Hogs in the ‘hood: American Triumph Tiger 650

Patriotic Triumph Tiger 650

Patriotic Triumph Tiger 650.  But which country?

Spotted this gorgeous Triumph Tiger 650 (TR6R), complete with patriotic American flag helmet.  Obviously the irony was not lost on us, but kudos for loving flag and country, as well as classic motorcycles from across the pond…

This Triumph Tiger 650 is no Adventure Bike:

The less popular '70's Triumph motorcycle has the perfect lines...

The less popular ’70’s Triumph motorcycle has the perfect lines…

Although the more popular Triumph Bonneville is nearly identical, this Triumph Tiger 650 is a true classic.  Only made for a few years, the twin-cylinder Tiger differentiated itself from it’s brother by having only a single Amal carb.  The claim was that it only effected the top end speed, being only slightly slower than the Bonneville.  The single carb required less care, making this bike even easier to love.

This beautiful 5-speed Brit bike produced horsepower in the high 40s, with greater torque at low RPM.  The rear of the Triumph Tiger 650 sat on a swinging arm suspension, hydraulically dampened and adjustable pre-load.  Weighing in at under 400lbs, this bike was built to move!

Unfortunately, Triumph has taken to reusing their model names, and the newest version of the Tiger has no connection with the vintage classic.  The Tiger of the past few years was painted in…you guessed it, tiger stripes.  Horrific end to a legacy like the one developed by the Triumph Tiger 650.  The latest model has dropped the stripes, and has joined the ‘Ewan and Charlie chase,’ competing directly for the Adventure Bike market against the likes of BMW and KTM.  Gone are the unique lines and classic behavior, in favor of large displacement [barely] off-road capabilities.

Which would you want, the Bonneville or the Tiger?

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