cruiser motorcycles

Indian Chief Vintage: Specs, Features, Background, Performance, & More

Indian Chief Vintage Specs, Features, Background, Performance, & More

After Polaris Industries acquired the Indian Motorcycle Company (IMC) in 2011, the motorcycle manufacturing wing redesigned the PowerPlus engine. In 2013, the IMC introduced new technology in the form of the 1811 cc Thunder Stroke 111 engine.

The new Indian motorcycle lineups were to feature this new engine going forward. In 2014, the the Indian Chief Classic, Chief Vintage, and Chieftain lineups were launched. While all three lineups were successful, the Chief Vintage proved to be special with its traditional Indian looks, new engine, six-speed transmission, stylish handlebars, chrome accents, windshield, two-up leather seats, saddlebags, and low price.

The Indian Chief Vintage motorcycle is an example of magnificent craftsmanship. This article will discuss all about the Indian Chief Vintage’s specs, features, background, performance, and more.

1. A Brief Background of the Indian Chief Vintage

The Chief Vintage was introduced in 2014, with many Indian motorcycle fans falling in love with its powerful engine, impressive performance, and classy look. The design team had done an outstanding job showing off the glorious history of the Indian Motorcycle Company through this masterpiece.

Since both the Indian Chief Classic and the Indian Chief Vintage motorcycles were launched in 2014, they had the same engine, body frame, drive train, suspensions, and fuel control system. The factory-installed standard equipment of the Chief Vintage, inclduing the leather motorcycle luggage and wind protection, set it apart from the Chief Classic.

In 2020, the Chief Vintage got a longer rake similar to the Indian Springfield. On the surface, it appears that the Vintage has remained unchanged. However, there have been some noteworthy changes over the years as shown in the table below:

Year Changes
2014 The bikes came with an air cooler.
2016 The air cooler was removed.
2017 The switchgear was updated.
2019 The rear cylinder deactivation system was added.
Three standard riding modes were added:
Standard mode
Sport mode
Tour mode

Any aesthetic changes were restricted to new paint jobs. The lower prices also made this bike more favorable for customers. For further details, see the table below:

Model Year Price Colors
2014 $20,999 Black
2015 $20,999 Black
Gray w/ Red
Black w/ Red
Gray w/ Green
2016 $20,999 Black
Cream w/ Green
Black w/ Silver
2017 $19,999 Black
Black w/ Springfield Blue
Black w/ Silver
Cream w/ Green
2018 $19,999 Black
Black w/ Silver
Blue w/ White
Cream w/ Green
2019 $19,999 Black
White w/ Sky Blue
Cream w/ Green
2020 $19,999 Black
Cream w/ Green
2021 $21, 499 Metallic Crimson
Dirt Track Tan w/ Deep Water Blue

It came as a shock when the Indian Motorcycle Company did not introduce a new motorcycle for the Chief Vintage lineup in 2022. Much to the dismay of the Chief Vintage fans, this model was discontinued in 2022 after an eight-year-long-production cycle.

2. Indian Chief Vintage at First Glance

Indian Chief Vintage Styling

The Chief Vintage has the traditional cruiser look. The bike features beautiful whitewall Dunlop Elite tires. The deeply valanced color-matched full fenders feature a war bonnet fender light and cover more than half of the tires. The liberal use of chrome on the front forks, handlebars, mirrors, and crash bars give the bike a luxurious feel. The large headlight has a beautiful chrome nacelle that offers maximum visibility.

The transparent windshield offers maximum wind protection and adds to the bike’s bagger look. Moreover, the large teardrop-shaped fuel tank has a well-finished paint job with minimal shine. The hand grips are wide and have beautiful brown leather covers. The brown leather rider and passenger seats and saddlebags come with decorative fringes that look striking against the bike’s chrome plating and paint job.

Indian Chief Vintage Engine

At the heart of the Chief Vintage cruiser lies a powerful 1811 cc V-twin, four-stroked, air-cooled engine that can produce a maximum torque of 161.6 Nm at 3000 rpm. The low-end to mid-range torque produced by the engine offers an enjoyable and relaxed cruising experience.

The engine also produces an impressive horsepower of 79 hp. The engine power is delivered to the rear wheel via a six-speed transmission.

The closed loop fuel injection system is an efficient fuel system offering great engine outputs and a good fuel economy.

Indian Chief Vintage Handling

The Indian Chief Vintage is heavy when parked but is still able to ride at high speed despite its weight. Though heavyweight, this bike is very agile and easy to handle on long straight smooth roads, wide curves, and sharp corners.

The Chief Vintage got a longer rake in 2020, this change lead ingto greater stability and slow speed maneuvers when turning corners.

The earlier Chief Vintage models lacked the air adjustable rear shock absorbers. But the later models were upgraded with fantastic suspensions. You can enjoy a smooth ride regardless of the road conditions, making the Vintage a capable tourer.

Indian Chief Vintage Wheels

The Chief Vintage features classic chrome wire wheels and whitewall Dunlop tires. The 130 mm front tire and 180 mm rear tires are covered with embellished full fenders. The wheels bring out the vintage character of the bike and offer maximum traction for a comfortable and safe ride.

Indian Chief Vintage Brakes

The Chief Vintage’s disc brakes, floating rotors, and a standard ABS ensure reliable braking.

Indian Chief Vintage Instruments

The Vintage instruments are tank-mounted and include a speedometer, digital tachometer, dual trip meters, oil pressure check, cruise control, ABS activation light, fuel gauge, gear position indicator, odometer, high beam, mileage range, and clock.

Indian Chief Vintage Comfort

The comfortable leather seat allows you to ride for hours without any sores or discomfort. Fitted with wide handlebars, steering the bike is an easy task, but your hands are bound to freeze against the cold wind if your bike does not have heated grips. The floorboards are stylish and roomy so your feet can rest flat as you ride. The cruise control option on the Chief Vintage helps improve its riding comfort. A rider can choose different speeds to ride at and the cruise control system will help maintain the chosen speed. You can remove and relax your foot from the accelerator for some time.

Indian Chief Vintage Lighting

For forward lighting, the Chief Vintage has a light bar with a large headlight and two comparatively smaller lights on either side of the main headlight. The forward lights feature a halogen bulb.

The bike also possesses turn signals, brake lights, and a LED tail light. The forward and rear lighting ensure maximum visibility and road presence.

Indian Chief Vintage Touring Equipment

The Indian Chief Vintage motorcycle has a high touring capability thanks to its efficient engine and suspensions. The touring accessories, such as a windshield and saddlebags, allow riders to take this bike for relaxing motorcycle trips.

3. Indian Chief Vintage: A Buyer’s Guide

3.1 What Is the Top Speed of the Indian Chief Vintage?

The Indian Chief Vintage has a top speed of 115 mph.

3.2 How Many CCs Is the Indian Chief Vintage?

The Indian Chief Vintage is powered by a Thunder Stroke 111 engine with a displacement of 1811 cc or 111 cu in.

3.3 How Much Horsepower Does the Indian Chief Vintage Have?

The Indian Chief Vintage boasts a maximum horsepower of 79 hp.

3.4 How Many Miles Per Gallon Does the Indian Chief Vintage Get?

The closed loop fuel injected engine gives the Indian Chief Vintage an average mileage of 34 mpg.

3.5 How Much Does an Indian Chief Vintage Bike Weigh?

The Indian Chief Vintage has a dry weight of 804 lbs. With its 5.5-gallon fuel tank, the bike weighs 836 lbs on a full tank.

3.6 Did the Indian Motorcycle Company Discontinue the Chief Vintage Lineup?

Yes. The Indian Chief Vintage lineup was discontinued in 2022.

4. Detailed Specifications (Indian Chief Vintage Specs)

4.1 General

Manufacturer Indian Motorcycle International, LLC
(Polaric Inc.)
Production Years 2014 - 2021
Model Chief Vintage
Category Cruiser
Touring Ability High
Base Price $20,499
Logistic Charges $900
Destination & Set-up Charges Applicable + Variable
Colors Metallic Crimson
Warranty Two Years
Unlimited Miles

4.2 Dimensions

Max. Length 101.7 in / 2583 mm
Height 56.8 in / 1444 mm
Width 39.4 in / 1000 mm
Max. Weight (Dry) 804 lbs / 365 kg
Max. Weight (Wet) 836 lbs / 379 kg
Max. Seat Height 26 in / 662 mm
Rake 25°
Lean 31°
Wheel Base 67 in / 1701 mm
Trail 5.2 in / 133 mm
Ground Clearance 5.6 in / 142 mm
Fuel Capacity 5.5 gal / 20.8 L
Fuel Economy/Mileage 34 mpg
GVWR 1260 lbs / 572 kg

4.3 Chassis

Frame Type Cast Aluminum
Downtube: Double
Front Suspension & Wheel Travel Telescopic fork - 46 mm
4.7 in / 119 mm
Rear Suspension & Wheel Travel Monoshock
Air Adjustment
4.5 in / 114 mm
Wheels Chrome Wire
Front: 16 in x 3.5 in
Rear: 16 in x 5 in
Front Tire Size 130/90 B 16 67 H
Rear Tire Size 180/65 B 16 81 H
Tire Brand (Front & Rear) Dunlop Elite American
Brake Type - Disc Front: Double
Rear: Single
Both w/ Floating Rotors
Brake Calipers (Front) Four pistons
Brake Calipers (Rear) Two pistons
Anti-Lock Braking System Standard

4.4 Engine

Type Four Stroke - Thunder Stroke 111
Bore 3.976 in / 101 mm
Stroke 4.449 in / 113 mm
Displacement 1811 cc / 111 cu in
Engine Details V-Twin
Cylinder arrangement Four Valves per Cylinder
Compression 9.5:1
Fuel System/ Induction Fuel Injected: Closed Loop
Bore: 54 mm
Exhaust system Dual Exhaust: Split

4.5 Performance

Maximum Power 79 hp
Maximum Torque 161.6 Nm / 119 ft/lbs at 3000 rpm
Top Speed 115 mph

4.6 DriveTrain

Clutch System Assist Wet Clutch w/ Multiplates
Transmission Six Speed
Primary Drive Gear; Wet Clutch
Final Drive 2.2:1
1st Gear 9.403
2nd Gear 6.411
3rd Gear 4.763
4th Gear 3.796
5th Gear 3.243
6th Gear 2.789

4.7 Electrical

Gauges Speedometer
Fuel Gauge
Gear Position
Oil Pressure
Cruise Control
Neutral Position
High Beam
ABS Light
Starter Electric
Ignition Keyless
Lights Headlight: Halogen Bulb
Tail Light: LED
Brake Lights
Turn Signals
Fender Light
Equipment Windshield
Leather Seats
Ride Modes

5. Aftermarket Parts & Modification Options for Indian Chief Vintage

The Indian Chief Vintage is a classic cruiser designed for comfortable daily commutes, urban rides, long-distance camping trips, and motorcycle tours.

This bike is equipped with a windshield and soft leather saddlebags. The tan colored seat match the saddlebags and are quite comfortable.

The Indian Motorcycle Company kept its heritage alive through the Vintage lineup. But sometimes this bike looks a bit old school when compared to the trendy looks of modern cruisers. If you own this classy machine and want to give it a modern custom look, then add a few aftermarket parts.

These may include fairings, crash bars, sissy bars, new seats, luggage racks, and  rider and passenger backrests.

You can replace the factory-installed soft Indian saddlebags with hard saddlebags or you can opt for a different color scheme.

Installing different types of Indian motorcycle luggage such as a windshield bag or a handlebar bag will increase your bike’s storage capacity while giving it a new look.

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