This morning the nice folks at Austin’s Lone Star BMW/Triumph let me test ride their new 2011 Triumph Sprint GT. This is a design that replaces the ST. It sits slightly lower than the ST and has nice FJR-like hard bags. The 1050cc Triple engine has been tweaked to have a little more torque, the fairing is new with a somewhat larger windscreen than the ST. At 590 pounds its noticeably heavier than the Sprint ST.
In general it has all the excellent qualities of the Speed Triple and ST, smooth precise gear box, wonderful sound, neck snapping acceleration, sports bike handling. The instrument panel is simple and easy to read. This is a high performance well engineered motorcycle.
The heartbreak of the GT is the ergonomics. They are those of a MotoGP bike almost. The pegs are very high, even with my 29 inch inseam my legs very cramped. Great for ground clearance on track day, but come on, nobody would enjoy that position all day long! The bars are not clip-ons, but they are very low. The net/net is that there isn’t much blood flowing through your knees and lots of weight on your wrists. If I wanted all day discomfort I’d buy a Harley or a race replica sports bike.
This bike is close to being a real competitor to the FJR, ST1300, and Honda VFR, if only it wasn’t a torture rack!
Triumph, RAISE THE DAMN BARS, LOWER THE PEGS! And if you really want to steal Sport Touring bike sales from Japan and Germany put on a cruise control!
As configured the ST is just a sports bike with nice bags.