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Wing Commander
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14,437 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Triumph has issued a warning to adventure riders not to ride its brand new Tiger XC bike at more than 60mph with knobbly tyres fitted. “We are not satisfied with the bike's handling/stability characteristics above that speed when it is in a fully loaded condition,” it told xrv.org.uk.

Not so fast, young man!
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Triumph initially said the speed restriction was due to the advice from Metzeler, which makes the Karoo tyre fitted as an option to replace the standard Bridgestones Battlewings. Triumph said: “As we anticipate some customers may wish to do some more serious off-roading - or may be riding in muddy conditions - we have also homologated the Karoos. They are an optional extra and not standard fitment. The speed restriction of 60mph is an advisory limit set by Metzeler not Triumph. I believe the limit applies to the tyre regardless of the bike on which its being used, as above 60 mph the rider may experience some instability.

“Since Metzeler recommend the 60mph limit we also communicate this info to riders via the owner's handbook, in case they opt to fit Karoos after purchase. Of course a rider is free to fit other tyres if they wish, however we will not have tested them and therefore cannot offer any advice or recommendation on suitability.”

Metzeler denial
But Metzeler’s product manager, Steffen Baun, denied the 60mph speed limit. He insisted the tyres had an R speed index and could be ridden to 106mph. “Any restriction on the speed of use is coming from the motorcycle manufacturer and not from us,” He said.

Faced with this, Triumph backtracked: “The advisory maximum speed has been set by Triumph, as we are not satisfied with the bike's handling/stability characteristics above that speed when it is in a fully loaded condition.”

It then added: “For the sake of clarity, fully loaded means rider, pillion, maximum permitted luggage and all conceivable accessories from the Triumph range - we set the limit using the worst scenario.”

The handbook says:
Approved Dual Purpose Tyres (for off road and on-road use)*
Front Metzeler MCE Karoo 2 (T)
Rear Metzeler MCE Karoo (T)
* The permissible maximum speed for dual purpose tyres is 60mph (96 kmh).

Triumph are meant to be lending me an 800 XC on 1 April but have said I can only ride at 60mph if I choose to have the Karoos fitted. I have pointed out I will be coming to Hinckley on a 20-year old Africa Twin with TKCs fitted that has already been to Spain and back – fully loaded with alu box panniers - on the same tyres.

Links (new windows)
Triumph XC spec
Metzeler Karoo Spec
 

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Wing Commander
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Discussion Starter #3
You must have spotted that while I was changing it.
 

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Senior Member
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Me and Hudders put Karoo's on our bikes a couple of years since, and we both experienced instability at over 60mph . . . . . . . . OFF ROAD. :cool: :blob5: :blob6: :toothy8:
 

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Generalissimo Tea Boy
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6,039 Posts
I still remember the fear I felt after fitting Michelin Desert tyres and heading onto the motorway fully loaded. I got up to 55mph and soon slowed back down to 50, it was a bit alarming, especially on bends when the front wanted to stay upright and go in a straight line and the rear was happy to lean and turn.

A few thousand miles later they were happy at 70mph though.
 

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Wing Commander
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Discussion Starter #9
story updated:
The handbook says:
Approved Dual Purpose Tyres (for off road and on-road use)*
Front Metzeler MCE Karoo 2 (T)
Rear Metzeler MCE Karoo (T)
* The permissible maximum speed for dual purpose tyres is 60mph (96 kmh).
 

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Sounds like theyre covering their ar#es as so many leisure riders are now buying them with those 'round the world' looking tyres that the real guys use - but then loading the bike up and riding down the motorway...only to get a shock when they try to stop or even corner at speed. You know, the ones with more money than sense!

Im mean, how dare a manufacturer actually supply a bike for its intended use?! And expect the buyer to understand what that use is!
 

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Premium Member
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I was off road today and had instability issues on the GSA with tourances.

At about 5mph I fell off. ;)
 

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Premium Member
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BMW says to limit yourself to 100 mph if you fit TKC 80s (R Rated so 106mph) to the 1200s so Triumph aren't alone. It's just that 60mph does seem particularly slow compared to the tyres rating.
 

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wee alp with TKC fully loaded on French toll roads.. 105mph right weave :-(

dropped to 90mph fine.. ( fuel consuption down to low 40 mpg mind :)

so nothing new here , but a Boris says 60 a bit low??
 

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Wing Commander
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Discussion Starter #15
I agree it is bizarre. But I just had it confirmed again:

"The speed limit is given for safety reasons. Handling above 60mph is compromised by the style of tyre and therefore there is a risk of instability above this speed. It doesn't affect the warranty, which is there to protect against vehicle manufacturing and/or material defects."

I think I will still ask for the Karoos to be fitted and test it myself. But if they have designed a bike that cannot be ridden at more than 60mph with knobblies it's not much of an adventure bike is it?
 

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SOTGATT
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Have you told Africa Jim, Whealie?

He's about to take delivery isn't he?
 

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Truffle shuffle king
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The Armstrong 500 used to have Metzler tyres, ( Im not sure what type) the bike used to weave only when slowing down from 90 MPH.
Maybe the type of frame fitted to the tiger is not that stiff so adding the uneven tyre contact with the road they become too unstable.
 
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