Indian’s FTR 1200 went through an identity crisis in 2021. Introduced as a flat track-inspired roadster in 2019, the FTR couldn’t live up to Indian’s naked bike ambitions with its 19-inch front wheel, 18-inch rear hoop, and Dunlop DT3-R rubber. For the 2022 model year, the Minnesota manufacturer vastly improved the platform's pavement prowess with 17-inch wheels and Metzeler Sportec tires.

The FTR found its stride in that guise when the 2022 King of the Baggers champion Tyler O’Hara piloted an FTR to the 2022 RSD (Roland Sands Design) Super Hooligans title. With the naked bike finally comfortable in its own skin, Indian doubles down on the model’s road racing success by introducing the 2023 FTR Sport at EICMA 2022.

Gallery: 2023 Indian FTR Sport

Replacing the outgoing FTR S variant, the Sport leans into those racing roots with a number board-imitating headlight nacelle, belly pan-esque chin fairing, and a single-seat tail cowl. The mid-range trim ranks above the standard FTR and Rally models but slots below the performance-oriented FTR Carbon R.

Still, it shares premium touches with the flagship variant such as the new four-inch round, TFT touchscreen display. The dash’s Ride Command software puts navigation at the rider’s fingertips while three ride modes (Sport, Standard, and Rain), lean-sensitive stability control, and ABS adapt the ride to changing conditions.

Fresh tank panel graphics set the Sport apart from the pack with Black Metallic/Indy Red and White Lightning/Indy Red/Black Metallic color schemes. Indian didn’t restrict 2023 updates to its new shiny toy either. All four trims now tout the brand’s double-barrel sport exhaust muffler, a finely-tuned front braking system, an updated clutch, and a repositioned speedometer.

Starting at $13,499, the FTR lineup features four distinct models catering to a wide variety of riders. For those with track aspirations, however, Indian partnered with racing components specialists Gilles Tooling to offer nine new track-derived accessories.

Adjustable rear sets, folding levers, and bar end weights tune the controls to the rigors of the racetrack while a new oil cap and radiator cap add extra bling. Of course, nothing says sporty like carbon fiber, and a carbon fiber exhaust heat shield, frame guards, and sprocket cover provide both form and function.

It may have taken the FTR some time to find its niche, but the 2023 FTR Sport amplifies the platform’s performance DNA for the streets and the track.

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