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Quote of the Day - It really was a hell of a motorcycle, ... It was arguably the first American motorcycle company, beating Harley by a year or so. Indian was the standard by which everything was gauged. - Jerry Springer
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The Death of an Indian Chief

The Indian Chief may once again ride off into the sunset. Yesterday, Indian Motorcyles halted production and laid off its entire workforce of 380 in Gilroy, California.

Initially started in 1913, the company folded in 1953, but rumbled slowly back to life in 1999, according to an Associated Press article. The article points out that just last year, Indian introduced its own motor, the Power Plus, which creates an exhaust sound different than the infamous Harley-Davidson sound. (Check out the "Sounds of Harley-Davidson" box. After you scroll down, look on the right.) For a short sample of the Indian sound, click on the "Feel the Power" link on the site's home page.

Now, the Indian company has 200 dealers across the country and had hoped to produce 4,500 bikes this year. Before WWI, Indian had produced as many as 20,000 bikes. Just recently, funds ran low, and the company's main investor backed out, leaving Indian high and dry.

Dozens of investors have called offering help, but the company is weighing bankruptcy options. This sad event may have been coming for some time. The job application section of the company's website notes that no jobs are available at this time

If you were ever thinking about owning an new Indian, now may be your last chance.

Printer friendly page Permalink Email to a friend Posted by J. Craig Williams on Tuesday, September 23, 2003 at 08:42 Comments Closed (0) |
 
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