The last Chief? What's happening at Indian?

Discussion in 'Road Warriors' started by chiefrider, Dec 11, 2012.

  1. chiefrider

    chiefrider Chrome won't get you home

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    This from thekneeslider.com, 12/11/12:

    "... I see Indian just rolled out the 2013 Indian Chief Vintage Final Edition, stressing at the same time:
    that this is only the end of a model, not a line. Many more Indians are coming, … customers can expect to see the historic brand attached to new styles, aimed at new segments of the market, within the next few months.
    Interesting, new Indian styles and new market segments, I wonder what’s on the way."

    Is Polaris/Victory giving us a clean-sheet design on a new Indian? Or will they slash bold new graphics and various handlebars and whitewalls ala the same old criuser formulas we've seen so much of? Or will we get rebadged Victorys?

    Has anybody anywhere spotted prototypes or published leaked information? Inquiring minds want to know!

    Just me myself, I would like Polaris to break away from the vintage-wannabe chuffers and build what Indian used to make--touring and sport bikes.

    Tom in Salem
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  2. rocker59

    rocker59 diplomatico di moto

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    Maybe they'll just throw a Victory engine into that "wonderful" CMC clone platform...

    :pot
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  3. JustKip

    JustKip Long timer

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    Oh...you haven't heard?
    They have a new air cooled 3 cylinder in the works!


    [​IMG]










    :hide
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  4. BadKarma

    BadKarma Long timer

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    V-twin's restyled by the Polaris Razor team... :puke1
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  5. JerryH

    JerryH Banned

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    Those 25 bikes are probably what Polaris assembled with existing parts. If Indian is going to survive, I think it will have to do so with bike that are competitive in both price and performance with other similar bikes. Nothing wrong with a retro bike, but they need something else too. And still the price and quality need to be competitive. They need to be viable motorcycles, not rolling works of art.

    And that W-3 is old news. The late Jim Fueling developed a completely workable W-3 for Harley, then Harley backed out. It would have only required Harley to add 6 new parts. It supposedly produced 150 HP.
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  6. JustKip

    JustKip Long timer

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    That was a joke. The engine pictured was a working Moto Guzzi prototype from 1984.

    But if Indian is going to survive they need to get innovative, and personally, I think a 3 cyl "headdress" would be a good inovation in an open hard tail framed w/plunger-type rear shock on a bike called "Indian". They would have to get creative with cooling for that rear cylinder though.


    And on a more serious note, they need more than one high priced model range. Harley has Sportster, Dyna, Softail, Touring, and...that liquid cooled one that nobody buys. Indian had/has one bike, with varying trim levels.



    They need to have bikes you just can't live without and can't get anywhere else, while still honoring thier tradition...

    [​IMG][​IMG]

    [​IMG][​IMG]
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  7. Gas Hog

    Gas Hog Two Wheel Fanatic

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    That article is very contradictory, but apparently the old Indian company was still making bikes..before the official Polaris takeover??
    Doesn't make sense but there is a ton of stuff happening behind the scenes at Polaris for the Indian brand. Cant wait :wink:
    Gary
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  8. chiefrider

    chiefrider Chrome won't get you home

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    It hasn't been the "old Indian company" since 1953. The Springfield Factory closed the doors after a small batch of 1953 Roadmasters. Bikes with the Indian name since were widely sourced, from badged Royal Enfields, clone choppers with fat fenders, like CMC, and assembled parts from ample spares and available bolt ons, like the Sammy Pierce Scouts, and weird things like Floyd Clymer's rebranded Italian minibikes and European/British roadsters, and the really not-half-bad Taiwanese two-smoke lightweights of the early 70s. There were gaps and many who tried to revive the name. We won't discuss the Indian mopeds....

    Before starting this thread, I should've looked at the Indian (Victory/Polaris) website. Anyway, Indian has already partially answered my question, with a teaser video. .

    Found this:

    <iframe width="560" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/ToIqheE59m0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

    Tom in Salem
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  9. JerryH

    JerryH Banned

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    Ah yes, Floyd Clymer. I have a huge stack of his manuals. Back then the Indian name was worthless, and nobody cared who used it. I almost bought an Indian moped back in 1980, but it was a four stroke, and slower than the Peugeot I eventually bought. It was made in Asia. But you are right, Indian ended in 1953, 60 years ago. The only "real" Indians are vintage Indians. It's time to drop it and come up with something new. Next thing you know someone will be trying to bring back Edsel.
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  10. Anorak

    Anorak Woolf Barnato

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    How about these?
    [​IMG]
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  11. Gas Hog

    Gas Hog Two Wheel Fanatic

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    Yea no kidding :huh What I meant was the ..Last Indian bike company..before Polaris bought them :*sip*

    There are some really cool bikes coming but I think the price will be more than I want to handle..but its only money
    Gary
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  12. mrbreeze

    mrbreeze Long timer

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    I always thought the Chief was supposed to be an in line 4, but what do I know? I am certainly no expert on the marque.
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  13. rocker59

    rocker59 diplomatico di moto

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    Do tell...
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  14. chiefrider

    chiefrider Chrome won't get you home

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    Indians the last dozen years or so have been very expensive as the numbers produced and sold barely qualified them as mass produced. Plus, Indian hasn't produced their own in-house drivetrain since 1953 (yeah, the latest version looks a little different from the Evo Harley clone it's patterened after, but internals are still Harley-S&S-Revtech-whatever spec).

    Polaris/Victory has the corporate money, muscle, mojo, and mental acumen to expand Indian into a viable brand again, like the "new" Triumphs, with enough engineering knowhow and production capability to make their Indian into a mass-market motorcycle with competitive pricing.

    I hope they aren't trying to bring out another modern antique. The original Indian company was never about that.

    Tom in Salem
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  15. rocker59

    rocker59 diplomatico di moto

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    No one answered, but the "Vindian" is pretty badass! :thumb
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  16. rocker59

    rocker59 diplomatico di moto

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    +1

    The Eller Indian prototype was super-cool. I still can't believe that the bankruptcy court gave the brand to CMC instead of Eller.
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  17. chiefrider

    chiefrider Chrome won't get you home

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    Near the end, Brockhouse, a British marketing firm got involved in Indian. They made a couple prototype Indian-Vincents. One is (or is like) the one you see, the other was a Vincent with the Indian name on the tank.

    Tom in Salem
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  18. Carter Pewterschmidt

    Carter Pewterschmidt Long timer

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    That's what I want to see, performance bikes like Indian used to make. Why that's always been overlooked whenever a revival occurs is beyond me. They're not a cruiser brand. If you're going to buy the name then read the history books first. Indian was always more into racing and engine technology than Harley was back in the day. They also held decent racing pedigree. In that time frame performance riders bought Indians like they buy Ducatis today.

    I want to see them bring back the scout sport, styled kind of like the XR1200, but just a bit more performance in typical Indian style.

    Something like this with USD forks and 17" wheels.

    [​IMG]
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  19. Anorak

    Anorak Woolf Barnato

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    Locally built and the parallel twin is a 1949 or 1950.
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  20. mentalfloss

    mentalfloss Been here awhile

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    I am in the interview process with Polaris right now for the Indian brand district manager and I can say this.... watch out and look for some new Indian bikes that will make a LOT of people happy.
    They are serious about the Indian brand.
    #20