Indian's reboot relied heavily on nostalgia and retro-inspired aesthetics to capture people's attention and drum up brand loyalty but the Victory's Judge Dredd vibe not really working, they knew they needed to do something different if they were going to challenge Harley-Davidson in the cruiser segment. Polaris then shuttered Victory, which could only mean one thing: Indian was about to get a whole lot less leather tassels and a whole lot more iPhones and Facebook.
Enter the 2018 Indian Scout Bobber, which was just released moments ago at Indian's Hometown Throwdown party held in conjunction with Maxim Magazine at the X-Games in Minneapolis, Minnesota (poor me, I know). In the nice Indian man's own words "we made a conscious decision when we designed the Scout to rely heavily on retro looks to tap into the long history of the Scout, but we knew all along there was so much more potential here for people that didn't mean much for. Something incredibly current."
The Scout Bobber comes as an addition to the Scout, modifying bits here and there to give it an entirely different vibe. Most of the changes are purely aesthetic, though a few things have been altered that will change the ride characteristic of the bike and add to the more aggressive attitude of the bike.
Style wise, the fenders have been chopped and the seat was redone to make for a darker look. The headlight gets a little shroud which I just learned is called a nacelle, there are new, minimal engine covers, and they've opted for small bar-end mirrors to give the bike more of a stripped down look.
The gauge face and exhaust are now blacked out, and the classic font on the side of the tank has been swapped out for new block lettering to continue with the muscular theme.
The motor, gearing, and brakes all remain the same, but Indian has modified the riding position and suspension a bit to give the Scout Bobber a different feel. The rear shocks have been shortened with an inch less travel (2 inches instead of the Scout's 3 inches) to make for an inch lower ride height at the rear.
The original Scout's swept bars have been swapped for a new tracker-style bar and the footpegs have been moved an inch and a half towards the rider (both of which were complaints when we compared the regular Indian Scout to the Triumph Bobber and Harley Street Bob).
Enjoy the pretty photo gallery below and leave any questions you have about the bike in the comments below. We're riding the bike tomorrow and I'll have a first ride review up early next week, assuming I behave myself the rest of the night at this Indian/Maxim party...
The 2018 Indian Scout Bobber hits dealer floors in September in Thunder Black, Star Silver Smoke, Bronze Smoke, Indian Motorcycle Red, and Thunder Black Smoke with ABS with a starting MSRP of $11,499, just $200 over that of the original Scout.