Polaris-Indian Number One Indian Motorcycle

Historic picture? The Polaris team working on Indian Motorcycles just tweeted the picture of the 1st Indian bike they ever assembled at the The Spirit Lake, Iowa facility. The first Polaris-Indian will be subjected to extensive testing and evaluation to ensure the quality meets all Polaris quality standards.

The 2012 Indian Chief will not be available until December or January, will keep the same price structure, and is the transition model to the brand new Polaris/Indian motorcycle to be unveiled summer of 2012. For the Indian Chief featured here, expect  minor improvements or fixes and only three 2-tone paint combos plus solid black and solid red. The industry can’t wait see what Polaris-Indian is going to offer as 2013 models.

67 Responses to “Polaris-Indian Number One Indian Motorcycle”

  1. 1 CafeSportyTC Aug 30th, 2011 at 10:32 am

    nice , but an indian four pleeeeease!

  2. 2 Rick Lossner Aug 30th, 2011 at 10:35 am

    Progress! Nothing but good news 🙂

    For the current owners ( 2009-2011), we’re all waiting to get new ‘fix’ in place for the EFI system that appears to be running too lean. No doubt, with the ’12 models coming out, this will fall in place as it did time with previous years.

    Looking forward to seeing the ’12 models hit the Showroom Floors!

  3. 3 1550tc Aug 30th, 2011 at 11:15 am

    Nice that they kept the classic look …….just get rid of the fringes and clean up that fuugggglly rick doss head light

  4. 4 Mr. Potts Aug 30th, 2011 at 11:24 am

    See, they are already calling it “The Polaris-Indian” I thought it was suppose to stand on it’s own as an Indian. I hope I’m wrong, but I don’t think it will fly as a Polaris motorcycle!

  5. 5 Brett Aug 30th, 2011 at 11:38 am

    I think it says Polaris-Indian to state the 1st Polaris built Indian.

    & for the people who complain about Indian 4…what motorcycle company hasn’t changed owners that has been around for decades?
    HD has changed owners, Triumph has changed owners & Indian has changed owners.

    I don’t see an issue with the 3 oldest motorcycle brands being around in any form. I just hope the Chief keeps this form.

  6. 6 fuji Aug 30th, 2011 at 12:06 pm

    Another American motorcycle . Fan-tastic.

    Now there are two American made bikes that I would be proud to ride and made by the same company.

    Noteworthy is the fact that a company rep ” Rick Lossner ” is willing to respond on Cyril’s Blog.

    Respect to both.


  7. 7 dmj Aug 30th, 2011 at 12:24 pm

    Great news, let’s hope they don’t Ness it up and create another ugly motorcycle. .

  8. 8 Grumpy Aug 30th, 2011 at 12:49 pm

    Glad to see Polaris is keen on keeping the classic Indian style and focused on improving quality, but unless they can bring the price down to a more respectable level (i.e comparable to the H-D Heritage Softail) it’s going to remain a slow seller. The competition in this class is just to hot for that much of a price difference in any economy, much less this one.

    As for additional models to come in the future, I’m hoping for an 800-900cc wearing the Scout name to compete in the middle weight class, but again…the price will have to be competitive for it to be a success.

  9. 9 Robert Pandya Aug 30th, 2011 at 1:41 pm

    Cyril – there is some mis-information about the Indian Motorcycle launch in this post. We certainly appreciate the attention and passion you show towards the Indian Motorcycle brand – but want to work with you to accurately communicate the production direction for Indian Motorcycle in the coming years.

    We are certainly investing in the brand and its future, therefore one could estimate that a Polaris Industries designed Indian Motorcycle model would take 2-3 years to see the public spotlight, based on typical product development timelines. We do not want to set the expectation that there will be a fundamentally different bike within the next couple years. We will be making some detail revisions on the 2012 year model Indian Motorcycles, but they are of course essentially the same design that came through the Kings Mountain operation. The line was moved and the first Indian Motorcycle built by Polaris (not a “Polaris-Indian”) precedes a complete evaluation of the production line processes, production line and product detail improvement evaluations and will be subject to engineering tests and further development. We do still plan the start of regular production to be in October.

    We’re proudly continuing to build motorcycles as in this 110th year of production for Indian Motorcycle, it’s important for the history and heritage of the brand to continue to build new motorcycles for our dealers and customers interested in owning this unique marque. In the meantime, our production lineup for 2012 includes the Chief Vintage, Classic and Dark Horse, and we are working with the dealers and customers to keep the Indian Motorcycle experience a premium one.

    As you know, taking over a brand that reflects so much emotion and passion means that we will likely never make everyone happy – but rest assured that Polaris will not rush to market on the new design simply to satiate those who are dying to see something fundamentally different or new – we will design, engineer, test, and produce great Indian Motorcycles that owners will continue to be proud to ride.

    Again – thanks for your reporting – if you have any questions do let me know.


  10. 10 ART "LOOSE CANNON" WELCH Aug 30th, 2011 at 1:51 pm

    Thanks for the update Robert.

  11. 11 Harry from OK Aug 30th, 2011 at 3:04 pm

    I’m excited to see this come to fruition; it’s nice to see Indian back in the news and w/ the backing of Polaris it will be a success I’m sure. I do concur w/ Grumpy though, I’d like to see a middleweight Indian in the future too. Could it be done and still be profitable for Indian/Polaris?

  12. 12 rob Aug 30th, 2011 at 3:05 pm

    “110th year of production for Indian Motorcycles.” Startin’ with that AGAIN? C’mon……………………..

  13. 13 Sean Aug 30th, 2011 at 3:52 pm

    Boring. 110 years my ass. Please if your are going to do this come up with something other than a softail, with after market Harley parts and big fenders…..this this has been killin me for over 10 years.
    Let it die or create something worth bragging about. TOO bad Excelsior Henderson didn’t make it. At least their bike was a proprietary motorcycle.

  14. 14 1550tc Aug 30th, 2011 at 4:41 pm

    “110th year of production for Indian Motorcycles.” comon guys with a model in the line up called a Dark Horse its like your playing that Johnny Cockaroach race card with the 110 bs spin……… you might as well get a model called the Lazarus of Gilroy!!

    ok lets look at the positive

    congrats on the 110 and where you having the 110 anniversary?? Kings Mtn, Gilroy?? Springfield?? Rouseau?? too bad Floyd Clymer cant make the parade 🙁

  15. 15 PP100Chief Aug 30th, 2011 at 5:40 pm

    C’mon everyone, be happy that Indian is still around. I know some love it, and some hate it, but either way it’s American heritage. It’s amazing how many people stop me and want to talk about an Indian either they had, or their grandfather had, or they know “this guy” that has one in his shed just needing some TLC. I know I’m biased, even though mine is a Gilroy with it’s fair share of problems, but it’s like a supermodel: f’n beautiful but expensive to keep.

    Side note for the Indian-Polaris muckymucks reading this: your Charlotte dealer needs to drop the condescending behavior and be friendly to everyone, not just the folks dropping $1k on leather products. I wasn’t impressed with him when i stopped in, but the girl behind the counter was nice, and the showroom and building was beautiful.


  16. 16 John Green Aug 30th, 2011 at 6:24 pm

    This country needs Indian.
    I am willing to be patient and wait for the right bike. It has been proven by the last attempts that rushing to market is the wrong thing to do.
    Bravo to Polaris for making a major capitol investment inside the boarders of the USA. Take your time and insure your ROI we need a success story right now more than ever.

    Polaris deserves our support for their commitment to a Iconic American Brand.
    You have my full attention and support. If there is anything I can do to help make this project a success I am ready and willing.

    John Green
    Easyriders Events

  17. 17 morpion Aug 30th, 2011 at 8:40 pm

    please don,t put a victory engine in it

  18. 18 roscoe Aug 30th, 2011 at 10:25 pm

    Why not?

  19. 19 Septic the Sceptic Aug 30th, 2011 at 10:36 pm

    Ho hum, another FLST clone with oversized mudguards.

  20. 20 Michael Aug 30th, 2011 at 11:53 pm

    @Sean -Couldn’t agree more. Excelsior’s brief resurgence was exciting and it’s collapse really sucked. re: the “110th” year Indian, good luck marketing to the George Clooney’s in our community.

  21. 21 Dave Blevins Aug 31st, 2011 at 1:05 am

    A message to Polaris-Indian
    These are just a few suggestions from a genuine fan of Indian and its recent attempts to re-emerge into the industry…
    I like the brand, I like the history, please don’t sell me and other fans short, this is not a 110 year anniversary and should not be marketed as such. That just cheapens the name, so instead, why not market it as “A Legend Reborn” or something along that line. It is more accurate and in my opinion, far more exciting.
    As for a model line-up, I think three models would be sweet. The classic Indian Chief that looks as much as possible to the last Chief made when original Indian closed, a round barrelled, bottlecap topped, big fendered, bagged out, cruiser with an Indian motor, not a re-badged Victory engine… let it cost whatever it costs, but be a Chief worthy of the name, not some weird softal with a big headlight.
    Next, a Scout. A stout performer with a pumped up Indian Vtwin motor, a more aggressive suspension than the Chief, lighter than the Chief, but still in keeping with the iconic Indian image. A bike with a cost similar to the Dyna line from HD, but a little edgier and stronger.
    And lastly, a totally new Indian… a sportbike. A genuine pavement shredder that looks, feels, sounds, and performs as a sportbike should while keeping with an American ideal, and the iconic Indian racing heritage. Not a Buell, not a V Rod, but something new. And cool, like a Vette on two wheels.
    No silly paint schemes on any models, just classic good looks that are not a fashion moment, truly timeless in style and performance. Less bullshit and more bike, it is afterall a motorcycle, and is meant to be ridden. No offense to the Ness family, but please don’t let them near the Indian project, in fact no one involved with the Polaris line should be styling the new Indian, you already have the Polaris line for those that want that type of bike.
    Just my 2 cents, not trying to offend anyone. Just sayin’

  22. 22 Wiz Aug 31st, 2011 at 4:25 am

    Kudos to Polaris in keeping an American tradition alive! Sounds like they got a good attitude towards the challenge. F*ck the naysayers, as they said to the Wright bros… “It’ll never Fly!” Wiz

  23. 23 Hondo Cat Aug 31st, 2011 at 6:39 am

    Both Cyril and Robert pointed that the 2012 Indian is a “transition” model year consisting of three (3) models that carryover from the Kings Mountain experience with some minor improvements and detail revisions. What this posts really indicates is that this is first Kings Mountain Indian design Polaris has ever assembled at the The Spirit Lake, Iowa facility. Nothing really more, except that the Polaris owned Spirit Lake, Iowa designed Indian will follow in 2-3 years. Robert said, “We do not want to set the expectation that there will be a fundamentally different bike within the next couple years.”

    I don’t understand the disparaging remarks and hate. Polaris has very recently been looking for design and marketing heads for the new Indian. The new Spirit Lake, Iowa Indian will take time….years as indicated above. It is nice to know Polaris is committed to servicing the 2009-2011 Kings Mountain Indians with updated fixes. I suspect this post by Cyril is fundamentally designed to keep Polaris/Indian in the minds of prospective buyers because it does take time to bring a completely new bike or bikes to the showroom floor.

  24. 24 Brett Aug 31st, 2011 at 7:01 am

    To the people who call the Chief’s softails…you have no idea. The set up on these bikes is so much more then what people think of as a softail. The Chief is also not a Heritage Softail Clone. Maybe closer to a Road King clone.

    I don’t know if Polaris made a change or will, but the chasis of the Chief to this point was a cross between softail & sport bike with it;s mono shock & I will put the touring comfort of the bike up against any other touring bike any time.

    The Chief is also a much larger bike then any HD. It is much longer then what Harley puts out.

    As a Chief owner & a Softail Standard owner, I can tell you there is very little the saem about these bikes to be able to say a Chief is a FLST clone.

  25. 25 TONY INDIAN Aug 31st, 2011 at 7:20 am


  26. 26 Rick Lossner Aug 31st, 2011 at 7:44 am

    @Brett … you hit the nail on the head. “The Chief is also a much larger bike then any HD. It is much longer then what Harley puts out.”

    I find it humorous ( and sad ) that the HD’s are so small. When I sit on a soft tail, feels like I’m on a mini bike. Even the touring bikes are smaller than the Chief. This is a HUGE deal.

    Nothing more humorous than a ‘big bad biker’, throwing a leg on a small bike. But he’s got his leather with HD patches all over it, and a $30 dealer shirt on under it… and crazy pegs mounted who knows where so he can get his feet kicked out, for comfort and dispel the myth that he’s on a high dollar mini motorcycle.

    Now the Chiefs ( as far back as ’99) are good sized bikes. Even the Gilroy Scout is large compared to most HDs . Not only do we Indian owners love the ‘big ugly fenders’, the fringe (on some models) but the SIZE and handling! . And apparently , so do most others where we go, Park a Chief in a sea of HDs…. and guess where the line is. Funny part is.. there are always a few naysayers in that line as well as here ( and most prove to be uneducated about the facts).. but the vast majority think they are beautiful bikes… which .. is one of the main reasons we own them…

    ’11 HD Road Glide Custom owner…….. ( as well as several Indians)

  27. 27 Fred Snyder, Boca Raton, FL Aug 31st, 2011 at 8:29 am

    I agree, make the fringe an option. The bike looks cleaner without it.

  28. 28 Sark Aug 31st, 2011 at 8:43 am

    I’m with CafeSportyTC, I’d love to see an Indian 4.

  29. 29 BryanR Aug 31st, 2011 at 9:45 am

    As a long time motorcycle rider and owner of many brands of bikes.Indians included,I am happy to see to see the resurection by Polaris, but as we all know it is not the same company as the original,
    but its a start of the new breed of the Indian marque, If I was in the think tank of the Polaris company
    I would give some very serious consideration to a smaller entry level Indian such as a 500/750cc
    which would go a long way to cultivating a brand new group of loyal Indian riders who would like to be part of the tribe,but don’t have the experince or the money to step right up to the Chief if you know what I mean. BR

  30. 30 Will2002 Aug 31st, 2011 at 10:06 am

    110 years? Realy?

  31. 31 biker Aug 31st, 2011 at 10:19 am

    Lets Build a Motorcycle that they [ last two companies} could NOT sell !!
    Sounds like a great business plan

  32. 32 CafeSportyTC Aug 31st, 2011 at 10:42 am

    really im excited to see a strong company take the reigns of Indian , i personally believe this time it will stick. if they bring a Scout that could compete with sportsters, a cheif that competes with softails, and i know I’ve already said this but an Indian 4 that would compete with Harley Touring bikes i think theyd be golden… evolve them over time and form the core of Indian with those , than those other 9 can be interesting and new motorcycles.. just a thought.

  33. 33 biker Aug 31st, 2011 at 11:18 am

    Does Indian really want to compete with Harley or Victory? or set themselves apart from HD and Victory as a premium brand above HD and Victory. The need to set themselves as the elite in the industry.
    The Rolls-Royce motorcycle, not just one the standard brands.
    Harley and Victory are having a tuff time selling bike to the general Joe public, why go there.
    It’s a shrinking market.
    People with Money have will alway have money and like to buy things that other can not.
    Thats why they buy the Rolls Royce and the Bugatti Veron

  34. 34 John Aug 31st, 2011 at 11:21 am

    I think that some Harley guys are quick to attack Indian and Victory as well because they feel threatened by new American companies. They want Harley to be the only American company. That makes them unique and special. That is the reason for a lot of the hate. Also I think it is funny when the Harley crowd tries their usual tactic of saying that the other motorcycles are all just cheap imitations of a Harley. First, the Indian won’t be cheap. Secondly, it was Indian that produced and sold the first V-Twin motorcycle… not Harley. Indian is the oldest American brand and the first V-Twin. When it comes to motorcycles … all other brands including Harley are just Indian imitations. That bothers a lot of Harley guys. To think that Harley is really just an Indian wannabe. I love Harley-Davidson motorcycles but I just want to set the record straight. It doesn’t hurt to have several American motorcycle companies…. it’s all good.

  35. 35 John White Aug 31st, 2011 at 11:29 am

    Great news from Polaris. Great news for KM owners and great news for 2002-03 Gilroy Indian Chief owners.

    Newsflash to those still believing this bike is a soft tail:

    Please wake up. The 2002-03 Chief and the KM Chief sport a mono shock suspension and a wheel base nearly 8 inches longer than a Harley Road King. Granted, the early Gilroy Chief (1999-2001) did have a soft tail frame and it is understandable to be confused. Gilroy spent a ton of money developing what we now see as the 2012 Chief. Some say KM improved in the Gilroy design, others say they developed new problems. I strongly believe that Polaris will take this Gilroy platform to a new level of quality. Thank you Robert for setting us straight on the expectations of an all-new Chief. Thank you Cyrl for keeping us up to date.

    John L. White
    President, Indian Legacy Riders

  36. 36 Jeff Nicklus Aug 31st, 2011 at 12:34 pm

    The original founders of Indian Motorcycles must to be smiling in their graves knowing that Polaris, a company with virtually unlimited finances, manufacturing and engineering capabilities, now controls the destiny of both the “Indian” name and future legacy of the “Indian Motorcycle”. In my opinion this is the first company, since the original founding of Indian, that can, and will, make Indian Motorcycles a viable force in the industry once more.

    FYI: Personally I don’t care if they call it “Polaris-Indian”, “XYZ-Indian” or just plain ‘ol “Indian”, the bottom line is Polaris would not have invested millions of dollars in this project if they did not intend to make Indian work.

    Just my 2 cents worth.

    Over & Out,


  37. 37 Sean Aug 31st, 2011 at 12:38 pm

    @ Brett, .
    The original Chief’s were softails. They used softail shocks, softail primaries, softail, transmissions and evo motors. Everything on the bike was straight outta the Custom Chrome Catalog at the time.
    Then they came out with the Mono Shock frame….big deal. Nothing new. The primary were remachined to look different but used all H-D style fuji clutches, 5-speed tranny gears. 41mm H-D (showa) forks and on and on. The stupid bottle cap motor runs, H-D lifters, and rocker arms, valves a and springs. So in my mind it is a Harley Clone with a mono shock frame. I am and have been a Harley Mechanic, Fabricator and bike builder for 20 years. Please don’t be fooled by big fenders and bullshit marketing. And don’t assume because you ride you understand how motorcycles are built. The first Indains were a CMC with big fenders and another attempt for big money to jump on the Indian heritage bandwagon and make money. They built shitty bikes with poor attention to detail and zero imagination. So please do your homework before you think you understand what these ‘manufacturers’ of ‘legends’ are doing.

    Normally I wouldn’t correct you. You are so off the mark I had to.

  38. 38 1550tc Aug 31st, 2011 at 2:07 pm

    because they feel threatened by new American companies.

    get real, like what the spirit lake indians are going to make harley’s market share 1% or bankrupt HD?? Its not going to happen to but i would hate to see buyers to go down the Gilroy Indian road once again

    Its is going be a $$$$ high end bike backed by polaris and with a great dealer net work and a bike for those niche riders that want that look and brand

    Its similar branding and market positioning toyota did with lexus BUT with a legacy to it …….indian bike$ will be a low volume brand with high margin …….a boutique line for polaris

    take the fringes off and as Rick Lossner said Park a Chief in a sea of HDs…. and guess where the line is……its a niche bike

    Robert announce the 110 anniversary party’s location already!!!!!!!!! Iam due for a trip!!

  39. 39 Robert Pandya Aug 31st, 2011 at 2:14 pm

    Hey fellers – please excuse the 110 statement – it was written poorly by some guy rushing to set the record straight on the expectations of a new Indian Motorcycle – he was an idiot and was shy a couple cups of joe yesterday. He was me. So – some of you may decide to flick that thorn, but it was simply a mis-statement. 110th since the brand was born was the sentiment. OK? Are we cool now?

    And no – it will NOT NOT NOT have a Victory engine in it. Scott Wine has said that, Steve Menneto has said that, and for the record the same schmuck who wrote the 110 stuf (see above) said that. On the record – in front of you – there will NOT be a Victory motor slapped into and Indian, and there will NOT be Indian Motorcycle logos slapped onto the side of a Victory.

    We certainly do appreciate the passionate riders that love, hate and love to hat brands – without that energy in the market, seriously – what’s the point? As long as you are a rider who rides, you have my respect – and I would say that of other staffers from Polaris / Victory Motorcycles / Indian Motorcycle.

    I’m off for my afternoon coffee…and to slap a couple more layers of black paint onto my crystal ball.


  40. 40 Spaz Aug 31st, 2011 at 2:33 pm

    right on Jeff. Why anyone has to be negative at all is beyond me. why can’t you guys just love motorcycles? If you’re at a car show, and you see a really great custom Chevy, do you automatically hate the Ford? Lighten up, stop hating, and remember that competion makes everything better. We all pretty much have Victory and their big 106″ motors for prodding harley to start stuffing their 103’s in the 2012’s. Love your Harley, and appreciate the Victory and the Indian for what they are- damn fine American made motorcycles. -oh and it won’t kill you to occasionally flip a deuce to the guy on the Goldwing. Although not as cool, he just live motorcycles too… Just sayin’

  41. 41 Brett Aug 31st, 2011 at 3:34 pm

    All I can say is I am now hooked after reading it will not have a Victory motor in it & it will not be a Victory with Indian logos on it. Not trying to bash Victory at all, but honestly, the Powerplus 100 & Powerplus 105 is part of what hooked me on the new Indian. It is a great LOOKING motor & when the bugs are fixed, which many people have done, it is also a great motor. I just think the last 2 companies were in over their heads & didn’t have the capital to do it right.

    Polaris is getting in line to trade in my 2003 Chief Springfield, maybe for 1 of their versions of the Darkhorse….we’ll see, but I am excited.

  42. 42 BlueStrada Aug 31st, 2011 at 3:36 pm

    This is a pretty tough crowd….
    One thing I would say to support what Polaris is doing… is they recognized that the bikes coming from Kings Mountain were of high quality and top notch finish standards…. They made great choices on components like suspension…brakes… leather goods…. even the frame was a work of art…… None of the Gilroy bikes could even come close to what has been delivered for the past 3 years. The Team from Kings Mountain enabled Polaris to come in and hopefully take it to the next level.
    I certainly agree that to be truly unique and not perceived as another “clone’ it needs a proprietary engine that is not like the HD copies and or aVictory. Hopefully they have the investment funds to start that process.

  43. 43 Sean Aug 31st, 2011 at 3:47 pm

    Rick, Brett, and the others,

    I was excited in the late 90’s when ‘Indian’ was coming back. I was at the dealer show in Indianapolis when they debuted. Upon close inspection it was a softail, with big fenders and parts outta Custom chrome. Big disappointment. I could have built it outta my shop…with one big difference. It would have run and stayed together. Then inter the Power plus 100″. So what they changed the frame to a mono shock. That is not difficult or exciting. Yes it rode better and it was bigger. IT has a softail transmission, all the softail driveline stuff is H-D replacement. Then you have the Bottle cap disaster. Ever get into the motor….all you brochure memorizing guys???? Rocker arms, Valves, Springs, Cam, tappets, pinion…..etc all H-D. So what you truly had was a Harley with a BIG MONO shock frame and a 100″ motor with massive issues. Using primarily H-D parts hiding behind cleaver machining.
    I think it’s great for Harley to have competition. They need it.
    Excelsior Henderson came out with a proprietary bike. Indian could have and should have done the same thing.I guess adversing work My concern is we will get the same garbage. Hiding under the Indian name and the 110 years of no manufacturing.

    Normally I wouldn’t care about all the inaccurate info that guys belch out. I couldn’t let this one go.
    Please educate yourself before you make claims that you don’t understand. I am 20 year H-D mechanic who works on this stuff day in and day out. Worked on all the Indains, CMC, Big Dogs…etc. They are all the same. Don’t believe what the salesman told you, the magazines said or the guy in cubicle next you said. Indians were full of H-D after market parts all the way up to the day the died again in 2003 hosing tons of customers and dealers in their wake. That is the plain and simple facts.
    I hope Polairs does it right. But that picture looks like the same old shit.

  44. 44 Septic the Sceptic Aug 31st, 2011 at 5:44 pm

    So it’s not a Softail copy cos it’s got a monoshock. That makes it a Yamaha clone.

  45. 45 morpion Aug 31st, 2011 at 7:52 pm

    roscoe,,because that engine,,,indian is the hearth of the machine

  46. 46 Mike Aug 31st, 2011 at 9:30 pm

    Personally I hope the Polaris Indian is successful. But to do that, they have to balance the cost of manufacturing with final price. In this economy a $36,000 motorcycle probably won’t appeal to too many people. Sure there’s the HD CVO line in that price range, but that is a short run of a few thousand bikes of each model. I’d love to have a new Indian, but my upper limit is in the 15 grand range. And as much as I like the idea of owning one, frankly there are quite a few really good bikes in my price range. So if you’re going to take several years to come up with an all new Indian it would probably be a good idea to think of the majority of bike owners and not the elite few.

  47. 47 Deputy Tim Aug 31st, 2011 at 9:40 pm

    OMG, feel like I just waded through the Jersey Shore with the cast of the View.
    Can’t any of you just appreciate motorcycles for being motorcycles and the people that ride them for
    being members of a special club that sports names like Lawrence of Arabia, Rollie Free, McQueen and Peter Fonda and Jim Bronson? Indian or BSA, Retro or Modern, 441 Single thumper or CBX Inline 6.
    The bike my heart yearns for is a T500 Two Stroke Twin of my youth and the bike of my dreams is a
    ’82 GS1000 Katana. The bike I ride is a Vision. It is modern and makes me 25 again once in the saddle. I hope Polaris saves Indian just as Jeep has survived through Chrysler but God bless the guy who rides a Vespa in Rome and the Indian riding a Royal Enfield in Mumbai. They’re on two wheels!

  48. 48 1personSOpinion Aug 31st, 2011 at 9:51 pm

    LC Welch – how are Indian sales these days? Do you have any of these Polaris made Indians arriving soon at your dealership? Whats the status of “Indian” dealers. Were you or will you and the others be extended a dealer agreement from Polaris? What’s going on with all that?

  49. 49 Scott Sep 1st, 2011 at 9:18 am

    Polaris has a few fundamental problems to solve that shouldn’t be too difficult, if they contact some of the people that have kept Indian alive all these years. They haven’t been in production for 110 years, unless you count the mopeds, dirtbikes, and repro parts?

    I think the first is they absolutely need to fix the price point. I know that they are trying to make it a niche, boutique, elite brand, but what’s wrong with paying a reasonable price for a beautiful bike? $15k tops is even a little excessive IMO. When you can buy a nice car (at least a car) for $15k, it seems to me like the price point on the American motorcycle market is inflated, probably because it is cornered by HD.

    Not only that, but those who are into Indian, and may be thinking about something more reliable for daily riding (instead of the old Springfield) might spring for a new model if they didn’t cost $27K entry. The loyalists for Indian are just going to spring for the original instead. A well sorted bike is only about $22k, and if you look hard you can find them for less locally.

    Obviously, they need to develop a motor that is designed entirely by Polaris, but Indian used other manufacturers for many of their parts, such as Auto-Lite and Linkert, and Aurora made their motors in the early years. But if they are going to compete with Harley, motor internals shouldn’t be interchangeable.

    The design has a few bugs. The hole in the frame between that strange plastic piece and the motor (what is that, an oil tank?) needs to be eliminated, and may have been (by the looks of the photos) if they didn’t update the website. I love the length, but it looks like that created a frame gap. Also, I don’t remember a lot of options for two-up riding, and they eliminated the Blackhawk?

    Also, the dash is too large, the bags high and awkward, and I’m not really a fan of 16″ whs. with the skirts. Indians with skirts and 18’s are graceful, whereas the ’46-’48s are stout, and it looks like this is what they pulled the design from. It needs to flow, the lines are too high in the front end and low in the rear, the dash gives it a hunched over look.

    The only thing to do is wait and see, and hope they get it right.

  50. 50 Dragon Bob Sep 1st, 2011 at 11:05 am

    First of all there are 4 5 if you count viper American mc companies HD Victory Indian and Big Bear if HD would have bought Indian they would have stuck a HD motor in it the very first day because it was a cheap way out but I believe Victory will not do that even though the 106 is a far better engine, I hope they rengineer it to be like the 106 because it is a great motor and I am speaking from owning both harleys and Victorys and Victory has the expertise to make the Indian line a much better bike not just a overpriced problem rolling down the road.

  51. 51 ART "LOOSE CANNON" WELCH Sep 1st, 2011 at 12:43 pm

    Sales are just fine for us thanks. You’d have to ask Polaris and the other “Indian” dealers on the rest. Some things on here can be answered by Polaris since we have Robert here doing a Good Job at answering the Nay sayers.

    We’re happy right where we are.. =o)

  52. 52 1personSOpinion Sep 1st, 2011 at 6:45 pm

    Welch, my question was directed to you. Not Polaris. But your answer says it all. You sonehow seem to dodge the questions with some line of BS.

  53. 53 Brett Sep 1st, 2011 at 7:03 pm

    sorry, but I didn’t fall for any salesman’s pitch. I bought my 2003 from the original owner. I know all about the issues. Trust me, there is a forum for Indian owners where we speak about the issues & problems. To say the engine is HD is false. If it were we should be able to walk into any HD dealership & get replacement parts for the bike right off their shelf or out of a catalog.

    We can’t. I even can’t get an HD dealership to look at it because they can’t get the parts for it.

    I’m glad your a mechanic for 20 years & worked on everything. Maybe if you were in Wisconsin I’d look you up to work on my bike.

    No matter what you want to say to bash Indian, I never had people come up to me every time I am getting gas when I rode up on my heavily customized FXST.

    It isn’t the same cookie cutter bike that use see all over the road from HD. No, Gilroy made mistakes, but I’d still take this over a Road King any day.

  54. 54 morpion Sep 1st, 2011 at 8:47 pm

    a victory has a jap sound,,,overhead cam,,and aN
    indian,,harley and any v-twin with push-rod has the real,reaL,REAL V-TWIN SOUND

  55. 55 WAKE UP POLARIS Sep 1st, 2011 at 10:39 pm

    @ 1personSopinion…… *yawn*.. i only respond to real people who use their real name. @ Brett.. good Point little buddy. See ya Saturday.

  56. 56 Close To Ref Sep 1st, 2011 at 10:53 pm

    Why would anyone respond to anyone who doesn’t use their real name?

  57. 57 ART "LOOSE CANNON" WELCH Sep 1st, 2011 at 10:58 pm

    Cuz they’re Yellah! =o)

    We’re calling ya out! lol

    Type writer tough guys are always fun on here.

  58. 58 1550tc Sep 1st, 2011 at 11:32 pm

    I even can’t get an HD dealership to look at it because they can’t get the parts for it.


    unreal that in 2011 a struggling HD dealer cant order you parts from CCI, Drag or ???? for the engine parts……..must be the only HD dealer IN THE WORLD who orders 100% of his parts from HD….. those indians came from the S&S, and CCI parts pin………..call JP they probably have some rain suits left and trannys!!!

  59. 59 ART "LOOSE CANNON" WELCH Sep 2nd, 2011 at 5:07 am

    its true, We have a Harley Dealership next door and they won’t work on anything other THAN Harley. They also won’t touch anything over 10 years old.

  60. 60 bshirk Sep 2nd, 2011 at 8:41 am

    No matter where they build them they’re still ugly.
    Wake up indian designers It is not 1940.

  61. 61 1550tc Sep 2nd, 2011 at 9:20 am


    Thanks for the heads up when iam in your area for me, its been Donnie Smith’s shop, the guys at elk river and fairbault………sounds like your typical HD where they basically only bolt on, “live to ride, ride to live” covers and SE parts.

  62. 62 ART "LOOSE CANNON" WELCH Sep 2nd, 2011 at 1:08 pm

    No problem.. Give me a call when ya need parts 1550tc.. I can cut ya in on something nice. 651-765-9988

  63. 63 Englishman Sep 5th, 2011 at 8:09 am

    You can’t blame people for having a dim view of the circus that has been “Indian” motorcycles for the last few years.

    Just as you can’t blame people for being wary of Polaris making styling decisions after seeing the ‘space ship’ Victory line.

    Personally, I’ve never liked any of the stylings from Victory. The “Highball” is the least offensive I guess, but things like the horrible headlight have to go.

    I suppose I don’t understand why Victory just didn’t introduce a retro styled cruiser with a new powerplant, instead of initiating the living dead Indian iteration #4.. or is it #5 or #6? One presumes they did research and determined there would be sucker.. I mean high end power players willing to spend large amounts of cash for an oversized grotesque lookalike 50’s commercial failure.

    The original Indians were/are cool. The 80″ flathead engine kicked ass. The stuff that Mike Tomas does at Kiwi is pretty damn cool also.

    All this is just my opinion of course, no need to get upset over it, I now return you to your regularly scheduled hand-wringing.

  64. 64 kc cheef Sep 6th, 2011 at 9:59 pm

    @ biker.
    A quote from your post.
    ”People with Money have will alway have money and like to buy things that other can not.
    Thats why they buy the Rolls Royce and the Bugatti Veron”

    I’d disagree a little with your statement.
    People with money (and any kind of sense) will NOT be ripped off just to make a statement.
    I’m thinking if you look back on the Kings Mountain snobbery and read a little of the hoopla Kings Mountain introduced their own version of a Gilroy Chief with you might be surprised to see KM essentially made the same statement you are making.
    Looks to me like that philosophy managed to keep KM in the motorcycle business for about 2 years of production.
    Looks to me like that philosophy allowed Kings Mountain to make a whopping 700 + or – motorcycles.
    Looks to me like that attitude allowed the dealers to sell about 2/3rds of the bikes they brought into their showrooms.

    Those bikes were worth about 2/3rds of what they were asking for them.

    Hey Rick Lossner.
    A question for you before you start in.
    Exactly WHAT makes the KM bikes worth up to $39k?

  65. 65 kc cheef Sep 6th, 2011 at 10:08 pm

    @ Brett.
    I guess you have the wrong HD Dealership in your area.
    Rawhide Harley Davidson in Olathe, KS will service my bike when ever I ask.
    Welcome me right on in.
    Any part they don’t have they source and order.
    ANYTHING I need I know how to find.
    Hey Brett–next time you need something for your Gilroy give Crazy Horse in Kent WA a call-they can help you find what you’re looking for.
    Nice dealership with good owners and employees.

    I agree with you on the Gilroy made mistakes statement.
    But I’ll also say KM managed to overlook those mistakes and multiply them.
    I’m hoping the dealerships Kings Mountain recruited will be able to hold on until the Polaris Indians start rolling off the line.
    Word is parts and service for the KMs is almost nonexistant.

  66. 66 Flex Sep 11th, 2011 at 3:31 pm

    @ Polaris
    Please get with Alan Forbes of UK Indian of Scotland and do the same thing with his beautiful Indian-4

  67. 67 CHINGON CHOPPERS Sep 13th, 2011 at 3:20 pm

    Put the Victory drivetrain in the new Indians and I will consider buying one. VICTORY components are second to none. Best in class

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Cyril Huze