Even the most classically styled motorcycles need a nip and tuck now and then. Debuting in 2014, the Indian Chieftain offered heritage styling in a thoroughly modern package. Not looking to lose momentum, Indian has tweaked the Chieftain's look and appearance, added technical improvements, and improved the stereo.

The goal of the redesign, Reid Wilson, senior director of Indian Motorcycle, states, “As we continue to evolve the Indian Motorcycle brand, we want to expand our lineup with more aggressive style options, while still maintaining the availability of our more classic style options. What’s most important to us is developing motorcycles that meet a wide variety of customer style preferences, and Chieftain’s new look does just that.”

Chieftain Limited
2019 Indian Chieftain LimitedCourtesy of Indian Motorcycle

Headlining the 2019 changes is the revised, sharper fairing design. The trimmed fairing is paired with full LED lighting and new fork guards, and new saddlebags with color-matched fender closeouts. Rounding out the changes are a new Rogue gunfighter seat and badging on the tank and saddlebags. The revision gives the bike a fresh appearance for this mid-cycle refresh, and definitely achieves its goal of looking just a touch more aggressive.

To go with the new look, there are an array of new color options. The Chieftain Dark Horse rocks three colors: White Smoke, Bronze Smoke, and Thunder Black Smoke. The 2019 Chieftain Dark Horse also features new black ceramic exhaust and gloss black finishes on the primary cover, valve covers, pushrod tubes, cam cover, and saddlebag hinges.

Chieftain Dark Horse
2019 Indian Chieftain Dark HorseCourtesy of Indian Motorcycle

Like the 2019 Chief models, the Chieftain models also receive new technical enhancements. Riders can now opt between three ride modes: Tour, Standard, or Sport. All 2019 Chieftains also receive Rear Cylinder Deactivation to increase rider comfort on hot days in traffic.

On all models, the standard stereo has updates to improve sound quality. The tweeters have been separated from the midrange speakers. In addition, a dynamic equalizer that’s fully customizable is utilized. This touch adjusts specific frequencies automatically at different vehicle speeds to optimize sound quality. Not content with the stock sound still? Indian has the option for you.

Chieftain Classic
2019 Indian Chieftain ClassicCourtesy of Indian Motorcycle

Indian announced its loudest audio system to date. With PowerBand Audio, riders can now opt for audio configurations that are up to 50 percent louder than stock audio, Indian claims. With an integrated amp and integration into the Indian Motorcycle Ride Command system, the bike automatically recognizes the upgrade and takes the equalizer from five bands to nine bands with additional pre-set options and volume control. There are three kits: PowerBand Audio (fairing upgrade), PowerBand Audio Plus (fairing and saddlebag upgrade), and PowerBand Audio Plus with accessory trunk (fairing, saddlebag, and accessory trunk upgrade). The stereo wars are heating up in the cruiser space.

Indian Chieftain
2019 Indian ChieftainCourtesy of Indian Motorcycle

Pricing for the 2019 Chieftain begins at $21,999 in the US and $26,999 in Canada, while the Chieftain Dark Horse starts at $25,999 in the US and $32,499 in Canada. Indian’s Chieftain Limited is available starting at $25,999 in the US and $32,499 in Canada. Pricing for the Chieftain Classic begins at $24,999 in the US and $31,499 in Canada. 2019 Chieftains are arriving at dealerships now.

Not earth-shattering, but with a revised look, new tech, and a stereo upgrade, the freshened Indian Chieftain remains a robust option for those looking in the bagger space. Full test coming soon.