Video: Walk around and startup of the new Indian Chief

Indian’s fully revamped Chief range has arrived in the UK and you’ll be able to get your hands on them in the next few weeks.

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The Chief has been completely redesigned for 2021, with an updated Euro5 1890cc engine placed in a brand-new everything else. The highlight addition is the Ride Command satnav built into the new TFT dash.

There are three models of Chief coming to the UK. At £15,795 the Chief is the entry level model in the range and is ideal for those who look at a cruiser and see a blank canvas.

2021 Indian Chief dash with built-in satnav

Up from the Chief is the Chief Bobber, at £17,695, which swaps in 16in wire wheels, foot-forward controls and shrouded suspension for a moodier bobber look.

For people who fancy travelling further afield there’s the classic-styled Super Chief Limited, which adds semi-rigid panniers, a removable screen and a more relaxed riding position for £19,995.

All the bikes in the range will be appearing at your local dealer this month, with Covid secure viewings available by appointment.

First 2021 Indian Chief custom boasts show and go

First published on 18 February, 2021 by Jordan Gibbons

2021 Indian Chief custom build

Ex-motorcross pro Carey Hart has customised the new Indian Chief to stunning effect, turning it from a mild-mannered cruiser into a wild-eyed West Coast brawler.

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Although it looks far from a stock machine, the engine and frame are untouched, which demonstrates the ease of customisation of the new platform.

Hart’s focus was on performance as well as style. Gone is the retro looking suspension, replaced with jacked-up Fox piggyback shocks as well as GP Suspension forks lengthened with Altered Industry extenders, which should give it a bit of extra ground clearance for carving up the twisties while exaggerating the laid-back stance.

The standard brakes are replaced with Beringer calipers and master cylinders which clamp down on the Galfer discs. The bike now rolls on a set of custom San Diego Customs wheels shod with Dunlop American Elite tyres to help unleash all the performance of the big twin, which has been maximised by a Fab 28 custom exhaust.

Carey Hart with Indian Chief custom build

Characteristic of the classic West Coast style, the Chief has been fitted with an Arlen Ness fairing. No custom bike is complete without custom controls, which come from San Diego Customs and Kraus Motor Co.

Then there’s the paint. Gone are the understated classic blacks and blues of the standard model, replaced by an outrageous multi-colour paintjob by Airtrix. Even if it isn’t to your taste, you have to commend the quality of the work.

Fancy something like this yourself? The standard Chief arrives this spring starting from £15,795 – after that the sky’s the limit.


Indian Motorcycle unveil radically pared-back next-generation Chief

First published on 9 February, 2021 by Jordan Gibbons

Indian Chief Dark Horse on the road

Exactly 100 years since it was first released, Indian Motorcycle have unveiled a brand-new version of the Chief.

Gone are the leather tassels and swooping fenders of old, replaced with the stripped-back style of a classic American bobber. And for the first time there are three models of Chief (Chief, Chief Bobber and Super Chief) each with their own finish but all sharing similar roots.

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At the heart of each model is the 116ci (1890cc) Thunder Stroke engine, which puts out 126lb.ft of torque at just 3000rpm. Indian (like another certain American bike maker) don’t release the power figures for their big, air-cooled machines but we’d expect a peak figure around 90bhp. That might not sound like much in today’s power-focused world, but it’s on the money compared to the competition.

Each bike sits the engine in a classic, twin-downtube steel frame with cast lugs and a bobbed rear fender – just like the early custom machines from the 1940s and 50s.

What’s most impressive about the styling though is just how clean the bike is. There’s no untidy wiring or cable trunking. No plastic boxes full of relays, or oil coolers hiding behind the front forks.

Indian Chief Bobber Dark Horse on the road

“This clean look and easy customisation was key to us from the start,” says Ola Stenegard, Head of Industrial Design at Indian. “We didn’t set out to make the perfect bike – we wanted to create the perfect canvas.”

Despite their old-school clean looks, each model is packed with modern technology. There’s a ride-by-wire throttle with three riding modes, LED lighting, ABS, keyless ignition and cruise control all as standard. But the real standout feature is the 4in full colour TFT dash that brings bagger tech down to cruiser size.

Packed inside the dash are two different gauge configurations, bike info (engine temp, tyre pressure etc), ride info, turn-by-turn navigation, plus call and text info when paired to a smartphone. All of that can be controlled through the touch-sensitive screen or the grip controls.

So which model is for you? The Chief Dark Horse is the most stripped down of the lot featuring drag handlebars, cast wheels (19in front, 16in rear), mid controls and a smaller headlight bucket.

Indian Super Chief Limited front

The Bobber Dark Horse takes a few steps further back in time with its mini-ape hanger bars, 16in spoked wheels, forward controls and a large headlight bucket. The forks are also shrouded with a matching nacelle.

Lastly there’s the Super Chief Limited, which is the most old-school of the lot. It’s closer to the Bobber with its 16in wheels but adds a quick-detach windscreen, black leather saddle bags, a two- up touring seat, footboards and traditional cruiser bars. In addition to this there are also some optional fog lights and heated grips (with the switches neatly hidden behind the forks) while the exhaust is finished with chromed fishtails.

All three arrive in Spring with the Chief priced from £15,795, the Chief Bobber from £17,695 and the Super Chief from £19,995. MCN will bring you more on each bike as it becomes available, including an in-depth review.

Indian Motorcycles Chief highlights:

  • 1890cc air-cooled V-twin 
  • Three new models 
  • TFT dash with navigation 
  • 126lb.ft torque 
  • 304kg