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Indian is an American brand of motorcycles originally produced from 1901 to 1953 in Springfield, Massachusetts, United States.


The "Indian Motorcycle Co." was founded as the Hendee Manufacturing Company by George M. Hendee in 1897 to manufacture bicycles.

 
These were initially badged as "Silver King" and "Silver Queen" brands but the name "American Indian", quickly shortened to just "Indian", was adopted by Hendee from 1898 onwards because it gave better product recognition in export markets.


Oscar Hedstrom joined in 1900. Both Hendee and Hedstrom were former bicycle racers and manufacturers, and after building three prototypes they teamed up to produce a motorcycle with a 1.75 bhp, single-cylinder engine in Hendee's home town of Springfield.


The motorcycle was successful and sales increased dramatically during the next decade.


In 2006, The Indian Motorcycle Company of America was formed from the merger of nine companies, including manufacturer California Motorcycle Company (CMC) and IMCOA Licensing America Inc., which was awarded the Indian trademark in 1998.


The new company began manufacturing motorcycles in 1999 at the former CMC's facilities in Gilroy, California.
The first "Gilroy Indian" model was a new design called the Chief. Scout and Spirit models were also manufactured from 2001.


These bikes were initially made with off-the-shelf 88 cubic inch S&S engines, but later used the 100-cubic-inch (1,600 cc) Powerplus (bottlecap) engine design from 2002 to 2003.


The Indian Motorcycle Corporation went into bankruptcy and ceased all production operations in Gilroy on September 19, 2003.


In 2011, Polaris Industries purchased Indian Motorcycles.


Indian's production facilities were moved to Spirit Lake, Iowa, where production began on August 5, 2011.


In March 2013, Indian unveiled their new 111 cubic inches (1.82 l) "Thunder Stroke" engine, and began to sell their newly designed motorcycles based on it in August 2013.


On August 3, 2013, Polaris announced three all-new Indian-branded motorcycles based on the traditional styling of the Indian marque, along with the Thunder Stroke 111 V-twin engine.


The motor has a triple-cam design with a chain-driven center cam turning front and rear cams via gears, permitting parallel placement of the pushrods to give a similar appearance to older Indian designs.


It is air cooled, with large traditional fins and an airbox in the cast aluminum frame.


All Indians using the Thunder Stroke 111 engine share this aluminum frame design, though the wheelbase and front end rake vary depending on model.

The integrated transmission is also gear-driven.


Since 2013, Indian has expanded its line up to ten models. Of these, seven models had Thunderstroke 111 engines, while two models used the smaller engine displacement, liquid cooled Scout engine.


The Scout has a 69.14 cu in (1,133.0 cm3) engine, while the Scout 60 has its eponymous 61 cu in (1,000 cm3) engine.




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