Indian Scout

Indian Scout

Indian's Chiefs and Fours were key to the company's image, but many would argue it was the Scout that gave Indian its soul. Like the first Chiefs, the 1920 Scout was the handiwork of designer Charles Franklin. Both models marked Indian's casting off of its bicycle roots and evolving into a proper modern motorcycle manufacturer. The middleweight Scout was powered by a 37-cubic-inch (600cc) v-twin using a three-speed gearbox and was capable of 60 mph. In a somewhat unusual departure, this new, smaller Indian twin featured primary drive by helical gears rather than the more common chain, and soon gained a reputation for indestructibility: "You can't wear out an Indian Scout," claimed the company's advertising. In other respects the side valve v-twin motor followed the successful Powerplus formula. Detachable cylinder heads were the Scout's big news for 1925 and, two years later, a 45ci (750cc) variant arrived. It was followed in April 1928 by the 101 Scout still regarded by many as the finest Indian ever: "...a machine that shoots away like the wind on an open stretch, yet rides as comfortably as a Pullman," read the brochure copy. In 1934 came the Sport Scout, a bike that would win glory on America's dirt-tracks and honor on the field of battle.