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Indian Motorcycle is a long-standing American brand that has been producing quality motorcycles since 1901.
Founded in Springfield, Massachusetts, by George Hendee and Oscar Hedstrom, the company quickly became known for its high-performance motorcycles that were built with quality materials and innovative design.
In its early years, Indian Motorcycle produced a range of motorcycles that quickly gained a reputation for their reliability and ease of use. The company gained a loyal following among riders who appreciated the speed and handling of Indian’s motorcycles. Over time, the company expanded its lineup to include touring bikes, racing bikes, and even sidecars.
During World War I
Indian played an important role in the war effort by supplying the US military with motorcycles. The company produced over 40,000 motorcycles for the war effort, earning the nickname “The Motorcycles That Win Wars.” After the war, Indian Motorcycle continued to innovate, producing the first electric starter in 1914 and the first V-twin engine in 1920.
Unfortunately, Indian Motorcycle faced financial challenges during the Great Depression and was forced to merge with rival company, The Ace Motorcycle Company. The new company, known as Indian Motocycle Manufacturing Company, struggled to stay afloat during the 1930s and was eventually sold to the duPont family.
Under the duPonts
Indian Motorcycle attempted to modernize its lineup with new models and designs, but the company continued to struggle financially. In the 1950s, the company was sold to Brockhouse Engineering, but production continued to decline. In 1953, after years of declining sales and mounting debts, Indian Motorcycle ceased production.
However, the brand never truly died. In the decades since, It has been resurrected by several different companies, each attempting to capture the spirit and legacy of the original brand. In the 1990s, a series of companies attempted to revive the Indian Motorcycle name, but it wasn’t until 2011 that a true resurgence began.
Indian is owned by Polaris Industries and has a thriving lineup of classic-inspired motorcycles that pay homage to the company’s rich history. The brand remains beloved by motorcycle enthusiasts around the world, who appreciate the brand’s classic style, top-quality craftsmanship, and commitment to innovation. Whether you’re a collector or an everyday rider, an it’s a truly iconic American classic.
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