Post Sale Update: This Trident sold for $12,000 after 28 bids on eBay.
I wrote up a Trident earlier this month, and under ordinary circumstances wouldn’t even consider doing another so soon. The compelling reasons for doing this one are: 1: It is the very rare early 1969 model, one of the first 200. 2: I know the collection this one comes from, and they are typically high grade motorcycles. 3: When these people decide that a motorcycle is ‘surplus’ they sell it. Often for a fair to low price.
As early as 1962 Triumph began considering multi cylinder engines to improve performance and market share. By 1965 they had settled on the three cylinder design and the 1969 Triumph Trident (and the BSA Rocket 3) were rolled out. Right into the teeth of Honda’s introduction of the CB750.
The first 200 were sent one each to North American dealers to get feedback from their customers on the new model. The public jury returned a bad verdict: ugly and expensive. Triumph immediately introduced a ‘beautification kit’ (based on the Bonneville) but the bike was destined to always cost nearly double the price of a Bonnie.
The Trident soldiered on through several model years, but the high price with no electric starter and the torrent of Japanese fours sent the Trident and Triumph/BSA to its ultimate end.
The 1969 Triumph Trident used a 741 CC air cooled four stroke transverse mounted inline three cylinder motor that made 58 HP. A 4 speed transmission with a dry diaphragm clutch with a single downtube frame gave the bike a dry weight of 460 LBS. Brakes and suspension were the Bonneville standard items.
This particular 1969 Triumph Trident (VIN# T150T 169) is in the Hamilton Triumph collection in Apache Junction, Arizona. The bike is listed as a 7500 mile original with the only exception being the paint on the tank and side covers having been freshened. The bike is currently bid to $6,001.00