Spied: Triumph Daytona 250 | Up To Speed

New Quarter-Liter Sportbike Caught on Camera

It's no secret that Triumph has been developing a new single-cylinder machine to target the booming Indian/Asian motorcycle market and also capture new riders in developed markets. We already showed you a spy shot of the naked single last month; now our spies have captured the first image of the fully faired sports model that will be the flagship of British maker's new lightweight line.

Following the pattern established with its 675cc triples, Triumph is developing both a naked "Street Single" and a faired "Daytona 250." Aside from bodywork and riding position, expect the two bikes to be identical under the plastic. Technically, both follow the layout of the bike Triumph sees as its main rival: Honda's CBR250R. That means a tubular-steel chassis with a simple, box-section swingarm and an all-new, DOHC, water-cooled, 250cc single for power. Expect between 25 and 30 hp, and a last-minute capacity hike to match Honda's recently announced CBR300R can't be ruled out either. Suspension will be simple and cheap—getting these bikes down to CBR250R cost parity will be vital to their success.

This project represents more than just another new model for Triumph; it represents the start of a plan that, if successful, will transform the firm. These new singles won't be built in Britain, or even in Triumph's facility in Thailand, but in a new factory in Karnataka, India, instead. Once fully online, Triumph expects to produce around 300,000 bikes per year at its Indian factory—six times the output of the company's current British and Thai factories combined. While the majority of that extra volume will go directly into the Indian market, the new singles are intended to appear in dealers all around the world, including America.

Triumph Daytona 250
Triumph Daytona 250
Triumph isn’t taking any risks with the Daytona 250. Styling hews closely to the proven-successful Daytona 675 (shown above, leading the 250 development bike).