Triumph Tiger 1200 Explorer XC


Make Model

Triumph Tiger Explorer XC




Four stroke, transverse three cylinder. DOHC, 4 valves per cylinder


1215 cc / 74.1 cub in
Bore x Stroke 85 x 71.4mm
Cooling System Liquid-cooled
Compression Ratio 12.0:1


Multipoint sequential electronic fuel injection with SAI


Starting Electric
Exhaust Stainless steel 3 into 1 , side mounted stainless steel silencer
Oil Capacity 4.0 Litres / 1.1 US gals / 0.88 Imp gal

Max Power

101 kW / 135 hp @ 9300rpm

Max Torque

121 Nm / 21.6 kgf-m / 89 lb-ft @ 6400 rpm
Clutch Wet, multi-plate


6 Speed 
Final Drive Shaft
Frame Tubular steel trellis frame, Swingarm Single-sided, cast aluminium alloy with shaft drive

Front Suspension

Kayaba 46mm upside down forks
Front Wheel Travel 190 mm / 7.5 in

Rear Suspension

Kayaba monoshock with remote oil reservoir, hydraulically adjustable preload, rebound damping adjustment
Rear Wheel Travel 194 mm / 7.6 in

Front Brakes

2x 305 mm Foating discs, Nissin 4-piston calipers, switchable ABS

Rear Brakes

Single 282 mm disc, Nissin 2-piston sliding caliper, switchable ABS
Wheel Front 32-spoke 19 x 2.5 in, aluminium rim
Wheel Rear 32-spoke 17 x 4.0 in, aluminium rim

Front Tyre


Rear Tyre

Rake 22.8º
Trail 90.9mm / 3.6 in


Length 2248mm / 88.4in

Width (handlebars) 962mm 37.9in

Height without mirrors 1410mm 55.5in

Wheelbase 1435 mm / 56.5in
Seat Height 837mm / 32.9in - 857mm/33.7in

Wet Weight

267 kg  / 586 lbs

Fuel Capacity 

20 Litres / 5.3 US gal / 4.4 Imp gal


Triumph will be offering a more dirt-worthy XC version alongside the standard Explorer for 2013. The new Explorer XC has some extra features aimed at improving off-road usability. The cast wheels are now replaced with Triumph-designed steel-spoke tubeless wheels with aluminum rims, which should be a little more damage resistant while still offering the easier flat repair of a tubeless design. Wheel sizes remain 17 inches in back, 19 in front

The new XC will be delivered with heavy-duty crash bars, an aluminum bash plate, hand guards, and dual 55-watt fog lamps. You can get the Triumph Explorer XC in Khaki Green.

The new Tiger Explorer XC is ready for your next adventure

Tiger Explorer. All-new bike. All-new excitement.

The ultimate choice for the long haul adventurer. Class-leading handling. The journey doesn’t have to end when the Tarmac does. Brand new, 1215cc engine, with shaft drive of course. A Triumph to take on the world.

Looking for even more adventure?

The new Tiger Explorer XC is ready for your next adventure. The XC isn’t just designed to get you noticed. It’s designed to go the distance on road or off the beaten track. That’s because it has the Explorer’s incredible dynamic handling, plus all the kit you need to keep going when things get challenging, including new aluminium rimmed, steel spoked wheels with tubeless tyres, hand guards, engine bars and fog lights. That’s on top of the shaft-driven 1,215cc triple that produces 137PS and 121Nm of torque, the cruise control and switchable ABS.

Triumph Tiger Explorer XC Features and Benefits

The new Tiger Explorer XC gets new, aluminium rimmed, steel spoked wheels – 19 inch front and 17 inch rear, with tubeless tyres for ease of repair should your adventure get the better of your tyres. It gets engine bars, hand guards, a sump guard and fog lights, while its tough Mat Khaki Green paint finish leaves no doubt that it’s ready for adventure. And if that doesn’t go far enough for you, there’s a full range of Genuine Triumph Accessories that let you really make it your Tiger Explorer XC.

Triumph Tiger Explorer XC Key Features
Aluminium rimmed, steel spoked wheels with tubeless tyres

Dynamic handling and off-road durability plus tubeless tyres for easy puncture repair in remote situations.

Sump Guard

Robust, heavy gauge aluminium sump guard for maximum protection on the rough tracks and passes.

Engine Bars

Tough 22mm steel tube engine bars for added protection when riding off-road.

Hand Guards

Designed to protect you from off-road debris and to keep you warm and dry, these high impact hand guards keep you out of harm’s way on and off-road.

Fog light kit

High performance 55w dual fog lights increase visibility for added security in poor riding conditions.

Mat Khaki Green paint

It’s says rugged, it says off-road, it says adventure. This distinctive Khaki Green paint is the perfect finishing touch and complement for Tiger Explorer XC’s tough good looks.

Motorcycle Daily review

Before our readers enter into a rant about why these large, heavy adventure bikes are not sufficiently dirt worthy, I need to editorialize briefly.

For most riders, the appeal of the new, large displacement Adventure bikes has nothing to do with their off-road capability.  Zero.  These bikes are frequently viewed as superior road machines . . . superior to many competing sport tourers and full dress tourers for both commuting and touring.  They are primarily bought for this reason, not for their dirt worthiness.

Having said that, these bikes do have varying degrees of ability to travel off-road.  Many owners will never take them there, but they have the ability, nonetheless.

So if you are shopping for a street bike in the sport tourer category, for instance, will you be better off with an adventure touring bike?  Quite possibly. For many riders, the bolt upright seating position and relatively forward peg placement is simply more comfortable than the riding position offered by sport tourers that hang on to the pretense of sportiness with lower bars and more rearward peg placement (often with less leg room, as well).  One of the most comfortable freeway jaunts I can recall occurred while I was aboard a large displacement Adventure bike.

Which brings us to the subject of this test, the 2013 Triumph Explorer XC.  A huge machine, no doubt, with its elevated seat height (32.9 adjustable to 33.7 inches) and claimed wet weight of 586 pounds.

The XC takes the standard Explorer and adds features to improve its dirt capabilities, including steel-spoked wheels (abandoning the cast wheels of the standard model) that are nevertheless tubeless, crash bars, under-engine bash plate, hand guards and dual 55-watt fog lamps.  The rest of the technical details are identical to those described in Gabe’s story. The headline feature is Triumph’s all-new 1215cc 3-cylinder engine.  The largest transverse triple ever created by Triumph.

The engine is fantastic.  With peak horsepower of 135 at the crank and nearly 90 foot/pounds of torque, this is an extremely fast motorcycle.  Not just fast, it pulls effortlessly with that mountain of torque.  The smooth feel and shrieking turbine-like sound are characteristic of Triumph triples.

The seating position, including the seat itself, is hard to fault.  The bars are comfortably high and close, placing your wrists at a natural angle.  The seat is firm enough to be comfortable on longer rides, and broad enough to distribute your weight well beyond your sit bones.  Wind protection was good, with minimal buffeting at the helmet level.

On-road handling initially revealed a vague feeling from the front end.  As we noted nearly a decade ago with Suzuki’s V-Strom, some adventure tourers are delivered without enough weight on the front wheel, necessitating the addition of spring preload in the shock and/or sliding the forks up a few millimeters in the triple clamps.  We did both, sliding the forks roughly 5mm.  The result was a much more confident-feeling front end and more accurate steering.

We got comfortable enough on the big Explorer XC to utilize nearly all of the very generous lean angle on the street (resulting from all that Ground Clearance).  The wide bars made it fun, and easy, to throw the big Tiger on its side.  Is it the most nimble Adventure bike we have ridden?  No.  The huge engine displacement and corresponding crank intertia mean it won’t change direction like a Suzuki V-Strom 650, for instance.   What it has is added straight-line stability over a smaller, nimbler mount.

The six-speed transmission offered more than enough gear choices given the extremely broad plateau of torque, but it was still nice to have an overdrive sixth gear for fuel economy on the superslab.  Speaking of which, we averaged 39 mpg while riding the bike more aggressively, no doubt, than you would in day-to-day use. The 5.3 gallon tank should get you well beyond 200 miles between fill-ups on a tour, because we are confident that you can achieve 45 mpg while cruising on the highway.  Given the engine performance on offer, not too bad.

The large dial that allows you to easily change rear spring preload without tools comes in handy.  You can not only quickly adjust weight distribution and handling with this feature, you can accommodate passengers/luggage loads.  We added 3 turns (equaling 3 clicks) of preload before escorting a relatively small female passenger to dinner one evening.

The instrumentation (described in our earlier stories) is both legible and complete, and includes a very precise fuel gauge.

Off-road the big Explorer XC is a handful.  It doesn’t like to change direction quickly on loose soil or gravel, but the suspension works to carry speed on fire roads and through more gradual corners.  I was able to comfortably travel 60 mph, or so, across the desert, with the suspension keeping things under control, on moderately rough roads.

On the street, the extra suspension travel and 19″ front wheel provide another benefit versus traditional sport tourers, i.e., better absorption of small bumps.  This is another reason why some riders now prefer adventure bikes for touring.  Honda’s big sport tourer, the ST1300, has an 18″ front wheel for similar reasons.

The extra features offered by the XC (features you could add to your standard Explorer through the Triumph accessories catelogue) do improve its dirt worthiness.  The high-speed desert travel I described would have concerned me a lot more without the engine bash plate and crash guards, and with the cast wheels found on the standard Explorer.  Visions of cast wheels collapsing in aggressive off-road riding would have been dancing in my head, otherwise.  The traditional, steel-spoked wheels on the Explorer XC look extremely stout and are undoubtedly leagues stronger.

So what we have here is a large, extremely comfortable and powerful Adventure bike that changes directions easily, and confidently, on the street, while offering the ability to take you off-road where a traditional street machine would falter.  Appropriately painted Khaki Green, the 2013 Triumph Tiger Explorer XC also looks the part.  The typical comment was “That bike looks badass”, and one could imagine that it was morphed out of something seen in Mel Gibson’s Mad Max movies.

Source Motorcycle Daily