The 2022 Indian Chief's Kickstand May Have a Problem, Remedy Under Development

Indian, which dubs itself America’s first motorcycle company, has a problem with the kickstand fitted to 4,653 motorcycles. Back in August 2022, the Minnesota-based manufacturer was notified of a crash in Canada, which involved minor bruising to the rider’s torso as well as a sore hand.
Indian Chief 6 photos
Photo: Indian
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Said rider informed the Indian Motorcycle Company of a YouTube video in which the kickstand of a Chief had failed to retract when contacting the ground. Mere weeks after the aforementioned incident, the company became aware of a second incident. No crashes or injuries were reported, though, but Indian was forced to investigate this worrying matter.

Following the engineering department’s design evaluation, the Executive Review Committee decided that the inconsistent retraction of the kickstand fitted to certain 2022 model year Chief motorcycles constituted a noncompliance with federal motor vehicle safety standard 123. More specifically, S5.2.4 clearly states that “a stand shall fold rearward and upward if it contacts the ground when the motorcycle is moving forward.” Given these circumstances, a recall had to be issued for said bikes.

A report published by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration lists Vietnam-based Northstar Precision as the supplier of the kickstand. The root cause hasn’t been identified yet, and corrective action hasn’t been developed thus far either. Polaris Industries, which owns the Indian Motorcycle Company since 2011, issued a stop-delivery order for 2022 model year Chiefs equipped with suspect stands in December 2022.

Dealers have already been informed of this problem, as well as the imminent follow-up with the corrective action. Owners, on the other hand, can expect to receive an envelope by first-class mail on February 17th.

Suspect bikes include the Chief (build dates ranging from August 24th, 2022 to October 31st, 2022) and Chief Bobber (May 4th, 2020, to October 17th, 2022). The Darkhorse (May 4th, 2020, to November 7th, 2022) and Bobber Darkhorse (August 27th, 2022 to November 4th, 2022) also need to be mentioned. The Super Chief (August 26th, 2020, to October 14th, 2022) and Super Chief Limited (August 26th, 2020, to November 7th, 2022) pretty much seal the deal. These bikes were not produced in sequential order, and their VINs all start with 5 because they’re made in the United States.

The Chief goes a long way back, introduced in 1922 by the Hendee Manufacturing Company as the heir apparent of the Powerplus. Designed by Charles B. Franklin, the Chief was joined by the Big Chief in 1923.

Fast forward to the present day, and the most affordable Chief can be yours for $14,999 excluding taxes and options. At the other end of the spectrum, $21,499 buys you the Super Chief Limited. The lesser variant comes with a 111-ci Thunderstroke air-cooled twin with 108 pound-feet (146 Nm) of torque at 3,200 revolutions per minute. The 116-ci version improves to 120 pound-feet (163 Nm) at 2,900 revolutions per minute.
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 Download: 2022 Indian Chief kickstand recall (PDF)

About the author: Mircea Panait
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After a 1:43 scale model of a Ferrari 250 GTO sparked Mircea's interest for cars when he was a kid, an early internship at Top Gear sealed his career path. He's most interested in muscle cars and American trucks, but he takes a passing interest in quirky kei cars as well.
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