Interesting Indian Op-ED - Victory Forums - Victory Motorcycle Forum
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-14-2012, 09:28 AM Thread Starter
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Default Interesting Indian Op-ED

I am strongly convinced about are: that with the right new Indian model Polaris could sell more of them in one year than they sell new Victory motorcycles, so potentially bringing more profit to Polaris; that a successful new Indian will be purchased in majority by those who would instead have bought a new or used Harley; that after a few years of success with the Indian brand, it could become so big for Polaris that it could relegate Victory to a second-tier brand, for example limited to touring bikes. We all wish success to Polaris and it’s a very exciting time for those working on this project and for all of us observers. Those belonging to the custom motorcycle industry can also imagine how a very successful Indian model could create in just a few months a brand new after-market parts industry…Well, time will tell if I am right. I am sure that one day many among you will remind me today’s predictions…

Methinks Cyril has some inside info. Notice what he says about a new Scout/Bobber model with Victory Freedom motor inards but with a nostalgic-looking case and top end.

Interesting time for Polaris, Indian, and Victory for sure.

I disaggree that Victory will be regulated to a second-tier bike though. It's just too good and is just what today's busy working biker wants. Something powerful, good looking, and reliable within a reasonable price point.

http://cyrilhuzeblog.com/2012/09/13/...w-scout-model/
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-14-2012, 10:18 AM
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Cyril usually has his finger on the pulse of what's happening now. It certainly will be interesting. The Indian community has cautious optimism. Next year can bring some very interesting things.

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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-14-2012, 10:45 AM
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I hope by the time I'm old enough for an Indian, they're as reliable as Victory motorcycles are. And given Polaris' track record with Victory, I don't think I will be dissapointed.

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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-14-2012, 11:00 AM
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i went riding with friends yesterday and several of them said harley is going to have to get rid of the air cooled bikes and go all water cooled in the next few years. is this true? and will vic's also have to go the water cooled route? i was just wondering because you couldn't make a truly indian looking bike if it was water cooled.

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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-14-2012, 11:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ridealittle View Post
i went riding with friends yesterday and several of them said harley is going to have to get rid of the air cooled bikes and go all water cooled in the next few years. is this true? and will vic's also have to go the water cooled route? i was just wondering because you couldn't make a truly indian looking bike if it was water cooled.
The Harley guys are just dreaming of up-to-date performance out of their rides. That's all there's to it. If they were sold on water cooled engines, they would've jumped on the HD V-Rod, but last time I checked, that branch of HD is treated like an adopted child, even though the V-Rod's been around for over 10 years.

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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-14-2012, 06:49 PM
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It will be really interesting to see where Polaris goes with Indian and only time will tell if it's good enough to pry buyers from the HD market. The main problem I see is pricing and unless the price goes up on premium bikes (Victory and HD) Indian is going to appear to cost too much. Granted people in the know understand that quality costs money but many of them are getting too old for a pricey door-less toy.

As for the changes to the Victory lineup I disagree as Victory will be to Indian as Chevy is to Cadillac. Add in the fact the Indian doesn't have a cruiser lineup Victory will surely continue the majority if not all their models.

In response to HD going water cooled goes it may be their only option if they refuse to change their engine design. Unfortunately both design change or water cooled will tick off the HD purests but so did the Evo engine and the V-Rod. As long as HD makes the changes along with targeting a younger demographic and realizes the the ticked off people already own bikes and aren't in the market (for the most part) they'll still have a huge following. Victory and possibly an Indian inspired Victory designed engine should not have to worry about water cooling because they already run a lot cooler and more efficient than the average HD mill.

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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-14-2012, 06:52 PM
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Quote:
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I disaggree that Victory will be regulated to a second-tier bike though.
All one need do is lift an Indian off the side stand to see that there is no danger of that happening.

But then again, I suppose "second-tier" is in the eye of the beholder.

The Indian is no way a better rider's bike. The previous owner of the brand did develop one sweet looking engine, but the rest of it isn't much to write home about. Maybe the faux wealth effect of the latest round of QE will create a market for the over-priced beasts, but I wouldn't hold my breath. Too many barely used chrome dripping choppers still available for the bike night set.

In any event, we will be lucky if the ape-hanger, spoked wheel designer types mosey over to Indian to create the Harley knock offs and leave the functional types to create the Victory brand that all the Japanese riders envy.




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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-14-2012, 07:30 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
As for the changes to the Victory lineup I disagree as Victory will be to Indian as Chevy is to Cadillac. Add in the fact the Indian doesn't have a cruiser lineup Victory will surely continue the majority if not all their models.
That was pretty much the point of the article. Looks like a Scout is on the horizon for an Indian cruiser.

Well heck, take the bags off of any of the current Indian's, and you have a cruiser. That's pretty much all Indian has. Pretty cruisers... or baggers if you want to call them that.

The thing is you can build an S&S w/Baker trans Indian for about the same or less than the current offering using a few catalogs and few weekends with hand tools and have a bullet proof drive train. Since these bikes generally don't see high mileage; an Ultima motor could be used making the price quite a bit lower and since a private person doesn't have to worry about EPA mandates; they can really build it any way they want.

Any state except CA. Last I heard they only allow 500 special construction vehicles a year now.
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-15-2012, 07:32 AM
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After spending 9 years and 80K miles on a Gilroy era Chief, I can weigh in on this one.

Indian actually did two things right with the 2002-2004 Chief. The engine was/is a beautiful looking design and well highlighted in the frame. The frame was an wonderful piece of work. It was sturdy (I know a rider who bounced off a mountain face and the frame wasn't tweaked.) and it was very well balanced. Not Vision balanced but easily X-bike balanced.

IMHO, the Indian community will quickly reject any attempts for Polaris to install a Freedom engine into an Indian. We'd accept the guts (heck, we did from the Evo) but visually it cannot even resemble a Freedom engine. I'm unsure if the engine/trans/primary combo would be accepted or the right-side drive.

As for the Indian/Victory relationship, I think we need to look at the history. HISTORICALLY, Indian is a premium brand. Polaris continues to say the price point will stay high for the brand. That said, the flagship will always be expensive, likely near 30K. They might develop a smaller bike, as eluded to in the article, but it won't be cheap either. I imagine a Scout (akin to the Vegas) for right at 20K.

In keeping the history in mind, both of Indian and Polaris' business practices, I fully expect the relationship to be one of Lexus to Toyota. Like it or not, it makes zero sense to compete with yourself in the business of making money. I see good things to continue for Victory and much better, near great things, for Indian. Face it, when the brand has been drug in the mud for the last 10 years, it can only go up.

Well, that is my .02. I accept change.


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Last edited by vagabondjpm; 09-15-2012 at 11:19 AM.
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-15-2012, 10:12 AM Thread Starter
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Good to hear about someone putting some real miles on one of these Jim. Thanks much for your insight. First hand experience is always the most valuable.
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