I will add that having owned a street triple I was probably expecting a similar exhilarating experience! I did love the triple in the street triple and I'm a triumph guy, had quite a few speedmasters 865cc, I was underwhelmed by both Tigers however
I've test rode both the 800 and the Explorer. Now, my opinion is probably lacking as I have a very short riding span, less than a year. But, I was out on my V when I swung by the Triumph dealer. They invited me for a test ride. The 800 did not impress me, the acceleration I felt was not as "xhilerating" as my V. I'm a big guy, 5'11 250, yet under hard off the line acceleration, I can make my self lite headed on my Versys. Tried it twice with the 800 and didn't feel it, for a $12,000 bike. Then rode the Explorer, better power (it's a 1200cc), definetly a bigger bike, but really can't justify the more than double price tag. I've ridden a V-strom 1,000 and felt that for the money I would buy it before the 800 and maybe even before an Explorer as 200cc is not worth a $10,000 mark up for the features.
'09 Candy Plasma Blue Versys 650 (the fastest color)
Blk Spool/slider kit
Givi DS 450 Windshield
t-rex front sliders
SW motech engine guards
HT Teton Panniers
Avon Distanzia tires
Garmin Zumo 665
dual power usb/12v plug
Givi trunk on custom mount
Location: Kelowna, BC - summer; Florence, AZ - winter
I've 'swapped' rides with friends, and then tried a Triumph (1100???) and a Duc Hypermotard (???).
Both were pretty nice - loved the ABS brakes on the Triumph, and the power on BOTH. But, I felt like my V handled better than the Duc, and, despite the power being "intoxicating" on BOTH, I KNOW that I should stay away from 1000cc+ machines.... On my Bandit 1200S I would (at least once a year) - 'pin-the-throttle' - and that's a recipe for jail time....
I've decide that 650cc is more than enough for me.
One of my riding buddies has both 800's, and he let me ride them before I purchased the Versys. The Triumph is definitely a lot faster than my V, and the guy has put lots of miles on both bikes with no mechanical issues at all. However, after trying his bikes, then test riding a Versys, I knew it was what I wanted within a very short time. And yes, I found the intake noise on the Triumph very annoying.
i thought the triple engine sounds kewl.
what do you mean by "the way the engine makes power is sterile" ?
just curious. i'm loving my V.
The torque curve and power deliver on the 800 is flat, smooth and progressive. there is no lurch or 'kick in the pants'. Quite simply the engine has been so well developed it doesnt' have a supposed 'sweet spot', it doesn't really reward 'digital riders' (ie full on / full off). It takes a while to get used to the effortless acceleration and smoothness of the triple, as any change in bike / car does. I do notice Im going through the same corners at higher sustained speeds as the chassis makes you feel confident without over confidence setting in.
it can make you a lazier rider, not having to work the gearbox as much to overtake.
After nearly 2 years on a Tiger 800 compared to the Versys the one thing I miss is the vibey 'roughness' of the the Versys. To em the Versys has an air of an eager puppy, lots of noise, lots of action but not a great deal actually happening. On the Tiger you don't get that noise, vibration and other puppy like attributes, just smooth power delivery all over the rev range
Aside from that, for me, the Tiger does everything the Versys does, just that bit better. build quality a lot more so in my books.
But make no mistake the engine in the Tiger is a gem, so willing and flexible.
But its not that big a step change from Versys to Tiger800. Quite a few people seem to have gone from 650's such as the Versys to the Tiger, quite a few from the 1050 Tiger and sportsbikes.
Knowing what I know now would I have bought the 800 back in 2011?
..probably. the only reason I say probably is that I'd be tempted by the 1200, but the 800 still ticks all the boxes as far as Im concerned.