The Triumph Rocket 3 has always been about big ‘ole nasty speed, putting the displacement of a large sedan underneath your crotch with a 2.5-liter triple. This brutish British is rated from the factory to run a 3.2-second 0-60, but at a recent corporate event a Triumph test rider took the damn thing out and laid down a 2.73-second 0-60 run. In the video below you can see the big lad walking away from a McLaren in a drag race.
While Triumph admits the bike used in the attempt is a pre-production model, it also says the bike is as stock as stock gets, having just removed the mirrors and the license plate bracket. That makes this run all the more impressive to me, as the Triumph Rocket 3 is said to weigh around 800 pounds in production trim. It’s a large boy, that’s for sure.
The Rocket 3 is supposed to be a quick cruiser, but as you can see in the video below, it’s far more at home around the race track than your average American V-twin cruiser. You can see the pro-rider taking the bike for a few quick laps, running it at 12 O’clock for a bit, backing it into the turns, and laying it over to drag a knee or two through the corners.
The old Rocket III was known for its deathtrap qualities, being a fast bike with not great handling. The new bike has been lightened and tightened to make it more capable through the corners while adding even more straight line speed.
While the Rocket 3R isn’t quite as quick as a 2001 GSX-R1000 or a Hayabusa or the supercharged H2, it also weights about twice as much as those superbikes. And with a more upright riding position and a comfortable seat, the Rocket 3 might be more comfortable to take on a highway cruise, too.
Because it weighs so much, the Rocket 3 needs a whole boatload of power to manage this quick sprint. Call it the linebacker of bikes, it has 163 ft/lbs of torque and 165 horsepower to haul that big weight around.
I have an opportunity to ride one this spring, and I’m genuinely looking forward to it. I’ll be sure to tell you all about it, assuming I don’t die.