By John Burns
And before Triumph figured out what it was doing and became king of the classics, it tried to fight head to head against the Japanese, sending modern Triples into battle covered in plastic armor, and none among them had cruise control. Could the Sprint ST overpower the reigning VFR800? Well, it was a noble effort.
1999 Triumph Sprint ST
The Perfect Compromise?
Amsterdam, November 16, 1999 — “Know what that is?” said the Triumph guy as we circled the stationary Sprint. “None of the journos notice it when they take the Sprint,” he said shaking his head in amazement as he leaned forward to pull open a small plastic cap low on the right-hand side of the bike. “It’s even got a plug for your heated touring gear.” Then he stepped back to give me room to admire this example of the commitment with which Triumph has set out to build their new generation sport touring bike. Courtesy forced me to pause for a few seconds in silent admiration, but an access plug wasn’t what I was looking for from the bike. There would have to be more than that — a LOT more — if it was going to come even close to deposing the Honda VFR800, the long-reigning King of the Sport Tourers.
There’s been a Sprint in Triumph’s line-up since 1993, but the arrival of the new generation T595 Daytona in 1997 created a sales slump as the Sprint struggled to find a place between the new Daytona and the full-dressed Trophy. A large dose of new technology was needed to solidify Triumph’s place in a market segment that is small but relatively uncrowded. The most obvious strategy would have been to do some minor work on the Daytona to take the edge off the sporty …read more
Source:: Church of MO: 1999 Triumph Sprint ST