Long Term Triumph Street Twin: Adding Height With Triumph Bench Seat

Adding a Triumph Accessory leather bench seat gives the Bonnie more height and legroom.

Triumph Street Twin with ribbed bench seat
The Street Twin's already retro look is amplified by the Triumph accessory leather Brown Ribbed Bench seat ($375).Photo: Julia LaPalme

WRIST: Julia LaPalme
MSRP (2016): $8,700
MILES: 3,858
MPG: 56 mpg
MODS: Triumph Brown Ribbed Bench Seat

After the first month of riding the new Bonnie , and a couple things stood out. Aside from the fun I have buzzing around town on the 900cc twin, the overall size of the bike started to feel cramped. This is a bit ironic since Triumph specifically designed the Street Twin for smaller riders, making the seat height a very approachable 29.5 inches. This in combination with the bike's narrow chassis makes it easy for me to not only flat foot it at stops, but flat foot it with bended knees.

Over the last 10 to 11 years I’ve been riding, I have gotten used to the riding position of sport(y) bikes, street fighters, and sport tourers. This of course involves taller seat heights, and sometimes higher placed foot pegs. The ergonomic configurations of taller bikes often allow plenty of leg room from seat to foot peg, especially if the foot pegs are mid-mounted and not rearsets. The Street Twin, in contrast, has begun to feel a bit small.

Street Twin bench seat
The Brown Ribbed Bench Seat from Triumph's accessory catalogue offers retro style, leather panache, and added height. Also doubles as a slip-n-slide.Photo: Julia LaPalme

Thankfully I only have a 20 minute commute to and from work. Anything longer, and I suspect my knees would start to ache, as I remember them doing during the launch last fall. So, what to do about this? I’m sure there are plenty of average height riders who would love the Street Twin were it not for such a low compact seat and footpeg arrangement.

There are a few options out there for Street Twin bench seats, one of which comes directly from the factory. I thumbed through Triumph’s accessory catalog, so to speak, and found their Brown Ribbed Bench Seat for $375. Aesthetically, the bench seat looks great, adding more retro flair to the already retro Bonnie. The brown ribbed leather with the tone-on-tone embroidered logo adds a nice subtle touch of class. While the flat profile, which replaces the more scooped out contour of the stock seat, looks great, it’s not as comfortable for longer rides. It does, however, solve my issue with legroom, adding 1.3 inches of seat height.

Street Twin Bench Seat measurement Will
Assistant Editor, and Garage Czar Will takes precise MC-approved measurements of the Triumph ribbed bench seat to verify it is, indeed, taller than the stock seat!Photo: Julia LaPalme

Funny thing about solving one problem, though, is that it often times reveals another. The ribbed bench seat’s leather is a little slippery, and I find myself sliding back a little during acceleration, and forward during braking. The most notable movement in saddle happens during cornering, making me squeeze the narrow frame of the Street Twin that much more to keep myself in place. I think this could be remedied with a set of tank pads. Stay tuned for more on that later!