The Brit brand goes small to sell big

With nearly every other motorcycle brand in the world producing small displacement motorcycles and selling them by the millions, Triumph’s decision to finally enter the fray is long overdue. The two highest-selling categories in U.S. motorcycle sales, according to several brand reps we have contact with, are off-road/dual-sport/adventure, and small displacement street. For our purposes, we’ll define small displacement street as road motorcycles 500cc and smaller. And Triumph just announced a pair of entrants for the 2024 model year- The Speed 400, and Scrambler 400x.

It’s about time.

With Royal Enfield’s worldwide sales and growing popularity here in the States with their 350cc singles (Meteor, Classic, and the new Hunter), Honda’s 300 and 500 Rebel line, and just about every other brand one can think of building and selling sub-500cc motorbikes, we’ve often wondered when the venerable Brit brand would dip their toes in the smaller bike pond. The Trident 660 and Tiger Sport 660 triples showed a move in that direction. Now Triumph has pulled the wraps off their forthcoming Speed 400 and Scrambler 400 X this week, and we like what we see.

A pair of diminutive Triumphs- Speed 400, and Scrambler 400x. Photo by Triumph.

Built around an all-new engine platform dubbed the TR-Series, Triumph claims inspiration came from early 20th century TR Trophy racing singles they built by the same name, as well as bikes they built and raced in the old International Six Day Trials off-road events. The TR-Series mill is a single thumper 398cc, obviously EFI and liquid cooled, and operating with four valves and a DOHC cylinder head. It’ll possess a 6-speed gearbox, and according to Triumph specs, will make 39.5 hp peak power and put down 27.7 ft. lbs. of peak torque. The TR mills both exhale through a stylish right-side upswept exhaust.

Not bad for small displacement street bikes.

Coming soon, we hope. Photo by Triumph.

Triumph debuted two models, a roadster-oriented Speed 400, and a street/dirt Scrambler 400x. Conceived and designed in Triumph’s Hinckley UK headquarters and engineered via a partnership with India’s Bajaj Auto, both models possess the distinctive look and vibe of Triumph’s iconic Modern Classic lineup, joining the 900 and 1200 twins. Triumph pays attention to details, and these small bikes look stunning, stem to stern.

Photo by Triumph.

Speed 400

The Speed 400 will run on 43mm inverted front forks, a monoshock in the rear, 17” wheels, and a 4 piston 300mm single disc front brake with single 230mm disc rear. Ride height is stated to be 31” at the seat, and the bike will weigh in at 375 lbs. The Speed 400 will come in three different two-tone color schemes, a “Carnival Red”, “Caspian Blue” and “Phantom Black”.

This is a handsome machine. Somewhat reminds us of the Royal Enfield Hunter 350 we recently reviewed. Triumph taking aim at the “Made Like a Gun Since 1901” brand?

2024 Triumph Speed 400. Photo by Triumph.

Scrambler 400x

The Scrambler 400x sports a longer wheelbase, longer travel, a 19” front wheel, a four-piston 320mm single disc front brake with the same 230mm single disc rear as the Speed 400. Ride height will be 32.9” at the seat, and weight comes in at 395 lbs. The Scrambler 400x will have a larger cast steel brake pedal and grippy footpegs, positioned a bit lower and wider than its stablemate, and a wider handlebar. The Scrambler will also come in three paint schemes, A “Carnival Red/Black”, “Phantom Black/Silver Ice” and a matte “Khaki Green/Fusion White”.

This looks like fun. We can’t wait to ride one.

2024 Triumph Scrambler 400x. Photo by Triumph.

Both 400s will run on the same electronics package, which includes both Bosch EFI and switchable traction control, a slipper clutch, switchable ABS, and ride-by-wire all standard. They’ll carry 3.4 gallons of petrol, and we’re guessing mileage will be somewhere above 60 mpg. We don’t know prices yet, but the brand is promoting a “low cost of ownership” with a 10,000 mile service interval and 2-year unlimited mileage comprehensive warranty. So far we’re learning of over 40 accessories and farkles that the Triumph catalogue will offer, with more to come.

We look forward to sampling these small offerings by the venerable English moto manufacturer. They’re long overdue in these times of “less is more” and “smaller is bigger”. We’ll keep you posted with prices and availability as soon as we know anything.

Road Dirt Crew

Check out some ride footage here:

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