2020 Triumph Thruxton RS (bike review)

FEATURING classic café racer styling, with breathtaking modern power, the 2020 Triumph Thruxton RS instantly impresses with its confidence inspiring handling and race like performance.

Top of class attention to detail, from its two-toned paint scheme to a beautiful brushed stainless-steel tank strap and matching monza fuel flap, and lots of blacked out parts including beautiful anodised black wheels, help make this bike stand out from the pack.

We especially like the ride-by-wire EFI throttle bodies that look like old school carburetors. Triumph have used modern LED lights but have kept the classic look, and the bar end mounted mirrors complement them perfectly.

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The engine gets an upgrade for 2020 and is now more powerful than its predecessor, with high compression pistons, revised ports and a cam matched with a new air intake system. Power increases to 78kW and 112Nm of torque.

They have also focused on weight reduction and changed many components, which all together has resulted in a 6kg weight reduction and a much more responsive ride.

2020 Triumph Thruxton RS

The 6-speed gearbox is perfect, and gear changes are smooth and done effortlessly. The torque assist clutch is light and has a nice feel to it. We would like to see an option to add the quick shifter that features on other Triumph models though.

The RS comes with high performance Bremo M50 4-piston callipers on the front, with a twin 310mm floating front disc. The rear has a single 220mm disc and 2-piston Nissin floating calliper. Both feature ABS and have great stopping power.

Suspension on the RS is top class too, with fully adjustable Showa USD big piston forks and an Ohlins piggyback fully adjustable rear suspension unit.

The rear Ohlins can be easily adjusted by hand and changes are noticeable. Unfortunately, the forks require tools to adjust and we would like to see quick tool-less adjustment.

Metzeler Ractec RR tyres provide excellent grip, but this author wouldn’t want to get caught out in the rain on them as they are almost racing slicks.

The instrument cluster is stylish and features analog gauges and an LCD screen that can display odometer, trip, fuel mileage, distance to empty plus more, without taking away from the classic styling image.

2020 Triumph Thruxton RS
2020 Triumph Thruxton RS

The screen also displays which of the three riding modes is selected (Rain, Road or Sport). Switching modes can be easily done on the fly.

Each mode has varying degrees of traction control and engine mapping to suit the rider’s preference and the traction control can be turned off altogether.

We filled up the 14.5-litre tank and headed to Bathurst via Oberon to put the Thuxton RS through its paces and boy were we impressed. Straight away you notice how stable this bike feels and how easy it is to ride fast.

The handling is excellent and it hugs the corners well, with what feels like endless grip. You can hit the corners hard and fast and the bike handles it effortlessly, and kind of feels like its egging you on to try harder.

The ride is firm and stiff, but we found turning the Ohlins rear shocks to soft would allow it to comfortably soak up the bumps and rough roads without giving up any of the stability or grip in the corners.

The pull out of the corners from the 1200cc parallel twin is exhilarating and will very quickly get you to the next bend, where the Bremo brakes bite hard and bring you back under control.

2020 Triumph Thruxton RS
2020 Triumph Thruxton RS

Put it in Sport mode and you will find yourself on the back wheel over crests without even trying. The performance is very good and sounds great. This bike won’t leave you lacking.

The riding position was comfortable, and the seat was very good, even after a few hours in the saddle. We liked the shape of the tank too, which allowed you to squeeze your knees in to help support taking corners at speed.

The fuel mileage was very good as well. We averaged 4.8-litres/100km, even with plenty of 100 per cent throttle runs.

We didn’t like the position of the kick stand though, as it’s almost impossible to find with your foot without looking down to see it.

The handlebar mounted switches are spaced out and well position, making them easy to use. We would like to see auto-cancel turn signals though, as these are lacking. There’s a USB charger under the seat too.

2020 Triumph Thruxton RS
2020 Triumph Thruxton RS

The first service is due at a huge 16,000km and comes it with a full 2-year warranty. Priced from $25,390 ride away, the 2020 Triumph Thruxton RS is available in two colours; Jet Black, and Storm Grey and Matt Silver Ice (as tested).

Our 2020 Triumph Thruxton RS was provided by Triumph Motorcycles Australia. To find out more, contact your local Triumph dealer.


Riding experience
Style and comfort
Braking and handling
Technology and connectivity
Overall bike performance
Value for money


Pros - great performance; excellent suspension and handling; looks outstanding.
Cons - no quick adjustment for the forks; location of the kickstand; no auto-cancel turn signals.
Mathew Probert
Mathew Probert
Motorcycling has been in Mathew Probert's blood for more than 30 years, which explains why there are three bikes in his garage. He says there's one for every occasion, but it's dirt bikes that are his passion. He also enjoys the adrenaline rush of taking on some of the best roads in Australia aboard anything with two wheels.



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<strong>Pros -</strong> great performance; excellent suspension and handling; looks outstanding.<br> <strong>Cons -</strong> no quick adjustment for the forks; location of the kickstand; no auto-cancel turn signals.2020 Triumph Thruxton RS (bike review)