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Are Triumph about jump into the electric bike sector?

With most big-name bike brands sporting at least one e-bike or concept, are Triumph about to take the plunge and join the plug-in revolution?

WITH rumours abound on social media about Triumph joining the electric motorcycle sector, we take a look at the facts and the gossip to try and figure it all out.

Right, lets get one thing out of the way; every volume bike builder on the planet is looking into electric. If they shift a lot of bikes, e-bikes in one form or another are on the radar. So, the small volume and niche stuff, Arch Motorcycle, Ariel and the such like, are less likely to take the plunge at this time – but that doesn’t mean it isn’t on the long-term agenda.

It’s really no surprise then that the internet is awash with mummering voices saying that Triumph are about to join the electric realm. With 61,000 bikes sold in 2018, the British brand are well set to throw their considerable weight and knowhow behind an electric project. But what is it going to be?

US site Electrek reported that a European patent had been filed to revive the name Trident once, in what they claim is an electric two-wheeler. We also reported as far back as 2012 that Triumph owners were sent an email (they don’t say when sadly) asking them what they think about electric motorcycles and most importantly ‘If they felt Triumph should build an electric motorcycle?’.

So, what does the Trident name mean, and what would a Trident electric bike look like? The definition of the word trident is a ‘three-pronged spear’ – think Poseidon and Britannia. The three points were an obvious nod to the Trident’s three-cylinder engine, the spear could be linked to its speed – the Trident was nearly the superbike of late 60s and early 70s. Until the CB750 and Z1000 arrived anyway.

An electric Trident will almost certainly be naked, Triumph are too busy with the new Daytona 765 to want to muddy the sportsbike pond too much, it’ll be fast and probably follow on from the Street and Speed Triple range the company already have. Triumph in the modern era are a forward-thinking company but their heritage is always at the heart of everything they do, and they tend to look at the evolution of a platform or product rather than revolution.

The team at Hinckley are also probably looking very closely at Harley-Davidson’s Livewire project, which has become one of the most expensive mass-made electric motorcycles on the planet and with less range than people were promised. Harley haven’t published any official numbers around orders taken for the Livewire but, I can’t imagine Energica or Zero are too worried just yet.

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