For 2024, the venerable Triumph Street Triple 765 naked-bike range has come in for a complete overhaul. At the base is the 765 R ($10,945), then comes the RS ($12,995) and the top-tier, limited Moto2 Edition ($15,395). In the case of the latter, it has already sold out everywhere but the United States. The R comes with lower-rate suspension and electronics than the RS, while the Moto2 Edition gains a multitude of goodies that include premium Öhlins suspension, racier ergonomics and Triumph’s new factory race colors. But it’s the RS that we’re here to test at the Circuito de Jerez racetrack in southern Spain.
On the course, the Curva Alex Criville— named after the legendary Spanish racer who gave his country its first MotoGP crown in 1999—is a dauntingly fast right-hand corner that requires pure commitment from the rider. In fourth gear and with revs around 7,000 rpm, I fling the RS on its side. As I do so, the bike’s front Pirelli Supercorsa SP V3 tire sticks in a way that lets me know I’ve completed the turn quickly and with the required velocity. The chassis naturally points towards the next right hander, the Curva Ferrari and, ultimately, to the left-hand Curva Jorge Lorenzo corner before I fire back onto the straight for another lap. Frankly, I couldn’t imagine a more enjoyable machine for this challenging track.
The RS’s revised 765 cc inline-three-cylinder motor unleashes a claimed 128 hp and 59 ft lbs of torque thanks to the myriad changes from 2020. These include a new, fully machined cylinder-head and piston crown, an increased compression and combustion chamber, shorter intake trumpets and shorter gearbox ratios from second gear to sixth, all of which add up to a very spicy throttle response and enhanced performance at low rpm.
The three-cylinder motor was first introduced to the Street Triple in 2017, and it’s become a favorite among riders looking for an alternative to the four-cylinder power plants from elsewhere in Europe and Japan. Ample torque starts early in the rev range and makes for a thoroughly engaging ride on the street, but delivers sheer exhilaration on track, with power building right up to the point where you hit the rev limiter at 12,000 rpm.
Matched to a sublime quickshifter for clutch-less gear changes, the Street Triple’s abundant yet approachable performance makes for a compelling case for a bike that can be all things to all riders. There’s five riding modes hidden in the five-inch TFT display, including one in which the rider can program individual levels of traction/wheelie control (it’s a combined system), Cornering ABS and throttle responsiveness.
It’s the chassis, though, that really shines in the hills surrounding Jerez and the circuit itself. Running Showa’s fully adjustable Big Piston Fork and an Öhlins STX40 monoshock at the rear, the RS offers a ride experience that’s smooth and comfortable on the street, with nimble steering manners and excellent brake precision from the Brembo monobloc calipers and MCS master-cylinder.
Head to the track and, once you’ve dialed in your suspension to have a bit more preload support at both ends, the RS comes alive and begs to be ridden in anger. The bike’s excellent front-end stability allows you to brake and turn later than you would normally dare; then jam on the throttle and let the traction control save you from high-siding yourself into next week. All the while, the three-cylinder mill sings its beautiful song. This is a motorcycle generating that always-important mechanical grip, which affords you max turn speed while you feel like you’re the one in total control. In contrast, the reverse is often true on a 1,000 cc-plus machine.
Available in April, the 2024 Triumph Street Triple RS is a massive amount of motorcycle for the money. With LED lighting front and rear, a full suite of ride-assist electronics and sharper yet more sophisticated bodywork, this is a hooligan bike that’s grown a few manners.
Click here for more photos of the 2024 Triumph Street Triple 765 RS.