Minichamps MIN122130101 1968 BSA Rocket 3 Motorcycle - Blue (1:12 Scale)
"German precision engineering at its finest!"
- The Motor Pool
The BSA Rocket III / Triumph Trident T150 was the first true modern superbike and the last major motorcycle developed by the original (Triumph Engineering Ltd) Triumph company. It was badge-engineered to be sold under both the Triumph and BSA marques.
The Rocket III / Trident was the first-step development of Triumph Motorcycles' plan to move on from the basic vertical twin. The engine was to give the 750 cc power required by the US market while avoiding the vibration associated with the parallel-twin design and the bulk of a four-cylinder layout. This was the only part of the plan to come into production: the later four-cylinder Quadrant prototype only hints at what could have been later.
During its production run, BSA fell into financial troubles and over the course of the official six year model run approximately 27,480 Rocket 3 / Tridents were produced - the exact number is unknown, as the factory at the end was very poor at keeping records. By comparison, a quarter of a million Honda Goldwings were manufactured during its first seven years.
Pictured here is a 1:12 scale replica of a 1968 BSA Rocket 3 motorcycle in blue. Comes in a handsome presentation case.
Length: 7 inches
Height: 3.50 inches
Release Date: January 2013
Historical Account: "Best Road Bike of the Time" - The Rocket 3s/Tridents were introduced in the summer of 1968. They were the first mass produced multi-cylinder production motorcycles. They were also labeled by a British Motorcycle magazine the best road bikes of the time - a label they held for four weeks before the introduction of the Honda's CB750K. The British triple did not have the 5-speed gearbox, overhead camshaft, electric start and disc brake of the CB750. In 1970 Triumph re-styled export versions with the original 'rounded' look to try to revive sagging sales.
Although all the three-cylinder engines, and the Rocket 3 motorcycle, were produced at BSA's Small Heath site, final assembly of the Triumph Trident model was carried out at Meriden in Coventry. The major differences were the engine and frame: a double loop with engine mounted at a slant for the BSA and single downtube with engine mounted vertically for the Triumph. The rest was essentially cosmetic: badging and painting. Racing success allowed the Rocket3/Trident to continue with a four-speed gearbox, as models A75 and T150. By virtue of their better riding position Triumphs sold better in the US despite BSA's Daytona racing successes of the early 70. BSA's sold slightly better in the UK/Europe. However sales did not meet expectations, and in mid-1971 a fifth gear was added, creating the model Triumph T150V. With mounting financial pressure, very few genuine five-speed Rocket3s came off the assembly line before production of them ceased entirely. In 1973 a front disk brake replaced the original drum, resulting in the final form of the T150V.