by Todd Halterman from https://www.autoevolution.com
Tiny Triumphs and EV Motorcycle Range in Prototype Now With Indian Firm Bajaj
Triumph is now teasing the development of a series of smaller displacement motorcycles that the company plans to build with Indian manufacturing giants Bajaj.
As far back as early 2020, Triumph announced that it reached an agreement with Bajaj – one of the largest motorcycle firms in the world – to develop and build an all-new range of so-called ‘baby’ Triumphs that would fill in the 200 – 750cc engine displacement category.
While the plan called for the companies to roll out the first models in the collaboration in 2022, the project has been pushed back as a consequence of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Now that the pandemic crisis seems to be loosening its grip, both parties say they’re back on track to develop the bikes.
Triumph Head of Brand Management Miles Perkins says prototypes have already been created and plans are back in the offing.
“That’s going great guns, I have seen the development motorcycles – and the prototype for those – it’s all on track,” Perkins says. “We haven’t yet confirmed exactly what the bikes are and exactly when we will launch them but the news is forthcoming soon.”
And fear not, though Triumph hasn’t confirmed exactly which the partnership will create models, it has said the resulting bikes will be sold globally rather be sold only in Asian markets more conducive to sales of cheaper, small capacity motorcycles.
According to Perkins, Triumph found the ideal partner in Bajaj. He says the company’s large market share in India and experience working with KTM and Kawasaki were key to the deal.
“The relationship with Bajaj and conversations I have had with the team over there and the engineering team working with them are very like-minded and passionate individuals, and their focus and commitment are outstanding. They have similar leadership family principles and values,” Perkins says. “The working relationship is strong, the design development is completely Triumph, these are Triumphs and the partnership is building it and selling them around the world. What Bajaj brings is phenomenal in terms of the ability to develop quality in this volume, especially in the lower capacity range.”
Perkins also says the Triumph TE-1 EV prototype has been built and is ready for testing. It represents an electric sports bike model developed in partnership with Williams Advanced Engineering, and Perkins calls it “a blueprint for a future EV Triumph.”
Power for the TE-1 comes from an electric motor that delivers 174 horsepower at peak and 107 horses of continuous power. Triumph chose not to publish additional specifications, but Motorcycle News learned the bike weighs 485 pounds and offers up to 120 miles of range. Quick-charging technology zaps the battery pack with an 80% charge in about 20 minutes. Triumph stressed it aimed to give riders the performance of an internal-combustion-powered bike in an electric package, but what you see isn’t necessarily what will land in showrooms.
Triumph will begin testing the TE-1 prototype in the coming months, but it told Motorcycle News that it still needs to clear the cost hurdle before approving the production model. When it will do that is up in the air.
Triumph calls the TE-1 EV a prototype platform development and not an actual motorcycle available for sale, it’s a project which the company is using for “learning and developing the team’s experience but also developing the partnership of technology with several partners for a full-on electric Triumph platform that will follow in years to come.”