A Brief History of the Triumph Street Triple

With the new 2020 Triumph Street Triple about to officially break cover, Visordown takes a look at the route it took to become one of the best sub-1000cc nakeds on the planet

Triumph Street Triple 2019

THE Triumph Street Triple was launched in 2007, as a naked 657cc sports roadster based heavily on the already successful Daytona 675 sportsbike.

From there, the Triumph Street Triple went through a myriad of changes, facelifts, and alterations. All of which were aimed at making the machine the pinnacle of the naked sports category.

2007 - The original Triumph Street Triple

The first version of the Street Triple looked like a carbon copy of the larger and more powerful Speed Triple. So much so that to the uninitiated the two bikes would be almost indistinguishable. The 675cc roadster even wore similar-looking high-level, double-barrel silencers. Other family traits carried over were the small dash-mounted fly screen/binnacle and of course the big, bug-eyed headlights.

The biggest difference, apart from the exhaust note, was the Street Triple’s conventional swingarm, where the Speed Triple wore a single-sided unit and the frame which was a cast alloy compared to the Speed Triple’s more tubular affair.

In launch trim, the bike was making a shade over 100bhp from its 12-valve inline three-cylinder engine. The suspension was a set of non-adjustable forks and a rear shock with pre-load adjustment. It wasn’t what you’d have called high-tech even back then. But it was adequate and very well set up for UK roads having been road-tested around the Hinckley factory for thousands of miles.

2008 - The Street Triple R joins the party

In a shrewd move by the team at Triumph, it wasn’t long before the Street Triple was joined in the range by its higher-spec, more powerful and better-looking sibling. The Street Triple R got fully adjustable suspension, 105bhp on tap, uprated brakes and a slightly tweaked stance. The whole bike looked and felt more purposeful, with a slightly taller 805mm seat giving an edgier, more racy riding position.

If you were lucky enough to scoop up one of the trick-looking grey and gold versions (above), you were also sitting on probably the most desirable Street Triples to roll out of the factory gates.

2012 - The facelift Street Triple

For 2012 Triumph made one of the biggest changes to the Street Triple range, and the 675cc followed suit and gained the same fox-eye headlights as the 1050cc machine. The restyled machine divided opinion, and with little difference between that and the 2008 model – in terms of spec and performance – 2012 is almost a forgotten version of the machine.

2013 – The corrective surgery

Either Triumph couldn’t leave the crayons alone or they’d realised that the previous version wasn’t quite sitting right with the public. Either way, the 2013 Street Triple put some space between itself and the ousted models. Both bike’s weight was trimmed by 6kg, partly thanks to a new cast sub-frame as opposed to the old tubular item and also due to a completely revised frame.

The 2013 model’s engine remained unchanged although 1st gear was made considerably taller by borrowing the ratios from the Daytona. The bike also lost its distinctive high-level end cans, instead it was wearing a sleek looking underslung item. The move was as much about mass centralisation as styling, and finally, the performance benefits were justification enough for the facelift.

2013 – Street Triple R

Solidifying the bike performance potential saw Triumph uprate the radial stoppers to the Street Triple R.. The machine also had a slightly higher seat than before and more aggressive geometry that helped make the Street Triple R one of the quickest turning machines on the market. This latest version also goes back to wearing the small dash-mounted fly screen as the original Speed Triple.

2015 – The Street Triple RX steps into the ring

The RX version of the Street Triple was a small step forward in terms of spec for the range. It included all the goodies of the R but was bolstered by a quickshifter. This alone wasn’t enough to justify a new model, so Triumph slapped on the pointy seat unit from the Daytona and presto – a new top of the range Street Triple was born!

2017 – The 765cc era

With ever-tightening Euro regulations to bow to, Triumph’s 2017 Street Triple gained a 765cc engine with 112bhp and howling Moto2-spec exhaust note. The 765 Street Triple is now a three bike family.

The Triumph Street Triple S

The S now features Showa suspension and a banana-shaped swingarm. The new 765cc engine has 6.6% more peak power than the previous model at 111bhp @ 11,250rpm, ride-by-wire throttle, two riding modes, ABS and switchable traction control.

The Triumph Street Triple R

The Street Triple R has 116bhp @ 12,000rpm, the R includes four riding modes, new angle-adjustable full-colour TFT instruments with 5” screen, fully adjustable Showa suspension and Brembo M4.32 radial monobloc front brake calipers.

The Triumph Street Triple RS

The top-spec RS gets the most powerful engine in the current Street Triple family 121bhp @11,700rpm, Brembo M50 monobloc front brake calipers, fully adjustable Showa ‘big-piston’ forks, Öhlins STX40 fully adjustable rear monoshock, an additional ‘Track’ riding mode, lap timer, quickshifter, and Pirelli Diablo Supercorsa SP tyres.