We partnered up with Cycleworks Motorsports of Alberta and Indian Motorcycles of Calgary again this year to demo 2 iconic motorcycles; we are both excited to put them to the test! Here is our 2017 Reviews Indian RoadMaster & Dark Horse Chieftain.
Troy is surprised but not disappointed
Rumours swirled around the dealership and Indian Motorcycle Riders Group as to what offering was going to be brought my way. I assumed it to be the Roadmaster; Indians king of the road and the biggest bike in their lineup.
Since Angela had already received her ride for the season; the Indian Darkhorse Chiertain. Jealousy and envy stirred inside me as the other half of Ride-Stop N-Go was putting miles and miles her bike before I received my Indian motorcycle to demo ride.
On reveal day, assumptions proved correct; with quite the emphasis of surprise. Vince Aellio, general manager of Cycleworks secretly rolled up behind me, honked the horn I turned in surprise; it was the new 2017 Indian Roadmaster and I found myself being shocked by the colour. Yes it was Snakeskin green with black accents. This bike I thought was painted to be seen, admired and not hidden.
Snakeskin Green is the colour
With the help of the Cycleworks staff and members of the Indian Motorcycle Riders Group 1908 Calgary they secretly had a vote as to what colour the bike was going to be for the year. They graciously chose one of the four new colours that could be ordered direct from the factory. No it is not lime green it is a heavy metal flake snakeskin green with accented black. It is a beautiful paint job and if you enjoy talking to other riders while you’re on the road about Indian Motorcycles this one draws a crowd young and old alike.
Getting used to the Green Monster
At over 900 pounds I soon realized the Indian Roadmaster is a big motorcycle. I spent some time riding it in a parking lot at low speeds to familiarize myself with the bike. At 6 feet tall and 200 pounds I did not find it difficult to stand it up from the bike stand and get it rolling.
Below is a brief summary of likes and dislikes after riding it for the first review(8000km)
- Classic Indian styling with the ever classic Indian fender
- Colour and quality of the finishes
- Storage space is plentiful with the trunk, saddlebags and the storage spaces in the lowers
- The saddlebags are very easy to open
- The navigation system (Ride Command) is easy to use and night friendly although I recommend using the owners manual to learn how to use it and all of its functions
- Power and torque seem adequate
- The suspension is very soft, smooth and adjustable
- The electric windshield will accommodate most riders heights and adjust for the most adverse weather conditions
- The stereo and speakers system are second to none
- The hand controls on each hand are easy to access
- Speedometer and tachometer are hard to read at night with the red background
- Although the seat is comfortable I find it too close to the bars if I was going to purchase this bike I would request a seat that pushes me back an inch or two
- There seems to be excessive heat on the right side of the motor which directly affects your thigh. This can intensify if the vents on the front lowers are closed
As you can tell I really like the Indian roadmaster and look forward to having a passenger ride along to get their perspective and thoughts as well as their comfort level.
This is the first full touring first motorcycle I have ridden for any length of time and has taken some getting used to.
I do look forward to doing a direct comparison with Harley Davidson’s CVO ultra limited as their offering is the direct competition. Until that time I hope to see you on the road, ride safe and stop and say hello if you’re ever passing the green monster.
Cheers from Troy
How can Ang forget where she parked her bike?
Perhaps it is known as “First World Problems”, but riding the 2016 Indian Springfield to a Victory Riders Group Meeting, one would think you would also ride it home! NOPE not tonight, and that totally confused me to say the least! Troy, Vince, Brandon and the amazing staff at Cycleworks Motorsports in Calgary pulled a fast one over on me as they swapped out bikes on me.
I am not complaining at all and was over top excited to start riding this beauty of a bike, Dark Horse Chieftain.
Love at first sight/ride
You know when you get that feeling that something good is about to happen, well that’s the feeling I got as I sat on the 2017 Dark Horse Chieftain, started it up and clicked it into gear! It fit me like it was made for me and the power… OH MY that just put me over the top!! Ok enough of me gushing over this badass sexy bike let’s get to the likes and dislikes!!
Below is a brief summary of likes and dislikes after riding it for the first review(12000km)
- Obviously the LOOK, it is just a beauty
- Matte-Black Paint, easy to keep clean
- 111 Thunder Stroke Motor, 120 ftlb or torque
- Power from 1st to 5th gear is exhilarating
- Love how it handles itself on twists,turns,corners and curves
- Love having the fairing back for obvious reasons
- Electronic Windshield – brilliant
- Saddle bags – locking, storage space and chrome accent on them
- Reliability, 1000% confidence in this bike
- Stereo systems, with USB connection to listen to my music
- Air Breather, deflects the heat big time
- Impressed that I can get over 300km on a tank when “cruising” down the road
- Having FOB/Alarm issues, too many times for my liking I have had the “horn/alarm” go off because the FOB can’t be found
- Due to my 5’2.5″ height I would like the seat a bit more narrower, I am going to get it custom fit for me
As I sit here and write this review, I find my smiles getting bigger and bigger! I had a 2017 Victory Magnum in a crate I was going to be buying since Victory announced they were shutting down, Vince was gracious enough to keep it for me. I returned home from a 4000km endurance ride to Yellowknife and back, called Vince and said you can sell the Magnum I LOVE THIS BIKE. We have had an amazing riding season so far and it has been real easy to stack on the miles, whether in a group or on my own journey. I hear many people say that they are not big fans of Indian Motorcycles but if they were going to buy one it would be the DARK HORSE CHIEFTAIN… yeah I agree!! Sign up for the demo rides in your area when they come through, you will NOT be disappointed!!
My motto for the year is MILES N SMILES and that is exactly what the Dark Horse Chieftain does for me!
Cheers from Ang