Indian Motorcycle’s willingness to capitalize on trending products is further shown by the 2022 Indian Springfield Dark Horse Cruisers. In particular, Springfield Dark Horse is banking on the success of Jack Daniel’s Limited Edition model, which impacted Daytona. A bad-boy blackout theme is running through this year’s paint kits, but this vehicle stands out because of its factory-custom touches. Indian’s Thunder Stroke 116, with a torque output of over 120 pound-feet, is the finest potential upgrade for its power and performance.
2022 Indian Springfield Dark Horse Cruisers – Features and Specs
The Springfield Dark Horse takes a lot of cues from Indian, the oldest motorcycle company in the United States, which is why you’ll recognize many of its design features. A fender ornament called a “war bonnet” that has been around since the early 1900s may be prominently displayed at the front. The front fender is cut back at the sides instead of having valance skirts so that the black and polished wheel can be seen in all its glory, but it still has a complete design that protects the wheel.
The rest of the front end, including the headlight nacelle, RWU forks, and fork skirts, takes us back in time and is blacked out to create a sinister, custom appearance. There is a very bright cyclops halogen light protruding from its conventional-looking nacelle that reaches to conceal the triplet tree. To round off the feature’s vintage-yet-modern aesthetic, the blacked-out bullet turn-signal housings are equipped with LEDs.
Thanks to these little monkeys, your hands should rest just over your shoulders. The first apehangers attempted to counteract the Wehrmacht’s anti-motorcycling tactics during World War II, which included stringing wires across roads to behead motorcycle couriers. The war heroes brought the apes back to America, where they quickly came to represent the uncompromising, no-nonsense attitude of the country’s growing motorcycle subculture.
Because the Springfield Dark Horse lacks a fairing or windscreen, I may enjoy the fresh air without obstruction. The blackout instrument panel, which houses the single circular speedometer gauge and the tiny LED screen, is another nice touch since it doesn’t reflect light and blinds the pilot. For an extra dose of nostalgia, the 5.5-gallon teardrop gasoline tank has black inlays on both sides depicting a battle bonnet. The control pod reaches from the saddle back around the fuel tank.
The low 26-inch seat height makes it possible for riders of all sizes to have a firm grasp on the pavement and confidently use their training wheels. The relaxed cruiser stance is defined by the rider’s triangle, completed by the front foot controls and the full-length footboards.
A short ride to the p-pad forms a butt stop and isolates the rider from the pillion before it tapers down over the rear fender, leaving the bike with the concept of a solo seat. To keep your belongings dry, the Springfield Dark Horse has lockable, expandable hard-sided saddlebags that complement the bike’s custom look. LED lighting takes care of the back end of things, while a low-mounted tagholder rounds off the necessary hardware.
A cast aluminum frame strikes all the right notes with its double-downtube/double-cradle construction, which ultimately supports the engine and gives some protection to the cases at the bottom. In corners, the Springfield Dark Horse is anything but ponderous thanks to its 25-degree rake angle, 5.2-inch trail across a 67-inch wheelbase, and 31-degree lean angle to each side.
The suspension comprises simple components, including rwu, 46 mm front forks, and a single air shock in the back. You can change the preload on the rear shock’s broad range, and its generous 4.5 inches of travel means it can handle the roughest urban jungles with ease. Despite the 4.7 inches of travel, the stems are not adjustable due to the preset damping settings.
Dunlop Elite tires in sizes 130/60-19 up front and 180/60-16 in the back are placed on blackout-cast aluminum wheels. Polishing flats may achieve low-end bling. Brakes are handled by 300 mm discs all around, with dual, four-pot anchors up front, a twin-piston caliper out back, and standard ABS coverage no matter what color scheme you choose with.
Dunlop Elite tires in sizes 130/60-19 up front and 180/60-16 in the back are placed on blackout-cast aluminum wheels. Polishing flats may achieve low-end bling. Brakes are taken care of by 300 mm discs all around, with dual, four-pot anchors up front, a twin-piston caliper out back, and factory ABS coverage no matter what color scheme you choose with.
Indian’s Thunder Stroke line of motors is styled after the classic side-valve engines used in the United States from the 1930s through the ’70s. The new 116-cubic-inch engine in the Springfield Dark Horse is reminiscent of earlier engines by virtue of its false cooling fins molded into the rocker-box covers and flathead-tastic exhaust ports. Parallel pushrod tubes, similar to the classic flatties, suggest a set of four independent cam gears beneath the nosecone, continuing the vintage charm into the valvetrain. Visiting the expensive gas station is unavoidable due to the vehicle’s two-liter engine’s 1,900 cc displacement, 11-to-1 compression ratio, 103.2 mm bores, and 113 mm strokes.
The 54mm throttle body with closed-loop fuel injection controls induction and is responsible for metering and supplying the atomized fuel for efficient combustion and low emissions. Unlike other top-tier machines that roll without the Ride Modes choice, the Springfield Dark Horse is a simple bike with a raw and honest response when you twist the proper grip.
It’s one of the most powerful engines on the market in the US, cranking out 126 lbft of torque at only 2,900 rpm, which is enough for relaxed cruising on the highway. The six-speed transmission and final-drive ratio allow for potential high speeds of 115 mph when revved to their absolute limits in top gear.
2022 Indian Springfield Dark Horse Cruisers – Pricing
The 2022 Indian Springfield Dark Horse Cruisers Black Smoke edition is available for $23,499. Blackout treatment is the industry standard. However, you may pay an additional $5 to have the metal sheets treated in Quartz Gray instead.
2022 Indian Springfield Dark Horse Cruisers – Technical Specifications
Engine & Drivetrain
|Bore x Stroke||4.063″ x 4.449″ (103.2mm x113mm)|
|Displacement||116 cu in (1,890 ccs)|
|Drive/Driven Clutch||Wet, Multi-Plate, Assist|
|Electronic Fuel Injection System||Closed loop fuel injection / 54 mm bore|
|Engine Type||Air-cooled Thunderstroke 116|
|Exhaust||Split Dual Exhaust w/ Cross-over|
|Gear Ratio (1st)||9.403: 1|
|Gear Ratio (2nd)||6.411: 1|
|Gear Ratio (3rd)||4.763: 1|
|Gear Ratio (4th)||3.796: 1|
|Gear Ratio (5th)||3.243: 1|
|Gear Ratio (6th)||2.789: 1|
|Peak Torque||126 ft-lbs|
|Peak Torque RPM||2,900 RPM|
|Transmission/Final Drive||2.2: 1|
|Transmission/Primary Drive||Gear Drive Wet Clutch|
|Fuel Capacity||5.5 gal (20.8 L)|
|Ground Clearance||5.1 in (130 mm)|
|GVWR||1,385 lb (628 kg)|
|Overall Height||48.3 in / 1226 mm|
|Overall Length||99.3 in (2,522 mm)|
|Overall Width||38.3 in / 972 mm|
|Rake/Trail||25° / 5.2 in (133 mm)|
|Seat Height||25.6 in (650mm)|
|Wheelbase||67 inches (1,701mm)|
|Front Brakes||Dual / 300mm Floating Rotor, 4 Piston Caliper|
|Rear Brakes||Single / 300mm Floating Rotor, 2 Piston Caliper|
Tires / Wheels
|Front Tires||Metzeler Cruisetec 130/60B19 66H|
|Front Wheel||10-Spoke Contrast Cut 19 inches x 3.5 inches|
|Rear Tires||Metzeler Cruisetec 180/60R16 80H|
|Rear Wheel||10-Spoke Contrast Cut 16 inches x 5 inches|
|Front Fork Tube Diameter||46 mm|
|Front Suspension||Telescopic Fork|
|Front Travel||4.7 in (119 mm)|
|Rear Suspension||Single Shock w/ Air adjust|
|Rear Travel||4.5 in (114 mm)|
|Color/graphics||Black Smoke, Quartz Gray|
|Factory Warranty||2 Years, Unlimited Miles|
|Gauges||Tank-mounted electronic speedometer with odometer; dual trip meters; digital tachometer; ambient air temperature; fuel range; gear position display; average fuel economy; battery voltage; real-time clock; vehicle trouble code readout; heated grip level (if heated grips installed); low engine oil pressure; and 9 LED telltale indicators: cruise control enabled, cruise control set, neutral, high beam, turn signal, ABS, check engine, and MPH or km/h unit designation; tank-mounted electronic fuel gauge with low fuel LED indicator|
|Lights||Halogen Headlamp/Driving, LED Tail/Brake/Turn Signal|
|Standard Equipment||Remote-Locking Hard Saddlebags, Vinyl Rogue Seat; Tire Pressure Monitoring; Light Bar; ABS, Selectable Ride Modes; Cruise Control; Keyless Ignition|
Indian Springfield Dark Horse vs. Harley-Davidson Road King / Road King Special
Since the MoCo is the second-oldest American brand that is still in operation, Indian is in good company. The Road King Special is identical to the standard Road King in terms of the front fender, but it lacks the Indian-centric combat bonnet. It features a large, skirted front end and large, nacelle-like headlights reminiscent of yesteryear. The criterion is set a bit higher for a mini-ape-like look. Thankfully, the power outage has spread to the game system. Keeping with the theme, the deep-scoop saddle is teamed with a Mustang-style pillion in the “I’d rather not” camp. Dry storage with a comparable load capacity may be found in expanded hard-side bags.
While the Showa Dual Bending Valve forks provide a more pleasant ride than the Springfield Dark Horse’s vanilla stems, the emulsion-type rear shocks on the Harley are only slightly more comfortable than the air shocks on the Indian. While anti-lock braking systems (ABS) are standard, H-new D’s Reflex Defensive Rider Systems feature is ahead of the curve since it combines drag-torque protection, traction control, and corner-sensitive ABS. This feature, however, is not mandatory and is instead offered as a paid add-on.
The Milwaukee-Eight 114 engine in the Harley falls slightly shy of the Thunder Stroke in power, but the difference is so little that even the most finely calibrated heinie dynos won’t be able to detect it. Like Indian, Harley offers several pricing points for different color options, with the base Vivid Black model costing $22,999 and the premium two-tone package costing $24,999.