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Between Eternities
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We just had a brand new Indian dealership open in my area (Berrysville, VA, in the Shenandoah Valley, just outside Winchester.)

The owner is former USMC (retired) and his B-Plan consists entirely of hiring prior military, older experienced long distance riders who have been a mainstay of Harley business in this region for years.

We all know the type - older, slightly affluent, retired, trading in their bikes every few years for the newest and greatest, etc. In other words, the bread-and-butter of the Touring Class business model for Harley.

I know all this because I was approached by one of these gentlemen at my local Harley dealership last Friday while I was in having some additional warranty repair work done to by 2012 FLHTK. This gentleman rides a 2014 which already has 30K on the clock, and after we got done talking about our respective Harleys he began to regale me with tales of how great the new Indians are, and advised me to check out the new Indian dealership I just described.

I am loathe to consider the new Indians for the following reasons:

(1) I think they are just plain ugly (Harley's retro look has evolved over time to be what it is today, while Polaris/Bombardier obviously just decided to put 1920s styling on a new chassis, in my opinion, with yards of plastic that look "like the dog's dinner" to me, to use an expression I learned from an old British Army buddy I knew in Afghanistan
(2) Harley's dealership network and parts availability will outshine anything Polaris/Bombardier can put together for at least a decade, if not longer
(3) While the Harley dealership experience is always a crapshoot and cagey, I do respect the MoCo for being in continuous operation for over 100 years (my bike riding progeny all told me before they all died that it was "Harley, or nothing" so I ain't gonna change now)

All that being said, Indian bikes are apparently getting stellar review from their riders, and if they continue to produce and support a good product in that high-end touring sweet spot that Harley dominates, then that will only hurt Harley's business in the short- and long-run.

Like my friend, the retired USMC Colonel told me after we got on our Harleys at the local Indian dealer and prepared to ride off, "Harley needs to watch its 6!"
 

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Wayward Son
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Competition is a good thing.
The strong will survive.

Me? For the reasons you stated and others, HD will be my one and only.
 

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I agree with all the above, competition is good. Its easy for Indian as the new kid on the block, it will take many years to prove themselves.
The press is in love with them right now, though the latest issue of Rider magazine, though still loving the bike against HD, calls the Indian a heat monster compared to the HD and Goldwing, so that thing must be darn hot because ours aint so cold! *L*

Also let us not forget, with Indian at only less then 5% of market place sales, you will not see as many complaints as someone who has 1000s and
1000s of times more bikes on the road.
 

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Like you, CC, I do not find the Indian bikes attractive. And I can say the same thing about the Victory bikes. IMHO, HD has the styling I want. Having said that, I do hope Indian and Victory stay in business and keep nipping at the heels of HD. If nothing else, some serious competition will keep HD from taking their customers for granted.
 

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Styling is definitely subjective but it is good to have a choice in American made motorcycles.

Just an FYI, Bombardier is a Canadian company that makes Can Am Spyders and ATVs. They are not affiliated with Polaris/Victory/Indian.
 

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They opened an Indian dealership right beside the H-D dealer in St. Charles County, Mo when i was living there. I went to two different test ride days and rode them both times.

A stock Indian, IMO, outperforms a stock H-D in pretty much every aspect. They are faster, brake better and handle better. They also come very well featured.

I think the H-D sits more comfortably, but I have done a few things to make that so.

BUT, the H-Ds do look a LOT better, and that goes a long way. I can't get over the "stamped" look of the Indian.
 

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I want to like the Indians, I really do, I just can't. Although their saddlebags with the fringe are top notch.


.....................................................

"Whatever it is, it's better in the wind"
 

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Vile Deplorable
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1,441 Posts
I like my women pretty. My wife is pretty. My daughter is pretty. My granddaughter is pretty. That said, I think the new Indians are pretty and as for me, the only pretty I'll ride is my wife!
 

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Official Forum [email protected]
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I keep an open mind...the MoCo has become a profit-monster , not that that's a bad thing , but they're sitting on a fence with customer satisfaction ( we do it our way ) and discounts ( If you don't buy this the next guy thru the door will ). I've encountered this attitude and so have many others . Indian is making a conscious effort to avoid this road with customers . That alone could change the motorcycle landscape...my loyalty to the MoCo is also on a fence...but that's just me...
 

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Mississippi Cajun
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I got a quick trip around the parking lot a few weeks ago on an Indian that this old guy (looks who's talking here:)) talked me into trying his after riding ther eon my Ultra. Got to admit the performance is there, it is a good riding scooter, but it is butt ugly in my eyes. Never could get to liking that Indian look. Performance wise, Harley may need to take a hard look at their competitors.
 

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Kicking Rocks...
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I just can't get around the stamped cookie cutter look... Just doesn't ooze soul like a HD.

To me they just like the Hyundai trying to be a Mercedes or Beemer.
It's the looks without the pedigree!
 

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American
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HD is a family. The total experience is something no other brand can duplicate. I believe Indian has tried before. I'm all for other brands of bikes..... Just not for me.
 

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I just don't like the looks of Indians I do like the leather but a little to much tin for me
I am glad they are trying hard to win customers maybe hd will make a better effort
that being said I love my Harleys and want a new one but man they want a lot of
money for them
 

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I also tried to like the Indian but just can't get past the style of the fenders. The Victory Cross Country is ok looking but not a fan of the swoopy Ness style on these bikes. Also I hear a rumor that Polaris may discontinue the Victory line sometime in the future and put all their money into Indian.
 

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victory's have too much occ to them -the made for tv look- but they also have a pretty nice sound and havent heard much negative about quality -

i do like the scout quite a bit- the guy i sold my sportster to is in lust with them- we saw a few up in a-bay and he hasnt stopped talking about them since-they also sound pretty sweet

this can only be good for american bikers - anything that makes the moco uneasy is a good thing- if they dont feel the heat they will loose % of market share and be forced into change
 

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Kicking Rocks...
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victory's have too much occ to them -the made for tv look- but they also have a pretty nice sound and havent heard much negative about quality -



i do like the scout quite a bit- the guy i sold my sportster to is in lust with them- we saw a few up in a-bay and he hasnt stopped talking about them since-they also sound pretty sweet



this can only be good for american bikers - anything that makes the moco uneasy is a good thing- if they dont feel the heat they will loose % of market share and be forced into change

Not occ... Ness
 
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