With the T-bird, it's a bit different. It still get comments, but with the HD set, it's surprise followed by confusion. Surprise that Triumph builds a big cruiser. Then confusion because they don't seem to know how to feel about it. It's like they aren't sure whether to hate it or not.
Thats probably because they have that HD attitude where no other cruiser is as good. And the fact is there aren't many if even ANY other cruisers out there that aren't total clones of harleys. So they see a copy and they think they have the real thing. So they are used to all other big cruisers being imitations of the real thing. then they see the Tbird with a parallel twin and incredibly sleek looks and not at all a HD clone yet still a cruiser and it confuses them because they've never run across anything like that before. So they sit there trying to figure out how they can convince themselves they still have the only real cruiser, but it's hard for them to compare when they are both cruisers but totally different. A parallel twin is so unusual for a cruiser because to date triumph is the only ones to make one ! (yes, i know about the jap toys like rebels and some 400's cruisers, but thats a whole different thing)
So i think they're torn because they like it but want to NOT like it, especially more than thiers because how would they then feel after all those years of dedication and $30k into thier parade floats? If it were a V twin then they could just say "another wannabe". Of course if they rode one they might have a much harder time being loyal !
Actually many wouldn't. My buddys bro who's ridden Harleys since the 70's rode mine and when he got back he basically said it's better than his in every way but he still prefers his Harley ! But hey, whatever the reason if he likes it that much more power to him.