Triumph Tiger 850 Sport Review

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Triumph has released the 2021 Tiger 850 Sport, which replaces the standard Tiger 900 model. The chassis is essentially the same, and it still utilises the 888cc engine. However, it has been de-tuned and made more beginner-friendly. The advanced lean-sensitive electronic aids and IMU are no longer included on the Tiger 850 Sport, and the suspension is no longer multi-adjustable. However, the benefit behind all of this is that the bike is thousand of dollars cheaper, and most of these features were aimed towards more advanced riders anyway. This bike has a surprising amount of power and features, despite these exclusions. This is all described below in our Triumph Tiger 850 Sport Review.

Summary:

  • Excellent beginner bike
  • On and off-road capabilities
  • No cruise control
  • It comes with top-of-the-line Brembo brakes.

Introducing the Triumph Tiger 850 Sport

Specs

Style: Adventure

Top Speed: 209 km/h

Riding Position: Upright | Slight Tuck

Engine: Liquid-cooled, 12 valve, DOHC, inline 3-cylinder

Chassis weight: 192kg

Chassis construction: Tubular steel frame, bolt on sub frame

Suspension: Marzocchi

Dashboard: 5″ TFT screen

Tyres: Michelin Anakee Adventure

Braking: ABS

Pricing: $17,890.00

Seat Height: 810–830mm

Learner Approved: No

Pros

+ Lightweight

+ Excellent suspension tuning

+ Easy to use and aimed at beginners

Cons

Not for serious off-road use

No cruise control

Summary
Performance
3
Handling
4
Aesthetics
4.2
Cost
4.5
Features
3.5
Versatility
3
Rating
3.7/5

Computer & Electronics

As expected for this price point, the Triumph Tiger 850 Sport doesn’t feature much in computer systems and electronics, but the inclusions are meaningful. However, being a beginner-oriented motorcycle, the Tiger 850 Sport only has two riding modes on offer: road and rain. These are not adjustable in any way, and there is no way of disabling ABS, which is a positive, considering this model is marketed for beginners. This bike also comes with self-cancelling turn signals, which many bikes have, but is a great safety feature. If you want to take the bike offroad, turning traction control off is simple. Just make sure the bike is at a complete stop, else it won’t disengage. This will turn on again once the bike has been switched off. This bike also has traction control toggling. However, it lacks cruise control.

Gearing

Changing gears is extremely smooth on the 6-speed gearbox, utilising a cable-actuated clutch and a chain final drive. You only need to touch lightly to operate the clutch, which greatly reduces rider fatigue. This is especially true in start/stop situations, like riding through the city. The gearing of the transmission complements the engines power band.

Engine

The Triumph Tiger 850 Sport uses the same engine as the Tiger 900. However, it is slightly detuned. It’s an inline three-cylinder T-Plane crank that uses a 1-3-2 firing order. Performance-wise, it reaches 84hp at 8,500 rpm, compared to the 93.9hp at 8,750rpm for the Tiger 900. It has an 888cc displacement, a 78.00mm bore, 61.9mm stroke and a compression ratio of 11.27:1. The torque on the 850 is significantly lower, 82Nm at 6,500, compared to the 900’s 86Nm at 7,250rpm. This is visualised below.

Triumph Tiger 850 Sport Review
Torque vs Speed Graph
Pictured: Triumph Tiger 850 Sport Engine Torque vs Engine Speed (Triumph Tiger 850 Sport Review)

The throttle delivery feels exceptionally smooth, with a soft connection at low speeds. This makes maneuverability in the city rather simple, especially for tight U-turns. As you can see in the above graph, most of the torque is lower in the rev range, which gives it a decent amount of power at low speeds, which builds quickly as you accelerate. With traction control switched off, it is possible to lift the front wheel in second gear because this bike can quickly build up power. When riding in rain mode, the power delivery is much softer, so it is ideal to utilise this if you are a beginner.

Chassis

The most apparent characteristic of this motorcycle is that it is so lightweight and easy to handle. It features the same twin-sided cast aluminium alloy swingarm, bolt-on subframe and tubular steel frame as the Tiger 900. The weight of the bike is complemented by the wide bars, which makes technical maneuvers much easier. This also assists with stabilisation on uneven terrain, so even when you build up some speed, you will be able to ride in a straight line. It is important to note that the Tiger 850’s off-road capabilities are restricted to easy gravel trails if you wish to travel at moderate to high speeds. If you want to ride on tough trails with some pace, it’s best to go for the Tiger 900 Rally. The design is catered more for off-road rather than road/off-road capabilities.

Most of the weight is carried low, which means that the bike will continue to feel lightweight and easy to handle at slow speeds. It is a fairly tall bike, the seat height is adjustable, and the handlebars are easy to reach. The Tiger 850 is suited for an upright riding position, which is ideal for beginners.

Suspension

Although both the 850 and 900 use Marzocchi suspension, it has been stripped down a bit on the 850. It offers 45mm upside-down front forks with 180mm of travel. The rear forks only have a manual preload adjustability with 170mm travel. This is still entirely capable of taking on rough terrain; you have to travel at a much slower speed to do so.

Dashboard

As expected for this price point, the Triumph Tiger 850 Sport doesn’t feature much in computer systems and electronics, but the inclusions are meaningful. The TFT display on this model is the same as the Tiger 900’s unit, a 5″ display with most of the basic information you need, plus a toggle switch that allows you to navigate through cluster configurations and the two modes.

Triumph Tiger 850 Sport Review
Tiger 850 Sport TFT display
Pictured: Triumph Tiger 850 Sport TFT display. (Triumph Tiger 850 Sport Review)

Tyres

The Triumph Tiger 850 Sport comes with Michelin Anakees on the cast 19″ front/17″ rear wheels. Thankfully, these sizes accommodate many popular Adventure style tyres, so you are not limited in your off-road travels.

Braking

Featuring the same high-quality brakes from the Triumph GT 900 models, the Tiger 850 is outfitted with 320mm twin discs at the front and Brembo Stylema four-piston Monobloc ABS callipers. The rear is outfitted with a 255mm disc alongside the Brembo single-piston ABS calliper. This is quite surprising because these are top-of-the-line brakes on a relatively affordable model. The ABS is non-intrusive, and the braking is incredibly smooth. This quality is to be expected, as these are the same brakes used on some Superbikes.

Details

The Tiger 850 features high quality full LED headlights, which do an excellent job at illuminating everything in front without blinding oncoming traffic. There are 60 accessories for this model that you can choose from. Unfortunately, you won’t be finding any heated grips or quick-shifters, though. The windscreen is manually adjustable by 50mm, and the wind deflectors on the side ensure adequate wind protection. Triumph states that the Tiger 850 goes through 4.2L of fuel every 100km, so in a 20-litre tank, you’re looking at around 480 km to a tank in optimal conditions.

Pricing

In Australia, you can pick up a Triumph Tiger 850 Sport for $17,890.00, while the Tiger 900 GT starts at $20,950.00, which does have cruise control. It depends on whether you need cruise control and lean-sensitive traction control, as the price gap is not massive.

Conclusion

The Triumph Tiger 850 Sport is an excellent beginner-oriented bike that omits some electronic features to ensure the bike is safe for people learning to ride. If you are a more experienced rider, it may be good to save the extra money to buy the Tiger 900 GT, as it has more advanced electronic features for more experienced riders. As it stands, the Tiger 850 Sport is excellent value for money, has a surprising amount of power, excellent power delivery, and immaculate handling. But if you’re a more advanced rider, it would be wise to steer clear unless you plan to teach someone the ins and outs.

Technical Specifications

Power:62.5kW @ 8,500rpm
Torque:82Nm @ 6,500rpm
Displacement:888 cc
Engine:Liquid-cooled, 12 valve, DOHC, inline triple
Transmission:6 speed
Front Suspension:Marzocchi 45mm USD
Rear Suspension:Marzocchi shock with manual preload adjustment
Front Brakes:Twin 320 mm floating discs, Brembo Stylema 4 piston Monobloc calipers. Radial front master cylinder, ABS
Rear Brakes:255mm disc. Brembo single piston sliding calliper, ABS
Length:2248mm
Width:830mm
Height:1410-1460mm
Wheelbase:1556mm
Seat Height:810–830mm
Fuel Capacity:20 litres
Wet Weight:210kg
Warranty:2 year unlimited km
Model Code:SMTE68DG7MTAD8095
Front Tyre:100/90-19
Rear Tyre:150/70R17150/70R17150/70R17150/70R17

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2 COMMENTS

  1. Torque is not significantly lower (82nm vs 86nm) and comes on 750rpm lower???

    Heated grips and a quick shifter are both available for this bike in the Triumph Genuine Accessories list.

    Not a bad review but you make it sound like a 125cc Honda learner bike which is quite considerably far from an accurate description.

    • Hi Craig, thank you for your comment. Yes, perhaps we have gone overboard saying it is “significantly” lower. And you are also right in that the heated grips and quick shifters can be purchased separately. We are always looking to improve our content and this kind of constructive criticism helps out a lot.

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