Author Topic: Just test rode a Tenere and Triumph Explorer 1200 back to back  (Read 4876 times)

Offline sportsguy

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Just got back from test riding the Triumph Explorer 1200 and the Tenere back to back.

Hands down the Explorer is a better bike...cruise control, more power, gear shift indicator, etc., etc.

BUT is it a better machine for me?

I'm looking at $9k for my FJR (10350 miles, '09) on trade, plus another $9100 out of my pocket for an Explorer XC.

The 2011 Tenere on the floor is priced about $6k less...

  • The Tenere is, for my rear end, more comfortable.  The Explorer seat was very cushy, but held me against the gas tank and limited movement.  The Tenere left me loads of room to move around, on the other hand.

    Loved the sound and feel of the Tenere engine - no clue what the moto-journalists are on about saying it has no character - dumbasses.

    The Explorer would creep along at 6 - 7 mph in 1st gear with zero lugging, bucking, etc.  The Tenere needed to have the clutch feathered at those same low speeds. Just more usable, low-down torque at play in the Triumph.  (Or I was misreading the feedback from the engine in the Tenere and should have just lugged it along more.)

    The Explorer is simply in another class power wise.  Gear is irrelevant: grab a handful and you hit warp 3. NOW!

    The downside here is you tend to find yourself exceeding the speed limit ALL the time.

    The Tenere is quiet-ish.  The Explorer is silent unless you open it up, then it sounds simply wonderful!

    The Tenere felt better between my legs while standing on the pegs.

    The Tenere is, for me, a more comfortable seating position.  The Triumph has my knees bent more - similar to my FJR, only a bit less.  The Tenere is more like sitting on my KTM Enduro R, which I like. :)

    Wind management for me was very good on the Tenere and excellent on the Explorer (up to 80 mph).  I'm 6' tall, 30" inseam - so taller torso.

    Both bikes were noticeably lighter than my FJR and you can really feel the difference in lower speed handling.  The FJR needs higher speeds and a bit more force to really play in it's sweet spot in the twisties.

    Vibration was a non-issue on both bikes.

    People complain about heat - well, neither of these bikes has an issue for me.  It was 83 degrees while I road.  Neither baked any part of me.  I've read people complaining about the cooling fan on the Tenere - yes, you can hear it, but its hardly an issue.  And the heat being pumped out slips past me instead of hitting me, so it works for me.

    Not a huge fan of those stock signal lights on the Tenere up front - they just flap around out there, so those would be close to the front end of any build if the Tenere comes home.

    The Explorer windscreen is easily adjustable, the Tenere, not nearly as much.

    Love that the Tenere has an actual 12v outlet in our standard North American size, instead of the Euro-sixed unit on the Triumph.

    Its clear what the mags are talking about when they say the Triumph is more onroad oriented, and when they talk about the Tenere being solid offroad.

    Traction control and ABS 100% defeatable on the Explorer, though it does reset to engaged when you cycle the keys - could be a PITA on the trails.
So...it's mostly a toss up.  Power I have with the FJR, and I like it at random times.  But damn, that's a big gap to fill with my money to bring home an Explorer.  The Tenere is much more accessible, if not quite as technologically advanced and feature-rich.  Still, that kind of gap can buy a LOT of farkles...AND leave change left over. :)

So, there you go - no clue what direction I'll end up going in, if any, but I can assure you I won't buy a Ducati Multistrada... ::015::

Offline hANNAbONE

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Re: Just test rode a Tenere and Triumph Explorer 1200 back to back
« Reply #1 on: June 29, 2013, 08:54:40 pm »
well - you found the best forum to discuss this, albeit - it'll be mostly one-sided - but still get an honest evaluation.

I have yet to ride the XC - been on the 800, liked it fine but a tic underpowered.

My Supa10 is the best scoot I've ever had in it's first 13000 miles.

I've been on countless BMW's and Triumphs and loved 'em all - but this iron is staying between my knees for a long long time.

It does everything so very well and for the price and features cannot be beat.

I just changed out a front tire that was the OEM original...it coulda gone another 2500 to make 15000 miles.

The rear was changed @ 8400 and it coulda gone at least another 1500.

So, oil n gas and air in tires - that pretty much sums it up.

Enjoy the ride to your new sled....

Oh, and welcome to the forum.!!
hANNAbONE
'12 Yammy SinisterBlack Supa10
...where 421 and 50 kiss...
* veho tutus, meus frater *

Offline GrahamD

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Re: Just test rode a Tenere and Triumph Explorer 1200 back to back
« Reply #2 on: June 29, 2013, 09:00:22 pm »
The "logical" decision on whether to go with the S10 or the TEX would be how much you wish to use it off the road.

YAMAHA has done a few things on the bike to make it better off the road. The TEX would be the closest thing to the FJR.

The S10 is a nuclear powered, and weighted, dirt bike. If I was never going to do anything too tricky I would have gone the TEX. as an all round "get you through the most varied terrain" it's S10 all the way.

By the way there are lots of wobbly bits on the S10. It was designed to take punishment and lot's of things are rubber mounted.

It seems the POMS do sealed back roads a lot. Where I live that is ONE option. The Strom I owned did well at that too.

Where the TEX and STROM start coming apart is when it gets a bit sandy, rocky and slippery.

The S10 handles that kind of situation a lot better and is EASIER to use in those situations, as well as being able to do some pretty deep water crossings. (Rouge waves excepted). The STrom would go there but it required a higher level of concentration, which usually meant I set up camp and just fell asleep. The S10 delivers me a lot more refreshed.

Offline JohnB

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Re: Just test rode a Tenere and Triumph Explorer 1200 back to back
« Reply #3 on: June 29, 2013, 09:28:18 pm »
Although I haven't ridden one, I sat on the Triumph at the IMS and it felt distinctly top heavy compared to the S10.  This was one of the things I didn't like about the FJR I was trading in.
'06 FJR (traded for Super Tenere)
'09 Street Triple R
'12 Super Tenere (delivered on 8/6/11)

Offline cosmic

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Just test rode a Tenere and Triumph Explorer 1200 back to back
« Reply #4 on: June 29, 2013, 10:46:40 pm »
Hey 6000$ of farkles, fuel, gear, hotels/motels, new fridge at home, led tv, ps4... You name it. C'mon, how difficult could it be? From my point of view is a no brainer.


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Offline Mzee

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Re: Just test rode a Tenere and Triumph Explorer 1200 back to back
« Reply #5 on: June 29, 2013, 10:56:59 pm »
At the end of the day, follow your heart.  That way it will be less complicated.

Offline cmastrom

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Re: Just test rode a Tenere and Triumph Explorer 1200 back to back
« Reply #6 on: June 29, 2013, 11:16:52 pm »
Having ridden both of these bikes I bought the Tenere. Tenere is paid for. I really enjoy my Tenere and have it set up pretty close to the way I want it. That said If something like a big truck backs over my Tenere without me on it of course and totals my Tenere I will go with the Triumph next. Do I like the Triumph better nope! The triumph has a few things I prefer however and didn't realize just how much I miss them Such as Electonric Cruise Control and emergency flashers things the Tenere lack that should have been on it. Emergency Flasher, Flash to pass, and based upon its wiring and parts robbed from other Yamaha's should have electronic cruise control even BMW got the message on that one with the 2013 GS.( rode it too) with all this said I will keep my tenere until I wear it out or that Truck runs it over. I can give up some of the off road ability and invest in a xt250 or the CRF250L or something similar.  Of course by the time my Tenere wears out I'll be ready for 3 wheels maybe the Can-Am :-)  For now I am all Tenere! Gave up my Goldwing and my DL650 Vstrom to get down to one bike. I sure wish Yamaha would make the Tenere with Electronic Cruise Control and make it able to be retro fitted. I really need emergency Flashers because I escort Triathalons and carry officials for Bicycle races Falshers are a Must. I don't feel I should have to pay for an after market flasher setup when it should be on every road worthy motorcycle made today. Oh well still ride my tenere every day I can :-)
     

Offline clint64

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Re: Just test rode a Tenere and Triumph Explorer 1200 back to back
« Reply #7 on: June 29, 2013, 11:30:39 pm »
At the end of the day, follow your heart.  That way it will be less complicated.

 ::026:: After taking a test drive I was sold.  The fact that I could customize the S10 to my liking and still be under the purchase price of the GS or TEX was icing on the cake

Offline Ramseybella

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Re: Just test rode a Tenere and Triumph Explorer 1200 back to back
« Reply #8 on: June 29, 2013, 11:54:16 pm »
The TEX-XC is a brilliant bike I took one for a test ride for two hours local dealer, on the highway the thing hits warp speed super fast rolled off pavement to dirt with no fuss, it did seem a little top heavy at first but after a few minutes of slogging it around I loved it.. Just didn't love the price and the fact that if I dropped it it would be upsetting for that sort of money. :-[
Reason I am looking at the Yam as my 1050 Tiger has met a tragic end (T-boned) after 3 years and 46000 + miles I need something to get me higher up into the Rockies, just waiting on the insurance check. ::003::
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Offline Rasher

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Re: Just test rode a Tenere and Triumph Explorer 1200 back to back
« Reply #9 on: June 30, 2013, 04:39:17 am »
My regular riding buddy has an Explorer, he rode both and liked both, but in the UK he got a brand new Triumph with £1k of extra's for £500 less than a year old Ex-Demo Yamaha would go for, but said it was only the financials that made the decision.

6 months on his bike with 1,000 miles on it (and locked away over the winter) is looking rougher than my 18 month old Yamaha with 6,000 miles on, so Yamaha definitely wins on the Finish front, he also has a cam rattle but Triumph reckon his is not one affected by the recall, so another point to the Yamaha on reliability.

To ride the Triumph is great on open roads, on narrow lanes and at lower speeds the Triumph is not as good as it needs 4-5k on the clock to start pulling hard, although in stock trim the Yamaha is not much better down low until 4th gear due to the restrictions. I much prefer my S10's ECU-U flashed engine as it pulls MUCH harder than the Triumph up to @6k, past 7k the Triumph really starts to steam ahead, but I think most riders spend 95% of their time in the range where the Yamaha pull stronger.

On the back lanes I ride at home, and the Alpine roads I love on my Holidays the Yamaha with Flash is perfect, hard charging from 2k, which is what you need when there are no straights and lots of corners (many of them taken just of idle in second) in these conditions you just won't get the Explorer into its power zone before the next bend. On fast flowing roads the Triumph is great, and the handling is also pin sharp, not that there is much wrong with the Yamaha's handling, just the Triumph has sportsbike geometery and it shows (would probably show in a negative manner on loose stuff)

The Yamaha works better for ME as I wanted to slow down after years of riding too fast on sportsbikes, I like a bike that feels OK at 80mph, the Triumph is too much like a sportsbike for me, 100mph is too easy, and I would be tempted to keep up with every sportsbike I came across, or burn up every car driver that fancied his chances, now I just cruise along, I will give the power rangers a good run in the twisties, but if they want to enter the realms of instant bans / possible jail sentences I let them go, on my old Kwak 1400 it seemed like a duty to not let anything past on the motorway.

A flash on the Yamaha gives it a LOT more character low down, and a little more up top, but really it comes down to if you want a "road bike" or an "adventure bike", although both work very well on road IMO, the Yamaha is a great roadbike if you really don't care about performance past 100mph, but if you want a fast comfy bike the Triumph is pretty good.

Offline Roge

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Re: Just test rode a Tenere and Triumph Explorer 1200 back to back
« Reply #10 on: June 30, 2013, 06:53:10 am »
I really don't get pricing policy an how one bike can be more expensive than another in one country and not another
The Mutts Nuts

Offline creggur

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Just test rode a Tenere and Triumph Explorer 1200 back to back
« Reply #11 on: June 30, 2013, 07:41:19 am »
I was (on paper) COMPLETELY sold on the TEX last year before it arrived in the States. I ended up buying a Tenere after a test ride before the Explorers ever got here.

I did sit on one about four months after buying my Tenere which confirmed my decision was the right one - the ergonomics on the Tenere suit me perfectly with only minor adjustments (seat flattening mod and rolling the bars back a hair from where the dealer set them). The TEX felt exactly as you described - I'm 6' with a 32" inseam.

The only time I wish I had more power on the Tenere is when overtaking two-up, there's still plenty, you just don't get that rush like you do solo. I haven't had the reflash done yet so that will likely cure that issue.

Also, if your anything like the rest of us, you're going to spend a bunch if $$ farkling to make the bike "yours" no matter which one you buy - the Tenere just gives you a $6,000 head start. So, will you end up with an $18,000 Tenere or a $24,000 Explorer when it's all said-and-done? I couldn't justify the extra 6 grand for the Triumph with horsepower and cruise control being the only two things it had that I cared about.

Also - if you rode a Tenere with less than 8,000 miles on the odometer you haven't "felt" that engine yet AT ALL. Mine is just about ready to turn 12k on the clock, and I swear it just keeps getting better and better. I don't know when the thing finally gets broken-in all the way, but it's a completely different bike now than when I first got it. It's difficult to describe how much better it is now - it's something you really must experience to fully appreciate.

Good luck on your research, and let us know which way you go...
U.S. Number 717 - for anyone keeping track of such things...

Offline Ramseybella

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Re: Just test rode a Tenere and Triumph Explorer 1200 back to back
« Reply #12 on: June 30, 2013, 11:06:59 am »
What grad Oil is recommended on the Tenere, any alternative auto filters being used?
I was using Shell Rotella full synthetic and Purolator Classic oil filters on my Tiger 1050 Loved the stuff 46000 miles.
« Last Edit: June 30, 2013, 11:11:15 am by Ramseybella »
"Green grass and high tides forever".
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Offline creggur

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Just test rode a Tenere and Triumph Explorer 1200 back to back
« Reply #13 on: June 30, 2013, 11:08:25 am »
What grad Oil is recommended on the Tenere?
I was using Shell Rotella full synthetic on my Tiger Loved the stuff 46000 miles until it was taken down last week.

Really? You're gonna turn this into an oil thread?

;)

Been using Mobil 10/40 synth since 2,000 miles (12k on the clock now) - no issues.....
« Last Edit: June 30, 2013, 11:11:19 am by creggur »
U.S. Number 717 - for anyone keeping track of such things...

Offline Ramseybella

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Re: Just test rode a Tenere and Triumph Explorer 1200 back to back
« Reply #14 on: June 30, 2013, 11:14:11 am »
Really? You're gonna turn this into an oil thread?

;)

Been using Mobil 10/40 synth since 2,000 miles (12k on the clock now) - no issues.....

Your so correct sorry I should know better Apologies please.. How about Tires?  ::002::

Just kidding I will stick to the subject. :-X
"Green grass and high tides forever".
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