Triumph's test riders and chassis development team have spent four years working in secret to develop this – the ultimate off-road Triumph Scrambler.
The team, renowned for developing Triumph’s great handling road bikes, turned their attention to modifying a standard Triumph Scrambler and shaved some 39kg off the weight of the standard bike!
It also gets a tweaked motor with new air filters and carbs, steeper geometry, new suspension, modified chassis and full made-to-measure Arrow exhaust system.
The bike is a personal project by a three-man team, headed up by Triumph’s test rider and engineer brothers David and Felipe Lopez, with some support from the factory.
Sadly, the bike will never make it into production, but it will certainly inspire plenty of us to build our own.
Called Tramontana after the wind that sweeps across the Pyrenees into Spain (the Lopez brothers are Spanish), it’s designed to satisfy the dual needs of real off-road scrambling with a big capacity 865cc motor.
Test rider David Lopez said: “It wasn't until the Tiger 800XC development process that we understood the real off-road potential of big capacity bikes when they were purposely developed for it. Our off-road background was more related to light bikes such as trials and enduro, so we were surprised by the pleasure of riding big bikes in challenging conditions and terrains.”
Using the Scrambler and Bonneville classics range as a base, they approached it as they approach every other chassis development project, by developing it by riding lots with the finished outcome in mind for the project mule.
The 270-degree crank motor was chosen and then the team looked at different geometries, suspension types, wheel sizes, riding positions and engine configurations, just as they would for a production bike. They stripped the bike back to nothing but were keen to preserve the classic looks.
What they’ve created is a more modern retro style but with multi-adjustable Ohlins suspension, Excel alloy rims, twin front discs, alloy yokes, new bars and tailor-made Arrow exhaust system.
David said: “We looked at every aspect of the bike – starting with the chassis geometry, which was developed to give a confidence-inspiring ride with balancing front and rear grip to allow for easy and predictable rear-wheel drifting. We did that by repositioning the rear suspension unit top mounts, lengthening the swingarm and by changing the front fork and yokes.”
A one-off, tailor-made Italian brown leather seat and pearl-grey and brown core colouring give the Tramontana a unique look.
With Special thanks to Triumph’s Spirit magazine for allowing us to use these words and pictures! To see more, have a look at the free online magazine here.