Friday 3 February 2012


I know I'm a cafe racer tragic, but this is much more than a motorcycle. It's a Dresda Triton, built by Dave Degens. He wasn't the first to exploit the razor-sharp handling of the 'featherbed' Norton frame combined with the power of the 650cc Triumph twin, but his Triton hybrids set the standard on the track and at the Ace Cafe in the late 60's and continue to do so today.

With the passage of time, you'd have thought pulling apart valuable standard bikes to make monstrous creations with big alloy tanks and savage rearsets and open pipes would be out of fashion. Not so - Tritons are just as relevant today.

The man himself is even still building them, tuning them and making custom parts for them. Check it out.

The point of this brief history lesson?

They've been making modern Triumphs for many years now. They're everywhere you look - fat Rocket IIIs, bug eyed Street Triples, old school Thruxton Bonnevilles. Wreckers would surely be bulging with Triumphs that have climbed gum trees or bounced off taxis.

UK Bike magazine rated the Triumph powertrain in their top 5 engines of all time. It's pretty too.

Last year, the re-established Norton Motorcycles started manufacturing new Commandos from an industrial unit in the middle of the Donington Park race complex in Derbyshire, UK.

They're beautiful, but terrifyingly expensive. They boast capable chassis technology including  big Ohlins forks and big Brembo brakes. The motors are a clean-sheet design that's been hastily tested and put in to production. Without an established dealer network, bikes outside the UK are going to have trouble with warranty claims.

See where I'm going with this?


  1. Yes, but will it still keep your driveway from rusting?

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