If you've never ridden a three-cylinder motorcycle, I urge you to throw a leg over one as soon as possible. I fell in love with the first triple I rode, so much so that I bought it. The linear ample torque that fills the rev range, top-end rush, and unmistakable howl make me happier more often than any other configuration I've tried or owned. 

Now, I say you should try a triple ASAP, but your options are limited to a handful of bikes from Triumph or Yamaha's grin-inducing CP3, which I sampled earlier this year. But if, for any reason, you don't like bikes from those manufacturers or the dealership support isn't good in your area, you're more or less out of luck, bar getting an MV Agusta. 

Well, this could be about to change thanks to the Chinese manufacturer Zontes.

Zontes has been developing a three-cylinder engine for the past few years. The engine is featured in the 703F adventure bike, which has just started being delivered to customers in China. So exports of the 703F should soon follow and give potential Triumph Tiger Sport 660 buyers something else to think about.

But what we're more interested in is the fact that the 703 RR sportbike has been type-approved, meaning once it's in production, it could end up being exported to the US. So, no more speculation, now we know what to expect from the production version.

Paperwork for the 703 RR reveals it has a homologated peak power of 101 horsepower, although this could change for export models due to various emissions regulations. The paperwork also included a verified top speed of 143 mph.

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The 699cc triple in the 703 RR has a 120-degree crank, giving it an evenly spaced firing interval. And in terms of power and performance, the Zontes 703 RR sits at the top of the middleweight sportbike class, amongst Aprilia's RS660 and the Triumph Daytona 660. 

A twin-spar aluminum frame houses the engine, and Marzocchi likely will supply the suspension components, as it does for the 703F. There are two versions of the bike shown in the type-approval paperwork, and they only differ in terms of the brake calipers they use, which both appear to be made from Chinese-sourced components. 

Triples seem like they're coming hard and fast from China, as CFMoto prepares to bring its 675SR into production. 

Given the fact that CFMoto is growing its dealership network in the US, we may see the 675SR on US roads before Zontes' 703 RR, if the 703 RR ever does get exported to the US. 

The question is, with minimal dealership support for a relatively new manufacturer, could you be tempted away from more established brands to pick up a 703 RR if the price is right?

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