Long Strange Trip for Indian

Editor Scott Cochran –  It occurs to me what a long, strange trip its been.

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Harley and Indian enjoy a level of devotion unrivaled in the motorcycle industry.

But, at least I’m still riding.

Ok…I stole that first line from the Grateful Dead’s song, “Truckin.” Written by the band and released in 1970, that song defined a generation and the psychedelic culture of the 70’s.

“Truckin” reached #37 in 1971 and was the only chart success the Dead achieved until “Touch of Grey” was released in 1987 and eventually broke into the top ten.

The story of the Grateful Dead and their music, does have some direct correlation to motorcycling. The leader, Jerry Garcia was a Harley rider as well as Ron “Pig Pen “ McKernan. Their first manager, G.H. “Hank” Harrison was also a motorcycle rider.

In the beginning (1965) the band even used the name “The Warlocks” which was also adopted by a motorcycle club that founded in 1967. The Dead eventually changed their name, not because of the MC, but because of another band in the area was also using the name Warlocks.

The Grateful Dead played over 2,000 concerts (Guinness Record) during their career, and by many estimates played to more than 25 million people, (600,000 at one show!) more than any other band.

But, by the measure of commercial / popular music, radio play the band never sold enough records to be considered wildly successful.

But its fans, The Dead Heads, were the reason for the band’s longevity and the money making machine it eventually became.

A hard-core group of fans, who will stick with you through thick and thin are worth their weight in LSD, (not that I would know what LSD is worth…)

And that’s where I’m going with this months ramble…. Fans.

Harley-Davidson, like it or not, has enjoyed (through the years) the loyalty of a group of customers unequaled by any other motorcycle manufacturer.

The reason, I believe, is not based in the machines, anymore than the Grateful Dead’s rabid fan base was because of the music.

The reason thousands of people followed the Dead around the country and tens of thousands of people inked the Bar and Shield onto their skin is…The Culture.

It’s what the brand said about them. Who the customer wanted to be and who the customer wanted to be identified with.

Whenever you see a “Dead Head sticker on a Cadillac” even though that vehicle is the symbol of the Right-wing upper-middle-class American bourgeoisie (Don Henley’s words) you can be sure the owner is someone who wants to be associated with the 70’s counter-culture movement. Someone who sees themselves as a “hippie” stuck in a white collar world.

The same (sort of) thing when you see a Harley-Davidson bumper stickers on a Honda Prius.

Until recently, Harley-Davidson could lay claim to being the only motorcycle brand with enough heritage to satisfy the owner who wanted something more than just a motorcycle. Today Harley-Davidson’s dominance in that space is being challenged by a revived Indian Motorcycle.

Looking back to 2008, it would have made more sense for HD to buy the intellectual property rights to their old nemesis Indian, instead of spending $109 million dollars on MV Agusta.

I’m guessing it would have been a better investment than the Italian motorcycle maker turned out to be. (not to manufacture Indian motorcycles but to keep anyone else from doing it) But, you can’t prove a negative so speculation is useless.

The common belief is that healthy competition is good for everyone involved.

Competition breeds innovation and prevents companies from becoming stagnant by relying on outdated manufacturing processes and market assumptions.

Indian is certainly bringing new ideas to the heavyweight cruiser market. Their five (5) year bumper to bumper warranty is the first (I know of) in the industry and has convinced many tire kickers to take the plunge, even though there may not be a dealer near them.

Once Indian has established dealers in most major metropolitan areas, the turf wars will really heat up, and it will be interesting to watch the brands as they compete for one another’s customers.

Or….maybe they’ll be able to increase the pie for both brands and sell more motorcycles overall than either would have been able to do alone.

I hope that’s the case.

It’s been a long strange trip for the brand that started in 1901 as Hendee Mfg Co. in Springfield Massachusetts.

And I’m not alone in thinking that Polaris is the last company who has any chance to revive the brand to its glory days.

But if the resurrection is to be successful, Indian will have to find a way to connect with enthusiast who values the intangibles as much as a reliable motorcycle.

The dealers will have a lot of that responsibility on them. They must work hard to foster a “community” of owners and realize their mission is more than just moving units out the door. Their mission must be to establish and nurture the “culture” of Indian motorcycle ownership.

If they do that, and Polaris commits to staying in for the long haul, then maybe, just maybe the pie will increase and we’ll introduce the Zen of motorcycling to a whole new generation.

Until next month, ride safe, and always take the road less traveled.

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Harley Hints at Entry Level Model Made in India and Electric Bike

made-in-india-bikeWe can’t confirm it, but Gizmag is reported that during the recent 110th anniversary celebrations, Harley-Davidson H-D’s COO (Chief Operating Officer) Matthew Levatich said the brand is planning to release a 500cc model to appeal to entry level riders, and that it will probably be built overseas.  Levatich is quoted as saying, “We have Harley-Davidson factories in India and Brazil – can we leverage those facilities and expertise so it can get to the, for example, Indian consumer, faster?  These are things we are becoming more open-minded to, but we understand the importance of ‘made in America’ – the American quality, spirit and integrity that matters to the customer.”

Levatich also said he’s often asked about an “electric”  model.  “People would say ‘hell no’. But why not: our engineers are quite intrigued with the idea of what an electric Harley would look like, sound like and feel like. And would it be visceral, would it be emotional, would it be luscious. And there’s a way to do that I believe, and it would be very exciting.”

Industry insiders speculate that the threat of a revived Indian Motorcycle Co is the reason Harley-Davidson is exploring every potential avenue to reverse its shrinking demographic base by attracting younger riders who may not care about where a bike is manufactured.

Read the report at Gizmag here

Indian Motorcycle reveals Spirit of Munro short film

Photo Credit Barry Hathaway - SoM 4Hello to my friends in the Powersports Industry. One of my most proud career moments is upon us – the release of a short film that captures the enthusiasm, work ethic and commitment by those connected to the Indian Motorcycle brand through the Spirit of Munro tribute motorcycle. Below you will find links to the film itself as well as a behind the scenes mini documentary that lets you visit with some of the amazingly creative people behind this work.

I must give credit and the utmost respect to my friends who made this project possible. As I have managed the program and proudly unveiled it in Daytona Beach in March, it has grown to be seen and appreciated at an International level and has been lauded with many kind words and the support of Indian Motorcycle fans. Jeb Scolman of Jeb’s Metal and Speed in Long Beach California was tasked to build this machine around a prototype Thunder Stroke 111. Jeb did so with three solid months of 18 hour days, taking only Christmas day off, building a truly stunning tribute machine to Burt Munro and the spirit of those who choose to do rather than just watch from the sidelines. It’s a remarkable piece of work that must be seen to be appreciated. It will be on display in Sturgis this summer as we launch the new Indian Chief.

Also requiring credit are Polaris Industries media team members David Shelleny and Mark Nevils who took on pushing the film project through Polaris Industries. Commitment is one thing – but it takes money to make something as beautiful as this film – and they asked favors of suppliers and pushed our managers for final approval and a budget – the results are worth putting their necks on the line as you will see. Adam Brummond and the crew from The Factory did an outstanding job in interpreting our shared vision in the final piece, also calling favors and assembling a committed, talented and rugged crew. Credit Barry Hathaway for some remarkable photos and his own commitment to the project as he documented the secret build for months as well as shot the images of the bike in motion. Todd Eagan accepted the challenge of riding the untested bike on the dry lake. The first time power was applied in gear was on that dry lake. Jeb’s work shone through as the bike tracked perfectly straight. While we certainly were not going for high speeds for the film – Todd told me after two runs “It’s perfect and man does she want to GO!” We estimate speeds on subsequent runs just topping 100 miles per hour. And yes, there is plenty left.

Photo Credit Barry Hathaway - SoM 2 Photo Credit Barry Hathaway - SoM 6 Photo Credit Barry Hathaway - SoM 7 Photo Credit Barry Hathaway - SoM 10 Photo Credit Barry Hathaway - SoM 14 with Jeb Scolman Photo Credit Barry Hathaway - SoM 18 Photo Credit Barry Hathaway - SoM 21 With Todd Eagan and Jeb Scolman Photo Credit Barry Hathaway - SoM 23 Todd Eagan Photo Credit Barry Hathaway - SoM 33 With Robert Pandya Photo Credit Barry Hathaway - SoM 34 with Robert Pandya and Todd Eagan Photo Credit Barry Hathaway - SoM 37 Robert Pandya This complete film project was shot in only two days. It took guts to makes the commitments, skill to tell the story and faith in people that it would represent what is truly a key piece in the long history of motorcycling. This is the first motorcycle to be publically seen powered by the Thunder Stroke 111, and the Spirit of Munro film captures the legacy of this great brand while pushing it forward to the future.  – Robert Pandya

Pricing on New Indian Chief Signals Intent To Compete For Larger Motorcycle Share

indian-silouette Indian Motorcycle, announced it will release the first new Spirit Lake era model during the 2013 annual Sturgis  motorcycle rally, and it will retail for $7,000 less than previous models.

 “We are honored to make today’s important announcements at this time, as it was roughly 112 years ago that the very first Indian Motorcycle prototype was demonstrated to the press on the streets in Springfield, Massachusetts,” said Vice President of Polaris Motorcycles Steve Menneto. “We’re especially proud to reveal that our inaugural model will be the iconic Indian Chief. Riders around the world will be thrilled to know their choice in American motorcycles will now come in the form of an all-new Indian Chief.”

 In addition to announcing the first model to come out of the Spirit Lake, Iowa production plant, pricing for the all-new 2014 Indian Chief will start at an MSRP of $18,999. Inventory is expected to be available at Indian Motorcycle dealerships throughout North America later in the year. Additional Indian Motorcycle dealerships will be opening across the country this summer to accommodate bike demand and service needs.

This pricing sends a clear message that Indian intends to compete for a larger motorcycle share than industry analysts first thought.   It has been widely rumored that Indian would focus on the “luxury” motorcycle market segment with bikes that start in the $25 to $30,000 range.

“When Polaris Industries acquired this brand two years ago, our goal from the outset was to leverage our engineering, manufacturing and operational prowess as a market leader in powersports to design and build a truly exceptional motorcycle that represents the perfect balance of legendary heritage and brilliant, state-of-the-art engineering and technology,” continued Menneto. “All of us at Indian Motorcycle are very proud to offer the 2014 Indian Chief at a starting price of $18,999. We set out to make the power and heritage of this beautiful new bike available at a price point that is competitive and more accessible to people who are looking for authenticity and choice in American motorcycles.”

At this price point, Indian will compete directly with Victory and Harley-Davidson in the large cruiser segment.

 The new Indian Chief will be revealed at the 73rd annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally in Sturgis, South Dakota, which runs August 3-11, 2013. Specific details on the launch timing will be announced this summer. The Sturgis Motorcycle Rally, the world’s largest motorcycle rally, was started in 1936 by an Indian Motorcycle club, the famed Jackpine Gypsies. Indian Motorcycle is proud to reclaim that heritage and share the historic reveal of the 2014 Indian Chief with the rider community at  the 2013 Sturgis Rally.

 For more information please visit www.indianmotorcycle.com, follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/indianmotocycle, and Like Us at www.facebook.com/indianmotorcycle. To learn more about the Jackpine Gypsies, log on to www.jackpinegypsies.com.

ABOUT INDIAN MOTORCYCLE

Indian Motorcycle, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Polaris Industries Inc. (NYSE: PII), is America’s first motorcycle company. Founded in 1901, Indian Motorcycle has won the hearts of motorcyclists around the world and earned distinction as one of America’s most legendary and iconic brands through unrivaled racing dominance, engineering prowess and countless innovations and industry firsts. Today that heritage and passion is reignited under new brand stewardship. To learn more, please visit www.indianmotorcycle.com.

ABOUT POLARIS INDUSTRIES

Polaris is a recognized leader in the powersports industry with annual 2012 sales of $3.2 billion.  Polaris designs, engineers, manufactures and markets innovative, high quality off-road vehicles, including all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) and the Polaris RANGER® and RZR® side-by-side vehicles, snowmobiles, motorcycles and on-road electric/hybrid powered vehicles.

Polaris is among the global sales leaders for both snowmobiles and off-road vehicles and has established a presence in the heavyweight cruiser and touring motorcycle market with the Victory and Indian motorcycle brands.  Additionally, Polaris continues to invest in the global on-road small electric/hybrid powered vehicle industry with Global Electric Motorcars (GEM), Goupil Industrie SA, and internally developed vehicles. Polaris enhances the riding experience with a complete line of Polaris and KLIM branded apparel and Polaris accessories and parts.

Polaris Industries Inc. trades on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol “PII”, and the Company is included in the S&P Mid-Cap 400 stock price index.

Information about the complete line of Polaris products, apparel and vehicle accessories are available from authorized Polaris dealers or anytime at www.polaris.com.

INDIAN MOTORCYCLE UNVEILS THE 2013 INDIAN CHIEF VINTAGE FINAL EDITION

Limited Units Available of Special Highly Collectible Model Designed to Commemorate the End of One Era in Motorcycling History, and the Beginning of Another

International Motorcycle Show, Long Beach, Calif. — December 8, 2012 — Indian Motorcycle, the original American motorcycle company, today announced the 2013 Indian Chief Vintage Final Edition, the final version of the Kings Mountain era of Indian Motorcycle, which is available in very limited quantity. The new model year 2013 Indian Chief Vintage Final Edition was unveiled before a gathering of the motorcycle industry press from the floor of the International Motorcycle Show in Long Beach, California, which takes place December 7th through December 9th at the Long Beach Convention Center.

This announcement marks the end of the Kings Mountain era of the Indian Chief, and signifies an important milestone in the 111-year storied history of the Indian Motorcycle brand. With a paint scheme emulating the iconic Indian Chief on display at the 1939 World’s Fair in New York, the stunning new collectible 2013 Indian Chief Vintage Final Edition is a fully accessorized motorcycle that befits its place in the history of motorcycling. The extremely limited number of these bikes available is sure to excite collectors and pave the way for the new era in Indian Motorcycle under the leadership of Polaris Industries.

The 2013 Indian Chief Final Edition comes fully loaded with the World’s Fair-inspired paint scheme of Indian Red, Thunder Black, and Gold Pinstripe; auxiliary driving lamps; black leather solo seat with included detachable passenger seat; windshield; black leather saddlebags; chrome grab rail; leather fringe; engine guards; and chrome fender tips. Powered by the PowerPlus 105ci engine, this historic 2013 model will be manufactured in an extremely limited run and wears a custom-designed, numbered emblem on the frame to commemorate the brand’s historic achievements.

 

“We are working hard designing and building the new Indian Motorcycle, but we knew it was important to honor and celebrate the long and proud heritage of Indian Motorcycle, and the Kings Mountain era played a key role in that continuing history,” said Steve Menneto, Vice President of Motorcycles at parent company Polaris Industries. “When we acquired the Indian Motorcycle brand in 2011, our strategy was to retain the existing design, quality and high level of detail for which Indian Motorcycle has always been known, while making significant detail improvements in order to satisfy the continued demand from Indian Motorcycle dealers. The Final Edition is an acknowledgement of our gratitude to the team at Kings Mountain for sustaining the Indian Motorcycle story and its heritage as America’s original motorcycle brand.”

The Kings Mountain, North Carolina assembly line was transitioned to Polaris’ Spirit Lake, Iowa production facility in 2011. The line was transported and returned to full operation in an astounding eight weeks, and continued to produce new units for the Indian Motorcycle dealer base. The state-of-the-art Spirit Lake plant also manufactures Polaris Rangers and Victory Motorcycles, though each brand is built on its own dedicated assembly line.

Pricing and Availability

The 2013 Indian Chief Vintage Final Edition is exclusively available for purchase in North America with a MSRP of $37,599 and $39,599 in Canada. Interested parties are encouraged to contact their local Indian Motorcycle dealer as soon as possible due to limited availability. Log on towww.indianmotorcycle.com for dealer and model information.

Oldest American Made Motorcycle Hits the Auction Block

FREDERICK, Md., April 13, 2012 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ — After hanging on a dentist’s wall for 30 years and then being stowed in a garage and then a basement, a 1903 Indian motorcycle will have a new owner. On Saturday, April 21 at the Frederick County Fairgrounds bidders from around the world will compete to own a piece of two-wheeled history from Charlie Alder, Jr.’s estate.

“This motorcycle predates the Harley – the bike most Americans associate with homegrown motorcycles,” explained Steve Rinker, who runs Buck’s Indian, an Indian motorcycle restoration firm in Romney, WV. Rinker added, “The handful of 1902 Indian models that were built were deconstructed, their parts used to build the 1.75-horsepower 1903 models. And as far as we know, this is the only unrestored 1903 still in existence.”

“What makes this bike particularly intriguing is that it’s never been restored. Except for a few nuts and bolts used for early repairs, this bike is all original,” added Josh Ruby, the auctioneer entrusted with selling the motorcycle for the Alder estate. “And I do mean ‘bike.’ This is one of the most primitive motorized vehicles you’ll ever see – a real peek into what innovation looked like over a hundred years ago.”

The motorcycle has already travelled more miles in 2012 than it has cumulatively in the last 90 years – albeit in the back of a van. “It was a hit at Daytona [Bike Week],” said Rinker, who has been storing the bike at his private museum of antique motorcycles until it makes its trip to the auction in Western Maryland.

Multiple pre-1930 Indian and Harley Davidson motorcycles – and even a side car – will accompany the 1903 model on the auction block. While those models have some limited sale comparables, Ruby admits he doesn’t know what to expect as far as number of bidders or sale price for the 1903. “This motorcycle hasn’t been sold since the 1950’s. The last time it changed hands outside of the family was during a barter for $50 of construction work by Charlie’s dad – before the bike was considered to have collectable value. So, it will be exciting for all of us, as those bids come in.”

The auction will also include 1940’s automobiles, World War II memorabilia, and antique railroad items – over 900 lots of collectible antiques in all. Online bidding is available via http://www.proxibid.com . Print-resolution pictures of the 1903 Indian and other bikes, as well as a scan of a 1903 Indian motorcycle owner’s manual, are available upon request.  Descriptions of each motorcycle are available at http://www.wolfeauctions.com .

Indian Announces 2012 Models and Pricing

When Polaris Industries bought the iconic Indian brand in April of this year it was wildly speculated that Polaris would introduce sweeping changes to the marquee.  At the dealer meeting the new models were unveiled and there were very few changes evident.  This wasn’t surprising to industry watchers.  It takes time to overhaul designs.  Major engine architecture modifications, if that’s the direction Polaris is going, won’t be seen for at least another year.

Gone is the Indian RoadMaster, and there’s no Indian Scout, despite internet rumors to the contrary.

Yet with only three new models, there is little doubt they’ve felt the strong hand of legendary Polaris engineering.  Behind the scenes in the areas of quality, fit and finish these 2012 models are sure to be vastly improved  across the board.

Pictures and More after the poll

Retail prices have remained somewhat constant from last year.  The Vintage Chief starts at $35,999 and tops out at $36,899.  The Indian Chief Classic retails at $26,499 and the Indian Chief Darkhorse is just shy of $28,000.

Additionally for the first model year under this new stewardship, the inaugural motorcycles will be numbered to 110 – signifying the years since the Indian Motorcycle brand was born. These numbered motorcycles will be highly collectible with badges and certificates authenticating the historical significance of the first production run of bikes under Polaris ownership.

 

 

 

 

Rare, Historic Motorcycles to Roar across Auction Block at Dana Point Concours d’Elegance

DANA POINT, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–EG Auctions, a premier collector vehicle auction company, will auction some of the finest examples of vintage motorcycles from the 1900s through the early ‘50s during the 29th Annual Dana Point Concours d’Elegance, on June 24-26. Located at the esteemed St. Regis Monarch Beach in Dana Point, Calif., the Dana Point Vintage Automobile Auction will offer more than 100 collectible, classic vehicles including European sports cars, exotics, hot rods, muscle cars and motorcycles during Southern California’s three-day celebration of automotive elegance.

“The Dana Point Concours d’Elegance is renowned for presenting some of the most breathtaking classic cars and vintage motorcycles in the world,” said David Berg, managing partner of EG Auctions. “To complement the wonderful examples of antique motorcycles slated for display on the Concours North Lawn, we’re going to offer people the opportunity to purchase one also. From a restored, classic Harley Davidson to an early 20th century Indian Twin two-speed, EG Auctions has an eclectic assortment of motorcycles for sale that would be wonderful centerpieces for any collection.”

Of the most interesting motorcycles crossing the auction block is a 1914 Indian Twin two-speed model #88F778 assembled by the Indian Motorcycle Manufacturing Company. Built during the decade when Indian became the largest manufacturer of motorcycles in the world, this is a fine example of a “survivor” bike. With original paint and rims, the fiery red cycle has been stored indoors for years. Even the engine is complete and operates correctly.

No vintage motorcycle auction would be complete without a legendary Harley Davidson bike or two. A beautiful barn find available to the highest bidder is a 1934 Harley Davidson VD with a side car. Found in an industrial building down the road in Orange County, the three-speed bike was registered at the building for more than 35 years and has approximately 44,000 miles on the odometer. The rustic feel of the Harley adds to its allure, with an engine and transmission that would make any enthusiast believe it just rolled off the production line.

“For many collectors, these pre-war Harley Davidsons are the king of the road with their bad boy looks, rumbling exhaust note and smooth handling,” added Berg. “These bikes aren’t just rubber and engine grease; they symbolize a way of life.”

Harley Davidson fans will also be pleased to find some of the first Harleys on the auction docket, including 1905 and 1908 built bikes. The ‘05 is a replica of one of the three Harley Davidson motorcycles made in the first year of production. Today, only two of these bikes can be accounted for in the world. The 1908 Harley is a fine example of an early strap tank, belt drive machine.

For those interested in adding a vintage motorcycle or a collectible car to their collection, the auction preview starts Friday, June 24, at 4 p.m. PDT with the auction scheduled for 7 p.m. Bidders can review the docket, which will be on display starting at 8 a.m. on Saturday, June 25, and Sunday, June 26, with sales to begin at 10 a.m. on both days inside the auction tent.

Visit www.danapointconcours.org to learn how to get tickets for the premier Southern California celebration of automotive elegance. To register to become a bidder or to consign a vehicle at one of the nine EG Auctions in North America, log on to www.egauctions.com. Like EG Auctions on Facebook or follow it on Twitter.

About The Electric Garage

The Electric Garage was established in 1999 with offices in Canada and the U.S. The U.S. operations are headquartered in Bermuda Dunes, Calif. The company has an impeccable reputation for providing products and services to classic and collector car owners, automotive enthusiasts and astute collectors around the world. EG Auctions maintains Classic Car sales showrooms and manages quality Collector Car Auctions in many regions of Canada and currently expanded their operating base to the U.S. market. For more information about EG Auctions visit www.theelectricgarage.com or call 1-888-296-0528.

About Dana Point Concours d’Elegance

The Dana Point Concours d’EleganceTM is a volunteer-run, 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization, with excess proceeds supporting the Ocean Institute, the Mary & Dick Allen Diabetes Center at Hoag Hospital and other Southern California youth charities. The event is operated primarily as a Classic Car Club of America (CCCA) Concours, with additional classes showcasing interesting and relevant automobiles. The Dana Point ConcoursTM organizing committee aspires to create a premier automotive event that showcases the rich Southern California automotive heritage. For more information, please visit www.DanaPointConcours.org.

Roadsmith Introduces Indian Trike Conversion

White Bear Lake, MN ( May 25, 2011)- The unmistakable look of the Indian Motorcycle has been turning heads for over a 110 years and the Indian Chief has always been the most iconic of the tribe. It was with this in mind that legendary trike company, Roadsmith Trikes, took on this model as their newest design and initial foray into this brand of motorcycle trike conversion.

Following Indian’s recent sale to Polaris Industries, it’s a sure bet that this brand will receive a much needed boost from its new owners and, quite possibly, a return to its former popularity and status. Knowing this, Roadsmith’s design team went to great lengths to capture every nuance of the design and personality of this easily recognizable motorcycling legend.

With its swooping rear fenders and graceful lines, this new trike design continues the look and feel of the original while, at the same time, creating a comfortable and utilitarian three-wheeled version. Complete with a spacious trunk (requiring only one hand to open) and fully independent suspension, this new model offers all of the comfort and convenience one would expect from a Roadsmith.  Options include the company’s proprietary AccuRideTM Automatic Leveling Suspension System, as well as a host of other convenient and stylish options and accessories.

 

Roadsmith Trikes is based in White Bear Lake, MN where it manufactures and distributes twelve different trike conversion kits for Honda, Harley-Davidson and now Indian motorcycles. They are also represented by over a hundred dealers in the U.S. and Canada as well as their own retail locations, The Trike Shop at Destination Daytona and on Beach Street in Daytona Beach, FL.

 

Polaris Acquires Indian Motorcycle

MINNEAPOLIS (April 19, 2011) — Polaris Industries Inc. today announced the acquisition of Indian Motorcycle. The business was acquired from Indian Motorcycle Limited , a company advised by Stellican Limited and Novator Partners LLP, U.K. Private Equity firms. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

“We are excited to be part of the revitalization of a quintessentially American brand,” said Scott Wine, CEO of Polaris Industries Inc. “Indian built America’s first motorcycle. With our technology and vision, we are confident we will deliver the classic Indian motorcycle, enhanced by the quality and performance for which Polaris and Victory are known.”

With this acquisition, Polaris adds one of motorcycling’s legendary brands to its strong stable of Victory cruiser and touring bikes. Indian will operate as an autonomous business unit, building upon the potent combination of Polaris’ engineering acumen and innovative technology with Indian’s premium brand, iconic design and rich American heritage.

“We are delighted to have reached an agreement with Polaris. Polaris will utilize its well-known strengths in engineering, manufacturing, and distribution to complete the mission we undertook upon re-launching the brand in 2006: harness the enormous potential of the Indian brand,” said Stephen Julius, chairman of Indian and managing director of Stellican. “Polaris is the most logical owner of Indian Motorcycle. Indian’s heritage brand will allow Polaris to aggressively compete across an expanded spectrum of the motorcycle market.”

Novator Partners LLP is a London based alternative investment firm founded and led by the investor Mr. Thor Bjorgolfsson. An avid motorcycle enthusiast, Mr. Bjorgolfsson said “After a troubled past, our goal was to bring the legendary Indian bikes back on the roads. The initial phase of that project is done and now our great partners at Polaris will carry on the work to realize the full potential of this classic American brand.”

Conference Call and Webcast Presentation
Tomorrow, April 20th at 9:00AM (CT), Polaris Industries Inc. will host a conference call and webcast to discuss the acquisition, as well as the first quarter 2011 financial results. The call will be hosted by Scott Wine, CEO, Bennett Morgan, President and COO and Mike Malone, Vice President-Finance and CFO.

A slide presentation and link to the audio webcast will be posted on the Investor Relations page of the Polaris web site at www.polarisindustries.com/irhome approximately 30 minutes before the conference call begins.

To listen to the conference call by phone, dial 800-374-6475 in the U.S. and Canada, or 973-200-3967 internationally. The Conference ID is #36643140. A replay of the conference call will be available approximately two hours after the call for a one-week period by accessing the same link on our website, or by dialing 800-642-1687 in the U.S. and Canada, or 706-645-9291 internationally.