Tag Archives: Indian Motorcycle

2014 Indians recalled over light failure

Indian Motorcycle Australia has recalled the 2014 Chief, Chief Vintage and Chieftain over a failure with the headlights cutting out.

The official recall notice, issued through the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission says the electrical defect “may cause unexpected loss of forward lighting, including high and low beam headlights and fog lights”.

“If this occurs, the High Beam indicator will flash on the gauge cluster,” it says.

“If the motorcycle lighting malfunctions while in operation, it may reduce visibility and increase the risk of an accident or injury to the rider or other road users.”

Owners are urged to “avoid riding at night or in low light conditions until their motorcycle has been repaired”.

Indian Chieftain2014 Indian Chieftain

Light failure

That might not be an issue given the current ever-tightening restrictions on riding during the pandemic.

Riders are asked to contact their authorised Indian Motorcycle dealer to schedule an appointment to have the failure fixed, free of charge.

“Do not attempt repairs yourself,” the notice warns.

“Repairs must be done only by an authorised Indian Motorcycle dealer.”

For any questions or concerns, please contact the Indian Motorcycle Customer Service Department on 03 9394 5610 between 8.30am and 4.30pm EST Monday to Friday, excluding Victorian public holidays.

Indian Chief Vintage

Even though manufacturers and importers usually contact owners when a recall is issued, the bike may have been sold privately to a rider unknown to the company.

Therefore, Motorbike Writer publishes all motorcycle and scooter recalls as a service to all riders.

If you believe there is an endemic problem with your bike that should be recalled, contact the ACCC on 1300 302 502.

To check whether your motorcycle has been recalled, click on these sites:

• Australia

• USA

• New Zealand

• Canada

VINs of affected Indian bikes

56KCCVAA6E3318875 56KTCAAA5E3313031 56KCCVAA3E3314881 56KCCVAA0E3318774
56KCCVAA7E3313491 56KCCCAA4E3313467 56KCCVAA9E3313699 56KTCAAA1E3311132
56KTCAAA6E3311174 56KCCCAA1E3314754 56KCCCAA1E3311448 56KTCAAA2E3311253
56KTCAAA5E3000111 56KTCAAAXE3311162 56KCCVAA6E3313529 56KTCAAA2E3311172
56KCCVAA3E3313343 56KTCAAA9E3311427 56KCCCAA3E3313881 56KCCCAA8E3311446
56KCCVAA4E3318017 56KCCVAA3E3313763 56KCCVAAXE3000094 56KTCAAA2E3313598
56KCCCAA8E3311818 56KCCCAA7E3311244 56KTCAAA1E3313138 56KCCCAA5E3313817
56KTCAAA0E3311168 56KTCAAA1E3313768 56KCCCAA6E3313812 56KCCCAA0E3313661
56KCCVAA2E3313821 56KCCCAA1E3318142 56KCCVAA6E3318617 56KCCVAA6E3311506
56KCCVAA0E3313770 56KCCVAA3E3313309 56KCCVAA7E3315080 56KTCAAA3E3313335
56KCCVAA0E3313607 56KTCAAA0E3311154 56KCCCAA9E3312959 56KCCCAA5E3313896
56KCCCAAXE3313487 56KTCAAA7E3313337 56KCCVAA5E3313134 56KCCVAA5E3311240
56KCCVAA0E3318645 56KCCVAA5E3313182 56KCCVAA1E3313664 56KCCCAA6E3311252
56KTCAAA6E3313765 56KCCVAA9E3313444 56KCCCAA5E3312862 56KCCCAA8E3313150
56KCCVAA4E3313707 56KCCCAA5E3311436 56KCCVAA3E3313861 56KCCCAA5E3311453
56KTCAAA2E3311432 56KCCVAAXE3313856 56KCCVAA8E3314150 56KCCVAA9E3313766
56KCCCAA8E3313858 56KCCCAA9E3313531 56KCCVAA8E3311457 56KCCVAA3E3318834
56KCCVAA8E3311250 56KCCVAA4E3313805 56KCCCAA7E3313057 56KCCCAA0E3314115
56KCCVAAXE3313114 56KTCAAA8E3311158 56KCCVAA1E3313180 56KCCVAA0E3311517
56KCCCAA3E3313511 56KCCVAA7E3313717 56KCCCAA7E3314757 56KCCCAA1E3318044
56KCCVAA6E3311439 56KCCVAA7E3313619 56KCCCAA4E3000077 56KCCVAA7E3318058
56KCCVAA6E3319105 56KCCVAA1E3313907 56KTCAAA6E3311160 56KCCVAA3E3313908
56KCCCAA5E3000086 56KCCVAA0E3312960 56KCCCAAXE3316731 56KCCVAA4E3311066
56KCCVAA5E3313912 56KTCAAA7E3310406 56KCCCAA3E3313301 56KCCVAA2E3311485
56KCCVAA4E3313402 56KCCVAA6E3312980 56KTCAAA0E3311476 56KTCAAAXE3311128
56KTCAAA2E3313570 56KCCVAA8E3313466 56KCCVAA0E3311078 56KCCVAA7E3318643
56KCCVAA0E3319097 56KCCVAA7E3313913 56KCCVAA7E3313667 56KCCVAA3E3313178
56KCCVAA9E3314111 56KCCCAA7E3314242 56KCCCAA5E3312909 56KCCCAA0E3313787
56KCCCAA1E3313863 56KCCVAA2E3313494 56KCCVAA0E3318872 56KCCVAA0E3313199
56KTCAAAXE3311470 56KCCCAA9E3313349 56KCCCAA3E3312763 56KCCCAA3E3313606
56KTCAAA4E3311156 56KCCVAA0E3313669 56KTCAAA2E3311124 56KCCVAA6E3318942
56KCCVAA6E3318830 56KCCVAA2E3317142 56KCCCAA4E3314103 56KCCVAA5E3311514
56KCCVAA0E3313302 56KCCCAA7E3312829 56KCCVAA4E3311228 56KCCCAA0E3311456
56KCCVAA4E3313755 56KCCVAA6E3313594 56KCCVAA8E3313001 56KCCVAA9E3311080
56KCCVAA2E3314290 56KCCCAA3E3313802 56KCCVAA3E3314315 56KCCVAA5E3318947
56KCCCAAXE3313005 56KCCVAA8E3313614 56KCCVAA8E3311507 56KCCCAA3E3311449
56KTCAAA8E3311452 56KCCVAA6E3311084 56KTCAAA1E3311177 56KCCCAA3E3314707
56KCCVAA3E3313813 56KTCAAAXE3310545 56KCCCAA4E3313601 56KCCCAA0E3313739
56KTCAAA9E3311170 56KCCVAA2E3312975 56KCCCAA7E3317951 56KTCAAA0E3318668
56KCCVAA2E3318937 56KCCCAA7E3311096 56KCCVAAXE3313288 56KCCVAA1E3313714
56KCCVAA0E3313798 56KCCVAA7E3312910 56KCCCAA8E3316369 56KCCCAA6E3311462
56KCCCAA7E3311812 56KCCVAA8E3311068 56KTCAAAXE3313493 56KCCCAA3E3316506
56KCCVAA6E3311036 56KCCCAA3E3313007 56KCCCAA8E3311477 56KCCVAA9E3319079
56KTCAAA0E3313762 56KCCVAA3E3311236 56KTCAAA1E3311437 56KCCCAA2E3313807
56KTCAAA3E3311505 56KCCVAA4E3311102 56KCCVAA7E3312826 56KCCVAA4E3318535
56KTCAAA9E3318779 56KCCCAA7E3313656 56KCCVAAXE3313341 56KCCVAA0E3315034
56KCCVAA4E3318647 56KTCAAA9E3311430 56KCCCAA0E3313269 56KCCCAA3E3311628
56KCCCAA5E3311064 56KCCVAA1E3313132 56KTCAAA5E3311148 56KCCCAA1E3313118
56KTCAAA6E3311482 56KCCVAA2E3313916 56KCCVAA9E3312746 56KCCVAAXE3311511
56KTCAAA4E3313277 56KCCVAA5E3318611 56KCCCAA4E3314098 56KCCVAA1E3311056
56KCCCAA7E3313561 56KCCVAA1E3313129 56KCCCAA0E3313417 56KCCVAA9E3313489
56KCCCAAXE3312968 56KCCVAA7E3318917 56KCCCAAXE3311108 56KCCCAA9E3316428
56KCCVAA1E3311090 56KCCCAA4E3311248 56KCCVAA3E3313617 56KCCCAA0E3313482
56KCCCAA7E3311230 56KCCCAA3E3314237 56KCCCAA8E3318106 56KCCCAA5E3313848
56KCCVAA9E3311516 56KCCVAA4E3313562 56KCCVAA5E3313344 56KCCCAA1E3313295
56KTCAAA5E3311179 56KCCVAA7E3313815 56KCCCAA4E3313002 56KCCCAA5E3313204
56KCCCAA9E3311486 56KCCVAA4E3311116 56KCCVAA6E3311098 56KCCVAA0E3312957
56KCCVAA6E3318732 56KCCVAA1E3318931 56KCCVAA2E3311504 56KCCCAA7E3316279
56KCCVAA8E3311491 56KCCVAA8E3313757 56KCCVAA2E3312913 56KCCCAAXE3312856
56KCCCAAXE3314090 56KTCAAA8E3313668 56KCCVAA0E3319133 56KCCCAA5E3316376
56KCCCAA9E3313397 56KTCAAA5E3313028 56KCCCAA8E3311589 56KCCCAA4E3314151
56KTCAAA4E3313568 56KCCCAA6E3313745 56KCCVAA6E3311232 56KCCVAA2E3313026
56KCCVAA0E3318984 56KCCVAA7E3314317 56KCCVAA5E3313649 56KCCVAA0E3313719
56KCCVAAXE3312982 56KCCVAA9E3312908 56KTCAAA5E3311134 56KCCVAA5E3313201
56KCCVAA7E3311112 56KCCVAA0E3311050 56KCCVAA2E3318100 56KCCVAA4E3313769
56KCCVAA8E3314200 56KTCAAA0E3311185 56KTCAAA8E3312973 56KCCVAA4E3313321
56KCCVAA7E3312745 56KCCVAA3E3313522 56KTCAAA7E3313483 56KCCVAAXE3318877
56KCCVAA4E3312976 56KCCCAA9E3313013 56KCCCAA5E3313185 56KCCVAA4E3311522
56KCCVAA4E3313125 56KTCAAA3E3311164 56KCCVAA5E3313800 56KCCCAA1E3313314
56KTCAAA5E3311442 56KCCCAA9E3314212 56KCCVAA4E3313285 56KCCCAA8E3311768
56KCCVAA8E3313919 56KCCVAA9E3313654 56KTCAAA3E3000107 56KCCVAA7E3314155
56KCCCAA6E3000081 56KCCVAA8E3312916 56KCCVAA0E3315180 56KCCCAA9E3312718
56KCCVAA8E3314181 56KCCCAA8E3314220 56KCCVAA3E3311060 56KCCVAA4E3313481
56KTCAAA4E3313814 56KCCVAA6E3313353 56KCCVAAXE3311461 56KCCVAA6E3313918
56KCCCAA1E3313748 56KCCVAA6E3313434 56KCCCAAXE3311092 56KTCAAA9E3311458
56KCCVAA4E3316817 56KCCVAA0E3319102 56KCCCAAXE3311819 56KTCAAA1E3313401
56KCCVAA2E3311034 56KCCCAA5E3311940 56KCCCAA1E3318318 56KCCVAA9E3317042
56KCCVAA4E3311519 56KCCVAA9E3314934 56KCCCAA2E3311474 56KCCCAA0E3312865
56KCCVAA7E3314205 56KCCVAA8E3313810 56KCCCAA5E3313591 56KTCAAA7E3311488
56KTCAAAXE3312747 56KCCCAAXE3311125 56KCCCAA5E3313462 56KCCVAA5E3313702
56KTCAAA1E3313141 56KCCCAA0E3313711 56KCCCAA0E3313899 56KCCCAA7E3311082
56KCCVAA1E3319139 56KCCCAA5E3311100 56KCCVAA1E3313051 56KCCVAA5E3318513
56KCCCAA0E3313742 56KCCVAA2E3313544 56KTCAAA4E3311450 56KCCVAA1E3313471
56KCCVAA8E3311054 56KTCAAA8E3311130 56KCCVAA7E3311479 56KCCVAA9E3313024
56KTCAAA6E3311126 56KCCCAA2E3311815 56KCCVAA6E3311120 56KCCVAA0E3314255
56KCCCAA0E3318259 56KCCVAA1E3318167 56KCCCAA2E3311118 56KTCAAA4E3313490
56KCCVAA1E3319142 56KCCVAA0E3313803 56KTCAAA3E3311181 56KCCCAA9E3315960
56KCCVAA5E3000097 56KCCCAA8E3313018 56KTCAAA8E3311435 56KCCCAA4E3313646
56KCCCAA1E3311076 56KCCCAA8E3314346 56KCCCAA1E3313331 56KCCCAA3E3313153
56KCCCAA9E3313352 56KCCVAA1E3313793 56KCCVAA2E3318615 56KCCVAA2E3313592
56KCCVAA1E3318511 56KCCVAA6E3319136 56KCCVAA0E3311467 56KCCVAA9E3313900
56KCCVAA5E3313442 56KCCVAA4E3312749 56KCCCAA4E3311122 56KTCAAA7E3311183
56KTCAAAXE3318726 56KCCVAA4E3313609 56KCCCAA1E3311238 56KCCCAA5E3312859
56KCCVAAXE3313517 56KCCCAA2E3316271 56KCCVAA9E3313542 56KCCCAA1E3314821
56KCCCAA9E3311052 56KCCCAA3E3312956 56KCCVAAXE3313761 56KCCCAA5E3313140
56KCCCAAXE3313893 56KCCVAA6E3314096 56KCCCAA9E3313867
56KCCCAA9E3313884 56KTCAAA6E3313605 56KCCCAA8E3311088
56KCCCAA5E3313137 56KCCCAA8E3316145 56KCCCAA4E3311234
56KCCVAA6E3317144 56KCCVAA4E3314131 56KCCCAA2E3311104
56KCCVAA5E3314106 56KTCAAA3E3311150 56KCCVAA8E3312978
56KCCVAA1E3313910 56KCCCAA2E3316383 56KCCVAA5E3313764
56KCCVAA0E3314109 56KCCCAA5E3311114 56KCCVAA9E3318613
56KCCVAA2E3313818 56KCCVAA5E3313859 56KCCCAA7E3313477
56KCCCAAXE3315921 56KCCVAA1E3313003 56KCCVAA2E3311454
56KCCCAA4E3311475 56KCCVAA9E3311094 56KCCVAA1E3315236
56KCCVAAXE3313808 56KCCVAA9E3318515 56KTCAAA4E3311464
56KCCCAA6E3316421 56KCCVAA6E3313904
56KCCVAAXE3311444 56KCCCAA1E3311451
56KCCCAA5E3317351 56KTCAAA6E3000103
56KCCVAA0E3313820 56KCCVAA3E3313519
56KTCAAA0E3311445 56KCCVAA6E3313188
56KCCCAA2E3313516 56KCCVAA8E3313760
56KTCAAA2E3313410 56KCCCAA7E3313334
56KCCVAA9E3311242 56KCCCAAXE3313411
56KCCVAA9E3315081 56KCCVAA0E3318838
56KTCAAA4E3311447 56KCCCAA2E3311443
56KTCAAAXE3313560 56KCCVAA1E3314099
56KCCVAA2E3315133 56KCCVAA3E3313469
56KTCAAA4E3313313 56KCCVAA8E3313905
56KCCCAA6E3312840 56KCCCAAXE3311478
56KTCAAA9E3311136 56KCCVAA4E3313190
56KCCVAA0E3313767 56KTCAAA9E3318829
56KCCVAAXE3317454 56KTCAAA1E3311440
56KCCVAA3E3318641 56KCCVAA6E3313532
56KCCVAA1E3311512 56KCCVAA2E3000090
56KTCAAA3E3311455 56KCCVAA9E3313864
56KTCAAA7E3311152 56KCCVAA0E3313350
56KTCAAA3E3313187 56KCCCAA8E3311625
56KTCAAA4E3313070 56KCCVAA8E3313287
56KCCCAA8E3311480 56KTCAAA7E3311166
56KCCCAA8E3311463 56KCCVAA3E3319093
56KTCAAA9E3311508 56KCCVAA5E3313117
56KCCCAA5E3318001 56KCCVAA5E3315031
56KCCCAA9E3311441 56KTCAAA6E3313670
56KCCVAAXE3313758 56KTCAAA6E3313720
56KCCCAA1E3313541 56KCCVAA0E3318841
56KCCCAA3E3313556 56KCCVAA6E3315183
56KCCVAA1E3311106 56KCCVAA9E3314108
56KCCVAA6E3311473 56KCCVAA3E3311110
56KCCVAA6E3311246 56KCCVAA7E3313524
56KCCVAA2E3311521 56KCCCAA2E3314326
56KCCCAA3E3311483 56KCCVAAXE3311072
56KCCCAAXE3312825 56KCCCAA3E3313878

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Which R 18 will BMW unveil in April?

BMW Motorrad will unveil their much-anticipated R 18 on 3 April 2020, but exactly what it will look like is still anyone’s guess.

So far they have shown two concepts – a retro classic and a modern cruiser – and there have been spy shots of touring models.

Perhaps they will unveil a whole family of R 18 models, all powered by the same massive 1802cc Boxer engine.

BMW Motorrad boss Dr. Markus Schramm certainly isn’t giving anything away:

With the R 18 and the associated entry into the cruiser segment, we are consistently pursuing our growth strategy with the clear goal of becoming the number one in the premium segment worldwide”.

The most recent spy shots show a full dresser to take on the HarleyDavidson and Indian Motorcycle tourers.

BMW R 18 full-dresserAll spy images: S. Baldauf/SB-Medien

Full dresser details

The most obvious feature is the fork-mounted “batwing” fairing that closely resembles that used by Harley.

However, it has a much higher four-dial instrument section. Unlike Harley and Indian full dressers, this doesn’t include satnav as there is a separate aftermarket GPS mounted on the bars.

There are also tacked-on lowers to protect your knees from the cold and rain that look more like an afterthought.

Panniers are hard and the hinges are on the outside so you can open them while seated, just like Harley introduced a few years ago. Convenient, but a Harley rip-off.

BMW R 18 (Image: S. Baldauf/SB-Medien)BMW R 18 (Image: S. Baldauf/SB-Medien)

But unlike a Harley, there are no forward controls and big floorboards.

We reckon touring on this beast would be hard on the knees which are bent back further than 90 degrees.

BMW has been taking orders and even deposits on the R 18 since last September, despite no firm idea of what it will look like.

But we do know all the details of the massive 1802cc Boxer engine with 67kW (91hp) at 4750rpm.

It pumps out a whopping 158Nm of peak torque at 3000 revs. Click here for more details.

BMW R 18 Big BoxerBMW R 18 Big Boxer

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Gloves off in Harley Vs Indian rivalry

Indian Motorcycle has always been diplomatic about their rivalry with Harley-Davidson, but a brazen new video showing their new Challenger and a Road Glide Special towing a taco van has sparked an online bitter feud.

The YouTube video shows both frame-mounted-fairing baggers having a go at towing the taco van to prove that the new Challenger can “smoke” the Road Glide Special.

The Challenger is powered by a new 1770cc Powerplus liquid-cooled engine with 122hp (91kW) and 173Nm (128lb-ft) of torque at the crank.

By comparison Harley’s Road Glide Milwaukee Eight 114 (1868cc) has 80.71hp (60kW) and 153Nm (113.63lb-ft) of torque.

rivalryChallenger pulls taco van while Road Glide Special looks on

Sales rivalry

Harley hasn’t readily identified Indian as a threat even though it has been taking minuscule chunks out of the cruiser, bagger and tourer market since its modern revival in 2013.

Around the world and in Australia, Harley sales have been sliding over the past few years.

However, they still sell substantially more than Indian.

Indian doesn’t say how many motorcycles they sell worldwide, but Australian figures show Indian sold 803 bikes last year (down 3.9%) compared with Harley’s 6462 (down 7.9%).

If this is an indication of global sales proportions then Indian probably sold about 26,000 bikes globally while Harley sold some 218.273 last year.

That’s about 12%, which isn’t a lot, but it’s obviously starting to get under Harley’s skin.

Their marketing department has bitten back over the YouTube video with this very clever ad with a not-too-subtle dig at the brand’s Polaris ownership.

If you can’t read the small print it states:

We’ve been building riders (not gimmicks) for over 115 years. With 700+ US dealer partners and category defining motorcycles, there’s never been a better time to join the tribe. Tow challenge accepted – we’ve been carrying your weight for a long time.

Ouch!

That’s what you get when you poke the sleeping bear.

So now that the gloves are off, we can expect to see more direct comparison in this rivalry and a lot of fun and interesting videos and ads!

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Indian joins forces with Motorcycle Holdings

Indian Motorcycle Australia will sell their bikes through six more dealerships owned by Motorcycle Holdings Ltd who operate TeamMoto dealerships.

Last month the company surprised its customers when it announced it would close its four company-owned dealerships in Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne and Perth.

Sources told us it was part of a long-term plan to move from company-owned dealerships to independent dealerships.

However, rather than independents, they have now signed an agreement with the biggest dealership network in Australia. We believe it does not preclude the company from signing on more dealers, including independents.

MotorCycle Holdings has 48 franchises operated from 31 dealerships and eight retail accessory locations in Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria and The Australian Capital Territory.

MCH went public in 2016 at about $2.50 a share, reached a peak of $5.22 at the end of 2017, hit a record low of around $1.25 in May last year and was today trading at $.175.

Today’s announcement has bumped the share price about 5c to $1.80.

New dealerships

MotorCycle Holdings will sell Indian motorcycles at the following locations: Springwood in Brisbane, Nerang on the Gold Coast, Penrith and Auburn in western Sydney, and Keilor East and Dandenong in Melbourne.

A statement on a dealer for Perth will be made “in the near future”.

stores Victory-Indian-Perth-Dealership-Artistic-Render.jpgPerth store opened in 2016

“All locations are anticipated to be operational by mid-2020, a transition that will see a smooth supply and service for existing and new Indian Motorcycle customers as each company-owned Indian Motorcycle dealership closes,” an official Indian Motorcycle Australia statement says.

“The expansion of our dealership network and moving out of the central city locations will give our customers greater and easier access to our dealerships nationwide and provide more than one location in each of the state capitals, providing more options for our customers.

“We have very high standards when it comes to how and where the Indian Motorcycle brand is represented and the level of service our dealerships offer our customers,” the statement says.

“We will be working with MotorCycle Holdings to leverage both companies’ vast retail experience to provide our customers with the exceptional customer service and premium dealership experience that you’ve come to expect from an Indian Motorcycle dealership.

“Each dealership will have a full fleet of new and demo Indian Motorcycles, sell parts, apparel and accessories and be a factory-trained Indian Motorcycle workshop for all your needs.”

The statement says parent company Polaris is working with MCH to keep current staff employed at the new dealerships.

No other market around the world had experienced the luxury of palatial company-owned Indian dealerships which offered a heightened customer service for the revived brand. 

Many in the industry and in the company, as well as customers, acknowledged that it was an excessive and unsustainable business model.

2020 vision

The year ahead looks good for Indian wth the extra dealerships, and the launch of the new Challenger touring range.

It has already got off to a god start wth 69 bikes sold in January which is a 13.1% increase on the previous year in a month when road bike sales tanked were down 5%.

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Independent Indian part of ‘a secret plan’

When Indian Motorcycle Australia sent a shock email to customers at 11pm on 10 January 2020 saying it was closing its four company-owned Australia stores to go to independent dealerships, it was simply accelerating a long-held secret plan.

No other market had experienced the luxury of palatial company-owned Indian dealerships which offered a heightened customer service for the revived brand. It seemed the dream run was now nearing an end.

Secret plan

However, the shock email was simply accelerating a long-held secret plan within Aussie HQ in Melbourne.

Our sources reveal that a secret plan had been hatched some time ago to quietly find alternative independent dealers to take over as leases came up for renewal.

We spoke with several current and former company employees, customers and even online rider group members who mostly agreed to talk if we withheld their identity.

The real shock to most of them was not that it was happening, but that the secret plan was accelerated and made public.

Its timing followed the resignation of Australian boss Peter Alexander and the switch at global level from Steve Menneto to Mike Dougherty. It seems the new management had a different view of how things should run Down Under.

Many in the industry and in the company, as well as customers, acknowledged that it was an excessive and unsustainable business model.

But it still came as a shock that the long-held secret plan was suddenly made public in January, reminiscent of the 2017 shock announcement that Polaris would axe the Victory brand.

However, our sources say this indie dealership move is not part of a plan to axe Indian Motorcycle.

Good future

“Indian is not going anywhere,” one senior source told us.

That stands to reason as the company has just spent millions developing the new, cleaner and more powerful liquid-cooled 1770cc Powerplus engine that motivates the new Challenger touring range and likely more models in future.

“You don’t invest that much money and then close down the brand,” the source says.

Another former employee says he can see “a good future ahead and more sales once the network expands”.

“Time will tell, but you gotta have a bigger network to sell more bikes; that’s what this business is all about,” he says.

Indian and various sources say the move to independent dealers could create a wider and more regional network of dealers, providing more customers with better access.

Nervous shockwaves

However, the announcement has sent nervous shockwaves through the industry and among customers.

“They had been trying to do it secretly; going public with the plan was not smart,” a source says.

“It leaves too many questions out there.”

It is expected other brands will seek to take advantage of the move and it is admitted by our sources that Indian Motorcycle Australia will take a big hit in sales.

“Our ownership of the dealerships was an investment in the brand,” one source says.

“There are plenty of good indie dealers out there, but I don’t think they will invest at the same level as we did.”

The Indian business model of a mix of company-owned and independent dealers has been operating since Polaris kickstarted its Victory Motorcycles brand in Australia in 2008.Victory touring USA America Sturgis motorcycle rally european boycott

Indian Motorcycle was added in 2013 after being bought by Polaris. They sold 102 Indian Chief models in their first year.

Former Indian Motorcycle executive and now a senior US motorcycle industry consultant, Robert Pandya, said the factory-owned dealership was needed to establish the brand in a new market but had now run its course.

One former employee says the Australian model set new standards for motorcycle industry.

“We raised the bar for other brands, Harley included,” he says.

Well respected

Indian Chiefs comfortable secret2014 launch of the Indian Chief Classic, Vintage and Chieftain

Indian Motorcycle Australia had substantive hubris and was so well respected by HQ in Minnesota that the relaunch of the brand was simultaneously conducted in the USA and Sydney.

Customers have expressed their concerns on various forums that they will not get the same luxury customer experience and will find it more difficult to access parts and service.

However, the official notice emphasised: “It will remain business as usual at our company-owned stores in the interim while we bring new dealer partners onboard.”

Polaris Australia boss Alan Collins said customers needed “more locations and more support”.

“Moving to an independent franchised network of dealers is more sustainable for us and our partners as we look to grow in order to meet demand, while also enabling a broader network of support and options for our customers.”

Alan said they would double their dealer network in the next two years and confirmed ongoing warranty and parts support.

It’s actually federal legislation that parts supply and warranty must continue for 10 years which is what Polaris is honouring for Victory customers.

Staffing

Indian FTR 1200 Race ReplicaBrisbane Indian motorcycle shop

Indian Motorcycle Australia also said it would look after about 30 staff and try to deploy them in the new dealerships.

One former staffer says he believes current techs will find a job “reasonably quick as they’re very capable”.

“All I’m worried about are the sales staff and admin. It’s harder for them considering the current environment,” he says.

Sales trends

The current environment is certainly grim.

Road bike sales in Australia dropped 11.9% last year, slipping from the top category to second behind off-road sales.

Indian has experienced strong growth in Australia, even during the past few parlous years of motorcycle sales, but last year recorded a 3.9% decrease to 803 sales.

Meanwhile, main competitor Harley-Davidson was down 7.9% to 6462 bikes.

Globally, Polaris Industries has announced that their motorcycle division was up 7% despite a drop in four-wheeler Slingshot sales.

CEO Scott Wine claimed the increase was largely due to the new FTR 1200 and Challenger bagger.

Despite only being launched in Australia in February, the FTR 1200 price has already been discounted $3000.Indian FTR 1200 Race Replica

While other recent discounts were planned before the independent dealership announcement, the FTR range discount is a new initiative.

One former staffer admitted it looked like a desperate move to get rid of floor stock before closing its company-owned stores.

“It’s not what I would have done,” says one source.

“FTR sales were fine, but market conditions had changed. I suppose it’s moving-metal time.”

Customers have expressed concern in online forums that the discounts on top of the shock independent dealership announcement could not only affect strategic brand values but also the resale value of their bikes.

One long-time customer says Polaris will have to “manage and resurrect the brand name actively” to continue selling at a better rate than the current road bike market trend.

“Will they do that? Time will tell,” he says.

Servicing

As for customer concerns about the expertise of techs, Indian Motorcycle already trains servicing staff at independent dealers, so there should be no change.

Vintage Chief rider Chris Keeble who is organising an Indian riders rally in Silverton on May 9 says she’ll “miss the signature dealerships — they were great to visit — and now I need to find someone to service my bike”.

Indian Motorcycle Chris Keeble SilvertonChris Keeble

Indian Motorcycle says it will have a totally independent network by the end of 2020.

“We plan to expand our independent network the right way, with the right people, who will represent the values of Indian Motorcycle and provide you with the service you need and deserve,” their email said.

Customers are invited to call their Indian Motorcycle Australia Customer Service Centre on 0460775949 “for a chat” or contact them via email.

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Indian Motorcycle rally eyes world record

A planned rally in the NSW outback this May hopes to break the world record for the most Indian motorcycle riders at one event, set in the USA with 651 bikes.

Organiser Chris Keeble says they already have more than 280 registrations for the rally on Saturday, 9 May 2020, at Silverton, the site of Australia’s only museum dedicated to Mad Max 2.

Click here to register.

Indian Motorcycle company support

Chris says the rally will not be affected by Indian Motorcyle Australia’s shock decision this month to close its company owned stores in Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne and Perth and seek independent dealers.

“I understand why they are doing it and there are some positives to this new model of independents,” says Chris who rides a 2017 Vintage Chief called Calamity Jane.

Chris Keeble and her Indian Chief Vintage Calamity JaneChris and Calamity Jane

“Many independent dealerships are working really well such as in Tamworth and Wollongong, so it can work.

“But I’ll miss the signature dealerships — they were great to visit — and now I need to find someone to service my bike.”

She says Indian has been supportive of the rally and supplied access to their customer data base to alert owners to the event.

“They are also shouting all registered riders to a free barbecue breaky on Saturday morning put on by the Lions club,” she says.

“The company have been great to deal with. The previous management team were all supportive and from what I gather so is the new team. I’m yet to meet the new head guys.”

Breaky will be followed by a parade through the town. There are no other formal festivities organised.

Record attempt

Chris Keeble and her Indian Chief Vintage Calamity JaneChris

Chris says the parade and rally will be the first Indian-only event in the Southern Hemisphere.

“The world record would be icing on the cake,” she says.

“We have riders from all over Australia gathering in one iconic Aussie location to meet fellow enthusiasts who share a passion for the Indian Motorcycle brand.

“This is about camaraderie and community, just as much as making and breaking records.”

Indian Motorcycle Chris Keeble SilvertonChris is welcomed by a local Silverton dog

She says Silverton, which is only 15 minutes west of Broken Hill, was chosen as an “historical Aussie backdrop” with a “good infrastructure of hotels and eateries”.

“If it isn’t on your bucket list to visit, it should be, and this event will tick a few boxes for many folk.

“Plus, it is taking traffic out to the country regions that need support for both morale and the economy. Short of doing a rain dance, country Australia and locals are very appreciative of these events.”

The event now has the sultry catch phrase of “C U N Silvo”.

Chris hopes the event will become annual.

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Indian ups ante on FTR 1200 discounts

Indian Motorcycle Australia is extending its massive discounts to FTR 1200 in its expanded closing-down sale.

Two weeks ago they announced they were closing down their Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne and Perth company-owned stores and moving to a system of privately owned dealerships.

Then they announced discounts that last to the end of January including:

  • $3000 off accessories or apparel and free on-road costs on Roadmaster, Chief Vintage and Springfield Dark Horse;
  • $2000 off accessories or apparel and free on-road costs on FTR 1200 and Scout Bobber.

Now they are offering up to $3000 off the rideaway price on any FTR 1200 model.

This new offer is separate, ends on 31 March 2020 and cannot be used in conjunction with the previous offer.

Shame if you bought one of the above Indian models before these massive discounts were announced!

Closing down

Indian say there will be a gradual closing down of their stores throughout the year as alternative dealerships are found.

By the end of 2020, Indian Motorcycle in Australia and New Zealand will operate solely with an independent dealer network, except for Christchurch for is independently owned.

Clearing out floor stock with sales offers will help them move the process along faster.

That’s one customer benefit from closing their company-owned stores. Another benefit they claim is that it will increase the spread of dealerships throughout the country.

Company history

 stores Victory-Indian-Perth-Dealership-Artistic-Render.jpgPerth store opened in 2016

The model of a mix of company owned and independent dealers has been operating since they started in Australia in 2008 with Victory Motorcycles.

Indian Motorcycle was added in 2013 after being bought by Polaris. They sold 102 Indian Chief models in their first year.

The traditional brand has experienced substantial growth since, even during the past few parlous years of motorcycle sales, but last year recorded a 3.9% decrease to 803.

That’s still far better than the 11.9% slump in total road bike sales in Australia.

Sales should increase with the launch of the new Challenger range early this year.

Indian ChallengerIndian Challenger

In 2017, Polaris axed the Victory Motorcycle brand, but continued with the company owned stores just for Indian.

However, it was only a matter of time before they switched to the conventional system as used elsewhere in the world.

Polaris Australia boss Alan Collins said customers needed “more locations and more support”.

“Moving to an independent franchised network of dealers is more sustainable for us and our partners as we look to grow in order to meet demand, while also enabling a broader network of support and options for our customers.”

Former Indian Motorcycle executive and now a senior motorcycle industry consultant Robert Pandya said the factory-owned dealership model was needed to establish the new brand in a new market.

Alan says they will double their dealer network in the next two years.

Sydney Indian and Victory store - platforms halogenSydney Indian and Victory store

They say warranties will not be affected.

Customers are invited to call their Indian Motorcycle Australia Customer Service Centre on 0460775949 “for a chat” or contact them via email.

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Indian launches closing-down sale

Indian Motorcycle Australia seems to be having a closing-down sale as it moves from company-owned Aussie stores to a system of privately owned dealerships.

The decision to close their Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne and Perth stores was announced just over a week ago and now they are offering generous deals on selected 2019 models.

They are offering $3000 off accessories or apparel and free on-road costs on Roadmaster, Chief Vintage and Springfield Dark Horse.

For their FTR 1200 and Scout Bobber the deal is $2000 off accessories and/or apparel with complimentary on-roads .

The deals end on January 31 and are not restricted to their four company-owned stores.

They say there will be a gradual closing down of their stores throughout the year as alternative dealerships are found.

By the end of 2020, Indian Motorcycle in Australia and New Zealand will operate solely with an independent dealer network, except for Christchurch for is independently owned.

Clearing out floor stock with sales offers will help them move the process along faster.

That’s one customer benefit from closing their company-owned stores. Another benefit they claim is that it will increase the spread of dealerships throughout the country.

Company history

 stores Victory-Indian-Perth-Dealership-Artistic-Render.jpgPerth store opened in 2016

The model of a mix of company owned and independent dealers has been operating since they started in Australia in 2008 with Victory Motorcycles.

Indian Motorcycle was added in 2013 after being bought by Polaris. They sold 102 Indian Chief models in their first year.

The traditional brand has experienced substantial growth since, even during the past few parlous years of motorcycle sales, but last year recorded a 3.9% decrease to 803.

That’s still far better than the 11.9% slump in total road bike sales in Australia.

Sales should increase with the launch of the new Challenger range early this year.

Indian ChallengerIndian Challenger

In 2017, Polaris axed the Victory Motorcycle brand, but continued with the company owned stores just for Indian.

However, it was only a matter of time before they switched to the conventional system as used elsewhere in the world.

Polaris Australia boss Alan Collins said customers needed “more locations and more support”.

“Moving to an independent franchised network of dealers is more sustainable for us and our partners as we look to grow in order to meet demand, while also enabling a broader network of support and options for our customers.”

Former Indian Motorcycle executive and now a senior motorcycle industry consultant Robert Pandya said the factory-owned dealership model was needed to establish the new brand in a new market.

Alan says they will double their dealer network in the next two years.

Sydney Indian and Victory store - platforms halogenSydney Indian and Victory store

They say warranties will not be affected.

Customers are invited to call their Indian Motorcycle Australia Customer Service Centre on 0460775949 “for a chat” or contact them via email.

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Opinion: Independent Indian dealerships

Riders and owners are understandably concerned about news that Indian Motorcycle Australia will close its Australian company-owned stores and move to a system of independent, privately owned dealerships.

The four stores in Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne and Perth are opulent, to say the least, with customer service to match.

They match the standards set by main competitor and fellow countryman, Harley-Davidson.

However, the expensive model which began in 2008 with Victory Motorcycles was simply economically unsustainable, especially in these tougher times.

Mrs MotorbikeWriter saddles up for the Victory/Indian shop ride independent 

Independent model

Piaggio tried much the same thing with company-owned Vespa boutiques that failed.

The Indian-owned dealerships probably only lasted under company ownership as long as they did because of rumoured “creative accounting” that borrowed from Polaris ATV sales to make the economic case for Indian and Victory which was axed in 2017.

The company now says moving to an independent model will be an advantage for customers with a more comprehensive network of dealerships across the country.

They have also confirmed ongoing warranty and parts support.

Pause for concernIndian motorcycle independent dealership

But do customers have pause for concern that there will be enough independent dealers?

We asked former Indian Motorcycle executive and now a senior motorcycle industry consultant Robert Pandya for his take on the Aussie move.

“To me it is only logical that a factory-owned dealership model needed was to establish a brand in a market over to a dealer-owned model,” he says.

Robert Pandya Bicycle kids will become motorcyclistsRobert Pandya

“Companies as big as Indian / Polaris are big ships with small rudders.

“The needs of a local market in products, training and culture require local understanding and commitment that simply would never efficiently filter up to the budget police at a corporate HQ, especially one on another continent.”

However he says the longtime Indian Motorcycle brand has “weathered significant storms” since its inception in 1901.

He says it will get stronger in Australia as dealer locations are increased through a more traditional model.

stores Victory-Indian-Perth-Dealership-Artistic-Render.jpgPerth store opened in 2016

“It will also end any issues of parity in factory Vs dealer shops,” he says.

“All dealers that sell reasonable volumes should have the same opportunity for products.”

As Indian launches its new Challenger range on the market, Robert says the challenge for the company is to produce new products that meet consumer wants.

“The product range will need to expand for local dealers to buy-in,” he says.

“If customers took the time to write in to companies in bulk (instead of bitching on some invisible forum) companies will respond to needs that will be better executed by an engaged local dealer.”

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Indian closes Aussie company stores

Indian Motorcycle Australia will close its company-owned stores in Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne and Perth and move to a system of privately owned dealerships.

The announcement came after a meeting this week in Sydney between Polaris owners from HQ in the US and Australian management.

Changes will occur gradually throughout the year with their stores closing as alternative dealerships can be found. Existing customers will be notified.

They say it will increase the spread of dealerships throughout the country.

The Christchurch dealership will remain under company ownership.

Company history

 stores Victory-Indian-Perth-Dealership-Artistic-Render.jpgPerth store opened in 2016

The model of a mix of company owned and independent dealers has been operating since they started in Australia in 2008 with Victory Motorcycles.

Indian Motorcycle was added in 2013 after being bought by Polaris. They sold 102 Indian Chief models in their first year.

The traditional brand has experienced substantial growth since, even during the past few parlous years of motorcycle sales, but last year recorded a 3.9% decrease to 803.

That’s still far better than the 11.9% slump in total road bike sales in Australia.

Sales should increase with the launch of the new Challenger range early this year.

Indian ChallengerIndian Challenger

In 2017, Polaris axed the Victory Motorcycle brand, but continued with the company owned stores just for Indian.

However, it was only a matter of time before they switched to the conventional system as used elsewhere in the world.

Polaris Australia boss Alan Collins says in an official press release that the model of mixing company-owned and independent dealers had worked over the past decade to establish the new brand.

“However, the response to Indian Motorcycle has reached a point where our customers now need and demand more – more locations and more support,” he says.

“We have big and bold goals as we look to grow the Indian Motorcycle brand in this market.

“Moving to an independent franchised network of dealers is more sustainable for us and our partners as we look to grow in order to meet demand, while also enabling a broader network of support and options for our customers.”

Stores close this year

Sydney Indian and Victory store - platforms halogenSydney Indian and Victory store

By the end of 2020, Indian Motorcycle in Australia and New Zealand will operate solely with an independent dealer network, except for Christchurch.

Indian Motorcycle says it will “communicate directly with customers regarding our specific plans in each market”.

“We anticipate no interruption to sales or customer service during this transition, which will ultimately result in a significant expansion of our dealer network – we plan to double our network over the next two years – to provide far greater coverage, support and accessibility to customers across Australia and New Zealand.

“It will remain business as usual at our company-owned stores in the interim while we bring new dealer partners onboard.”

The company’s official press release was followed by an email to all customers.

It says they plan to “double the size of the Indian Motorcycle dealer network over the coming 12-24 months, which means we’ll have far greater coverage, support and accessibility for our customers”.

“We plan to expand our independent network the right way, with the right people, who will represent the values of Indian Motorcycle and provide you with the service you need and deserve.”

Warranties are not expected to be affected.

Customers are invited to call their Indian Motorcycle Australia Customer Service Centre on 0460775949 “for a chat” or contact them via email.

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com