harley davidson vs indian

Harley Davidson vs Indian – A Battle of Giants

Since the early 1900s, Harley Davidson vs Indian Motorcycles have engaged in a heated rivalry. Both brands created V-twin bikes simultaneously in 1903 and they’ve endured every major economic event since then. But what really fuels the feud between these two American powerhouses? Dedicated fans of each brand remain fiercely loyal despite their long history together.

Why Each Company Has Their Own Die-Hard Fans

In their early years, both Harley Davidson vs Indian Motorcycles were modelled after bicycles. However, within two years of starting production the paths of these two companies began to part ways – with Indian Motorcycles focusing on producing a V-twin factory race bike in 1905 that claimed multiple speed records as “America’s fastest motorcycles”. On the other hand, Harley Davidson opted for more comfortable rides for affluent customers by emphasizing utilitarianism.

Riders who prefer Harley Davidson are drawn to its reputation for comfort, long-distance rides and a status symbol. The fanbase of Indian motorcycles is younger, appreciating the powerful American-made bikes that boast serious grunt along with reliable performance.

Which Company Objectively Makes the Better Bike?

When assessing bikes based solely on tech specs, Indian motorcycles have consistently aimed to create faster and more powerful models. In the standard cruiser class, the Indian Scout is notably more potent than Harley Davidson’s Forty-Eight; with a 100 HP engine output and 72 lb-ft of torque in comparison to the Forty Eight’s 66 HP power along with 70 lb-ft of torque. Even so, this additional mightiness comes at an added expense – while it has a base price tag of $13240 compared to the cheaper $12299 for Harley Davidson’s namesake model.

Although the Harley Davidson Road King and Indian Super Chief are almost identical in engine size and weight, with the former’s $19,929 price tag exceeding that of the latter by just under a thousand dollars, there is one marked difference: their torque. The Road King produces 111 lb-ft while its competitor only reaches 108 lb-ft.

Despite the reality that in comparison, Indian Motorcycles are typically more potent than Harley Davidson models, it remains largely subjective as to which brand its followers prefer.

Did Harley Davidson Buy Indian Motorcycles?

Despite the ongoing conflict between Harley Davidson vs Indian Motorcycles, Harley Davidson never acquired its rival. After production ceased in 1953, several companies obtained the rights to use the Indian name before Polaris Industries eventually purchased it in 2011. As a result of this purchase, Polaris reanimated what was once thought to be a lost legacy: Indian Motorcycle.

The Future: Will Peace Ever Be Achieved?

Harley Davidson vs Indian have both faced their share of struggles in the past. Presently, Harley Davidson is targeting younger audiences by introducing electric bikes with its LiveWire brand, while Indian has been acquired by Polaris – renowned for reliable products at an affordable price point. Both companies are now back on track and striving to stay ahead of the competition.

Electric bikes may be the key to bringing these two rival brands together. With a pact on shared charging or battery swap systems, they can start resolving their differences and make peace with each other. Nevertheless, due to how devotedly fans support both companies, some form of rivalry is likely to remain in place.


The Harley Davidson vs Indian Motorcycles rivalry is one that has endured for decades. Devoted admirers of each company have their own unique stories to share, and while Indian motorcycles are often more powerful than Harleys, the battle among fans will most likely remain due to its subjective nature. Although electric bikes may bridge the gap in the future, it is certain that some form of competition between the two brands persists still.


Below are some FAQs on Harley Davidson vs Indian:

What is the rivalry between Harley Davidson vs Indian Motorcycles all about?

Since the dawn of the 1900s, Harley Davidson vs Indian Motorcycles have been in a heated rivalry. Despite their intertwined past, each company decided to pursue different paths when it comes to production.
While Indian focused on faster and stronger bikes for thrill seekers, Harley chose comfortability as its top priority by introducing utilitarianism – appealing directly to affluent customers who prioritize luxury over speed.

Why do both companies have their own die-hard fans?

Whether you’re a Harley Davidson or an Indian Motorcycle fan, both brands have their own unique attributes that draw in riders. For example, fans of Harley Davidson appreciate the comfort and long rides it provides as well as its status symbol amongst other bikers.
On the flip side, younger followers are drawn to Indian Motorcycles for its powerful American design with reliable performance that packs serious punch.

Which company objectively makes the better bike?

Indian Motorcycles are more powerful than their Harley Davidson counterparts, as demonstrated by the Indian Scout’s increased HP output of 100 and torque of 72 lb-ft when compared to the Forty-Eight’s 66HP power and 70 lb-ft. Despite this added mightiness coming at a slightly higher price tag ($13240 vs. $12299) ultimately one has to decide which brand is best based on personal opinion rather than technically specs alone.

Did Harley Davidson buy Indian Motorcycles?

Despite popular belief, Harley Davidson never acquired Indian Motorcycles. After the production of its motorbikes stopped in 1953, numerous enterprises got the privilege to use the brand name before Polaris Industries ultimately procured it in 2011.

Will peace ever be achieved between Harley Davidson vs Indian Motorcycles?

With Harley Davidson vs Indian Motorcycles both making a comeback, they are now in constant competition against each other. But electric bikes may be the game changer that brings them together despite their diehard fans who remain loyal to either company.
Although an alliance between these two brands could happen, there is still likely to be some form of rivalry between them in one way or another.

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