faceonahead
Hey All,

As some may know I am no stranger to Indian, having had a chief, chieftain and now challenger so I am hoping you can put some weight in this review.

I wont be going into huge details as V-Twin did a good write up here https://www.indianmotorcycleforum.com.au/post/2020-indian-challenger-ride-review-with-comparisons-10447257

What I will be doing is just highlighting some differences I have noticed and I will try and run it in line with the above review.

First Impressions:
  1. There is some quality issues but not to the extent V-Twin mentioned, my only grip is the gap between plastic skirt on pannier and the pannier itself
  2. Power - They have either done some remapping since, or V had it in rain mode, but the throttle response is excellent and if you are a 'blipper' as V puts it, its more than responsive enough to rev match even if you are trying to ride it like an R1 on a track.
  3.  So I have the stage 1 pipes and breather, it is quiet at idle (happy with that, keeps that nasty blue gang from chasing me), but get above say 1500rpm and its loud even through a full face helmet and sound system.
Engine, Clutch, gearbox
  1. 3 modes, rain (boring but good safety fucntions especially if rain), normal, bit meh for me, and sports, and OMFG, it scared the #### out of me when I first gave it a full twist from stationary.
  2. Traction control can be a bit limiting in sports mode, because it has this tech to stop your back end flying off sideways, it can at times throttle you back, but never fear two clicks on the ride command screen and its disabled (but reenables when you turn bike off or manually reenable)
  3. Sports mode - Love the old bikes wheel standing at every gear shift, then this engine and mode is for you, seriously I had 116cu's in my last two bikes and all sorts of mods and it wouldnt keep up with this little baby.  Im like 140kg, so add the weight of the bike and consider it lifts for me on every gear change if i ride it like I stole it, and I say thats a winner
  4. Clutch is smooth, well for a large V Twin (not you, the bike) and the acceleration is smooth,a s in straight line its does taper ever so slightly in the lower gears at approx 4000rpm, but otherwise it just keeps giving til rev limiters kick in
Handling:
  1. Much like the other review, its light and easy to maneuver even in peak hour Sydney traffic, it reminds me of a light 125 in asia where handling is golden!
  2.  The traction control and corner assisted abs, can make even the worst rider look super skilled, I dilberately tried to get the back end to flick out, and the bike said, i call you and raise you 1....Thank god it wasnt poker!
Ride Command:
  1.  Its a little slower to start up than old, but once up and running its abive average and you can drop and drag items around the screen to make your individual perfect screen and then still scroll though many more
  2. Ride command bike syncs to ride command web/app itself and it uses this sync to steal a little of your phones data for weather and traffic.  I have an android phone and it wouldnt play ball for a while.  I read some forums, played around and finally found out its a true android wide issue and to get the RC sync to work, your phone needs wifi off, and just bluetooth connect to phone, but if you attach the phone to the USB for data updates to charge it, it breaks the sync and ride command cant get past it and just times out when you try to sync any run data etc....NO big issue, polaris know and I am sure in time it will be ok.  Apple lovers and users dont have this issue
The Donk:
  1. I turned teh cyclinder deactivation thing off because liek Davo said in another post, when it goes to one cyl at idle it sounds like there is a bunch of bolts bouncing around, but if both are firing at idle, no issue.
  2. I dont have the issue V describes in his article about surging etc, nor do I have the hesitation on take off or the blipping issue
Other items
  1. The seat like all factory seats is not good, they are designed to feel nice when you touch them in a show room and go for a quick ride, but punch out 600km with only fuel stops and its not nice, back to corbin I go for a custom job....BTW I have a fire and ice corbin seat that fits the 111's
  2. The engine just looks like the scout grew up, I dont mind the finish unlike V, but I dont really care as I ride every day and I dont look at the engine while I ride.  Bit like an ugly bird, it still comes down to the ride, not the look 😉
  3. Fuel cap, I like that its lockable, yeah its bit ugly on the tank side, but if you are not sitting on your bike you can see in to the tank to fill easy enough from eitehr side given its centrrally mounted
  4. Having done some real night rides, the headlights are fine, good visability in traffic, and country condition, we dont need super burn your retina headlights, because it has handling and brembro brakes, we aint no road train!
  5. Wind, yep agree with V, got a klockwerks one on order cause they make the best screens for HD and Indian, seriously, dont mess about with indians options
  6. Cubbyholes will fit a 600ml drink, great for long runs!!
Conclusion:

The acid test, would I buy it again if I had to do it again, Yes, for two reasons a) its a really good ride, its worth every $ in my opinion!  Just go aftermarket where you can for accessories as Indian is still a stealership on that front. b) if we dont back the brand and invest why would indian stay, I have 2yr warranty with Indian and extended warranty through Swann (I always get that, and have NEVER EVER had an issue with a claim) so surely if they find any issues in the first 5yrs Im ok, and I ride about 30,000km per year, so I'll let you know what develops.

Lastly I ride with an MC, every member so far who has seen it loves or likes it, and usually I get all the bull Indian gags, that ok, I just give them newspapers to put under their bikes etc etc.  what I am trying to say is there where no haters, especially when I launched it up the road (please dont read that bit Raptor 😉) so I think Indian is meeting its objective of getting people to convert or at least start thinking to convert.

Is this a bias review, sure cause I bought it and we all look for articles and comments to validate our choices.  But I have tried to be rounded without being too much of a sally sad pants as Indian looks after me and so I am trying to do the same back without telling tales

Sorry about the spelling issues, out!
2020 Challenger Dark Horse, stage 1 pipes and air and a stack of minor mostly cosmetic mods
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BigTone
Excellent write up Face. Thanks. 
Cheers,
Tony
St. Kilda  Victoria
IMRG: 20380071
Current Ride: 2020 Dark Horse Challenger 
Previous Ride: 2015 Roadmaster
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JuanPoop
Great review face.  

Loads of +’s and -’s identified, but looks like it totals up quite positively.   

Well done. 

aka - John
2017 Springfield - grey / burgundy
Northern Beaches - Sydney
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Croc
is good! ðŸ‘
I'm Not Completely Useless . .
I Can Be Used As A Bad Example!

Kwinana W.A.

Ulysses   #48275
IMRG      #100932
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V-Twin
faceonahead wrote:
Power - They have either done some remapping since, or V had it in rain mode, but the throttle response is excellent and if you are a 'blipper' as V puts it, its more than responsive enough to rev match even if you are trying to ride it like an R1 on a track.

I dont have the issue V describes in his article about surging etc, nor do I have the hesitation on take off or the blipping issue
Other items
Nice write up Face! 👍

I suspect the difference in your experience and mine is that you have Stage 1 bits on your Challenger.  They would come with stage specific tune, which would no doubt be more aggressive and possibly more refined.  I wouldn't be surprised if Indian tuned the PowerPlus 108 for Stage 1 first, and then toned down the calibration for the stock tune (less responsive).  That is exactly what they've done with Thunder Stroke engine.

Glad you are enjoying it!  Congratulations!!
Let's be kind to one another.
Melbourne, Victoria
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faceonahead
V-Twin wrote:
Nice write up Face! 👍

I suspect the difference in your experience and mine is that you have Stage 1 bits on your Challenger.  They would come with stage specific tune, which would no doubt be more aggressive and possibly more refined.  I wouldn't be surprised if Indian tuned the PowerPlus 108 for Stage 1 first, and then toned down the calibration for the stock tune (less responsive).  That is exactly what they've done with Thunder Stroke engine.
Suspect you are right
2020 Challenger Dark Horse, stage 1 pipes and air and a stack of minor mostly cosmetic mods
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Bluey2
Great report Face, My findings not quite as good as yours but close. They are a hell of a ride.

I was told they had a run-in map till the first 800 Kl service, true or false I don't know.
Mine seemed better after the service but I didn't thrash it till I had a couple thousand Kls. on.

The stage one AC comes with the upgraded map chip. I will get the Power Vision3 when they come out. I have the Power Vision on the Harley Ultra and a Power Vision CX on the Victory also a TTS Mastertune on the softail. The Harley tuners are much better than the victory and indian tuners as you can build and change the entire map and don't need to have the original map still in the system. The PVCX and PV3 I believe works a bit like a Power Commander add on module rather than a complete map rewrite. It adds an overlay to the factory map, for me this sucks so if Steve Cole from Mastertune or others comes out with a system like the TTS or SERT for Indian I'm on board.
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