Even sitting on a parking lot, the Triumph Rocket 3 is already one of the most menacing and intimidating motorcycles out there. It truly is a show of excessive brute force on the part of the Hinckley company. I’m certain if you asked the execs over at Triumph why they built such a bonkers machine, their answer would be something along the lines of “because we can.” Having said that, there is something missing in the Rocket 3’s overall package.
Due to today’s standards—mostly due to tightening emissions regulations noise restrictions in certain areas, the Rocket 3, just like all other brand new bikes, gets a rather dull and muted exhaust note. It is, however, clear to see, or rather, hear, that the bike has the potential of producing a burlier, more guttural exhaust note. Lucky for all you Rocket 3 owners, nearly all major exhaust manufacturers has at least one slip-on offering for your bike. Not only does it improve the exhaust note, it also improves performance just a tiny bit. One such slip-on exhaust system is from Italian manufacturer Zard.
Zard’s slip-on exhaust options for the Triumph Rocket 3 consist of either a silver or black stainless steel exhaust pipe that attaches to the stock headers of the bike. Adorned with a carbon fiber end-cap and a sleek design, the exhaust system gives the bike a slightly more athletic aesthetic. It gets a removable DB Killer, for times when you really want to disturb the peace, plus, a Euro 5 homologated version is available as an option, too. The kit comes with a carbon-fiber clamp, right and left carbon heat shields, and of course, the pipe itself. A set of fancy carbon header heat shields are available as options, too.
Fitting the Zard slip-on exhaust system on the Rocket 3 will result in some pretty impressive weight savings. The bike’s stock pipe tips the scales at 12.5 kg, or 27.5 lbs. Meanwhile, the Zard kit weighs in at a featherweight 5.5 kg, or 12.1 lbs. Zard promises that the fitment of the slip-on exhaust system is as easy as plug and play, with no ECU tuning required for optimal performance. What’s more is that the aftermarket pipe offers just a tiny bump in power—around 2.5 ponies more of peak power. Zard also claims that the free-flowing exhaust system offers improved throttle response and more linear power and torque delivery.
There are, however, some caveats to this premiu accessory. For starters, its 1,622.21 Euro ($1,914.20 USD) price tag isn’t exactly cheap, especially considering the fact that this is just a slip-on system, and not a full exhaust. I guess everything—including price—really is extra big with the Rocket 3. Additionally, Zard states that OEM side bags will no longer be compatible with the bike if this exhaust system has been fitted, as the exhaust gases may damage the side bags. Having said that, if all you want is better sound, improved aesthetics, and a slight bump in power, then this exhaust system is definitely worth considering.