2018 Triumph Bobber Black

Bonneville | 1200cc | 16-inch wheels | Traction control | ABS | Specifications




If this bike was any blacker, it would be playing reggae. But we've got nothing against reggae, and black is exactly our kind of colour. That fuel tank, incidentally, is just 9-litres; 3-litres less than the 2018 Speedmaster. So as with the Harley-Davidson Sportster, you'll just have to stop at filling stations a little more often and enjoy whatever attention you can get.




Over the years we've looked at thousands of home-brewed Triumph Bobbers. T120s. T140s. T150s. TR6s. The list goes on. But this factory Bobber, in our opinion, offers a far more attractive and credible package. If bikes are built to be ridden, this liquid-cooled 1200cc parallel twin engine is a pretty cool ticket. With mudguards, ABS, traction control and powerful up-to-the-minute LED lighting, you've got little excuse for putting-off that ride you've always promised yourself.




That's a genuine fake carburettor body hiding the fuel injection gubbins. It's a deceit that most of us are happy to accept, not least because the payoff is traction control and 69mpg. At least, that's what Triumph is telling us—and we think that's realistic under the right conditions. Beautifully engineered, bikes such as this make us glad the British motorcycle industry collapsed.




2018 Triumph Bobber Black 1200



Engine: Liquid cooled, 8 valve, SOHC, 270° crank angle parallel twin
Capacity: 1200cc
Bore and stroke: 97.6mm x 80mm
Compression: 10:1
Max power: 77PS (76bhp/57kW) @ 6,100rpm
Max torque: 106Nm (78.2lbs-ft) @ 4,000rpm
Fuel injection system: System Multipoint sequential electronic
Exhaust: Chromed stainless steel 2-into-2 twin-skin with chromed stainless silencers
Final drive: Chain
Clutch: Wet, multi-plate assist clutch
Gearbox: 6-speed
Frame: Tubular steel cradle
Swinging arm: Twin-sided, tubular steel
Front wheel: 32-spoke, 16 x 2.5 inches
Rear wheel: 32-spoke, 16 x 3.5 inches
Front tyre: 130/90 B16
Rear tyre: 150/80 R16
Front suspension: Showa 47mm fork with cartridge damping, 90mm travel.
Rear suspension: KYB monoshock with linkage, 77mm travel
Front brakes: Twin 310mm disc, Brembo 2-piston floating calipers, ABS
Rear brake: Single 255mm disc, Nissin single piston floating caliper, ABS
Instruments: LCD multi-functional pack with analogue speedometer, odometer, gear position indicator, fuel gauge, range to empty indication, service indicator, clock, 2 x trip, average & current fuel consumption display, traction control status display, heated grip ready - controlled by a handlebar mounted scroll button.
Fuel consumption: 69mpg claimed
Width at handlebars: 29.9-inches (760mm)
Height without mirror: 40.3-inches (1,025mm)
Seat height: 27.2-inches (690mm)
Wheelbase: 59.4-inches (1,510mm)
Rake: 25.8º
Trail: 3.5-inches (87.9mm)
Dry weight: 522.5lbs (237.5kg)
Tank capacity: 2-gallons (9-litres)


Triumph Bonneville


Triumph T140 T-shirt






The Triumph Bobber Black for 2018 is the first derivative of the now established 2017 (standard) Bobber brand, but it's not likely to be the last. This is a roadshow that's gonna to run and run.

The "Black" name pretty much speaks for itself. Check out the black powder-coated engine, the black exhaust, the black (twin skin) slash cut silencers, the black anodised footrests, the black fuel tank, guards and side panels, the black radiator surround, the black wheel hubs—and a lot more black sprayed pretty much everywhere else.






Bobber black front fork and wheels


To enhance the macho looks and stance, Triumph has replaced the

41-inch front fork with a new 47mm Showa item fitted with dumpy gaiters and what looks like perilously little travel to keep the mean and low look. It's obvious, but it works. And that travel, incidentally, is 90mm. Not great. But not unacceptable.

Meanwhile, the 19-inch front wheel of the standard Bobber has been switched for a 16-inch wheel to accentuate the kick-ass, back street bruiser look.




To haul the bike to a faster stop, a pair of Brembo twin-piston calipers operating on 310mm discs have been fitted—and the bike needs 'em. It weighs a massive 522lbs (237.5kg) dry. So you're not likely to be out performing stoppies on this; not if you want to keep that front fork straight. At the rear, a Nissin two-piston caliper squeezes a 255mm disc.



Bobber features


If you buy one of these bikes and you'll also be rewarded with:


Switchable traction control
Ride-by-Wire throttle
"Road" and "Rain" riding modes
Torque-Assist Clutch
Engine immobiliser
LED rear light
Trip Computer
Single button cruise control


Overall, it looks a pretty compelling package. As with the standard Bobber, there are nice touches everywhere such as the raised seam on the rear mudguard, the look and feel of the bar end mirrors, the quality of the welding, and the subtle flourishes on the petrol tank and side panels.




Bobber style


The designers have obviously worked extra hard throwing this lot together, and Harley-Davidson, in particular, now has some very VERY serious competition in this sector of the laid-back cruiser market.

As with the standard Bobber, there's no pillion perch for this bike either. It's intended as an uncompromising purist bike, so no hitchers, groupies, lovers, friends or dogs. Consequently, if you need tandem seating, take a look at the 2018 Speedmaster. Or take a bus or something.




Triumph Speedmaster instruments


Colours, extras & price


Colours are Jet Black or Matte Black. And we figure that blackness will extend onto the Triumph accounting books.

A "Highway Kit" (screen, panniers and backrest) is optional. Or choose a "Maverick Kit" (flat 'bars, single seat).

No prices as yet (Oct 2017). And there's no delivery date at the moment. But if you think you might want one, you probably do. Expect a waiting list.




Triumph Bobber (standard)

Triumph Speedmaster (2018)






Copyright Sump Publishing 2017