The Indian Motorcycle Manufacturing Company, the first American motorcycle company, held sovereignty from 1901 to 1953. The first reincarnation of Indian motorcycles occurred in 1999 when a group of investors purchased the trademark in bankruptcy court. Indian motorcycle production again began shortly thereafter in Gilroy, California.
The appearance and appeal of the new S&S-powered Indians certainly hit a chord of nostalgia with many enthusiasts. Unfortunately, after selling 13,000 motorcycles, Indian again closed its doors in 2003. Ironically, it was exactly 50 years after the original factory shut in 1953.
Enter 2009, the first new limited-production 2009 Indian Chiefs from Indian Motorcycle Company are being shipped to 7 dealerships across the nation, along with an attractive selection of accessories and apparel (both riding, and non-riding).
America’s First Motorcycle: In the Beginning, a Genius Created a Pacer Bicycle
While the 2 3/4 horsepower single and the five horsepower twin have been retained, two new models will be presented and a seven horsepower twin. The radical changes of the Indian, however, will consist in a mechanical oiling device, free engine and two-speed gear, and a new spring fork.
>>New York Times, January 9, 1910