– Motorcycle News, Editorials, Product Reviews and Bike Reviews

Motorcycle News, Editorials, Product Reviews and Bike Reviews

Does Indian’s Scout FTR1200 Custom Point to a Future Production Model? (with video)

Indian’s 1,133cc Scout engine is a gem, which we verified in our test of the Victory Octane (which utilized a version of that engine). An engine that deserves to be in a performance-oriented chassis.

Enter the Scout FTR1200 pictured in this article, a custom unveiled by Indian at EICMA last week. It looks very much like the FTR750 that Indian used to dominate the American Flat Track Championship this year.

Indian hinted at the show that the FTR1200 could lead to a production model in the future. The concept itself is stunning — with LED lights and carbon fiber body parts throughout, the FTR1200 also features Brembo brakes and Öhlins suspension. The custom S&S exhaust and RSD Traction wheels round things out.

As you can see in the video below, this engine has some serious performance potential. We say Indian should build a street-legal version ASAP. What do you think?

See more of MD’s great photography:



  1. DragonFly says:

    In a heatbeat, Indian would have my deposit as soon as it got the green light. Absolutely LOVE IT! Please ship to Australia ASAP. The market for such a bike is crying out for Indian to open up another genre of bike for the large percentage of riders that don’t want a cruiser. We have had the cafe racer revival back in the early noughties. Then came the Scrambler and so it’s now time for obviously the Tracker. The appeal of this bike is it’s pedigree and heritage, such an iconic motorcycle brand that has a rich and glorious racing history. Indian motorcycles have always been beautiful in design and their revival in American flat track racing and recent success is the perfect time to launch such a desirable bike. I honestly cannot imagine any other bike to be this appealing in the last 30 years. Bring it to the masses and WE WILL BUY! Indian are you listening? Don’t hesitate, seize the moment and you will resurrect Indian to unimaginable heights with this product. JUST DO IT. I’m holding my breath and so are all my fellow riding mates for an early 2018 surprise launch.

  2. Don says:

    I need to see it with the tail light, license plate holder, illum. light and rear turn signals in place before I bite, but it looks great so far…Too bad those great looking pipes probably won’t make it onto the street version!

  3. Louis says:

    Saw the bike at the NYC show . It’s absolutely beautiful, would buy it in a heartbeat. Spoke to Indian rep. and asked about if and when it would go into production. Indian rep pointed to the people in there area and said probably wont go into production. It’s not there demographic. If that’s how they are looking at it they will never grow there brand. Hopefully this rep didn’t know what he was talking about.

    • Jeremy in TX says:

      A Victory rep the exact same thing when I asked about a possible model fashioned after the Project 156. It isn’t what their customers want. They would never make anything but cruisers. And they didn’t.

  4. Buzzard says:

    Good looking and looks like it will hold its own. I truly hope it comes to production.

  5. Steve B OZ says:

    I’m 67 years young and have been around motorcycles since I was 12…had all the British brands, numerous model HD’s, road bikes, dirt bikes, choppers, boy racers and the like, but all I have to say about the Indian FTR1200 is, “This is a motorcycle in it’s purest state possible”.

  6. keving says:

    If they build it, we will come.

  7. Magnus says:

    I would seriously consider trading my Moto Guzzi Griso 1100 for this Indian. Put a light weight trellis girder fork (red like the frame) on it and I’m all in! I do like the front down tube casting with the integrated radiator of the Scout. That is a piece of art.

  8. edbob says:

    I’ve been looking for a broomstick just like this. Please give it at least 4.5″ of suspension, and a tank range of 150 miles, or you can keep it.

  9. Bruce says:

    I get excited about this bike and then I realize that is likely less than a 10 litre tank. So much gets lost on the way to building a practical streetbike. KTM’s new Duke 790 for instance….

  10. EZ Mark says:

    Guess what bike everyone will be racing in the “Hooligan Class?”

  11. Cowboy says:

    That is the first Indian I’ve ever seen that would get me into the show room. Once there, I would be reaching for my wallet. Build this!

    • bmbktmracer says:

      This is a race bike to which the marketing department added lights and mirrors to get the bike trending. It’s free advertising. I think your wallet will be safe for the time being. Bummer.

      • Bob S. says:

        Race bike? The FTR750 is a race bike. This bike uses a completely different engine sourced from the street model Scout. If they’d put the lights and mirrors on the FTR750 race bike, I’d say no chance it would ever see production as a street model, but I’d give the FTR1200 a pretty good chance.

  12. Provologna says:

    Indian promising a standard bike is the motorcycle version of “The boy who cried ‘wolf’.”

    The Roland Sands Signature Edition comes with beer bottle holder and fast-acting air-bag and/or parachute.

  13. Mike says:

    The bike Indian should be trying to emulate is the new Harley Street Rod, but with the 1200 Octane engine cranked up to about 140hp. With inverted forks and dual discs on the front.

    • bmbktmracer says:

      Gads, that’d be a huge mistake. Motorcycle manufacturers are finally realizing they need to offer unique, nicely-styled, reasonably-priced motorcycles in order to attract younger customers.

  14. Mick says:

    I’ll take “Here comes a really disappointing restyled Scout” for never in a million years Alex.

  15. todd says:

    What’s up with all that worthless plastic crap on the front end? And why make the headlight look like you ran into a brick wall?

    • Rhinestone Kawboy says:

      The plastic crap on the front end is fork and tube protectors. I’m guessing the headlight that ran into a brick wall was sort of intentional to resemble a flat area where the number plate might be otherwise. Personally, I would rather see the front headlight more extended but not old school round. Protecting the fork tubes is a good idea, but I feel not really needed for the lower fork legs as much.

    • bmbktmracer says:

      Well…since you asked… The carbon bits on the front are fork protectors since flat track bikes toss a decent roost. The “brick wall” headlight is designed to be as flat as possible to mimic a front number plate. You have to know this is a styling exercise meant to gauge public reaction. I’d not take any of it too seriously. I’m pretty sure the folks at Indian know there’s only a tiny niche market for flat track motorcycles.

  16. Dale says:

    This bike is not a cruiser. This bike has the seat, pegs, and handlebar in the correct position. They will never make this bike for retail sale. Please everyone, give up and move on. Nothing to see here folks….

    • ledcat says:

      Yep, did we forget about project 156? We thought the octane was gonna be it, it was just another cruiser? At least we got the new Indian Scout bobber with 1″ less ground clearance for the Hipster/Dufus’s

  17. Austin ZZR 1200 says:

    In the immortal words of Jay Cutler “Dooonnt Caaarre” Lets go to the next article…

  18. RyYYZ says:

    I’d just like to see them take this engine and put it in something reasonable, with my feet below me, and that won’t drag parts when leaned over more than 25-30 degrees. i.e. not a cruiser. Street trackers look great but aren’t really comfortable or practical.

    • paquo says:

      yup, something sporty that isn’t a pig, that’s a tall order though as only buell has made that kind of bike

  19. Dick Ruble says:

    I wonder why the radiator is blocked with what looks like cardboard. Now before everyone and their aunt start hallucinating about an Indian street tracker based on the 1200 engine, they should consider that the 1200 engine that is in the Scout weighs a lot. That’s the reason the scout is some 580 lbs. All things considered, a production based on the design pictured here would look like the XR1200x and would end up weighing the same or even a bit more, as the XR had an air cooled engine (no water radiator, no hoses, no fans, no water).

    • P Harris says:

      The thought that a watercooled engine is just an air cooled engine with water added is wrong. They can be built with more precision (lighter moving parts) and don’t require fins and other masses of metal. I think you’ll find a watercooled engine is lighter than an aircooled of similar power.

    • fast2win says:

      The cardboard piece is a protector honeycomb piece made of nomex. But there are more than one reason a Scout is 560 lbs wet. The motor is a bit heavy, but was never designed to be a light weight race engine. The two frame sections and rear subframe on that bike are also heavy. This bike is a claimed 427 lbs. I can see adding 50 lbs tops, assuming you stay with the trellis frame.

  20. Tommy D says:

    I’d place my deposit today if they announced it as a production model. Here in New England this bike would be a lot of fun on the back roads. I hope they make it and I hope it stays as close to this bike as possible. Small tank, solo seat, high pipes and all.

  21. SausageCreature says:

    There’s an old adage that states any headline which asks a question can be accurately answered with “No.”

    This has never been more true than the stories that pop up every few years about the odds of the latest Victory/Indian non-cruiser concept bike resulting in something the public can actually buy. Granted the last time this happened, we actually did get a production bike, the Victory Octane…which was basically another cruiser after all.

    Really, moto-journalists, just because Lucy puts the football down doesn’t mean you HAVE TO run up and try to kick it. She only does it because you keep falling for it. If you just walk away and ignore her, eventually she’ll stop.

  22. WSHart says:

    Looks like a styling exercise that needs to switch gyms.

  23. allworld says:

    I would love to see performance motorcycles come from Indian, but till then I can’t be bothered walking into their showrooms. Maybe they hear me, maybe they don’t…………. luckily I have choices.

  24. thrus says:

    The article hits on one of my major concerns the Victory Octane, they did the look what we can make and what we did make on that one why should we trust Polaris on this one just because they closed Victory and moved everything over to the more expensive Indian name? Either way it is still Polaris that is calling the shots.

  25. Tank says:

    “I hope it handles better than the FTR750”- Roland Sands.

  26. Auphliam says:

    Dig it. Looks like a blast to ride. Exactly what young Americans have been asking an American company to do for decades. Not going to get my hopes up, since we’ve all seen and heard this song and dance from Polaris before. My money says they don’t have the stones.

  27. My2cents says:

    Back tire is too skinny for street use, it throws the whole look off. It must have a fatty on the back even if that does not resemble the pure track machine. The Harley-Davidson XR1200 was a little too sporty for the bagger crowd attending demo rides.

    • Roadrash1 says:

      I took an XR1200 on a demo ride. It was kinda like riding the Buell M2 I had. And why not? Same engine…
      If they actually offer this bike for sale, it will be interesting to see if it sells any better than the XR1200 did.
      It looks cool, but the concept bikes get changed so much if they go through production, just to satisfy NTSA, EPA, Etc.
      I’m in the market for a bike to ride local back roads, but I’m leaning more towards something really light, like the KTM 690 Duke.

    • todd says:

      Nothing looks more lame to me than a fat rear tire. It’s as if they think people can’t balance the bike on their own. Not everyone thinks Batman’s bike was badass. Skinnier tires handle better and are cheaper to boot.

      • P Harris says:

        Like the skinny tires on a motogp bike?

        • todd says:

          Race bikes need larger tires to help deal with the extreme temperatures that the tires get worked up to. Skinny tires get up to temperature quickly and begin to fail quickly on a track. A front tire takes more cornering load and requires more traction than the rear tire but a front tire is a 130. The rear has to deal with the added heat from longer periods of acceleration and doesn’t get the direct frontal cooling that the front tire sees. If larger tires gave noticeably more traction, a front tire would be a 190 or more. Remember, motorcycle tires are round in section and not flat like a car. Making them 2″ wider doesn’t put 2″ more tire in contact with the ground.

  28. Grover says:

    If it were light enough it would make a pretty good bike for fire roads and such. I personally don’t need big power numbers with a bike like this as the standard Scout powerplant would suffice. Also, the bike in the pic is a total custom and I bet the production version will look more like the XR1200 and that would be depressing. I do believe this bike will make it to production and sales numbers will depend on how close it resembles the bike pictured above. I hope Indian can pull it off as this would vastly help Indian’s image in the marketplace.

  29. David Evans says:

    I’ll wait and see, but I suspect I’ll be getting in touch with Storz instead.

  30. Doc says:

    I like it. Keep the nannies off and the street equipment minimal, I’m in. And a tank with seams please.

    • Bob S. says:

      Now it’s all about “seams”. Seems the once popular “beak” doesn’t get any love at all now.

  31. beasty says:

    Nope. Despite their flat track success, I look for Indian to fold up their tent in about 5-7 years……..again.

    • Grover says:

      They will need to expand their line and not just the touring segment if they want to stay in business. This bike would go a long way to that end.

    • Norm G. says:

      re: “I look for Indian to fold up their tent in about 5-7 years”

      DOH…!!! (best Homer J.)

    • Gershzilla says:

      As I have mentioned previously, the Victory motorcycle division was never really profitable, and Polaris spent over $100 million trying to make it profitable. If you look at their financial reports, the Indian portion of their revenues is pretty strong, and it won’t be long before they sell a billion dollars worth of product in their motorcycle division (yes, that includes the Slingshot). So my point is that Indian is already profitable. Our U.S. economy appears to be moving upward, that can only help. With each model introduction Indian has increased their sales and market share. All those disappointing quarters (now years) for Harley? Indian has been capturing market share from them consistently. It is Harley’s financial health you should be worried about. The market capitalization for Harley is just a few million more than Polaris. When Polaris surpasses them, and they will, you will see more Indian products coming to market.

  32. Aussie Mike says:

    Increase engine capacity to say 1200 to 1300cc range to differentiate from the Scout.
    Can build a whole bevy of performance models on this sporty platform.
    Twin discs up front & a larger tank and you have a Home Run.

    • XR650Lover says:

      The article did mention it was a 1200 and everything else tracks very close visually to the flat track bike. As long as the single front is similar to a full floater monobloc Brembo, I could live with that. So far it’s the main contender for being the first American v-twin to find space in my garage.

      Scrambler fans need not apply, it’s flat track.

    • Fast2win says:

      I agree. They can build 3 or 4 bikes off a platform like this. 1200cc would be plenty, and a few ponies more to boot. I loved the old tube framed Buells. As much as I love the flat tracker. I would lay my money down for a sport tourer on this platform.

  33. Dino says:

    Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice….

    Love to see a production bike like this, even once they add everything to make it legal… but I ain’t holding my breath! Maybe lower those high pipes, otherwise every day will be like Christmas (Chestnuts roasting on an open pipe…)

  34. RandyS says:

    The Victory Octane had 104HP (not bad, but low for its displacement class) and weighed 548 pounds wet (ouch). It cost just north of $10,000.

    If the Indian tracker comes in with about the same specs (which I assume that it has to, since the carbon fiber bits aren’t likely to make it into production), it will be more expensive and much heavier than a Ducati Scrambler, though it will be significantly more powerful. The Duck Scrambler might be a better value and a more sporty ride.

    I can’t help but remember how many folks said that they would love to purchase a Harley XR1200 tracker when they heard about it, with close to (but not quite as good) the same specs (90HP, 580lbs, and south of $11,000) as the Victory Octane. Then they didn’t.

    Will more folks purchase an Indian tracker just because of the styling? What else distinguishes it?

    • Brian says:

      I dunno, but I think times have changed since the XR1200 came out. The whole retro scrambler thing is bigger now (unless that’s flamed out). And, frankly, among the demographic that’s into that stuff, Harley probably isn’t seen as being all that cool.

      But who knows…

    • Randy in Ridgecrest says:

      The XR1200 was a disappointment on both weight (580 pounds?!) and styling (kind of ugly), that’s why it didn’t sell.

      • Grover says:


      • Ron says:

        Not to mention handling and under-performing engine when compared to competition. Oh, and it was 580lbs..

      • mickey says:

        A Harley flat tracker looks lithe, narrow, light and fast. The XR 1200 looked blocky, thick, bloated and slow. and THAT’s why it didn’t sell.

        Painting a pig black and orange doesn’t make it into a greyhound.

    • Provologna says:

      My ’00 R1150GS weighed about 12 lb more than an XR1200, but the 1200 felt more like 50 lbs lighter.

  35. Tom R says:

    The number of people on this thread who say they would love a production version of this bike…is about the same number that would actually buy one…nationwide.

  36. redbirds says:

    Gorgeous best describes it. A production model will need vary some from this custom but if Indian manages to keep the production bike with as little change as possible it’ll sell. Harley pay attention, this is how you do it right.

  37. Gham says:

    I think they would be smarter to build an Indian “Buell Ulysses” but the flat tracker is at least cool looking.

  38. Dennis says:

    Dear Indian motorcycle company, please make this and put it into production.
    Pretty please.


    P.S. Want.This.Bad.
    Real Bad.

  39. oldjohn1951 says:

    Hey HD–take a look–a good look! This is what people asked for when you trotted out your silly offerings when asked to make a street-legal XR (KR) 750. This is also why Indian will take home the marbles and you won’t. Maybe HD will pay attention but I’m not holding my breath.

  40. Scotty says:

    First US built motorcycle I have actually really wanted to own, if its anything like that concept. It would be a hoot on the backroads. And may deal a serious blow to HD if they play it right.

    • John says:

      Agreed. I own 10 motorcycles now. Most I bought new. Twin discs up front and I’d buy this. I’d probally replace my ducati hyperstrada for this

  41. Alaskan18724 says:

    My family would take two immediately. Well, if the price is anywhere near the real world….Maybe three, and keep one on a pedestal near the Steinway.

  42. Samson Batna says:

    Maybe they’ve noticed how much money Ducati is making on the Scrambler.

    Being a US company, they’ll probably feel obliged to make it weigh 700 lb, but I’ll keep hoping while I can.

  43. JD says:

    I like where they put the battery.

  44. John S. D'Orazio says:

    This bike will sell like ice water in hell…depending on price. Looks great, should be a terrific “real world” performer and represents a look not present in the market. Should be a home run.

  45. Gary Turner says:

    Hopefully there will be some options: front and rear fender, larger capacity fuel tank, lower exhaust pipes, retro wire spoked wheels….

  46. Mark Schaeffer says:

    I believe Indian will sell anyone who wants to race a FRT750 for Flat Track competition for $50k –
    Hopefully if they build a road going version it will be a little cheaper that.

  47. motocephalic says:

    Yes, OH yes, and I’ll take the 750 as well.

  48. Rufas Y Nought says:

    Now that is a motorcycle !! One severely excellent video of California fun. I could fit a flat seat on it. Screw the lights. Don need no stinken light ifn you go quick like a bunny.

  49. Jon says:

    yes! Yes!! YESSSSS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! for the love of all things good, build it!!!!!

  50. Ron says:

    Looks ready to me. Ready for a cartoon. Mud guards? No. License plate bracket? No. Turn signals and associated electronics? Nope. Caricatural swing arm? YES! Air box and filter? Huh, not yet. 1 Gal gas tank? YES, SIREEE! Dual disk brakes upfront? No. Link-less budget suspension with Ohlins in the back? Yes, Yes, Praise the Lord!. Ok, then. Ready it is.

  51. Finedaddy1 says:

    Absolutely!! You won’t be able to keep up w/ demand…..don’t get greedy w/ the price.

  52. TimC says:

    A: Did they learn anything from that last fiasco around this type of thing?

  53. Norm G. says:

    gonna have to now. if you’re scared…? take a page from the Yamaha/Tesla playbook, take deposits, make them on order. exclusivity goes through the roof. everybody wins.

  54. paul246 says:


  55. RD350 says:

    Yes Please! And as soon as possible, while the flat track glory, and street tracker movement, lasts. They should have had the production version ready for EICMA imho. Anyway, Indian must keep it “real” … light weight, well finished and with quality suspension and brakes. Do it!

  56. tuskerdu says:

    Let’s hope so.

  57. falcodoug says:


  58. red says:

    hells. yeah.

  59. goodlyRun says:

    Oh please build this thing!

  60. daveh says:

    Street track means nothing to me, call when we have “monster” so to speak.