(This review first ran on July 8, 2015)

Sometimes, getting to demo a bike for review is like riding a bagger across the Sahara — you can try it, but it’s probably not going to happen. We have to work it in when we can, convince a dealer to let us get on one, or we find out about a demo day but have to track along with a group on a 20-minute loop that barely lets you figure out where the turn signals are let alone how a bike actually works.

So when Dan Gulden at East Bay Ace in the Bay Area agreed to let us take our time on a new Triumph XCX, we jumped on and took off.

This is a dual-sport bike and the smaller cousin of the Triumph Adventure. And, full disclosure, our time in the saddle did not include time on a trail. We could only squeeze so much in, and we’re pretty convinced most people who buy dual-sport bikes still spend more time riding on the street. So that’s what we did — mixing it up with an equal measure of freeway and backroads with some twisties and sweepers thrown in for good measure.20150701_110824

No matter where you ride this bike, you’re going to have a grin on your face. While V-twins of any configuration have a certain grunt, there’s still nothing like Triumphs sweet triples for smoothness and power delivery.

Pros

  • Comfortable — great seat and ergonomics.
  • Minimal wind buffet until we got up to higher freeway speeds, but that was still not too annoying.
  • Fantastic acceleration and power with lack of vibration at high speeds.
  • Plenty of riding options to choose from – you can disenage both ABS and Traction Control, and there are multiple rider and custom settings to get it so it’s just right for you and whatever conditions you find yourself in.

Cons

  • Clutch and throttle combo off the line was a bit touchy
  • Some buzziness in the pegs at high speed in a lower gear, but that dissipated when shifting up.
  • Cost – you’re going to shell out $15k or more with a fully kitted version (That’s still going to be a few thousand less than its big brother or its German equivalent.)

This bike’s biggest competition is the BMW 800GS. That bike has been alternatively praised for its ride and pounded for its lack of guts. But its biggest hook over the Triumph is that it costs more.

We could have ridden the Triumph Tiger XCx all day. Maybe one day we will.