New Indian 101 Scout Vs Harley-Davidson Low Rider S: The Sporty Cruiser Rivalry - SUV VEHICLE

New Indian 101 Scout Vs Harley-Davidson Low Rider S: The Sporty Cruiser Rivalry


  • 2025 Indian 101 Scout cruising across sand
    2025 Indian 101 Scout

    Expert Opinion: What’s not to like on this new Indian 101 Scout? It has a really cool look that just screams “West Coast Custom” with a clubber bent, but it’s the performance that really sells this bike. Rebuilt from the ground up, it’s just the thing for fiery-eyed pegdraggers who are beyond the entry-level but don’t want to go with one of the Big Twin models.

    • Staggering looks
    • Plenty of modern features
    • Liquid-cooled powerhouse
  • 2024 Harley-Davidson Low Rider S static profile shot
    2024 Harley-Davidson Low Rider S

    Expert Opinion: Tthe Harley-Davidson Low Rider S is a wonderful confluence of old-school looks and modern performance. It’s ready to rock right off the lot, but also makes for a dandy platform for customizers to do their thing. Plus, there’s no arguing with inches, of which the Milwaukee-Eight 117 has plenty to make this bike a real thrill to put through its paces.

    • Trusty Milwaukee Eight 117 engine
    • Sporty riding dynamics
    • Lack of modern features
    • Pricey

More often than not, cruiser motorcycles are purpose-built for long-haul comfort, exceptional low-end thump, and brawny road presence. But as times change and bikemakers try to lure in a young audience, a niche sporty cruiser market has risen. It’s a place where both American heavyweights–Indian and Harley-Davidson–have started competing hard against each other in recent times. And the competition has just leveled up again, thanks to the new-for-2025 101 Scout.

The 101 serves as the flagship model in the company’s updated Scout range. The focus is on sportiness here, instead of the usual cruiser elements (mentioned above), while paying homage to the OG 101 model from yesteryears. This makes it a direct rival to the Low Rider S, which serves a similar role in Harley-Davidson’s lineup. This one too has sporty written all over it, whether it’s because of the high-spec suspension, big front wheel, or the raised bars.

The question then is – which one of these American-made sport cruiser bikes makes more sense for you (the customer)? It’s a question that depends on multiple factors while requiring an in-depth look at each aspect of each bike. And that’s what we’re about to do here. So pick a team.

All details and specifications have been sourced directly from the manufacturers (Indian Motorcycles and Harley-Davidson).

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Design And Technology

The Indian 101 Scout makes its sporty intent clear with a bespoke aesthetic in the Scout lineup. There’s a round all-LED headlight up top, housed inside a muscular fairing with a smoked windshield. This is flanked by a sport bike-like fender and golden USD forks for extra pizzazz. At the back lies a chopped fender with a trifecta of round LED lights. There’s no shortage of attention to detail either. You get upside-down bar-end mirrors, all-black mechanicals, contrast red letterings on the engine, and a custom-made gunfighter solo saddle. A special mention also goes to the dual-tone alloy wheels.

On the other hand, the Harley-Davidson Low Rider S appears much simpler than its counterpart. The fascia houses a small bucket fairing encasing a round headlight, while being partnered with a slim fender. The mirrors are more conventionally placed on the handlebar and the forks have a blacked-out finish. As for the rear, the fender is chopped but doesn’t look as sporty as the Scout. What we do dig, though, is the bronze finish on the alloy wheels. Not as flashy as the Indian, but still worth a mention.

Harley-Davidson sells the Low Rider in four shades for 2024: Sharkskin Blue, Red Rock, Vivid Black, and Billiard Gray. Neither one has any graphics other than H-D lettering. Whereas, Indian offers the Scout in two options: Sunset Red Metallic and Ghost White Metallic. Each one has sporty graphics and a dual-tone finish on the tank. So overall, the 101 Scout will certainly turn more heads than the Low Rider. At least in our opinion.

2025 Indian 101 Scout instrument dial close-up detail
Indian Motorcycle

To talk technology, the Indian takes the cake here. Being the newer offering, the 101 Scout comes armed with a TFT instrument cluster with smartphone connectivity as default. This is topped by cruise control, ride modes, and traction control. Meanwhile, the Low Rider has a digi-analog display, along with ABS and traction control. More details are given below:


Indian 101 Scout

Harley-Davidson Low Rider S

All-LED lights



Instrument cluster



Turn by turn navigation



Traction control



Ride modes



Smartphone connectivity



Keyless ignition



USB charger



Engine Performance And Capability

2024 Harley-Davidson Low Rider S chassis closeup detail

In typical American fashion, the Indian and Harley-Davidson both employ V-twin engines. The former has 1,250 cubic centimeters at its helm, while the latter has 1,890 cubic centimeters to woo you. However, as always, Indian has a trick up its sleeve to nullify the gigantic capacity deficit.

Powertrain Comparison

We’ve all heard there’s no replacement for displacement. And it’s true until you bring in other technological factors. That’s precisely the case here too. Indian has a new 1,250cc V-twin for its Scout lineup that comes armed with a high compression ratio and liquid cooling by default. As a result, it’s good for around 111 horsepower on the 101 Scout. This gives the Indian a sizable eight-horsepower advantage over the bigger displacement Low Rider S. Add to this the Scout’s massive 121-pound weight deficit over the H-D, and you won’t be wrong to expect stronger top-end performance.

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Emphasis on “top-end” because there’s a twist. Although the Scout has more peak power, the H-D has an impressive 125 pound-feet of torque–23 pound-feet up from the Indian. Plus, all of it kicks way earlier in the rev range, so you’re looking at explosive acceleration and heaps of tractability. In similar fashion, the S has a five-gallon tank compared to the Scout’s 3.4-gallon unit. We can’t comment on the overall range since Indian doesn’t claim a figure.

Indian 101 Scout vs Harley-Davidson Low Rider S Performance


Indian 101 Scout

Harley-Davidson Low Rider S


1,250cc, V-twin, liquid-cooled

1,890cc, V-twin, air/oil-cooled


111 horsepower at 7,250 RPM

103 horsepower at 4,750 RPM


82 pound-feet at 6,300 RPM

125 pound-feet at 3,500 RPM

Compression ratio



Fuel capacity

3.4 gallons

5 gallons

Power-to-weight ratio



Underpinnings And Dimensions

2025 Indian 101 Scout cruising on the road
Indian Motorcycle

There are several common things here. Both bikes have a steel chassis, upside-down forks, monoshock, alloy wheels, and dual disc brakes up top. But the deeper you dive, the more interesting things get. The 101 Scout comes armed with adjustable suspension at both ends to help you fine-tune the riding dynamics to your liking–something the Low Rider misses out on. Similarly, you get 320 mm front rotors on the Scout compared to the H-D’s 300 mm discs.

Then, there are the dimensional differences. The Scout has a shorter wheelbase and lower saddle height than the Low Rider. Whereas, the H-D has a considerably higher ground clearance than its rival. A 180-section tire is also present–a size up from the 150-section unit on the Indian. Check out the other intrinsic details below.

Indian 101 Scout vs Harley-Davidson Low Rider S Underpinnings


Indian 101 Scout

Harley-Davidson Low Rider S

Front suspension

43 mm USD forks (adjustable)

43 mm USD forks (non-adjustable)

Rear suspension




19/16-inch alloys

19/16-inch alloys

Front brake

2x 320 mm discs

2x 300 mm discs

Rear brake

298 mm disc

292 mm disc

Ground clearance

4.4 inches

5.7 inches


29 degrees

28 degrees

Saddle height

25.7 inches

27 inches


61.5 inches

63.6 inches

Price And Availability

This is where the Indian 101 Scout truly lands a solid punch. It’s priced at $16,999–a whopping $3,000 less than the Low Rider S. Plus, some colors of the H-D cost as high as $600 extra, which only makes matters worse. So there’s no denying the new 101 is the more bang-for-buck offering for youngsters. It has more features, better looks, and higher power than its rival, while still being “budget-friendly”. Not to mention, you can use the $3,000 to invest in some matching riding gear or performance mods to decrease its torque deficit. That said, if you’re a hardcore cruiser fan who cherishes nothing but pure V-twin performance, the Low Rider S is still a great option.

Indian 101 Scout


24-month warranty

Harley-Davidson Low Rider S


24-month warranty


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