Indian Scout Trial


Custom, live US cruiser or roadster

Launched in 1920, the Indian Scout made a name for itself by defying the wall of death in 1928. Indian therefore adopted the codes of its history to relaunch the model almost a century later, both in terms of its characteristics. ‘then (performance and power) that at the level of its challenges by making it again cross the wall of death for its launch in Sturgis. The result is there with a machine of 100 horses almost as slender as its ancestor but with all the contributions of modern technology for a machine which now wants to be the spearhead of the brand, especially at the level of women. Successful bet ? Test…

Indian Scout at the Ranch


Difficult to immediately put a label on the Scout. Not really a roadster nor quite custom, it would be almost a bobber or a signed preparation as we see more and more … with a real game of contrasts between a big coil at the front and a minimalist headlight, a single-seater leather saddle highlighting the rear mudguard … The whole enclosing a huge injection V-Twin that does more than its 69 ci, or 1133 cm3 official. What is certain is that it is a big heart, each cylinder being marked by the I of Indian … while the crankcase signs the full name of the brand….

69ci or 1133cc VTwin Indian Scout

Carter Indian Scout

An engine casing cut in the mass and extended by the two huge exhaust pipes.

Double Indian Scout exhaust

The chrome is present, but really enhances the bike unlike some customs models where the chrome gives the impression of being there by obligation, as if the definition of a custom went through the omnipresence of chrome. Nothing too much here: just what is needed to give personality to the model … and therefore to its pilot. The finish is there, from the omnipresence of the Indians logo including in the metal to the particularly elegant leather saddle.

Indian Scout Lighthouse

and even Indian branded tires !

Indian Scout Tire

In the saddle

With a slim saddle at just 635mm in height, there is no need to step over the bike, the saddle is so low. Even the 1.60 pilot puts his feet flat on the ground and his legs are still flexed. However, the older ones also find their marks easily without looking like toads..

Indian Scout single seat

The hands fall almost naturally on the handlebars, even if the arms are almost straight. Compared to a roadster, it is the legs that must lengthen noticeably forward to find the footrests, but without any exaggeration. The arms being extended, the gaze falls quite easily on the meter, minimalist at first with its analog speedometer. But the digital screen can display the tachometer and the traditional partial trips, gear engaged, totalizer, clock … the information passing through the trigger located in front of the left handle. The commodos are American or Japanese standard. So we quickly find our marks.

Indian Scout Counter

With the low saddle and flat feet and a side stand that barely tip the bike, it can be lifted effortlessly, even by a 50-kilo woman, despite the full 253 kilos of the machine. (a featherweight in the category). The thighs finally enclose the tank more easily than on many customs, where the natural position usually tends to separate them..


Deep growl, the Scout snorts. First engaged, the gearbox is easier than that of the Chieftain or Roadmaster and the speed engages clearly. The first few meters are easy. At no time does the weight seem to drag the pilot, even over the very first kilometer hours. The handlebars even seem strangely light, further amplified by the front flange.

Indian Scout handle and stalk

For the anecdote, the US model starts, first even with the crutch unfolded, a lug on the crutch taking care of folding the crutch at the first stone encountered! The legislation in Europe being different, this will not be the case with us with the impossibility to start in first if the crutch is unfolded..

In the city

The first is very long and climbs briskly up to 70km / h … already too fast. In fact, we pass the gears quite naturally towards 2-3000 rpm instinctively for a smooth ride; a diet that the Scout particularly likes, especially through the absence of vibrations. At these speeds, it seems to evolve smoothly. And yet, it suffices for the right hand to be a little more vigorous and the departure is done with vigor and at the limit of natural burn. Because the Scout has a couple and not only on paper.

The beginner can take it in hand naturally and gently. The pilot can take it in hand and wring it out like a piglet, causing it to start sliding without thinking about it..

The vtwin is however particularly docile. He was made to agree to wind at 1,000 rpm on the last gear at 45 km / h. Certainly, it bangs a little, but it is only at 1000 rpm! It still feels better around 1,400 rpm and really comfortable at 2,000 rpm. And we start to feel the kick in the ass from 2,500 rpm while the maximum torque is only reached at 5,900 rpm! What to have a lot of fun…

With a relatively tight handlebar, the interfile is done naturally. Above all, the flat feet make starting and stopping in town in traffic jams without any difficulty or sweat … Except that of the heat given off by the engine in hot weather.

Indian Scout in Shiny Black


With a second pushing up to 110 km / h and a third up to 145 km / h, the Scout slips through the highway like an arrow. And at 145 km / h, it is still only 3,000 rpm, or at mid-speed! Its look and especially its total lack of protection does not predestine it a priori for long motorway journeys but it is neither worse nor better than a standard roadster. The 150km / h on the handlebars go very well and you have to climb higher to really feel the pressure.

Indian Scout highway test


Capable of driving at 45 km / h in the last gear and at half its engine speed at 145 km / h, the Scout is capable of the big gap … To adapt all the better to the pranks of its pilot. The beginner will appreciate its available twin, being almost 4 cylinders by its smoothness at mid-speed and its 2-3000 rpm. The pilot will appreciate making it howl in the laps above 6,000 rpm. The first will be on the latest reports. The last will be more on the intermediate gears … almost rarely going to pass the fourth! Suddenly, on departmental, we choose the pace we want. The beginner will appreciate its smoothness and its availability and will almost forget the gearbox. The pilot will appreciate the little bomb that he then has between his legs to push it to its limits. If the engine has no limits other than that of the pilot, the bike begins to have a life of its own when the virolos follow one another at a faster pace. It wiggles noticeably in a healthy way and you just do not have to tense up on the handlebars to appreciate the handling. The Soout is alive at all levels and the sensations are at the rendezvous.

Indian Scout trial on departmental


There are two 76mm side shocks but their almost horizontal mounting limits their work despite their large travel. It’s good for the Sunday walk. This is not for all that a touring and for the long trip, it will be better to turn to a Chieftain. Comfort is excellent as long as the road is in good condition. In the city, it is fine but the defects of the road surface are more easily reflected on poorly maintained roads.

Indian Scout road test


Both the front and rear brake provide an excellent feeling. And the power is there too, despite the single 298mm disc with dual piston calipers present both front and rear. The distribution of the two is well respected with an efficiency of 2/3 for the front and a third for the rear feeling. You just have to use them together, not to get to a stop but not to block. Because blocking the front does not require any particular force, nor even the rear. In daily use, the front can be used with two fingers and without forcing. If you take the hand, the front is locked. But what is good is that the bike remains perfectly in line so far. We can therefore block without being afraid. The question will not arise anyway for Europe, because only the ABS version will be imported into France..

298mm brakes on the Indian Scout


With a 12.1-liter tank, the Scout should provide a range of 200 kilometers … naturally depending on the type of driving. In the beginner version, it can exceed 200 km, but for the pilot who pulls the model to the maximum of his tachometer, it will be in reserve under 170 km.

Indian Scout drinking at gas station

Indian Scout at the Store


Indian has succeeded in offering a motorcycle with two faces, capable of offering confidence and simplicity to the beginner while offering a more violent face to the experienced rider. The bike has no equivalent in terms of both looks and performance, with a real driving character and a real life that makes you rediscover what the bike was in its beginnings with real personalities. Attention to detail and the seal of history with the renewal of a historic brand complete the picture of success. Only its price of 12,990 euros will not make it a motorcycle within the reach of all budgets. The price of the exception ?

Strong points

  • living engine
  • braking
  • look

Weak points

  • price
  • engine heat

The Indian Scout technical sheet

Colors: red, shiny black and matt black

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11 thoughts on “Indian Scout Trial

  1. expensive very expensive but spuer becane

    I have the 2011 model and wow I love the cantilever

    why it could be a shame

  2. it looks too much like a jap too too bad the mosdele 2011 is better bye bye the 2014

  3. the truth :

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  4. Apart from some sporty roadsters designed to attack (there are not many in Japan except for kawa and its Z1000 and more …), I think that this new R12R has no equivalent in terms of chassis / compromise compromise. engine / efficiency / rigor / comfort / safety / versatility / equipment … not to mention the extra watts which are not negligible! This was already the case with the air r12r! When in the absence of the telelever, we can deplore it, but if the agreement and adjustments are well done, if the graft has taken well, why not! and then nothing prevents the most perfectionist, the most frustrated by this absence, to equip it with equipment from Ohlins in TTX 36/39 (front / rear) to make it a real tracker! And then where was BMW going to put a telelever with that radiator, eh? Look question, just with its flat, its frame and its gimbal … it stands out largely in my opinion and more! Personally, I don’t see how it looks like Japanese roadsters! let’s not forget that looking at a motorcycle in a photo and in real life, the impression is often very different! for me, it is a rejuvenated R12R, more dynamic, aggressive, more modern … many found the previous one, too wise, too BCBG, too classic etc … After, each to his tastes but that does not exempt from remaining objective all the same ! When it comes to price, just because we can’t afford it doesn’t mean it’s too expensive! It can be frustrating and I can understand that but once again, let’s stay objective! we are not dealing with a 1200 Bandit anyway, you will agree!

  5. I forgot a significant factor, it is in the resale and there, it is also distinguished from the Japanese competition …!

  6. Always the sensitive question of the price, even when damn high, without counting the quantity of "options" which make a steep addition.

    Too bad, because basically it is a well thought out machine, very versatile and which could satisfy the greatest number of bikers.

  7. @ Little wolf1300:

    the options on the BMW are not obligatory whatever some owners and sellers of the dealerships say! You can also buy an R1200R or an R1200GS with almost no options and be very satisfied because, even with the basic equipment, they are already damn good machines..

    A year ago, I bought an almost basic R1200GS LC with just the heated grips, the handguards and the optional case supports (+ the regulator that I finally chose to add at the last moment) without taking any of the three packs. The bill is still much less salty and I have no regrets because in my eyes, I do not lack anything essential.We can do the same with the future R1200R and take full advantage of its engine and its chassis.


  8. I love these bm, but I am extremely disappointed that they removed my beloved double lens it was a good part of the style of this wheel to my taste and we did not see many like that! Otherwise it’s very heavy.

  9. In comparison forgotten, the KTM 1290 super adventure s holds the pavement without problem.

    Then it looks like this article was written directly by BMW … too bad that’s not what we expect from journalists …

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