Triumph Daytona 955i

Triumph Daytona T595/955i – A Tyre Kickers Guide

Now then… this was a real game-changer for people who loved British bikes – which was lots of us back in the late 1990s.

Looking back it could be argued that the original wasn’t quite the bike it was hyped to be: let’s just say that the weekly newspaper who broached early pics of the bike made it into some sort of FireBlade beater. It wasn’t… nor ever was. So, while the Honda FireBlade and Yamaha R1 went off in much sportier directions, Triumph quietly went about slowly refining the original T595 and ironing out the early problems to make it a fine road-biased sports machine. 

It has to be said that riding the T595/955 was never as silky-smooth as swinging a leg over a Jap four-cylinder, but it had its own charms. OK, the clutch can be heavy, yes your wrists can ache on the early models, sure she runs hot, but it’s a visceral and involving ride.

There have been many changes to the family under the fairing panels of the original machine, with three major models being easily identifiable thanks to aesthetic changes. The general rule of thumb is that the bike has improved with age – remember that while buying (although the first models may have a cachet all of their own…)


FRAMES: Subject of an early recall on the first T595 model. Two types of frame weld were initially used and a few snapped: despite this, the factory acted quickly to recall and replace early frames leaving the owners happy with the way they had been treated. This recall was in 1997 and included recalls for ignition leads issues and a fuel pump problem. In 2001 potential problems with clutch cables fraying on 955s and other models led to a recall and in 2004 another recall thanks to the possibility of some male connectors fracturing in the wiring loom.

Triumph Daytona 955iFUEL-INJECTION/ENGINE MANAGEMENT LIGHT: The T595 used the Sagem FI system and this was modern stuff for the day. Often, the engine management light would come on for a number of different reasons. Any problems are soon sorted with a trip to your local dealer whose diagnostic equipment can find out the relevant fault code and solve the problem. Owners of later machines (Daytona 955i – 2002-on) have reported some problems with the light coming on just before the fuel light when the tank is running dry, or when the tank has just been filled.

BRAKES: Good as they came from the factory – need TLC to work well.  

FORKS: Suspension is good, but externally the forks can suffer from pitting.

ELECTRICS: Clocks and speedos can die/have a mind of their own. Connectors/sensors are often the issue. Batteries that are nearly flat mean that the bike sometimes won’t start while the rest of the electrics will work. Sometimes, you’ll thumb the starter to hear nothing but a click, then you’ll do it again and it will start. Don’t upset the fuel-injection/engine management system by starting with an open throttle, either. Keep it closed when turning the engine over.

ENGINE: Issues are few and far between: some owners reported faulty camshaft position sensors. Do check behind the oil cooler and check that there’s plenty of clearance between the cooler itself and the two oil pipes themselves, if not slacken them off a tad, re-route them and then re-tighten them. This could save you a new oil-cooler. Oil leaks aren’t uncommon on early machines.

EXHAUSTS: End cans can be ‘leaky’ so watch the joins.  

GEARBOX/CLUTCH: Early T595 owners have had fourth gear implode. Gear-change can feel sloppy but post-1998 bikes had a ‘direct-to-lever’ gear lever which made things better.

SHOCK:  Finish can suffer big time but they last well. DO keep that single-sided adjuster hub lubed!

BUILD QUALITY: Varying on early bikes much improved on later machines. Original T595 and T509 machines had some very exposed electrical connectors which would fail at the first sniff of rain.

AFTERMARKET PARTS: If buying, try and get the parts with the bike if end-cans have been swopped. Premium can be paid for any Triumph-badged goodies.

Triumph T595 (1997-1998)

Colours: yellow, silver, black, red

Price new: £9999

Comments: Early problems with weak frame welds and poor gearboxes soon forgotten as the bike sail past the FireBlade in outright sales for a little while.

Triumph Daytona 955i (1997-1999)

Colours: yellow, silver, black, red

Price new: £9999

Comments: In 1998 the T595 name is dropped to avoid confusion with the on-coming TT600 and the bike is re-named 955i. 1999 sees new graphics, a new rear shock and lighter engine internals in an otherwise identical motor.

Triumph Daytona 955i (2000-2001)

Colours: silver, blue, black, yellow

Price new: £8599

Comments: Wheelbase reduced by 15mm.

Triumph Daytona 955i (2001-2003)

Price new: £8599

Colours: Blue, silver, red, yellow

Comments: The first major aesthetic change sees a lighter, shorter dual-arm swinger, bigger fuel tank, updated front fairing, headlights, bodywork and digital clocks. Frame is the same, but with a steeper head angle. The motor benefits from an extra 19bhp thanks to some work on the cylinder head and an increase in compression ratio from 11.2:1 to 12:1. Lighter con-rods, re-shaped air-box helps the bike find an extra 1500 revs. Lighter front-wheel from the TT600 also helps speed up steering a tad.

Triumph Daytona 955i (2003-on)

Price new: £7649

Colours: Red, silver, black, yellow

Comments: Return to a single-sided swingarm and smoother looks.