This page is not all about me. I also invite you to review your own bike. In coming months I hope to have some rider apparel giveaways for the best contributions. Write your review to [email protected]This first reader review comes from self-confessed “biased, narrow-minded, one-eyed Ducati owner” Harry Bohler:
I have owned only Ducati’s for the past several years (currently a 998S) so they are my only point of reference for comparison.
I have been road riding for many years and a couple of years ago did my first track day. I really enjoyed it and decided I’d be doing more. The only trouble with track days is if you come off, insurance is not going to help you out. The thought of my beloved Ducati 998S cartwheeling down the track and me having to pay the repair bill was more than I could bear so it was then I decided I needed another bike.
I wanted a bike with similar stance and riding position to the Ducati, good handling, preferably cheaper running and maintenance costs, cheaper purchase overall and preferable not a Japanese bike. Some low down torque was also essential.
I always liked the look of the Triumph Daytona 675 and it seemed to fit the bill. I purchased one and must say I am very satisfied with my decision.
Riding on the road the Daytona has a very similar feel to the 998S. Both bikes feel “narrow” (knees feel together while riding, not spread out like when on a bike with a fat tank). The riding position for both bikes is also similar in a traditional sports bike crouch. This could translate to being a very uncomfortable position for a non-Ducati rider! As far as handling goes, cornering feels like you’re on rails and even when pushed, there is no loss of confidence in the bike’s ability or stability. I was surprised by this as the Ducati has Ohlins, the Triumph has non-branded gold suspension which obviously functions very well and at least looks like Ohlins! On the track the Daytona does lose a bit to the Ducati. Although handling is very good, when ridden deep into a corner, some flexibility and slight wallowing can be felt within the bike.
The Daytona has superb power delivery (for a bike that is not a V twin). There is enough torque to pull out of corners in lower gears and the top end also has ample go. I have fitted an aftermarket slip-on exhaust which is highly recommended. The engine feels much less restricted and more responsive plus there is a substantial weight saving over the stock exhaust. The Arrow exhaust seems to be the preferred option, but I installed a Leo Vince (about half the cost of the Arrow) which I’m very pleased with.
One big difference between the Ducati and Daytona is the dash and instrument cluster. The Ducati has a very simplistic dial speedo and tacho arrangement. I’ve always liked that as it is traditional and provides all the necessary information a rider needs. The Daytona on the other hand is more hi-tech with only a dial tacho and then several digital read outs. There is a digital speedo, clock (handy as a watch under leathers is useless), digital readout to show what gear you’re in and some pretty blue LED lights that let you know when you’re reaching the end of your rev range. I’ll admit the additional information on the dash is a nice modern luxury, but can become a bit confusing. On a recent ride, I’d finished lunch and was having a spirited ride with friends when I glanced down to see the time. I saw a 2.30 on the dash and thought to myself, wow time flies when you’re having fun. After a second glance I realized that was actually my speedo and the time was only 1pm!
The mod-cons are great for track days. With the poke of a few buttons, the dash converts to a lap-timer providing lap times, top and average speed and other miscellaneous information.
The cost of parts and general servicing is noticeably less than the Ducati. This is great and another way to help justify owning two bikes!
The build quality of the bike is also very good. I’ve not had any problems with the bike mechanically and no bits or pieces have fallen off it since I’ve owned it. Materials used are not to the same standard as the Ducati. I’ve noticed a few nuts and bolts showing some rust. The fairing is quite flimsy and paint finish, although nothing wrong with it, is not to the same quality as the Ducati. I guess to achieve the significantly reduced price of the bike, something has to give.
Overall, I think the Daytona is incredible value for money. It is a pleasure to ride and loves a windy road. It goes forward well, stops well and feels very nimble and able when thrown into corners. When I first purchased the Daytona, being as narrow-minded as I am, I was preparing myself for disappointment. It did not happen – I truly enjoy riding this bike. My only regret with the purchase is not getting the 675R. The thought of the same bike with Ohlins suspension and Brembo brakes sounds even more appealing!
(Editor’s note: The Daytona will soon be updated. Stay tuned for more news. Meanwhile, here are the tech specs for the current model.) Triumph Daytona 675