Not everyone is searching for the latest in throttle-by-wire electronics and lean-angle-sensing traction control technology. Many of us, in fact, feel that two-wheel cruising is best when it’s kept simple. And the low-frills Triumph America cruiser meets that need perfectly, appealing to internal combustion lovers who don’t want every new innovation.
The aptly named America reflects Triumph’s desire to broaden its cruiser share of the US market.
This Triumph offers just the essentials. In addition to a generous 5.1-gallon fuel tank, the America offers single-disc Nissin brakes front and rear, Metzler ME880 Marathon tires, and a two-person seat. Claimed weight is 551 lb. If your ideal cruising machine has a windscreen, some luggage capacity and a passenger backrest, opt for the America LT model, which has all of those items standard.
Visually, the Triumph America is a blend of British and American charm, with cruiser styling cues applied to a look that’s classic Triumph. At the heart of the machine is the handsome motor—somewhat of a rarity in the category—an air-cooled DOHC 865cc parallel twin. This is the same twin used in the Triumph Bonneville, but in this application it puts out a claimed 61 hp compared to 68 in the Bonneville.
The motor, the exhaust, the faux carburetors, and the gold-letter badging all affirm the America’s British ancestry. At the same time, the forward footpegs, the long swept back bar, the mag wheels, and fat tires shout All-American cruiser. And the view from the rider’s seat is refreshingly simple, almost sparse. Mounted in the center of the handlebar is a single gauge, a speedometer, accompanied by a simple flat-mounted dash on the top of the fuel tank. That’s all.
Motoring along canyon roads near our Southern California office, I had the chance to roll on the throttle and awaken the familiar sound of the parallel twin. At just over 60 ponies, the America won’t win many drag races. But this American style cruiser has plentiful torque, which makes it easy to pass slower traffic.