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Indian Product Plans Leaked, Including New Models and Big Liquid-Cooled Twin

Indian patent drawings reveal the SOHC, liquid-cooled design of its next big twin.

Several of Indian’s product plans for next year are now common knowledge, thanks to internet leaks and patent drawings. First, take a look at this Cycle World report. It focuses, primarily, on the new Indian Raptor bagger due for official announcement this Fall. The Raptor will feature an all-new, liquid-cooled v-twin displacing 1,770cc. An SOHC, instead of the pushrods currently found on the Indian Thunder Stroke twin, and a six-speed transmission contribute to an expected high performance from a big, cruiser twin. Apparently, it will peak at 120 HP.

Patent drawings (see above) identify the Raptor’s engine design, but other product plans were leaked when an image of an internal document appeared online (see below). In addition to the cruiser Raptor with the big twin, Indian is apparently planning additional models powered by the 1,203cc twin found in the new FTR1200. Those models may include a more street-oriented model (the current FTR is a flat track deskgn), followed by an adventure bike.

Indian product plans leaked to internet publishers in recent days.

After the demise of sister-brand Victory, Indian is diversifying its product line to include higher performance models outside the cruiser genre. It should be interesting to see what is actually unveiled by Indian this Fall.


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58 Comments

  1. Auphliam says:

    I understand baggers seemingly sell well right now, but I would much rather see their focus on the other 2 FTR derivatives than on this. Let’s see those other 2 engine/chassis packages that were patented along with the FTR1200.

  2. Mick says:

    The FTR is marketed as a flat track design. The flat track part of the design went away after the third or forth dose of vanilla. It got many more doses before it hit the showroom looking like a Chianees knock off from the eighties.

  3. Dirty Bob says:

    Water cooled v-twin, just give me a gold wing. GWs are crossing that desert without all the heat of a HD. Old people want comfort and speed not a ride on a fence post.

  4. motocephalic says:

    I only wish they would realize that the greater motorcycle riding population is getting older. I am looking for a smaller lighter version of the FTR. I don’t need fancy electronics that breakdown. I want a simple lightweight standard-seated bike, nothing bigger than an 800 cc.

    • mickey says:

      I always thought an 800cc SV Suzuki would be a great bike

    • Dave says:

      There are many choices that meet that description. All of the Japanese makes, Triumph and Ducati if you want something more premium. The latter two even have both modern and retro models to pick from.

      • motocephalic says:

        I have ridden all of the above for decades. To be specific, a reasonably priced American built standard that is light weight, has few electronic gadgets. I like the FTR, just too heavy and too much motor.

  5. mechanicus says:

    I visited the local dealer who was hosting the Indian Demo Day this last Wed. They had a FTR and an FTR S there, but you couldn’t test ride them. If the upcoming “street oriented” version gets rid of that stupid exhaust and that @ss-up seat, and replaces them with a level 2-up seat and a rear fender, along with more tasteful exhausts, I might be interested after a test ride… maybe.

  6. carl says:

    Funny how that bike is a copy of the drawings of what was suppose to be the next generation of Victory Cross Country.

  7. todder says:

    Here’ I got all excited about a small displacement future bike. Drat!

    • Tank says:

      Polaris needs to stop thinking like HD and start thinking like Honda.

      • DP says:

        Bingo!
        … or at least like Aprilia.

      • Mikey says:

        Tank, that is a great comment.
        Why emulate an ancient and far surpassed technology?

      • DaveA says:

        They’re thinking like Harley by coming up with a clean-sheet liquid cooled OHC 120hp motor inside 5 years of producing their first bike?

        Please explain how this thinking is even remotely close to Harley “you can tell it’s a 2019 and not a 1988 because in ’88 there was no factory chrome gauge bezel option” Davidson?

        Please.

  8. Crazyjoe says:

    Last weekend’s Sunday ride caught me by surprise. Perfect weather brought out the more bikes than usual. I saw less Harley’s on the road than I’m used to. They were out there but there’s a lot of adventure bikes this year. Those things are catching on even in Houston. Are Harley and Indian going to start building them? A 1250 with 120hp might be a little to much for some people.

    Will they ever produce something like a Tenere? During the 60’s and 70’s Japanese invasion Harley figured people would move up to them. Maybe that’s Indian’s plan too.

    • mickey says:

      Harley has prototyped an ADV bike, but I think its not slated for production until 2020 or 2021

      It wont be anything like aTenere however

  9. Anonymous says:

    Looks interesting, but the world needs another 1200cc V-twin like it needs another 4 cylinder sedan.

    • Max says:

      I disagree. The world needs a good one. If Polaris gives me a Vic Cross Roads with a nice watercooled 1200, I could get interested really quick.

    • DickJohnson says:

      The world needs more trikes. They need to put that motor in a three wheeler. They’ll sell loads of them.

  10. Scottie says:

    With this model it looks likes Polaris is taking Indian down the same path as they did with Victory – copy H-D and add HP. Didn’t work for Victory, won’t work for Indian. To me Indian is the Chief Vintage and several of the Scout models especially the FTR1200.

    Problem with the Vintage is that is too cramped compared to my Yamaha Stratolner.

    • DaveA says:

      The only detail we have her eis a clean-sheet 120hp liquid cooled OHC motor. Please explain in detail how this is copying anything about HD.

  11. Grover says:

    Indian may be painting itself in a corner by only recreating V-Twins for their lineup. How about offering a triple or 4-cylinder engine? How about a sport touring bike? Don’t make the same mistake as Harley and become a one horse show offering only V-Twin power plants. Variety is not a bad thing, you know.

    • Dave says:

      Variety is a bad thing when volumes are low. It adds confusion and ambiguity. They know that they’re not going to be profitable trying to compete directly with Japanese makes. With a more powerful V-twin they’ll be able to make a sport tourer and other, similar things, without spreading themselves too thin.

      They’re picking a lane and staying in it. That’s commendable.

      • mickey says:

        If Harleys customer base is really dieing off as has been claimed for a few years now, just building a more powerful clone is not going to increase that dieing customer base. A road to nowhere.

        • Dave says:

          That assumes that the taste for vintage styled bikes is dying with them and that Indian’s products will be, or be seen as clones. It also assumes that there’s an age below which bikes of this style of do not appeal.

          How’s Triumph, Moto Guzzi, and Vespa doing? Ducati’s best selling bike is a retro (Scrambler). There are plenty of indications that this is a viable direction.

          • mickey says:

            The point is there is no upcoming base of cutomers that want/ like that style of bike hence the dying cutomer base and Harleys foray into electrics and ADVs. if sales weren’t down on that type of bike, Harley would not be diverting energy into something else.

            Triumph. Moto Guzzi, Vespa and Ducati are not doing well selling $25000 V twin clones. The new $25,000 Yamaha V Twin Harley Dresser clone is doing horrible in sales. Most dealers can’t sell even one, even though it’s clearly superior to Harleys offerings.

          • Dave says:

            Indian/Polaris aren’t dumb. If they’re making it, it’s because they *know* there is a market for it that they can reach.

          • Grover says:

            Maybe Indian is dumb. Polaris, the parent company ran Victory into the ground by focusing everything on the V-Twin and Indian seems to be on the same track. They need to expand their product line or they’ll be shuttering Indian before long.

          • mickey says:

            Btw stopped at my dealer the other day and he told me the “new” Venture Harley V Twin clone was not even listed in his available product line up for 2019. A one year model?

            Yamaha went to much effort to come up very short.

          • Dave says:

            Saying that Polaris ran Victory “into the ground” suggests that there was a time when the brand was flying high, but it never really did. They simply failed to capture enough of HD’s market share by offering products that were too similar to what HD made.

            Bikes with liquid cooling, higher performance and technology aren’t HD clones. Bikes like the FTR and Scout are very appealing alternatives to HD Sportsters, and much more in-line with Triumph and Ducati’s higher performance retro-styled offerings.

          • mickey says:

            In the last 2 years we have lost 5 Indian dealers here in Ohio, including my local dealer.I have seen exactly ONE scout on the road. I’d say Indian has a bit of a problem right now. Indian has the same issue that Polaris did, and the same issue that Harley has. Not enough buyers, and not enough diversification. There is no denying that fact. Sales are down, significantly, and not much for potential buyers to choose from. There is basically a whole generation or two of riders 50 years old and younger that do not want that style of motorcycle any more. They want lighter,more powerful, more technologically advanced, and they don’t want to look like Sons of Anarchy. They are willing to wear safety gear, and embrace things like liquid cooling, and ABS and TC and dislike loud pipes.

            That’s not saying other manufacturers are doing much better. The whole industry is in a crisis with the average motorcyclist age, and particularly the average age on new buyers getting older and older, but the one’s that are buying, do not resemble the ones that used to buy, and they are not buying the same old same old for lots of money.

          • Dave says:

            It’s hard to say how a brand is doing with only one market from which to judge. I hardly ever see any of the newer ADV bikes but to read the comments on this forum, you’d think they would be visible everywhere.

            I see Polaris Slingshots and Can-Am Spyders pretty frequently, for instance.

          • mickey says:

            Ok Dave, they are doing great and don’t need to change a thing. I’m sure sale will surge for them any day now.

          • Jeremy says:

            I agree with you Mickey. And if they think they have it tough with millennials, wait until the next generation starts adulting.

            Recently, I had volunteered to drive a bunch of track athletes from my kid’s high school (Gen Z I guess they would be?) to their meet. We came upon a group of cruiser riders at a stoplight, dressed without exception in the stereotypical cruiser fashion. The kids in the van started making jokes about how the riders were dressed and the “grandpa” bikes they were riding.

            That led to some interesting discussion with the kids about motorcycles for the last leg of the drive. I won’t go into all of that, but my little informal focus group suggests that H-D’s and Indian’s bread and butter in terms of both product and image are only just starting to feel the waves of an approaching storm.

          • Dave says:

            They’re an over $4.5b company with a track record of success in several Motorsport segments, including the building markets of some newer ones. They’re not making the things they do because someone there “really believes in it”.

            We keep talking about motorcycling as an old man’s game, but the average age of new car / truck purchaser in the US is 53. Maybe that coming storm is bigger than we all realize.

          • Jeremy says:

            “They’re an over $4.5b company with a track record of success in several Motorsport segments”

            To be fair, Polaris – not Indian – is a $4.5 billion company. They also have track record of failure in the motorcycle industry (if you can call 0-for-1 with one TBD a track record.) Like Victory, Indian is a relatively small nugget in the Polaris portfolio that can be discarded with few tears shed should management decide the return to be not worth the effort.

            That said, I think they are already trying to find a way forward. Victory took it lying down, but I think Indian plans on a fight.

            And indeed, auto manufacturers are already very concerned about the upcoming generations, a large percentage of whom are very content to replace car ownership with ridesharing apps and other transport options.

  12. Bubba Blue says:

    This spring, I traded in my Road Glide Ultra on a R1200RT. Lord, it broke my heart. But Harley is going to have to bite the bullet and come out with liquid cooling before I can buy a new one. Between the heat and the weight, it is just too much!

    • Dave says:

      I believe HD does have liquid cooled heads on some of their top-end models now but there’s no indication that they’re trying to make their bikes any lighter.

      The heat issue has more to do with their style choices. Even with a fully liquid cooled engine, body work must be used to control where the hot air exits and as long as we want to look at the engine and sit above/behind it, we’re gonna cook.

      • Denis says:

        I own an older ‘05 Ultra that I’ve had for the last 8 years, and in the summer I just remove the lower fairings. Even in the northern Midwest, it can get hot. When removed, the comfort level in upper 80’s and higher temps, is quite manageable. When the Polaris Indians first came out, I took out a demonstrator and was surprised how much heat those jugs generated on a relatively cool 80 degree day. In traffic, it was almost too much. Granted, the 111 is bigger than my old TC 88. But I welcomed getting back on my Ultra. About 4 years ago my wife and I flew out to Reno in August with a couple of friends to explore the desert and the Sierra Nevada mountains. We rented Harleys for a couple of days. I selected the new (2014) Ultra Limited with the new liquid cooling circuit around the exhaust valves. It also had the rear cylinder deactivation feature when stopped in heavy traffic. I was NOT convinced that this set-up would work well in the desert heat and I knew that the lower fairings were not removable since they housed the small radiators and cooling fans. Desert temps were around 100 degrees. Well I have to say, those two features worked very well, and mind you, I was carrying a load plus a passenger up and down the mountains, in heavy traffic, and blasting through deserts. Now I know-Hot is Hot. But I was reasonably comfortable the entire time. The rear cylinder deactivation was barely noticeable and those fans were always running whenever we shut down to take a break. All of these features worked way better than I expected and yet when you looked at the bike, you could not tell they were there unless you looked closely into the lower fairing openings. My legs did NOT cook the entire time. Sometimes I think that people really underestimate what the Motor Company has done to maintain the look and feel plus offer modern day comfort. I give them credit for trying to address heat issues.

  13. Tank says:

    I would like Indian to make a 500cc single cylinder bike. Getting too old for heavy bikes. I think it would be a great way to get female and new riders on an Indian.

    • Gronk says:

      I know, they could make a small, 500cc bike aimed at beginners and newbies. Maybe they could call it the “Blast”.

  14. allworld says:

    I think it is great that Indian (Polaris) is diversifying their lineup. HD may be leading in the cruiser market, but Indian is casting a wide net, and Polaris is more than motorcycles.

  15. Fuzzyson1 says:

    I hope Indian takes a good look at where Harley is headed and gets the hint before it’s too late. Not everybody wants bar hoppers and baggers. Even an old guy like me! Indian build us something new and exciting. I own motorcycles to ride them, not to park them in front of the local pub for everybody to gawk at! I don’t give a rats a** about seeing more two wheel lead sleds.

  16. Mikey says:

    I suspect Indian leaked their own design to create some buzz.
    Hit me up when they put that engine in a 450 pound bike.

    • todd says:

      Isn’t that what they’re doing? A 250 pound engine in a 450 pound bike is around 600 pounds.

  17. Neal says:

    I’m not sure what HD can do to compete with a 120 hp bagger.

  18. steveinsandiego says:

    honestly, i don’t see lots of 30-40 yr olds bombing around on their HD baggers. who in that generation (my adult kids’) is gonna lay down hard-earned bux for a 900+ lb dresser?
    i don’t want HD or Indian to fail, but it’s too little, too late, imho.

    • GT08 says:

      Remember Pulp Fiction;
      ”Z dead baby, Z dead.”

    • Auphliam says:

      Stand out on the highway near my house on any given sunny weekend and you’ll see several hundred 30-40 year olds on various iterations of ‘Glides. It’s the fad du jour in my part of the country.

  19. GT08 says:

    Maybe one day, Polaris will make a sportbike ???
    Something like kawasaki Z900RS cafe to begin and later a 1000cc VFR kind.
    Please Polaris can american cie build inline 4 or V4.
    I hope.

  20. Bill says:

    An Indian Road Glide will probably sell well. I would be interested in a Scout with mid controls and a bigger gas tank.

  21. Don says:

    Indians touring line up is a clone of Harley’s right down to vent in front of the fairing. The new “Raptor” is looking a lot like the Road Glide. Come on Indian, come up with your own designs in this department! It’s like your sticking your new motors right into a Harley…

    • Jeremy says:

      To each his own I guess, but the Indians look much better than their Harley counterparts in my opinion. It’s not even a contest really.

  22. Dan Dan says:

    It’s a real shame Polaris/Indian hasn’t done something closer to the Project 156 bike outside of the FTR1200.

    I would really love to buy an actual lightweight v-twin StreetFighter based on the 750 lump from flat track.

    But they gotta produce what sells, and as long as these new motors have the longevity I’m sure a solid bagger will sell.