Indian Scout Bobber
The Indian Scout Bobber is the latest variant of the versatile Scout series. Is it as appealing as its elder sibling? We find out
A bold new variant of the Scout series makes for a stylish and credible 1,133-cc alternative
Finally, indian Motorcycle have realised the potential — or rather the growing number — of ‘Bobber’ motorcycles in the country and this has resulted into the firm introducing the Scout Bobber, a new variant of the highly versatile indian Scout. the Bobber promises to turn heads and make a bold style statement, but will it be able to step into the shoes of its elder sibling, the Scout? We spent a day with this black beauty to fathom its potential.
First of all, the Bobber is not that different from the standard Scout. it is based on the same platform as the standard bike and much of the wizardry remains the same. of course, it has gone completely black now. the front, side, and rear are all draped in the colour of stealth, giving the Bobber a rather sinister look. there is absolutely no chrome on the bike, just some polished aluminium on the
cylinder-heads. the Bobber is like a shadow now, a really cool shadow!
there are a few changes, of course; for, after all, this is a new variant, though these changes are limited in number. to begin with, the fenders are chopped, or ‘Bobbed’, to justify the name. Flatter handlebars and lowered rear suspension have reduced the ride height of the Bobber, which adds to the authenticity of the name. these differences have given the Scout a new avatar and it’s a good-looking one, even though much of the bike is still the same.
it has the same gas tank, front suspension, frame, engine, exhaust, and wheels. however, the lowered rear suspension and the flatter handlebars are the two changes that have made a big impact on the way you ride this new Scout. the seating position is drastically different; indian say that they have made it more aggressive by fitting the street-tracker style
handlebars and by moving the front pegs back by 38 millimetres. these two changes give the bike a more aggressive riding position, which is great news if you are going to ride the bike like tom cruise in Mission Impossible; however, you will not be doing so at all times. and this is where the real problem lies. My back started aching after 15 minutes in the saddle, which says a lot about how comfortable the Bobber is after the changes.
the strange riding position is probably the only chink in the Scout Bobber’s armour as the rest of the things simply fall in place like a jigsaw puzzle. the Bobber’s 1,133-cc, liquid-cooled, v-twin is smooth as butter and refined. it produces 94 PS and 97 nm of torque, which are delivered to the rear wheel via a super-smooth five-speed transmission. the powertrain is probably one of the best in the cruiser category as it is highly refined and the delivery is quite linear. the acceleration is brisk and the fuelling spot on, just as in the standard Scout.
riding the Bobber in town goes like a breeze; the bike is so well-balanced that you don’t feel the bulk once you get going. it feels relatively easy to handle at low speeds, which is quite a good thing for a cruiser. there is so much torque, even at low rpm, that the bike simply forges ahead with gusto. on the highway, the engine really comes alive, thanks to the brilliant engineering behind that 1.2-litre v-twin. the moment you wring the throttle, the torque flows in a smooth and uninterrupted manner and the speedo needle quickly climbs to triple-digit speeds. not just quick acceleration, the Bobber also cruises quite well at those triple-digit speeds on the highway. the engine really puts a smile on your face owing to its capabilities.
handling-wise, the Bobber is no different from the standard Scout… well, almost. the well-balanced chassis allows you to
have fun on twisty mountain roads. throw it into a bend, and the Bobber will oblige, it will stick to the selected line like glue, giving you the confidence to push harder round the next bend. the suspension is set on the firmer side, which hampers the ride quality a bit but then again it also lets you enjoy the corners like no other non-indian cruiser does. the only limitation the Bobber has is its low ground clearance, which sees you dig those peg feeler bolts in every time you ride hard on a twisty road. apart from that, the handling of the Bobber is flawless for a cruiser. it likes corners, it turns in nicely and then gracefully exits the corner without any fuss.
overall, i would say that the Scout Bobber is a bold new variant from indian Motorcycle. it is styled appropriately to represent the Bobber genre, the engine is great, transmission superb, and the chassis is well-engineered. these attributes make the Bobber a really nice motorcycle. however, the strange riding position and the resulting discomfort is something that i did not like. at rs 11.99 lakh (ex-showroom), the Bobber is just rs 70,500 less than the standard Scout, but it gives you authentic Bobber styling mixed with amazing engineering. So, if you are a fan of the genre, then the Bobber is for you; however, if you want something that is as brilliant as the Bobber, but comes with more comfort, then i would suggest you take a look at the standard Scout.
The Scout Bobber is a bold new variant from Indian Motorcycle. It is styled appropriately to represent the Bobber genre
Street-tracker style handlebars give the bike a more aggressive stance
1,133-cc V-twin is smooth, powerful, and ultra-refined
‘Bobbed’ rear fender with a luggage tray hints at practicality