When Indian Motorcycle first released its 116 Big Bore Kit, riders were eager for a factory hop-up kit and quickly seized the opportunity for more power. But, as we all know, riders looking for that extra boost are rarely satisfied and enough is never really enough. So while the connecting rods were fine on the 116 as it came from the factory, any additional upgrades would increase the stress to a level they just couldn’t handle and it would result in some failures. Necessarily, Indian Motorcycle pulled all of these units off the shelves and started working on updating the kit with new, sturdier parts.
But now here is some good news for those looking to get a little more out of their Indian Chiefs and Chieftains—Indian claims to have fixed the problem and is rereleasing the 116 Big Bore Kit! Below is an official statement we’ve received from Indian’s Product Development Supervisor Sam Dando addressing the previous issues and explaining what they did to fix it.
“We are excited to announce the relaunch of Indian Motorcycle’s 116 Big Bore Kit upgrade for Thunder Stroke 111-powered motorcycles.
The motorcycle industry is looking for new riders. Ducati released its affordable Scrambler in 2014, hoping to lure riders who’d never owned a bike. Last summer, Harley-Davidson announced an unexpected lineup that included an electric and off-road adventure model.
As for Indian, the brand has spent the last several year putting its marketing money into reviving flat-track racing, a style of riding going back to the 1910’s. The latest result of that trend is the Indian FTR 1200, which will sell in two models—the base 1200 for $13,000 and the upgraded 1200 S for $15,000.
For the extra two grand, you get adjustable suspension and a dash with Indian’s Ride Command user interface. Through the digital dash, riders can customize the throttle response and traction control settings, or choose from presets: Sport, Standard, or Rain.
All models have dual-disc four-piston Brembo front brakes, ABS, an electronic stability and traction control system, and USB charging ports. Dry weight for both is just under 490 lbs., which is heavy, but 120 hp will be enough to make it feel fast.
The bike was designed by Rich Christoph, who created the Indian Scout three years ago. Also at Indian is Ola Stenegärd, the company’s Head of Product, who designed BMW’s RnineT before coming to Indian earlier this year. Among the FTR 1200’s features to thank Rich for: those aftermarket-looking upturned exhaust pipes, a gas tank that’s set underneath the seat for a lower center of gravity, and an unusually compact design.