10 things we just learned about the Indian and his bikes


Indian motorcycles have a long history, a tradition of delivering tough, fierce looking machines. Take a look at the latest Indian Scout Bobber or some of the older bikes like the first Indian Chief. Comparisons are often made with the Harley, but fans of both brands would have something to say about it.

The history of Indian bicycles dates back to the production and racing of bicycles. But since then the evolution of the Indian has spawned bikes that are not only great to look at but easy to ride. But their history has also delivered extraordinary feats, such as world record ground speed and fantastic performances at the Isle of Man TT. Let’s take a closer look at some of the motorcycles and exploits that make Indian motorcycling what it is today.

RELATED: Here’s What You Need To Know Before Buying an Indian Scout Bobber

ten The beginnings


Beginning with making bicycles, former bicycle racer George Hendee started the business as the Hendee Manufacturing Company, but in 1923 the name was officially changed to The Indian ‘Motocycle’ Company. The “r” in “moto” has been deleted.

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In 1900, Hendee joined forces with Oscar Hedstrom, a partnership that resulted in the creation of a machine that eventually produced a world record over one mile for motor tandems, but also their first motorcycle, powered by a single cylinder engine. of 1.75 hp.

9 Isle of Man TT


The Isle of Man TT was the scene of those early days for Indian motorcycles to shine. In 1909, the finalist was Lee Evans, riding an Indian twin.


Again, in 1911 Londoner Oliver Godfrey won on an Indian v-twin, the year the event first took place on the 37.4 mile mountain course. But that was just the start. Charles Franklin and Arthur Moorhouse came second and third on their Indians. Their 1-2-3 victory solidified the Indian’s reputation as a fast bike on a tough course.

8 1920 indian scout


The Indian Scout came out in late 1919, designed by motorcycle rider Charles Franklin, who successfully competed in the Isle of Man TT. Powered by a 610cc V-twin with a 3-speed gearbox. Seven years later, the Scout received an upgrade with a 745cc V-twin engine. The Scout was soon replaced by the 101 Scout with its improved chassis.


The Indian Boy Scout of 1920 was made famous by Burt Munro, who set a world land speed record of 184.087 mph on his modified Scout. Anthony Hopkins portrayed Munro in the 2005 film The fastest Indian in the world.

RELATED: Look Back at the Life of World Record Holder Burt Munro

7 Indian chief

VIa: Indianmotorcycles

In 1922, the Indian Chief was produced, powered by a 61 cu. flat-head V-twin engine (1000 cc). There was the optional Big Chief with its 74 cu. in. engine. In the 1940s, the Chief received a few upgrades, including its skirted fenders and a new spring-loaded frame, to compete with Harley’s unsprung rear.


The fifties saw an upgrade with its 79 cu. engine in. (1300 cm3). A fleet of fifty Chief motorcycles was reportedly ordered for the New York City Police Department in the mid-1950s. The Indian chief was honored with his own special edition stamp.

6 Indian four

Via routesmile.com

Motorcycle company ACE started producing luxury four-cylinder motorcycles in the early twenties, essentially a model. After the founder was killed in an accident, production ceased. In 1927, Indian purchased the business. They started making the ACE-Indian in 1927, but the ACE brand was quickly discontinued. He was replaced by the four Indians.

Via mecum.com

First, there was the Indian 401, a modified version of the Ace, but with Indian’s signature leaf spring fork. Then came the Indian 402 with a new five-main bearing crankshaft, different from Ace’s three-bearing crankshaft. Production of the Indian Four continued into the 1930s, witnessing the birth of the ephemeral “ upside down ” engine in 1936.

5 Polaris and the “Thunder Stroke” engine


Polaris took over Indian in 2013, a defining moment in their history. One of the important developments in this situation was the unveiling of the Thunder Stroke III V-twin engine.


A 49-degree V-twin engine with a displacement of 111 cubic inches (1,811 cc), supposed to provide 118 ft-lbs of torque and a maximum engine speed of 5,500 rpm. Air-cooled, with integrated oil cooling, the engine features down-fire exhausts with left-side air intake, also including finned heads and parallel tappet tubes.

4 Indian Scout 2015


The 2015 Indian Scout is powered by a 1,133 cc (69 cu in) liquid-cooled V-twin engine. Boasting 100 horsepower at 8,100 rpm with 72 lb-ft of torque at 5,900 rpm.


When it comes to rider comfort, this Indian Scout has a beige leather solo seat. With a low seat height of 25.3 inches, as well as 5.3 inches of ground clearance, weighing approximately 558 lbs., The Scout offers a relaxed and comfortable ride.

RELATED: Ranking The 10 Best Indian Motorcycles You Can Buy For $ 10,000

3 Indian Scout Bobber


The 2018 Indian Scout Bobber has an Indian Scout-inspired chassis, powered by the same 100-horsepower 69-cc (1133cc) V-twin. With its many blacked out features, the Scout Bobber offers a more aggressive style.

Via Indian Motorcycle

The Bobber has a higher seat than the Scout, with a height of 25.6 inches. His footrests moved closer to the rider by 1.5 inches. Lower rear suspension, an inch lower than the Scout. Of course there is the upgraded 2020 model with its 10 inch ape suspension bars.

RELATED: Indian Scout Bobber: What You Need To Know Before You Buy

2 ‘Wrench Scout Bobber Build Off’


“ Wrench Scout Bobber Build Off ” was a 2018 U.S. National Competition for unknown hobby builders to showcase their talents. The ultimate winner was NASA engineer Alfredo Juarez.


His custom Indian Scout Bobber was inspired by Knuckle, David Beckham’s garage company, and the Indian Scout FTR1200 Custom. Juarez’s “Chopper” is powered by a 69 cu. in. V-twin with its copper styling, metal seat tray and signature headlights.

1 Collaboration with Jack Daniel’s

2020 Jack Daniel's Limited Edition Indian Springfield Dark Horse in a Jack Daniels Wine Cellar

via: Indian Motorcycle

Indian Motorcycle and Jack Daniel’s have teamed up to produce The Jack Daniel’s Limited Edition Indian Roadmaster Dark Horse with its custom Jack Daniel’s branding on the motorcycle and custom two-tone whiskey pearl paint job, along with oak wood accents.


The Dark Horse is powered by a Thunder Stroke 116 cu. engine in., delivering 126 lb-ft at 2900 rpm. Other features include heated grips, saddlebags and a remote locking trunk. Only 107 for production, which makes it even more unique.

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