It’s been too many years since Triumph last gave the world a big sporstbike; The last triple-cylinder Daytona 955i rolled off the production line in 2006 and while the Daytona 765 ticks a few of the sportsbikes boxes it’s an expensive (£15,000), limited edition road-going Moto2 bike that might be one of the greatest trackday bikes you can buy but aesthetically at least, it doesn’t go far enough to be as memorable as it could be.
In 1993 Triumph gave us the four-cylinder Daytona 1200 – a handsome 147bhp superbike that made an impressive road-biased machine (as did the amazing 955cc 1997 triple Daytona T595). Sadly, it was overshadowed, like many other sportsbikes of the time, by the success of the all-conquering Honda Fireblade. With that bike in mind we turn to the recently-revealed Speed Triple 1200 RS. A supernaked that boasts almost 30 (claimed) extra horsepower over the current 1050 Speed Triple and a whopping 20lbs lighter too. It’s a long overdue update that sees the bike getting even more minimalist, even mre powerful, and even more wheelie-happy. It’s basically a hardcore sportsbike without wind protection.
With such a beast as a starting point, we reckon it would make an excellent foundation for an all-new sportsbike with wind protection. So we conjoured one up digitally. It’s not the first time Kardesign has created such a beast, our first Daytona concept – based on the then 1050 engine as used in the Speed Triple of that era – dates back to 2007. So it’s perfecty natural to do it again, especially with an all-new engine to power it.
Our new fairing is a fusion of 765 and the original Triumph Moto2 prototype to give the Daytona a distinctive look that distinguishes it from the 765 and 675 models. Subtle twin winglets are this year’s must-have accessory and will provide additional downforce stability at licence-shredding speeds.
While we love the new Speed Triple’s design we think they may have missed a trick with the exhaust system. Triumph’s pursuit of mass-centralisation led them to a traditionally-routed exhaust system that exited from the side. It’s a departure from the underseat exhausts of Speed and Street Triples over the years and there are definite performance gains to be had too when the exhaust gasses don’t have such a tortuous route to get out. However, the visual appeal from showing off a single-sided swingarm is arguably worth the trade-off according to KardesignKoncepts followers on Instagram.
Specs-wise, we’d expect a 1160cc Daytona to be in a higher state of tune than the Speed Triple donor: with a higher rev ceiling, 195bhp at the crank could be a real possibility at the expense of a little mid-range torque, which would make the Daytona competetive o the track where a bike like this would be measured.