motorcycles of all time" , rejoices the Hinckley firm !

  • MNC Presentation2018 Triumph Tiger 800 XR and XC: always spoiled for choice

Building on this success, the Tiger 800s experienced their first major evolution and are getting a new look. . 

Tiger Explorer 1200 (2012)

Unveiled in the wake of the Tiger 800s, the imposing Tiger Explorer 1200 is launched with a specific goal: to unbolt that damn R1200GS! All the right ingredients are there, starting with a 1215cc 3-cylinder engine full like an egg, a safe chassis and a pleasant comfort. 

Culture - Motorcycle retrospective: Triumph Tigers from 1936 to 2018 - Used TRIUMPH

Only problem: a high weight and high perched. Never mind: the Explorer also convinces with its flawless finish, transparent gimbal and an impressive list of standard equipment. And Triumph goes even further in 2016 by adding an electric windshield and semi-active suspensions !

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Tiger 1200 (2018)

The third evolution of the Tiger 1200 – which abandons the Explorer name – has just been tested by MNC in its XCA (top of the range with spoke rims) and XRT (top of the range with spokes) versions. Not easy to understand, the 2018 offer revolves around six Tiger 1200s, more or less equipped !

  • MNC test :
  • MNC Video Trial :

Culture - Motorcycle retrospective: Triumph Tigers from 1936 to 2018 - Used TRIUMPH

Lightened from 2 kg to 10 kg – depending on the model – and packed with new technologies (TFT screen, adaptive lighting, double-effect shifter, etc.), the British maxi-trail confirms its status as a plush and comfortable “road on stilts”. A good way for Triumph to compensate for the stoppage of its Trophy 1200 … and to continue with panache this rich saga of Tiger !

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