2011 Triumph Thunderbird Storm Makes the Scene

Hinckley Unveils A New Cruiser and Announces Changes to The Others

Two weeks ago, Triumph introduced the latest version of its Thunderbird cruiser at the INTERMOT show in Cologne. About the best we could surmise was that it was black - we hadn't been able to get any official photos and spec confirmation until now, though, so we chose to hold off until we heard from Triumph. Now that England's given us the thumbs up, as they say, here's what we know.

The 2011 Triumph Thunderbird Storm carries a bigger version of the powerplant found in the standard Thunderbird - in this case, a bored-out 1699cc liquid-cooled Parallel Twin engine (as opposed to the standard T-Bird's 1597cc mill) with a 270 degree firing interval. As you may recall, Triumph released a limited edition Thunderbird 1700 last year - basically the regular Thunderbird with the optional big-bore upgrade kit installed. For the new Storm version, Triumph claims 98hp at 5200rpm, with torque numbers of 115 ft-lb. at 2950rpm.

The Storm rumbles on the same chassis as the standard Thunderbird, with burly 47mm fork legs and adjustable twin shocks, but takes things a bit further than just an engine upgrade; to quote the Brits, it's "wrapped in a pared-down, punked up look". Loosely translated, that means it gets the iconic twin "bug-eye" headlights more readily found on the Rocket III and the Speed Triple; a straighter drag bar; and blacked engine cases. Complementing the more aggro, street-rod vibe is a choice of Phantom Black or Matt Black paint.

Twin 310mm floating discs up front get grabbed by four pistons for superior stopping power, and ABS is optional. Specially developed Metzeler Marathon rubber wrapped on five-spoke alloy wheels provides the contact patch.

The look may be minimalist - in the vein of, say, the Rocket III Roadster - but we happen to think it suits the T-Bird.

Triumph has also announced changes to two other models in its Cruiser category. The long-running America and Speedmaster both get major updates for 2011, including lower seat heights and improved ergonomics 'to make them more accessible to more riders', according to the Brits.

The America's new styling takes on a more classic theme for 2011, with the 16-inch front and 15-inch rear cast wheels sporting full-height tires to complement the deep front fender, pulled back handlebars and forward controls for a traditional low cruiser look.

The Speedmaster, meanwhile, gets more aggressive, adding a 19-inch cast aluminum front wheel with single disc brake and 'skinny' tire for a more chopped, hot rod look. Ergos also get tweaked for the 2011 model year, with a low 27 inch seat height married to new, wider handlebars that bring a new riding position

All three units will be available in the USA and Canadian markets by the end of January.

The new 2011 Triumph Thunderbird Storm gets blacked out and stripped down.
The 2011 newest Triumph America adopts a more classic theme.
The SpeedMaster gets a host of updates for 2011 including revised ergonomics, a new front tire and a lower seat.