Indian Motorcycle of the US, part of the
Polaris Group has a very distinct image in the country. They are respected for
their cruisers of all sizes and shapes. These motorcycles are known for their
power, their size, their girth and their attitude.
But young India loves products that are
nimble, sporty, hot looking and have power like nobody’s business. The FTR 1200
S is one such bike that could possibly change the fortunes of Indian Motorcycle
company in India.
The company recently launched the 2019
FTR 1200 S and the FTR 1200 S Race Replica. We got to ride the former. There is
also another variant that is FTR 1200 but that will not be brought into India
unless the market craves for it. The FTR 1200 is the street version of the FTR
750 which is basically a race bike that has won several accolades at the American
Flat Track Professional racing series.
Overall length: 2287mm
Overall width: 850mm.
Wheel base: 1524mm
Seat height : 805mm/850mm.
Ground clearance: of 183mm.
Weight without fuel: 225kg.
Front suspension: Inverted telescopic cartridge fork with 150mm travel
Rear suspension: Monotube IFP with 150mm travel
Front brake: Dual discs with 4-piston caliper
Rear brake: Single disc with 2-piston caliper
Front tyre: 120/70 R19 60V
Rear tyres: 150/70 R18 70v.
Engine: Liquid cooled V-twin engine, 1203cc, electronic fuel injection
Peak Power 123 hp
Peak torque: 120Nm
Let me describe the bike’s design and features. It looks brilliant with
its very race ready kind of looks. The bike comes with a trellis frame around
which is built the entire bike with a sporty riding position. The scooped down
riding seat and the aerodynamically built fuel tank allow the rider to take a
thigh hugging stance while riding. Incidentally the fuel tank is just a dummy,
it is an empty redesigned shell which covers the fuel tank beneath it. Yes, the
real fuel tank has been built so smartly that it ensures a perfect centre of
gravity character to the bike and thereby helps in a stable ride. The tank has
a fuel capacity of 13 litres.
The almost flat handle bars are ideal for both a crouched position as
well as chest out position while riding. It all depends on what roads and what
speeds you are riding.
The bike has a wheel base of
1524mm, a seat height of 805mm/850mm. It has a ground clearance of 183mm. The
overall length is 2287mm, the overall width is 850mm. The weight without fuel
It has full LED lights. The
front DRLs in the shape of a half moon has the name Indian prominently
displayed at the base. The rear LED lamp too has the Indian name printed
prominently. The FTR 1200S gets a 4.3 inches ride command touch screen, 3 ride
modes that are sport, standard and rain, a fully adjustable front and rear
suspension, lean sensitive traction and stability control.
Apart from the LCD touch
screen display we have bluetooth and fast charging USB port, digital
tachometer, odometer, trip meter, engine temperature and low fuel lamp.
For the screen you can choose
a day theme or an auto theme or a night theme. In the day theme the screen
becomes white and the figures and indicators become black. Everything stands
out very clear even during a very bright day. In the night theme, the screen
becomes black and everything displayed on it is in white. In the auto theme,
everything happens automatically and it changes from white to black as the day
Now interestingly, the touch
screen can be operated with your gloves on and that is quite a relief for the
rider. The touch screen functions can also be operated through two switches on
both sides of the handlebar. Talking of switches, there are not many in this
motorcycle and that is quite a relief. The left has the cruise control buttons,
the screen function buttons, a combined button for indicators and hazard light
and a button for the horn. The right switch has a start/kill function for the
engine, apart from another switch for the screen functions. The front brake
lever can be adjusted for your grip.
The front suspension comprises
inverted telescopic cartridge fork with 150mm travel, while the rear is a
monotube IFP with 150mm travel. The suspension for the front and rear can be
fully adjusted. The front brakes consist
of dual discs with a 4 piston caliper while the rear is a single disc with a 2
piston caliper. The front tyre is 120/70 R19 60V and the rear is 150/70 R18
70v. The sporty twin exhausts are strategically inclined upwards for redefining
the sporty character of the bike.
The FTR 1200S is powered by a liquid cooled V-twin engine with a 1203cc
heart with an electronic fuel injection. It generates a peak power of 123 hp
and a peak torque of 120Nm @ 6000rpm. The bike comes with Brembo brakes, Dunlop
tyres and a host of other features.
True to its sporty design, the
V twin too performs very sportingly. The moment you slot it into the first gear
and move, the acceleration is quite evident and reaching speeds beyond 100kmph
comes in a flash. Unlike the real flat track racer this one is quite tamed and
thankfully rides steady on roads.
Since the new traffic norms
had kicked in by the time we got our hands on the FTR 1200S, we had to be
careful about pushing it too hard.
The seating position is very
comfortable and those less than 5 feet 10 inches in height will have to really
stretch their feet to plant it on the ground when the bike is stationery. The
riding position is again amazing with the handle bars placed perfectly for both
a speed run as well as cutting through normal traffic.
What I really like about the
bike is that everything is very minimalistic. You have to choose from three
different ride modes sport, standard and rain. It’s least complicated. The
speed digits are prominently displayed on the screen for the rider to glance
down even at high speeds. Even when I hesitatingly touched 132kmph, I knew the
bike had lots and lots of juice left for it to go a lot further.
The disc brakes sure had a lot
of bite. And coming down from a hundred to a zero kmph was very exact. We tried
out the standard and sport modes and got to experience the change in character
of the bike. The standard mode can get you all excited with its throttle
response, while the sport mode is simply the icing on the cake. Riding through
the thick of traffic is not much of a hassle for this chunky bike but despite
the engine being liquid-cooled, the heat dissipation can get you a tad
uncomfortable. But that is bearable.
While I enjoyed the flat track
character of the bike on the road, I did take it on some loose soil and
switched off the ABS and traction control. That brought its own fun. The FTR
1200S is truly a very capable bike and for Indian Motorcycle it’s going to be
the cherry on the already strong line up in India.
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