Indian Motorcycle is giving fans a chance to get in on the King of the Baggers action.
To celebrate their victory in the AMA’s King of the Baggers class - you know, the bonkers place where massive cruisers get kitted out for racing and go bar to bar on the racetrack – Indian is set to release a limited run of Challenger RR race replicas for those wanting a taste of the action.
Bagger racing hasn’t caught on here yet, but maybe it should be something we should be looking at adopting. There’s drama, incredible modification to take a hefty touring bike and make it tackle the ins and outs of the track, and more in the class which is dominated by Indian Motorcycle and arch-rival Harley-Davidson.
The Challenger RR is as the name suggests, a race replica as close as you can get to the real deal. To add to the allure, Indian is building just 29 examples and according to Polaris representative, Michael Blundo, just one example is heading to Oceania.
Like the championship-winning race bike, each of the 29 Challenger RRs will be built by the team at S&S with Indian boldly stating that the bikes will be the first time a race-ready bagger will be available to the public for purchase.
“Originally, the thought of road racing baggers was perplexing to many and even downright offensive to some road racing purists,” explains Gary Gray, Vice President – Racing, Technology and Service for Indian Motorcycle.
“But in just three short years, King of the Baggers has emerged as the hottest thing in motorcycle racing as these bikes have rapidly evolved in their sophistication, and we thought it would be awesome to give people the opportunity to own the bike that holds the crown.”
Unlike a more traditional race replica which is more likely than not set apart from its base bike counterpart by a set of swanky graphics, the Challenger RR is every bit a replica of Tyler O’Hara’s #29 championship-winning bike.
While that translates to a bike that is sadly not street-legal, it also means the Challenger RR is crammed with some of the best kit money can buy.
The bodywork has had a full going-over, with carbon fibre saddlebags stepping in for the standard items, plus an aero race fairing and belly pan courtesy of S&S. The ergos have also been tweaked for racing with a Saddlemen seat raising the seat height, while the foot position slides rearward thanks to a set of S&S rear sets.
The suspension for the RR is supplied by Öhlins, with FGR250 forks matched to a TTX rear shock.
Helping turn-in and choice for sticky rubber, the wheels have been swapped out from the factory fitted 19/16-inch combo for a pair of 17s wrapped in Dunlop race rubber.
The engine hasn’t missed out on the action either. S&S have increased displacement to 112 cubic inches via a big bore kit, while the engine breathes more freely thanks to an S&S air intake system with 78mm throttle body, ported heads, S&S camshafts, and a 2-into-1 race exhaust.
The factory belt drive has also been swapped out for a chain, while shifting is quicker thanks to, of course, a quickshifter.
“We’re excited to embrace the fandom of bagger racing and celebrate our second title with this highly exclusive, special run of Indian Challenger RR motorcycles. This bike is the real deal, much like when we released the venerable FTR750, the Indian Challenger RR is a true race bike and is not street legal. Put in the right hands, it will reach the podium in MotoAmerica’s Mission King of the Baggers race series.”