Just more than a week after teasing us with a new Tiger Sport 660 prototype, Triumph sends us photos of another new model, this time a heavily updated Tiger 1200. Along with this showcase of Triumph’s camouflage wrapping, the British manufacturer sent us this brief description:
NEW TIGER 1200 OFFICIAL PROTOTYPE TESTING
Lighter and more powerful, the all-new Tiger 1200 transformation is on its way.
The all-new Tiger 1200 has now reached its exciting final stages of testing.
The word ‘transformation’ simply doesn’t do it justice. Designed to deliver the new ultimate large capacity adventure ride, the incredible Tiger 1200 will bring every advantage in one all-new motorcycle family. Now significantly lighter than its closest competition, with an astonishing transformation in weight, the new 1200 will combine the triple powered engine advantage with a new dimension in class-leading agility, control and handling.
Those are some bold claims to make for one of the most competitive segments in the industry, adventure-touring. There’s a lot to unpack from this brief statement and the three supplied photos.
First of all, that Triumph has been working on a new Tiger 1200 should be no surprise. The existing Tiger 1200s were last offered as a 2020 model, with their 1215cc three-cylinder engines only certified for Euro 4. As Triumph did with many of its models, the Tiger 1200 skipped 2021, opting for a Euro 5 update for the 2022 model year.
While we know it is still a Triple, it’s clear from the casings that the Tiger has a new engine that looks a lot like the 1160cc engine on the new Speed Triple. The industry trend has been to increase displacement to make up for any loss of performance from meeting Euro 5, but Triumph may be bucking the trend with a smaller, but more powerful engine. That said, it’s entirely possible the engine may turn out to be a larger version of the Speed Triple’s powerplant.
Triumph’s boasts about “an astonishing transformation in weight” is likely due in large part to the new chassis. The frame uses straighter tubes, with fewer smaller support tubes than the previous chassis, and the subframe is now bolted to the frame instead of being welded together. The new Tiger 1200 also uses a double-sided swingarm, with the rear brake now on the right side of the rear wheel, opposite the redesigned drive shaft.
The previous Tiger 1200s used WP Suspension components but the fork on the new model looks similar to the Showa fork currently equipped on the Tiger 900s.
From the front, the new model still has a small beak and a new windscreen. The headlights are a slimmer design, but instead of the Tiger 900’s unibrow LED running light, the new unit has two small light strips below the main headlight lenses, like football players wearing eyeblack.
The motorcycle in the photos is equipped with wire-spoke wheels, engine bars and auxiliary lighting, but if past Triumph models are an indication, we can expect the new Tiger 1200 to come in both more off-road capable and street-biased versions. We probably won’t see the previous Tiger’s XR and XC nomenclature, with Triumph likely to adopt the Rally and GT naming scheme of the 900 models.
Triumph hasn’t provided any indication on when we might learn full specifications on the 2022 Tiger 1200 Rally and GT. In recent weeks, Triumph has offered hints at the Tiger 1200, Tiger Sport 660 and Speed Triple RR prototypes. The Nov. 23 EICMA show is still a long ways off, so we suspect Triumph will reveal more about all three bikes well ahead of the Milan show.
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