Cruiser class motorcycles are popular in America. The fact that Harley-Davidson only sells cruiser motorcycles emphasizes this fact. The 2009 Triumph Speedmaster is one of the Hinckley, England company’s entries into the cruiser bike market. Triumph revives the name Speedmaster from a 1960s American Triumph importer. The Speedmaster is considered a middleweight, and therefore doesn’t come with the high price tag of the larger heavyweight cruisers.
Triumph paid close attention to exterior styling on the 2009 Speedmaster. Many cruiser riders are looking for style and ride quality. The 2009 Triumph Speedmaster was designed to evoke the appearance of a classic 1960s hot rod cruiser, and comes with an available matte black and a two tone black/white paint job that give the Speedmaster classic paint schemes, with a healthy dose of attitude. The matte black paint on the engine adds to the clean look of the Speedmaster. A teardrop-shaped gas tank complements the styling choices nicely. The tank-top console for the tach also clearly maintains the vintage cruiser look on the 2009 Speedmaster.
Many of the Triumph Speedmaster’s cruiser competitors opt for a V-twin engine configuration. But instead of following the pack and using an engine just because other company’s do, Triumph sticks to what they know best: a 865cc parallel-twin engine. The parallel-twin and the in-line triple are the engines that have revived the Triumph brand, and won international acclaim for performance. On the Speedmaster, the parallel-twin generates a healthy 61 hp and 54.6 ft. lbs. of torque. With an X ring chain drive transmission reliably transferring power to the wheels, the Speedmaster is generally quicker than its middleweight cruiser competitors. The wet multi-plate clutch and 5-speed gearbox ensure smooth shifting.
Triumph added electronic multiport fuel injection to the Speedmaster in 2009. But in keeping with the classic 1960s cruiser look, they masked the fuel injection port to look like a traditional carburetor.
A tubular steel cradle endows the Speedmaster with a sturdy frame. Even when taking the Speedmaster close to redline, the frame is solid, and provides excellent stability. The stock suspension on the Speedmaster is a bit tight. This means without any adjustments, you might feel the bumps on the road. This can be sorted out relatively easily, but new owners should make these adjustments before going on a long ride. The 2009 Triumph Speedmaster comes with a large 18-inch custom wheel in front that adds to the aggressive look of the bike. Stopping power comes via twin 310mm discs in front, with a single 285mm disc for the rear wheel.
Ergonomically the 2009 Triumph Speedmaster is very good for the rider. The placement of the footpegs, and the 33-inch-wide handlebar, together provide a comfortable riding position. With a seat height of 28.3 pounds, the Speedmaster easily accommodates shorter riders and female riders. The low center of gravity of the bike makes it an appealing choice for beginners. While the seat is very comfortable for the rider, the passenger section is a bit small and narrow. If a Speedmaster owner intends to carry a passenger frequently, then it would be worth adding Triumph’s dual touring seat to the bike.
Triumph offers a very wide range of accessories for the Speedmaster. Whether you want custom handlebars, chrome parts, or a modified exhaust, Triumph (as well as aftermarket companies) have plenty of goodies to individualize a rider's bike. The 2009 Triumph Speedmaster is a fitting heir to Triumph’s long tradition of creating custom cruiser bikes with excellent engine performance.