Funny how things change. Many moons ago Triumph was the conservative unable-to-change stodgy brand while the Japanese were the innovators experimenting with new ideas. Now it's the opposite with tiny Triumph coming up with the 675 while Honduh (yawn) takes the bodywork off of a scooter and calls it the greatest innovation in history. Big Ruckus is more like Big Snoozefest.
Since Soichiro died they are moving away from motorcycls and more and more to cars unless you count step-through 90's which they sell by the gazzillion in 3rd world countries like Myanmar, Thailand and N. Dakota...
Who says a small company can't compete with proper engines
I think the key lesson for the "Harley, Stay the Course Crowd" of the GPTB is that a small company can build a modern proper engine, put it in a sportbike and beat the big 4. Aprilia is doing it with 1000 V-4 and Ducati does it routinely. But some how the GPTB says Harley can't put a great engine in the Buell.. Imagine if the Buell Firebolt had a world class engine.. Heck I bet they would sell 10 times more Buells...
Congratulations Triumph you deserve it for showing guts and working hard to produce world class products. Products that don't have to rely of marketing slogans, "mystique", or "heritage".. OK HD Buell it's your turn to show that America is still the land of free and home of the brave
Agreed... Seems Honda has forgot their roots and gone corporate. It's a familiar scenario i.e. the founder dies or gets set aside (Apple Steve Jobs) and the thing gets ran by Harvard MBA professional managers who have no passion for the product...
...except, Apple did something unheard of and brought Jobs back. Who is now looked upon as a god by Mac followers (and rightly so considering what he's done...just ignore that whole stock investigation thing).
It was really surprising since Jobs left under REALLY bad circumstances. Pirate flag and all...
Good point on the Superhawk. It was not that long ago that Colin Edwards on the Honda RC51 took on Ducati in the WSB with great success. From the Mediteranean to North Sea, Euro mfgrs are spicing up life.
OK, I confess. Right now there are 7 bikes on trickle chrge in my garage. Guess which one gets ridden, even when it's not really riding weather -- a Triumph Scrambler. And yes, there's a nice honest coating of dirt on the skid plate. Great all-around fun bike. Congratulations Triumph!
Re: Who says a small company can't compete with proper engines
Triumph plays off their heritage to a certain degree with the Modern Classic line, but they also crank out thoroghly modern designs as well. Triumphs were always cutting edge sportbikes in their day because that was the market they competed in. Norton, BSA and Triumph as well as Ducati and Laverda where and are about performance, not sh*t-barge land yachts.
That's why John Bloor has succeeded where so many others like Indian, EH and the like have failed. Building modern competetive sportbikes and tourers from the start and establishing the brand before paying homage to the past with the Bonneville series instead of trying to one-up Harley with '50's style cruisers.
IMO the only way Buell would survive with out the Sporty engine is as a total stand alone brand. It's a catch 22 for them. The Sporty engine defines the bike but keeps them tied to HD and back corner status at most dealers. Get rid of the Sporty engine and put a modern engine in it and it looses it's cult appeal and has to compete with bikes like the Ducati, 675 Daytona and Moto Guzzi as non-Japanese performance bikes.
Tough call for them.
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