Old school never looked so cool! The ultra low Scout looks like no other cruiser on the road.
The name Indian Scout is one of those iconic monikers of pre-modern engineering, and carries with it a responsibility for anyone who dares reinvigorate it. The Indian Scout was the American performance lineage, and new Indian owners, Polaris, know this better than anyone.
The revamped Indian marque has been steered very cleverly by Polaris, not infringing on its Victory teammate and staying relatively true to the machines that were once part of the most dominant name in motorcycling. It’s a vintage marque for the new millennium, with bikes like the Chief and Chieftain connecting the past with the present.
If you don’t like attention, then don’t buy the Indian Scout. It’s iconic and just plain good looks got more “that’s cool” comments by passer-byers than just about any cruiser we’ve ever tested.
The Scout takes this a step further, representing a stripped back, performance-based cruiser aimed squarely at the Harley-Davidson Sportster 1200. Powered by a 60c.i, (1133cc), DOHC, 60° V-twin with classic chrome styling along the outer cylinder walls and pumping out a claimed 100hp and 72 lb-ft of torque, coupled with just a claimed wet weight of 558lb to pull along, the Scout’s performance is as surprising as it is spirited. The lack of weight over a traditional 600lb-plus cruiser means acceleration is vivid, pulling hard from a tick over idle and with an ultra flat torque curve seemingly the whole way through the rev range. The Scout pulls hard in the lower revs, and even though fuelling is a touch jerky on a consistent throttle on the highway at about 65mph, it’s a fair tradeoff for such instant torque.
The gearbox is much nicer on the Scout than any of the previous Indian’s I’ve tested. The lever is set a bit high for my hoof on standard height (you can change the height of the ’peg if you need) but the pull is relatively light and positive, making quick snicks of the gearbox when pushing hard a breeze rather than a chore, as on many other cruisers.
Minimalistic dials only have the basics of low fuel, trip, speed, rpm and time.
It’s surprising how quickly you can hustle a Scout through the twisties. The ultra low seat height of 25.3 inches and those small 16in wheels, coated in thick, chunky rubber, mean initial turn-in is swift, if a little unstable. You can really fling a Scout into a corner hard and find the outer limits of the ground clearance very quickly. The Scout’s unadjustable front end does transmit a solid shock over sharp bumps but on smooth roads they soak up corrugations well. The twin, heavily cantered rear shocks do come with preload adjustment but the standard settings were fine for my 195lb backside and offered good resistance to squatting when trying to squeeze the gas on mid-corner. The ride overall is smooth, especially when not pushing too hard – an easy thing to do on the Scout thanks to immediate pick-up of the power, low center of gravity and the fact you’re riding Indian’s sporting icon.
Single seat and that’s how it’s supposed to be! The ultra-low seat height makes the Scout accessible to a huge variety of riders.
The Scout is a one-person machine, but if you look into the extensive Indian aftermarket section of their website (www.indianmotorcycle.com/en-us/scout-indian-red) you’ll find the company has the provisions for a pillion seat and a backrest.
Gorgeous detailing on the cases make the engine a standout feature of the Indian Scout.
But I think you’re missing the point if you option the Scout with a passenger seat. This is the performance icon of the days when the only machine to have was one built in the U.S. The new Scout retains some the style and performance DNA of what made Indian who it was, and is undoubtedly the fastest machine of its kind on sale today.
2015 Indian Scout
Engine: Twin-cylinder, 60° four-stroke, DOHC, four-valves per cylinder
Bore x stroke: 96 x 73.6mm
Horsepower: 100hp @ 8100rpm (claimed)
Torque: 72ft-lb @ 5900rpm (claimed)
Compression ratio: 10.7:1
Front suspension: 41mm inverted fork
Rear suspension: Dual shock absorbers, preload adjustable
Front brake: Single 298mm discs, twin piston caliper
Rear brake: Single 298mm disc, single-piston caliper
Front tire: 130/90-16 72H
Rear tire: 150/80-16 71H
Trail: 4.6 in.
Wheelbase: 61.5 in.
Seat height: 26.5 in.
Overall height: N/A
Overall width: N/A
Overall length: N/A
Fuel capacity: 3.3 gal
Weight: 558 lbs (wet, claimed).
Color: Thunder Black, Indian Motorcycle Red, Silver Smoke (matte), Thunder Black Smoke (matte)
MSRP: Starting at $10,999