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American manufacturer Indian Motorcycles was founded in 1901 under the trademark of Hendee Manufacturing Company. Until 1953, the name ‘Indian’ was only associated with bicycles and not with motorcycles. Within their first decade of origin, Indian Motorcycles became the highest selling brand of that time.
The model names like Scout and Chief were more popular at that time. After 1953, the brand went bankrupt and production was ceased for all locations. From manufacturing cycles in 1897, the brand entered motorcycle production with lightweight options that looked more like bicycles. Around 1920, a proper motorcycle design could be seen within an Indian motorcycle.
The brand diversified around 1940 as apart from motorcycles, they were seen making aircraft engines, air conditioner and boat engines. Bicycles were always on the cards. The war time demands emptied their inventory and thus, Harley Davidson won with better sales soon after the war was over.
The present generation Indian Scout can be seen somewhere in the 1920 Scout as both shared the long fuel tank design that survived almost a century in the automotive market. They went into many deals and thus, the acquired products were rebranded as Indian motorcycles for more success by the owners.
The brand had a serious rebirth when Polaris bought it in 2013. They now manufacture 10 models that mostly share parts with each other. The huge Thunderstroke 111 engine is tuned to produce maximum torque at lowest possible rpm’s, making it easier for the riders to carry their weight and luggage across all terrains.
This engine is extremely powerful as dry weight for most bikes that it powers is over 300kg. Top spec bikes from Indian Motorcycles offer inbuilt navigation system, premium speakers for music and electronic safety features. The range is presently more effective against Harley Davidson as prices for India reveal a different story for both the American brands.