2023 Triumph Rocket 3 R | Street Take a look at Evaluation


2023 Triumph Rocket 3 R
The 2023 Triumph Rocket 3 R felt
proper at residence on
the imply streets of
downtown Los Angeles. (Photographs by Kevin Wing)

The very first thing you must know in regards to the Triumph Rocket 3 R is that its inline-Triple displaces 2,458cc (150ci), making it the most important bike manufacturing engine by far. Nothing else even comes shut. 

The Rocket 3 R’s cylinders are like a hippopotamus’ tooth: It doesn’t have many, however the ones it does have are spectacular. They’ve a bore of 4.33 inches – wider than the cylinders in a 707-hp Dodge Hellcat – and a stroke of three.4 inches. Every one displaces 819.3cc, exceeding the engine capability of Triumph’s Road Triple 765 sportbike.

Associated: 2024 Triumph Road Triple 765 Vary | First Look Evaluation


Claimed output on the crank is 165 hp and 163 lb-ft of torque. You should buy a sportbike tuned to make extra horsepower, however no manufacturing bike churns out as a lot grunt. Once more, nothing else comes shut.

2023 Triumph Rocket 3 R
Take a deep breath and simply soak all of it in. It’s a magnificence and a beast.

The second factor you must know is that, regardless of having such an infinite engine, the Rocket 3 R just isn’t an chubby, bloated machine. With a claimed dry weight of 641 lb and an estimated curb weight approaching 700 lb, it’s as gentle or lighter than many cruisers and open-class sport-tourers.

Even taking its engine dimension and output under consideration, the Rocket 3 R stays a uncommon breed: a muscle cruiser that handles effectively and has sportbike-caliber elements and electronics. And its design, from its mixture of brushed, matte, and gloss finishes to its single-sided swingarm, displays unbelievable consideration to element and top-notch match and end.

My, How You’ve Grown 

2023 Triumph Rocket 3 R
Midmount controls and minimal handlebar pullback encourage an
aggressive posture, particularly when on
the gasoline.

Within the late ’90s and early 2000s, there was a displacement battle occurring amongst cruisers, with engine sizes rising from 1,449cc on the Harley-Davidson Twin Cam 88 to 1,510cc on the Victory 92C. Then the Japanese OEMs joined the fray, beginning with 1,670cc on the Yamaha Street Star, then 1,795cc on the Honda VTX1800, and at last, breaking the two-liter barrier, 2,053cc on the Kawasaki Vulcan 2000, which debuted for 2004. 

The next 12 months, Triumph got here alongside and topped all of them with the Rocket III, which received its thrust from a large 2,294cc inline-Triple, albeit with an additional cylinder in comparison with the V-Twins listed above. The Rocket III was underneath improvement within the early 2000s, and with every new displacement benchmark, Triumph’s engineers ratcheted up the engine’s capability as a result of the corporate’s major aim was to be the most important.

Associated: 2014 Triumph Rocket III Touring | Street Take a look at Evaluation

The three-cylinder configuration made sense as a result of the trendy incarnation of Triumph, underneath the route of John Bloor, had constructed its status and model picture round Triples in bikes just like the Trophy, Dash, and Pace Triple. However the origins of the Triple and the mannequin identify got here from even additional again in Triumph’s historical past: The 1968 Triumph Trident / BSA Rocket III (the identical bike with totally different badging throughout a time when each manufacturers have been underneath the identical umbrella) was the primary three-cylinder bike produced by the British producer. Because the fashionable Rocket III’s engine can be so massive, Triumph organized its cylinders longitudinally reasonably than transverse to the route of journey, as on its different Triples.

2023 Triumph Rocket 3 R
The Rocket 3 R’s hot-rod Triple is a knockout.

It’s been practically a decade since we examined the Rocket III Touring, which was a conventionally styled cruiser with a single spherical headlight, driving lights, a buckhorn handlebar, top-loading saddlebags, a passenger backrest, and plenty of chrome. At 105 hp and 150 lb-ft of torque, it additionally had a milder state of tune than the Rocket III Roadster, which made 146 hp and 163 lb-ft of torque on the crank. Each bikes have been huge, scaling in at 906 lb for the Touring and 806 lb for the Roadster.

For the 2020 mannequin 12 months, Triumph hit the reset button. It modified the platform’s identify to Rocket 3, favoring the extra frequent and modern Arabic numeral to its antiquated Roman counterpart. Whereas that will seem to be a quibbling distinction, it represented Triumph’s dedication to constructing a extra fashionable machine. The engine not solely grew from 2,294cc to 2,458cc, it was up to date with a brand new crankcase meeting, balancer shafts, and lubrication system. The Rocket 3 was additionally geared up with throttle-by-wire, an IMU, trip modes, cornering-optimized ABS and traction management, cruise management, hill-hold management, and keyless ignition.

2023 Triumph Rocket 3 R
Lean it such as you imply it.

In comparison with the earlier platform, the Rocket 3 had gone on a crash weight loss plan, shaving off roughly 90 lb. Despite the fact that the brand new engine has extra displacement, it’s 40 lb lighter than its predecessor. Extra weight was saved by changing the metal body and swingarm with cast-aluminum items, lightening the exhaust system and wheels, and lowering gasoline capability from 6.3 gallons on the RIII Roadster and 5.9 gallons on the RIII Touring to five gallons on the Rocket 3.

There are two variations of the Rocket 3: the R roadster examined right here, which begins at $23,895, and the GT tourer with a small windscreen, extra handlebar pullback, ahead foot controls, and a passenger backrest, which begins at $24,595. Triumph additionally produces some limited-edition variations with particular paint, finishes, and particulars, together with the Rocket 3 R 221 Particular Version (which celebrates its 221 Newton-meters of torque), the Rocket 3 R Chrome Version, and the Rocket 3 GT Chrome Version.

See all of Rider‘s Triumph protection right here.

Triumph Rocket 3 R: A Magnificence and A Beast 

2023 Triumph Rocket 3 R

Despite the fact that the previous Rocket III made boatloads of torque, its styling was bland. Its mondo engine, huge radiator, and 240mm rear tire gave it big-boy presence, however little in regards to the Rocket III stated, “Hey, take a look at me!” A cruiser mustn’t solely make beneficiant low-end torque, it also needs to make an announcement, and the Rocket 3 R actually does that. 

It’s a muscle bike with a muscular stance, sitting on fats tires – 150/80-17 up entrance, 240/50-16 out again – and coated in a big selection of metallic surfaces, as if the whole bike have been carved from one huge block of metallic. The impact is much more pronounced with the Matte Silver Ice paint on our take a look at bike (different shade choices are Sapphire Black, Phantom Black, Korosi Purple, or Silver Ice/Cranberry Purple). On the fitting aspect is a surprising hydroformed triple-exhaust header that ends in brief, matte-black silencers with slash-cut chrome finish caps – two on the fitting aspect and one on the left.

2023 Triumph Rocket 3 R in Sapphire Black
2023 Triumph Rocket 3 R in Sapphire Black
2023 Triumph Rocket 3 R in Silver Ice
2023 Triumph Rocket 3 R in Silver Ice/Cranberry Purple

There’s nothing clunky or misplaced – no unpleasant hoses or wires, no half-baked compromises. The “Rocket 3 R” and “2500 cc” badges are engraved; the matching gasoline, radiator, and oil filler caps are brushed aluminum; and even the bar-ends have customized detailing. The good styling component, and the one I bragged about to everybody that requested in regards to the bike (it’s a lookie-loo magnet), are the double-hinged, fold-away passenger pegs. 

If there’s one factor that appears slightly off to me, it’s the twin spherical headlights. They’ve been a signature Triumph styling component because the ’90s, most notably on the Pace Triple, they usually have been on the Rocket III Roadster. However with the extra fashionable look of the Rocket 3 R, simply as Triumph did with the Pace Triple a few decade in the past, evolving the headlights right into a extra aggressive form would make the bike’s total look extra cohesive. 

2023 Triumph Rocket 3 R
Complementing the uncooked metallic look of the numerous brushed and polished surfaces
are black finishes on the flyscreen, handlebar, fork tubes, and aspect covers.

Hitting the starter button on the Rocket 3 R elicits an authoritative growl, and blipping the throttle at idle causes the whole bike to twist to the fitting resulting from its huge, longitudinal crankshaft. Maybe to make the bike extra livable, throttle response is a tad boring under 2,000 rpm, however as soon as the large pistons spin up extra, the effectively of grunt feels bottomless. On Jett Tuning’s dyno, the two.5-liter beast spun the drum to a peak of 148 lb-ft of rear-wheel torque at 3,900 rpm, with greater than 140 lb-ft on faucet between 2,500 rpm and 5,300 rpm (redline is 6,500). There’s hardly a ripple in both the torque or horsepower curves, with the latter climbing steadily from 47 hp at 2,000 rpm to a peak of 145 at 6,100 rpm. Energy is distributed to the rear wheel by way of an infinite driveshaft.

2023 Triumph Rocket 3 R dyno chart

Whereas the 6-speed transmission with torque-assist clutch shifts cleanly with none huge cruiser clunkiness, this isn’t a motorcycle that requires a lot rowing by way of the gearbox. Quick shift your approach as much as prime gear, and the large mill spins solely about 3,200 rpm at 75 mph. On a twisty backroad, simply put it in third and neglect about it – there’s at all times sufficient grunt to drag you out of nook and catapult you towards the following one. And when a protracted straight stretch opens up, seize a handful and grasp on – it’s an expertise you received’t quickly neglect and shall be wanting to repeat. 

2023 Triumph Rocket 3 R
Twin spherical headlights
are a Triumph hallmark, and all
lighting is LED.

The Rocket 3 R is the bodily embodiment of badassery. Till you beep the horn. Then it seems like a Vespa. Even by bike requirements, the horn is wimpy. 

2023 Triumph Rocket 3 R
As proven in different pictures, the double-hinged passenger
pegs fold away fully.

The Triumph Rocket 3 Can Bend It Like Beckham 

Bikes with ultra-wide 240mm rear tires aren’t usually identified for his or her cornering prowess as a result of it takes effort to get the bike over onto the aspect of the tire. However Triumph labored with Avon to develop the profile of the Rocket 3 R’s Cobra Chrome tires to make sure their profiles resulted in pretty impartial dealing with. For a giant, lengthy bike, the R3R goes round corners remarkably effectively, requiring much less steering effort than one would possibly count on. 

2023 Triumph Rocket 3 R
The Rocket 3 R is a type of uncommon
cruisers – Triumph prefers to name it a roadster – the place
cornering clearance isn’t a significant limitation.

Useful on this respect is adjustable Showa suspension with damping that’s extra sporting agency than touring tender. There’s sufficient suspension journey to soak up the worst of huge hits, however trip high quality usually favors easy roads over bumpy ones. Slowing issues down is a trio of top-shelf Brembo Stylema 4-piston radial monoblock calipers – two in entrance pinching 320mm discs and one out again pinching a 300mm disc – with hydraulic fluid pumped by way of steel-braided traces. They’re critical anchors that provide excellent stopping energy with exact really feel on the lever. 

2023 Triumph Rocket 3 R
Properly rounded profiles on the fats tires give the Rocket 3 R good cornering
manners, however WFO in a straight line is the place the true magic occurs.

Gear Up:

Deux Ex Machina 

When the Rocket 3 R is keyed on, its shade TFT show exhibits the Triumph brand and a message that claims, “Welcome Rider.” All the time places a smile on my face. 

2023 Triumph Rocket 3 R
Bar-end mirrors add to the Rocket 3 R’s go-fast look. The shapely seamless gasoline
tank is topped with a brushed-aluminum strap.

I parked the Triumph within the storage at LAX airport throughout a brief journey, and once I returned, I pulled the keyless fob out of my backpack and pressed the bike’s energy button. A small purple gentle got here on, which implies the fob isn’t inside vary or isn’t working. It was 11 p.m. and raining, and I nonetheless had an hour’s trip forward of me. I held the fob near the bike and pressed the ability button repeatedly, however no luck. 

As panic began to set in, I imagined the Rocket 3 R as HAL 9000 from 2001: A House Odyssey: “I’m sorry, Greg, however I’m afraid I can’t do this.”

2023 Triumph Rocket 3 R
Our all-silver take a look at bike matches the chrome steel panels of the Frank Gehry-
designed Walt Disney Live performance Corridor.

Seems I’m a moron. What I didn’t know is that, to save lots of its battery, the fob goes to sleep. And to wake it up, you should press a button on the fob. However there’s not an apparent button, simply an embossed Triumph brand.

Throughout my Uber trip residence, I despatched a grumpy e mail to Adam VanderVeen, Triumph America’s advertising and marketing director, asking for assist. I’m positive he laughed to himself as he composed a diplomatic reply informing me that, in reality, the emblem is the button, and whenever you press it, a inexperienced gentle comes on to let you understand the fob is sending indicators to the bike.

2023 Triumph Rocket 3 R
Prime-shelf Brembo Stylema calipers entrance and rear are critical

After bumming a trip again to LAX the following day, I pressed the logo-button-thingy, and the Rocket 3 R powered proper up. I used to be relieved that the start-up message didn’t say, “Welcome Dum Dum.”

Like different Triumphs we’ve examined lately, the Rocket 3 R’s electronics bundle is complete and straightforward to make use of, aided by a TFT show with intuitive graphics. Choose from one of many three commonplace trip modes (Sport, Street, Rain) or customise your personal (Rider – there it’s once more, if solely they used the Rider brand!), and relaxation assured that the ABS and TC are lean-angle delicate, simply in case. 

Rocket Man

2023 Triumph Rocket 3 R
The stubby exhaust with slash-cut suggestions accentuates the
uncovered wheel held by a single-sided swingarm.

Because the saying goes, we purchase on emotion and justify with logic. The Triumph Rocket 3 R is all about heart-pumping stimulation. It’s the kind of bike you lie awake at night time and take into consideration, triangulating a plan to get one into your storage. Simply as Sméagol was corrupted by the Ring, the Rocket 3 will take over your ideas and make you do naughty issues. If you wish to be King of the Street, there’s nothing else prefer it.

2023 Triumph Rocket 3 R
2023 Triumph Rocket 3 R in Matte Silver Ice

2023 Triumph Rocket 3 R Specs

  • Base Value: $23,895 
  • Value as Examined: $24,425 (Matte Silver Ice) 
  • Guarantee: 3 yrs., unltd. miles 
  • Web site: TriumphMotorcycles.com 


  • Kind: Liquid-cooled, transverse inline-Triple, DOHC w/ 4 valves per cyl. 
  • Displacement: 2,458cc 
  • Bore x Stroke: 110.2 x 85.9mm 
  • Compression Ratio: 10.9:1 
  • Valve Insp. Interval: 20,000 miles 
  • Gasoline Supply: EFI w/ throttle-by-wire 
  • Lubrication System: Dry sump, 5.5 qt. cap. 
  • Transmission: 6-speed, hydraulically actuated slip/help moist clutch 
  • Remaining Drive: Shaft  


  • Body: Solid aluminum fundamental body w/ solid aluminum single-sided swingarm 
  • Wheelbase: 66 in. 
  • Rake/Path: 28 levels/5.3 in. 
  • Seat Peak: 30.4 in. 
  • Suspension, Entrance: 47mm inverted fork, adj. compression & rebound, 4.7 in. journey 
  • Rear: Single shock, totally adj. w/ distant preload adjuster, 4.2 in. journey 
  • Brakes, Entrance: Twin 320mm discs w/ 4-piston radial monoblock calipers, ABS 
  • Rear: Single 300mm disc w/ 4-piston radial monoblock caliper, ABS 
  • Wheels, Entrance: Solid aluminum, 3.50 x 17 
  • Rear: Solid aluminum, 7.50 x 16 
  • Tires, Entrance: 150/80-R17 
  • Rear: 240/50-R16 
  • Dry Weight: 642 lb 
  • Load Capability: 458 lb 
  • GVWR: 1,100 lb 


  • Horsepower: 145 @ 6,100 rpm (rear-wheel dyno) 
  • Torque: 148 lb-ft @ 3,900 rpm (rear-wheel dyno) 
  • Gasoline Capability: 5.0 gal 
  • Gasoline Consumption: 30 mpg 
  • Estimated Vary: 150 miles 



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