So far, I’ve offered my thoughts on the new bike launches from Harley-Davidson, Triumph’s Speed Triple 1200, and Kawasaki’s third-gen KLR650. I felt like those were all fairly low-key, didn’t hype me up that much, and were more deserving of a careful, unbiased analysis.
I’m just going to cut to the chase on the FTR updates, though: SWEET ZOMBIE JESUS. I really want to get one of these in the garage. I seriously haven’t actually wanted a particular bike as much as this since Kawasaki released the Z900RS, and we know how that turned out.
The basic specs of the FTR remain the same. Same 1200cc liquid-cooled mill (that I’m already a fan of on the Scout models) that puts out a delicious 120hp and 87lb-ft of torque. It’s improved with new heat management tech, including rear-cylinder deactivation, and better throttle response.
Same adjustable suspension. Same Brembo brakes. Same comfortably aggressive (is that a thing?) upright riding position. Why fix what’s not broken, right?
All FTR models, with the exception of the more dirt-worthy rally, get 17″ wheels, which will make handling feel even more like a sporty naked roadster, and opens up a whole new world of tire options. Take it from the street to the track with some Sportmax Q4’s, tour with a set of Roadsmart IV’s, or get dirty with some Trail II or Rally STR tires. The possibilities are pretty much endless, and brings a new level of handling and versatility to the FTR.
What’s most exciting is how well Indian is differentiating the models in the FTR lineup now. You now have the base FTR, the FTR S, the FTR R Carbon, and the FTR Rally.
The base model doesn’t have any particular bells and whistles, but since the base package is still tight, I’m not complaining.
Things start getting fancy on the S model. With the S model, you get premium paint, a tuned Akropvoic exhaust, and an upgraded ECU that adds ride modes, lean-angle stability control, ABS with cornering pre-control, and wheelie control with rear lift mitigation. There’s also a Ride Command touchscreen with Bluetooth connectivity for the dash.
Things get bonkers on the FTR R Carbon. As the name suggests, it adds a bunch of carbon fiber bodywork to the S package. That’s only the beginning, though. The Carbon also has custom premium numbered badging, suggesting it’ll be a limited production run. Best of all, you get fully adjustable Öhlins suspension. It’s all topped off with a gorgeous red frame, a premium seat, a blacked-out Akropvic exhaust, and jaw-dropping paint. The FTR Carbon is an absolute savage, and is totally going for Ducati’s throat.
The lineup is wrapped up with the Rally, which retains more of the dirt tracker influences of the FTR. It has 19″ wheels in the front and an 18″ back wheel, wrapped in Scorpion Rally STR tires. The wheels are also spoked, for better capability off road. It has taller Pro Taper bars, a rally-inspired windscreen, and a unique leather “aviator” seat for improved ergonomics and comfort. I already have a very capable street bike, so as the most dirt-ready, it’s probably my favorite of the FTR lineup.
Thoughts and Reaction
If you couldn’t tell, I absolutely love this updated FTR lineup. Zero complaints.
They look stunning, got a few welcome upgrades, and are priced great. I seriously can’t wait to ride one.