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Polaris to Buy Indian, But What Happens to Victory?

Black and cream Blackhawk powered by a Power Plus 105 inch motor and built by Indian Motorcycle in Kings Mountain, NC.

Some motorcycle brands know how to quietly crawl into a corner and die. Others…not so much. One such brand is Indian, which stopped making motorcycles in 1953, and was then, like the waxen corpse of Evita Peron, taken out every decade and paraded about. Some new Indians actually have been built, first by a reformed Indian Motorcycle Company of America in Gilroy, California, and when that company went bust in 2003, by yet another Indian Motorcycle company in North Carolina from 2009 onwards. The new bikes are reportedly fine machines.

We at MD don’t know much about the new Indians, just that they are big, expensive and have little in common other than styling with the original Indian products (but given the last Indians rolled off the line in the early years of the Eisenhower administration, that’s hardly a surprise). Not really a mass market product, as a basic 2010 Chief will set you back $26,000. So that’s why we were surprised to learn that on April 19th, Polaris (maker of snowmobiles, quads and Victory cruisers) announced it had acquired the privately held Indian Motorcycle company.

The terms of the deal are undisclosed, but that won’t stop us—and you—from endless speculation. Since the price and terms are secret, does that mean Novator Partners (the UK-based investor that sold Indian) is embarrassed to be dumping an under-performing company at a loss? Or did they make a buck and want to keep their rivals guessing? Why does Polaris want the Indian name? Will the Victory moniker get dumped, with 2012 Victory models getting giant fenders, Chief and Scout badges?

Details are scanty. Polaris did say Victory would be kept as an “autonomous business unit,” which would make sense, as a great deal has been invested in new manufacturing facilities. Still, Polaris’ expertise in marketing, manufacturing and distribution (and its massive dealer network) could be what Indian needs to become a bigger brand. It would also seem logical to keep Victory as an “entry-level” luxo-cruiser (although that seems to be a “jumbo shrimp” or “Microsoft Works” kind of contradiction), with Indian as an aspirational brand—think BMW to Rolls Royce more than Chevy to Cadillac.

Whatever happens, we know we’ll find out more, as Polaris has top-notch (and very responsive) PR staff. Dirck and I look forward to our first-ever Harley v. Indian luxury-touring shootout. I’ll bring the Cohibas and single-malt scotch. Dirck will have to loosen up the MD expense account (what expense account? – Ed).

72 Comments

  1. vf6cruiser says:

    Don’t need Harley, (but some models do look like jewelry) Don’t need Victory, and from what I can tell Indian leaves a lot to be desired in the reliability dept. This is just another re-floating of the Titanic, only to watch it sink again.

  2. Jon M says:

    Folks, I see this discussion as sad. Indian has a rich quality history reaching further back than HD that continues to carry it far beyond it’s unfortunate demise 50+ years ago. Like Ford men will never drive a Chevy, I will never put a HD between my legs. It’s Indian or nothing for me. Unfortunately for all of us, Indian lost it’s focus and had to shut down business. I applaud anyone who wants or has the ability to resurrect that great Indian history, but it must be for the bike itself. Do not bring back a name just to destroy a competitor. That is a misdirected path destined for failure. If Polaris or Victory have purchased the right to use the Indian name and faithfully try to resurrect a future for the legend as we know it, so be it. When most companies start up they pretty much sell their souls to investors just to be able to start work. But with integrity and a strong company objective or goal it can be done. Sustaining sales will judge them worthy. I truly hope that the Indian legend can live on.

  3. Wilson R says:

    Uh, Victory….modern four?

  4. Jan J says:

    Another request for a “Modern 4″

  5. Tom says:

    How do the new K-BMW’s sell vs. the old R-air-heads? R bikes are rooted in history, so I bet they sell more of those. I think the “roots” or DNA is what sells a bike. Think Moto-Guzzi. Or Triumph. Or BSA if those are still made, I can’t remember. Victory had no roots, so who’s compelled to buy one? Indian suddenly gives Polaris some roots. Sort of. If you use your imagination. So it may well work!

  6. wannaby says:

    modern four please.

  7. 36EL_Knucklehd says:

    I’ll comfortably wager that at least 3/4 of commenters here don’t even own an American Big-Twin, of any make. It’s just my *opinion*, but one can draw a reasonable conclusion from so many comments citing UJM standards & niche dual purpose bikes *rolling eyes*

    Recently sold my 07′ FLHX and am waiting on my new Cross Country to arrive. It’s a damn fine bike. I rode one & and put my HD on CL the same weekend! If Polaris uses their engine tech to revamp Indian’s PP105 in the next couple of years, I’ll probably buy one of those too.

  8. G Fahey says:

    Polaris did this for one reason:

    Despite the generally good reviews and reliability of the Victory bikes, they are ALWAYS compared to a HD. They don’t quite have that retro look V-twin riders like. Indians look even better than HD’s. I’m sure others would disagree but, Indians have an easily identifiable look to them that any MC fan recognizes as an Indian. They are not Hardly Davidson’s. They are not Victory’s. They have a broader appeal and if Victory can keep the looks (not just slap a Victory engine in them, wouldn’t work) and make them reliable as the Victory’s along with the stellar service, they have a winner on their hands.

    Do that and Polaris can not only compete with, but maybe one day surpass HD in sales/loyalty. Even hard core bikers would embrace an American made Indian.

    • Wilson R says:

      It’s natural to compare one product to the standard. The standard is HD and the Victory falls quite short in the styling department in most people’s eyes. Mechanically, Victory might be even better than a HD, but even that is debatable. I don’t think HD or any other company is threatened by Victory’s offerings, as most riders snicker behind the backs of Victory riders after they leave the local watering hole on their garish machines. Too bad Victory can’t be a bit more creative and hire professional designers rather than a bunch of hacks with a few #2 pencils. Also, whoever is naming Victory motorcycles (Eight Ball, Vegas, King Pin etc..) must have had quite a drug infested background as those names suggest. Giving bikes a name like that doesn’t make it more desirable in most rider’s minds, it just drives respectful people from the showroom. I truly hope that Victory makes changes to keep them from being the laughing stock of the motorcycling world.

  9. G Duncan says:

    This, to me, is sad news. The once-proud name of Indian has been passed-around for 58 years to a string of several makers (even a Chinese minibike company) in failed attempts to resurrect it. A shame for a company that most insiders say was better than HD with their engineering, but HD had better marketing.

    Make way for the next foolish attempt to milk something out of this much-abused name.

  10. yellowhammer says:

    Use the Indian badge, ditch the stupid garish Ness crap and produce a refined 74 cubic inch water cooled v-twin touring bike with footboards, a batwing’ish fairing, and a removable touring pack. Not asking for a HD styling copy, but not swoopy space pods, alien-eyeball headlights, putrid batmobile rear-fenders, and giant JLO-butt looking tour packs mounted higher than the riders head….

    Add to that a standard-type based on the same chassis – squint and it would remind you of an FXDC crossed with a T160 Trident…

    Commit to these for the long haul, make parts interchangeability a priority, concentrate on quality, finish and FI smoothness, undercut HD by $5K on each one and you have the basis for building a long-term clientele.

  11. Jay Mack says:

    The problem with Victory is the styling, (oh, well, and the silly nomenclatuer of the models, 8-Ball, Crapshot, etc., like they wanted to attract a LOWER class of people than Harleys do). But with respect to the styling, it was only cool the first time you saw it, like a custom. It isn’t something you want to live with, decade after decade.

    If they could even slap the Indian look, which is timeless, on a Victory … .

    Of course, they should try try compete with BMW, too.

  12. Oscar says:

    Next step is buying Motus and use their MST-01r (KMV-4 engine, frame, body), stamp Indian logo on the tank and make a naked Indian Four. It wouldn´t be an inline four like the original one, but a “Four”. Harley Davidson had the chance of making a real-deal range of American sport/naked-bikes when they had Buell and they threw it into the shredder. Let Polaris do it and do it right. Now, back into reality, Polaris have the tech to improve the “Bottlecap” engine to smash Harleys to the floor!!

  13. Addi says:

    Just wanted to let you know that the investor ( Bjorgolfur Thor Owner of Novator and Actavis , from iceland ) had to sell the company because he´s companies here in iceland went bust, including his bank and investment bank. This was just a part of that process of selling everything he has to pay his depts. Made his first millions in Russia when he sold a beer factory to heineken if i remember correctly. After that he came to iceland and bought a bank and just about everything else. ( excuse my english guys )

  14. Terry says:

    Believe me Polaris didn’t buy Indian to loose money, has any looked at Polaris’ stock and earnings? Polaris has the money and fortitude to ride this out. They held on to Victory for over 10 years now what makes you think they won’t give Indian the same shot? The obvious reason for the Indian move is to buy a name and that makes sense. If they build a superior product in Victory but can’t crack HD because of the name the Indian name should help. I would guess that in a year or two we will see an Indian bike with some of the goodies that the Victory has namely the power-plant, slap an Indian primary cover on it and let her buck. Sharing parts betweens the brands should bring that Indian price tag down to wear it needs to be to compete in the cruiser world.

    • Wilson R says:

      “slap an Indian primary cover on it and let her buck”. Is that the formula for success with Indian? I think not. Are they still trying to “crack HD” after 10 long years of trying? Perhaps they should choose a different target.

  15. Pat says:

    Wow. Seems to be a lot of Vic haters here. To say Victory’s aren’t selling? That they have no imagination? That they don’t have the confidence to stand alone and build their own heritage? Just because they don’t sell in HD numbers, doesn’t mean they are not selling. No imagination? Have you not seen their bike line up? Where HD (and Indian)makes great, old looking bikes, Victory makes modern looking V twins, with their own style, much more custom and modern looking. Great bikes, but different takes on what a V twin should both look like and perform like. Unless you can see into the future, how can this move by Victory be stupid? I really love the Indian looks. I think Victory should only try and refine Indian. And maybe somehow get that price down if possible. Keep both brands identities seperate. Obviously, Indian needed help. I’d rather have this happen then have them go under, like EH.

  16. Idaho Bruce says:

    If Victory had any courage, they would develop the 21st century equivalent of Honda’s “you meet the nicest people” mystique of the 60’s. Victory’s “Super Cub” would be built around a modular engine, 400-500cc’s, 35-40hp, capable of 50-60mpg and be sexy as hell. And built in America. If they had any courage.

    • Ruefus says:

      I’m sorry – it wouldn’t be courage. It’d be complete and utter stupidity.

      Why?

      NO ONE in America would buy that bike. NO ONE. Why imitate Honda or any other Japanese maker with such a bike – THEY don’t even market one here. They’ve tried…..and they do not sell. What’s more – there is virtually no margin for profit in such a machine. Perhaps a hundred bucks for a dealer to work with. You cannot operate a business for long with such razor-thin margins.

      It is beyond me why people think their little niche idea would corner the market when time and again manufacturers have tried and failed miserably.

  17. jay1975 says:

    Use Indian for its heritage and keep them as the full size cruisers and let Victory go wild with R&D so that they can create some sport bikes, dirt bikes, sleek and speedy cruiser and entry level rides that can open the market up more. The Japanese makers have been quite successful by opening up their brands to all riders, why is it the US Manufacturers never seem to grasp that?

    • Wilson R says:

      Victory hasn’t got the imagination to try something new. They would rather buy Indian (a losing proposition at best) than branch out to sportbikes or DP machines. Not a very creative company IMHO.

      • Ruefus says:

        Show me where the honest-to-god profit is in sportbikes and DP machines for someone completely new to it?

        You can’t, because it isn’t there.

        Why doesn’t Harley kick out a sportbike? Oh, wait……they tried that, made it unique….and it failed. What about Triumph? Oh….the liter-class Daytona was a me-too and died mercifully. The 4-cylinder Daytona middle-weights failed miserably as me-too. Not until the 675 appeared did Triumph have any chance…..and they were going back to what they knew, what made it uniquely Triumph.

        However – Triumph is not surviving on that one model, nor the Tiger, nor the Speed Triple or Street Triple. Those can be tough to get in many markets. Their retro-Bonnies, Thunderbird and Rocket series bikes are where there bread is being buttered. Selling virtually every one they can produce.

        But they SO need to compete with Japan Inc. and Das Deutschland in sport and DP machines.

        No they don’t. Because they’ve found their niche and laugh all the way to the bank.

  18. kirk66 says:

    My take: Polaris SHOULD do the following. R&D should enlist Eller and Rousch to build an updated version of the eller air-cooled motor that was developed in the middle 90’s when the Gilroy Canadian battle began. It’s a sound motor that with updated internals and modern FI should make for a fine powerplant.
    Simply, Indian should be the Cadillac of the Polaris division and Victory should be the Pontiac performance division. The luxury brand can make fine high-end boulavard bikes while the performance brand makes touring and performance cruisers.
    Polaris would be making a mistake by keeping the bike in clone mode. This is an opportunity to re-invent Indian as a modern luxury bike that produces only ten or so thousand bikes annual at a price starting at $25k. You can keep the skits, but it’s time for a 21st century frame and suspension.
    If they run luxury bikes, performance cruisers and tourers and revive Can-Am into something like a modern KTM or Husky setup then the only piece of the puzzle are sporting bikes. Not sportbikes. More like a selection of Roadsters like BMW R1200r or Ducati Monsters. You can certainly place them within the Victory line-up and use Rotax powerplants.
    Just out loud thinking…….

    • Davis says:

      As peviously noted, Bombardier Recreational Products owns CAN-AM not Polaris.

    • Zuki says:

      Sporting bikes, not sportbikes? What’s the difference? Don’t confuse the term ‘super-sport’ bike, aka repli-racer, and ‘sportbike’, aka UJM.

      • kirk66 says:

        BRP does in fact own the Can-Am brand, but Polaris and BRP have a working relationship and the connection in branding would make logical sense from a dealer distribution standpoint since there are no actual Snowmobile dealers in the south where I live, but many BRP products are sold at Victory dealers here. My bad for not making that clearer.

        Sporting bikes are roadsters (or street sports) like I said. You can pick nits all you’d like, but most people do not break supersport, superbike and open-class gt bikes into different classes. As a whole, sportbikes are one complete category. However, with 11yrs of motorcycle insurance sales, I can tell you that there is quite a difference in sporting bikes like the SV650, FZ1, Monters and R1200R bikes vs sportbikes in the insurance industry. There is no such thing as a UJM any longer. Hasn’t been since the Nighthawk died.

        • jim says:

          There is no “working relationship” between Polaris and BRP. Trust me on this.

        • Davis says:

          As Jim mentions, no connection between Polaris/Victory and BRP/CanAM. And many BRP products are sold at Yamaha, Honda, Suzuki, Kawasaki, Triumph, etc. dealers (you get the picture). They’re called multi-line dealerships.

        • Zuki says:

          Well… whatever you want to call them, but sporting bike sure is strange. I guess since you call them that everybody should but I won’t subscribe to your point of view. Insurance company descriptions are idiotic. I wouldn’t be surprised if they labeled a fully-faired GS500 as a supersport.

          My SV1000S is most definitely a sportbike but not a supersport. The H2 was known as a “Superbike” when it came out.

    • Charlie says:

      And Polaris owns 24.9% of KTM, so in a way they ARE building dirtbikes and sportbikes. They wanted to buy more, but KTM’s shareholders decided not to sell.

      • jim says:

        Polaris sold most if not all of their share in KTM. If they own anything it’s less than 5%.

  19. Ericbeer says:

    I own BMW and would never buy a Harley. But the Indian brand has always intrigued me as a Harley fighter. I would be thrilled if Indian could be successful. They need a range of bikes with a range of prices to compete with Sportsters thru Ultras. And they could even make a sport bike! This is a brilliant move for Polaris. I wish them well.

    • Steve says:

      I very much doubt you would buy an Indian after your Harley comment Eric. I’ve owned BMW’s, Harleys & an Indian & while Indians & Harleys can co-exist, BMW riders remain exclusive… I doubt you could make the leap onto what you would consider antiquated technology & more importantly, not German.

      besides…. your ONLY interest is in seeing Harley go down, not Indian succeed….

  20. Bobby B says:

    Yes, the economics are there for Victory to do this buy. This is the biggest move on the American cruiser market place that HD has had to contend with in it’s history.
    I would like to be a fly on the wall and hear the debate to re-badge the whole line up as Indian. I would support that move.
    Indian has some R&D in their pockets that will end up in Victory hands, get some value engineering and hopefully to the showroom floor soon.
    The Indian bagger coming to showroom near you soon.
    Love it
    Bobby B

    • Wilson R says:

      The local Polaris dealer has had to downsize three times. Next time he is closinsg his doors. Economics are against Victory to do something stupid like buying POS Indian motorcycles.

      • Ruefus says:

        Similar things were said about Harley. Only they didn’t have the massive resources of Polaris to lean on during the dark times.

        And yet…….here they are.

        • NJ Bears says:

          That only makes sense if you believe the US Gov’t doesn’t have massive resources.

          If not for the 45% tariff on motorcycles over 700cc in the early 80s, HD might not be here, at least not in its current form anyway.

          • Ruefus says:

            Quite right. But you know who pushed for that legislation?

            Harley Davidson and Vaughn Beals. The government didn’t just miraculously figure it out on their own. They didn’t have the power – so they created it.

  21. Tom Shields says:

    Polaris can use the Indian name to shoot right at the heart of the H-D demographic. Victory can remain their modern V-twin interpretation, but Indian has the same claim to the Big American Iron market as H-D. And I’m betting that Polaris can put engines in Indians that don’t suffer wristpin failures and jug gasket leaks after 8,000 miles.

  22. venator390 says:

    18 years ago, my friend John Britten did some design work for the Aussie outfit that then owned Indian. Their thinking was that, in its day, Indian was a sporting motorcycle. They asked John to design a sport bike for them. I have photos of the life-size clay model that was done, and it was stunning. John did, after all, design pretty nice bikes.
    Let’s hope that Polaris thinks likewise, and purchased the Indian name with the idea of getting into the sport bike realm.

  23. Baxter Blue says:

    It’s a pity that everything in America relies on a label (Brand). We buy shoes, watches, and motorcycle by their name and not by their substance. We have been hoodwinked by marketing firms for years. This acquisition is a fine example. Victory which has no name but lots of substance and Indian which has a name and limited substance. I wish that Victory had the confidence to stand on their own name and to build their own heritage rather than try to capitalize on someone else’s name.

  24. Jay Mack says:

    Love “Microsoft Works.”

    THis is what Polaris should have done – and what I told them to do – when Indian initially came back on the market after Gilroy, or even before that. It’s the only thing that makes sense if Polaris wants to stay in the motorcycle business, because I don’t think they’ve sold many Victorys. The ‘Nessie’ styling of VIctorys was immediately dated and never compelling.

    I’m glad to see someone over there woke up.

  25. Tom R says:

    After sleeping on this story for a night, and reading a few other thoughtful posts, this action by Polaris is starting to make sense. I wouldn’t be surprised if the main purpose of acquiring and marketing the Indian brand was to simply draw people into Victory dealers’ showrooms and get them on a test ride. The product (whether Indian OR Victory) could then get a chance to speak for itself. Indian models might be just the thing needed to break the resistance of many H-D owners and would-be owners to even CONSIDER another brand.

    Actually selling Indian-badged motorcycles is probably only a secondary consideration for Polaris. Their overall strategy might draw potential buyers to dealers far better than any amount of magazine or TV advertising.

  26. bo_nos says:

    I definitely NOT a fan of Polaris and Victory products, but I do have to say that this is a good move on Polaris’ part. Styling judgements aside (my only comment is that the Ness boys couldn’t have been paid enough for chopping down the ugly tree growing behind the Victory factory), what Victory has always lacked vs HD is history and they just bought the next closest thing. If Triumph and Norton can resurrect a storied nameplate, then Indian can rise again, with extra credibility when they stop using Harley clone motors. The Indian name will justify Polaris’ attempts to collect “Harley money” for something that ain’t, and they’ll definitely get a boost from the all-to-important t-shirt sales dept. Walk into a bike night with a Victory t-shirt and it might as well say Honda or Star, but with an Indian label, you’re now able to belly-up (pun intended) with the HD boys and re-battle the brand wars of the 20’s and 30’s. Polaris will make good on the Indian name with some steady QC and new technologies, which have been lacking in previous resurrections. Victory bikes don’t suck half as bad as I like to give them credit for, and now Indians won’t either…

  27. Zuki says:

    I always thought that Indian should have been brought back to life as a sport and sport-touring motorcycle brand, with an emphasis on the sport-touring models. It seems that’s what Burt Munro would have liked. Back in the day, didn’t Harley guys hate Indians, and vice-versa? It was the Ford vs. Chevy in the bike world. Had I been alive back then, I’d definitely be an Indian owner.

    Instead of competing in an already heavily cruiser-saturated market, compete where there is an obvious void… where Buell was and where Motus is attempting to emerge. They would also need to be priced competitively too or there would be no hope. There is still a great lack of non-cruiser American motorcycles and it would be insanely cool if a sport-bike emerged wearing a legendary name like Indian. Can you imagine an awesome sporting bike, with the classic Indian script on the tank? Perhaps that is where Indian would have been now had it not died in 1953? While H-D continued on in its stagnant way, Indian could have been keeping pace with the Big Four that no other company managed to do back then. Like how Triumph came back from the dead and is running strong now, Indian could with the right kind of models. Who knows… ? In my mind, Indian was supposed to be America’s sport-bike.

    • MarkF says:

      I’ve never been a big cruiser fan and always rode sporting bikes. But, even I know that if Indian gets even 1% of American cruiser sales it will still be more than Buell + Motus could ever sell.

  28. Moto65 says:

    Polaris buying Indian is a play to break into the American heritage space that Harley has a stronghold on. Victory is a superior and more stylish American machine by far than Harley, in my opion. But the Harley faithful ignore it because it isn’t what the American cruiser bike rider is suppose to ride (peer pressure) and it doesn’t have the long standing brand cache’ that the HD brand has. But Indian–that is an iconic American MC brand that routinely kicked HD’s butt on the early race tracks of America. And while it’s brand has been damaged, Polaris engineering and styling excellence could certainly return the brand to it’s former glory. And if they did and the bikes were priced competitively to the HD models, the hardcore American heritage cruiser buyer would have a very intersting decision to make. Buy a better engineered and styled American heritage cruiser or stick with HD. Most would stay with the Motor Company because they can’t take the peer pressure of doing something different from the rest of the flock. But some would jump to the superior Indian product knowing they had kept the faith by lining up with a true American MC icon. Check the price of a fully restored vintage Indian Chief or Indian 4. You’ll see there is still a following and respect for the brand. Polaris doesn’t need to convert a large percentage of the HD faithful to make a nice business and finally break in to the market that Victory hasn’t been able to penetrate.

    • Steve says:

      you have an awful lot of opinions Moto65…. do you own a Victory? If Vics are so “superior” why don’t the sales support that?…. peer pressure you say accounts for this? R U kidding me? Vics are ugly, plain & simple. & where are the Vic dealers… I know of 2 within 100 miles while there are probably 20+ H-D Dealers….

      you’re dreaming… make that hallucinating….

      you & a lot of others only want to see H-D die….

      so why not go out & buy a Vic or Indian Moto65… put your money where your mouth is

  29. CEOBILL says:

    Te Polaris purchase of Indian motorcycles is a Win-Win situation for Polaris and all Americans. Stellican (current Indian owner) found out that launching an expensive brand at the beginning of a recession was a plan for disaster. Now, Victory gets a chance (probably at .30 cents on the dollar) to add Indian to their American Cruiser lineup. If they can bring the price in line (lets say $22k for a Chief) they will have a winner on their hands. Quality is the mainstay at Victory. With both the high tech and retro cruiser market in hand, HD may have some problems in the near future. Indian is another product for the USA to export and will supply jobs (for awhile anyway) to Americans. I am a former Victory Dealer.

  30. The Bear says:

    Hey, Gabe, how goes it?
    Nice story, a bit of analysis instead of just knee-jerk reaction.
    See you in Milano this year?

  31. Wendy says:

    I love it when a plan comes together and works. Buncha guys from GB build a quasi bike, buncha guys form Canastan then buy it from them. result, brand with questionable sales winds up with two types of retro bikes, original investors make their Euros, and Gabe gets to post about it.

    Everyone wins. :clap

  32. GP says:

    I am not surprised by this, just discouraged. I was hoping they would revive the Can-Am line of MX and Enduro bikes before making a move like this one.

    • Charlie says:

      Can-Am is/was a brand name of Bombardier Recreational Products not Polaris – two different companies.

      • harryfxr says:

        The Can-Am brand has been revived by the trademark holder BRP (Rotax) and they are producing ATV’s and side-by-side vehicles.

  33. Bud says:

    Microsoft Works. Nice.

  34. harryfxr says:

    Polaris industry’s has managed to stay in business for 55 some odd years but suddenly out of the blue they’ve made the stupid decision to buy Indian motorcycles. I think it’s safe to say that they must have some idea about what they are doing. The superb motorcycle blog turned on-line magazine, Hell For Leather, is reporting that Polaris has said that the Victory line will continue as a range of power cruisers and high tech touring bikes. Similarly the Indian line will continue to be what it is a vintage brand emphasizing the heritage and style of the marque. No re-badged Vegas Eight-Ball’s masquerading as Indians no sport bikes no dual sports.

  35. Wilson R says:

    I hope that Victory decides to do something different, like a sportbike or a cool dual-sport. I’m so tired of seeing their ugly cruiser line, makes me want to throw up. I hope there is a little imagination left at Victory.

    PS- Buying Indian is a losing proposition. You’d think that they would know that.

  36. Brian says:

    It would seem that they are hoping to use a well known name as a way to move some bikes.. Use the Victory name for some models and do some bikes that are more suited to the Indian image as a way to get in with the Harley crowd.

  37. ApriliaRST says:

    The cruisers formerly marketed as Victory should be called Indians and the Victory name should be a line of sporty and sport-tour bikes.

  38. Matt says:

    I agree with Danny. While i’m not against this happening, I would rather have seen Polaris put that giant Freedom V-Twin into an American version of the Yamaha MT-01, or something similar.

  39. Kenny says:

    So, I think the question now is: Who will be buying Indian NEXT year? Anyone, anyone…

  40. Danny's Econ Professor says:

    Most of the bikes sold in the US are cruisers. I’d say it was an educated investment.

  41. Danny says:

    Shame. That investment could have been used to expand Victory’s products beyond cruisers.

    • Wilson R says:

      Very true. I’m very tired of the lack of imagination shown by Victory. They really need to expand their line and offer something exciting to the consumer. They have not one creative bone in their entire company.