When Indian launched the redesigned 2022 Chief earlier this year, it came with an additional announcement. Several custom motorcycle builders were getting Chiefs to tweak, tune, and otherwise work their magic artistry on as part of the launch. And one of those builders was Brat Style founder and huge Indian fan Go Takamine. Now, a few months later, his custom 2022 Indian Super Chief Limited is ready to rock.
Brat Style founder Go Takamine turned a 2022 Indian Super Chief Limited into a stylish hardtail
The name ‘Go Takamine’ is impossible to separate from ‘Brat Style.’ Originally the name of Takamine’s Tokyo shop, it’s since become a custom bike style that’s often referenced and imitated but hard to define. The pervading theme of brat-style bikes, whether they’re made by Go Takamine or another shop, is minimalism and functionality, Cycle World says. And that stems from Takamine’s original influence: vintage American flat-track race bikes.
However, Go Takamine isn’t just inspired by these antique racers. He owns and actively races several vintage Indians, including his custom-built ‘Chout,’ a mix of a 1927 Scout and a 1940s Chief. And he brought that spirit to his new 2022 Indian Super Chief Limited build, RideApart reports.
Takamine didn’t touch the 2022 Indian Chief’s powertrain. So, the custom bike still has a 1890cc air-cooled V-twin with 120 lb-ft of torque and, based on Cycle World’s dyno results, 90 hp. It does roar through some new custom-made cone-end exhaust pipes, though. However, they’re likely not the first things you notice about this bike.
Instead, you’ll likely notice that, like the 101 Scout and contemporary Harley-Davidsons, this custom Indian Chief is a hardtail. Yup, Go Takamine removed the stock rear shocks and replaced them with steel struts linking the rear axle and the rest of the frame. So, instead of 3” of rear travel, this Super Chief has a sprung brown-leather solo seat.
And that’s just the start of the modifications.
The bike doesn’t have brass knuckles, but it does have brass and nickels—and so much more
Although they’re not synonymous, strictly speaking, brat style builds mirror the bobber ethos: stripped-down, de-chromed, and often lowered. And so it goes with Go Takamine’s 2022 Indian Super Chief Limited build.
Besides the hardtail rear, Takamine narrowed the Chief’s fuel tank and mounted it lower in the frame. He also repainted the tank and much of the bike black, including the custom-made upper fork shrouds. In addition, he relocated the Indian Chief’s 4.3” TFT gauge to the bike’s lower left side. Plus, he installed a bottom-mount headlamp as well as a Brat Style Shi-Sa side-mount license-plate holder, taillight, and handlebars.
However, there’s still a bit of flash about this custom 2022 Indian Chief. Those Brat Style handlebars, for example, are mounted on vintage-style brass risers. The new headlamp has some brass, too—specifically, an antique brass Indian Motorcycle coin. The new gnarled footpegs and shifter controls are brass as well; the footpegs also feature genuine US Buffalo Nickel coins. And while the fuel tank’s black, it also has silver scallops and a golden ‘Indian’ script. Also, the new drive-belt cover is chrome.
But Go Takamine didn’t stop there with the antique touches. He replaced the stock rear mudguard with one made from a repurposed 1937 Ford truck spare tire fender. And the rear fender is capped off with the end piece from a 1940s Indian Chief. Finally, he installed a custom low-profile rear sissy bar as a callback “to the strut-mounted fenders of yore,” RideApart explains.
Go Takamine’s 2022 Indian Chief will ride historic with a Mad Max: Fury Road star
Unfortunately, this custom 2022 Indian Super Chief Limited isn’t for sale. But it’s not because Go Takamine is keeping it. He built it for Mad Max: Fury Road star Nicholas Hoult, who’s already taken delivery. Hopefully, someone will witness him riding it around.
Still, as the Indian Chief’s designer, Ola Stenegard, explained to us, the 2022 bike was designed to be easy to modify. So, even if you can’t convince Go Takamine to make you something similar, perhaps another shop can. That way, you too can ride eternal, even if not shiny and chrome.
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