In preparation for the 2022 Waves and Wheels festival, Indian Motorcycle launched the Indian Chief Design Contest. The brand commissioned French custom shops Baak, Lucky Cat Garage, Mystic Mechanic, and Tank Machine to submit digital renderings of a custom Indian Chief.
Each concept then underwent the scrutiny of Indian’s Super Voter panel, which included Swedish chopper specialist Ola Stenegärd, master builder Roland Sands, photographer Michael Lichter, and moto journalists Paul d’Orleans, Tadashi Kono, and Katharina Weber.
After tallying the scorecards and more than 35,000 online votes, Indian proclaimed Tank Machine and Rise Designs’ Grind Machine concept as the winner. That victory allowed the Parisian custom garage to commit that design to metal, and the Grind Machine looks just as good in the flesh as it did in pixel form.
Gallery: Grind Machine: 2022 Indian Chief
Clément Molina of Tank Machine and Antonin Bazin of Riser Designs partnered to bring Wheels and Waves’ “board culture” to the latest-generation Chief. With a blend of bobber and scrambler design elements, the two bring together the best of both form and function. The chopped fenders, floating single-saddle, and flat handlebar all play into the bobber mold.
On the flip side, the knobby Continental TKC tires, front bash plate, and auxiliary lights outfit the Chief for short trips on the trail. A rolled blanket strapped to the top of the headlight should keep the rider warm during cold desert nights, while heat wrap on the SuperTrapp 2-into-1-into-2 exhaust shields the user from engine heat on sweltering days. Dual Ohlins rear shock absorbers steady the ride in diverse terrain and the fork gators keep dust out of the suspension both on- and off-road.
The Chief’s new cosmetic treatment, however, steals all the spotlight. Tank Machine and Rise Designs capture the Grind Machine’s rugged nature with a two-tone military green/bare metal paint scheme. The livery’s faux aging accents along with the brown leather saddle and brown hand grips only enhance the Grind Machine’s rough-and-tumble attitude. Lastly, Molina and Bazin integrate skateboard decks into the tank console and seat pan, drawing the Grind Machine even closer to the Wheels and Waves festival.
Sources: Motociclismo, Indian Motorcycle