Teach Your Kids To Ride! 1969 Indian M5A Italjet

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This tiny wonder is a 1969 Indian M5A Italjet and it’s on eBay with an unmet opening bid of $1,500! This bike is in Spearfish, South Dakota, a stone’s throw away from Sturgis, so, there ya go. There is less than a day left on this auction so jump in if you have a kid who needs to start learning how to ride! This bike weighs 60 pounds so you can put it in the trunk or the back of your pickup and head out to a field somewhere and teach your kids how to have fun that doesn’t include looking at their phones.

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This is a super cool little motorcycle, obviously one that’s made for kids. Although, you know that I’d ride this thing, even though I’m 6′-5″ tall! Actually, Indian had a few different minibikes, or small motorcycles, available for kids; now you’ll have to look to Japan for a mini-ride for your young’ns. I think that just like mastering cursive writing and knowing how to shift a manual transmission, every kid should know how to ride a motorcycle. It’s just one of those things that a lot of (most?) kids these days don’t get a chance to do because of over-protective helicopter parenting. In case you’re wondering, yes, they actually made training wheels for these! It doesn’t get much safer than that. They could even be mounted on the shock mounting bolt so little Johnny or Janie would be able to experience a 25-degree lean while still staying safely upright. Or, mostly upright..

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This is powered by a 48cc single-cylinder with 1.5 hp, which doesn’t sound like a lot but it’s perfect for beginners. And, it’s an Indian, come on! Or, at least it has an Indian name or two on it. These bikes were made by Italjet and it’s really an Italjet M5B Brave, but they were licensed by Indian in a few sizes. This is the second smallest one, having bigger tires for kids that are a little older, taller, and/or more experienced behind the handlebars. This is considered a minicross so there are no lights, it’s strictly an off-road bike, not that you’d let your 7-year old ride it on the street. I know that I never did such a thing as a kid! (crickets).. If you have kids, do they know how to ride a motorcycle yet? If not, what are you waiting for?

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Comments

  1. geomechs geomechs Member

    I remember when these came out on the market. A lot of us could envision the old Indian moguls spinning away in their graves, seeing their beloved logo adorning bikes like these (and I for one, like these bikes). I remember Indian in its attempts to stay afloat tried marketing Royal Enfields before throwing in the towel back in the 50s. Sure hope that this finds a good home. It looks like it’s had a pretty good home up until now…

    • Howard A

      Hi geomechs, I remember these too. I agree, such a mighty name at one time, reduced to this. These were pretty cool. I’d have killed for one in ’69. I was riding a frumpy Honda step-thru 50. This, at least looked like a real bike, and it was. And cheap, $249 in 1969.( about $1,600 today, so the price is still right on) Any kid with a paper route ( which, for some reason, was forbidden for me to have) could buy one. Out of the box, these did 10-12 mph, but I’m sure many kids figured out how to fix that. I agree with Scotty, get ’em on a motorcycle as soon as you can. And this is the bike to do it with.

  2. DAN

    dads buddy had one in the 70s with sidecar !!
    ya sidecar on a 50cc,lol
    he was a honda wrench and fixed my honda 50cc when I was to young to do it myself.
    I learned quick, and did it myself after watching him:)

  3. brakeservo

    I’ve been living in southern New Mexico for a year and a half now – there’s somebody in Alamogordo that’s been listing one of these on Craigslist for at least that long, maybe longer. When I first saw the listing he was asking a ridiculous $5,000 – and I don’t know what he’s thinking as now the ask is $7,000! Wow – a 40% increase when his price really needs to go the other way – and by a big chunk too if he ever expects it to sell!

    • Scotty Gilbertson Scotty Gilbertson Staff

      I wanted your ’62 Sears/Puch D50, brakeservo!

      • brakeservo

        Gee, I wish you had out-bid the man who bought it then – I thought it went too cheap, but that’s the chance one takes! It really ran well and gathered a fair amount of attention too!

  4. Kevin Member

    Finally something I can try to sell my wife on! I had an 81 Yz 50 when I was a kid and I wish I still had it today. Not just cause they made it one year but also to teach my little girls to ride it. My wife is dead set against it. But hey if one shows up in the mail by a second cousin no one has met? Who am I to argue? My Mom hated it too. My Dad came home from work with my little Yz and I seriously think that was the most exciting day of my childhood. I was 5 or 6, He helped me put my helmet on witch felt like wearing a cynderblock on my head. Taught me where everything was and then had me start it. I kept Twisting the throttle and it got louder and louder. I seriously looked at life a lot defferently from then on. My Mom was outside as well working in her garden completely disgusted yelling at my Dad “He’s gonna get killed”! My Dad said don’t listen to her she’s jealous. He tells me to pull in the clutch push the gear lever down give it some gas and slowly release the clutch lever. And what do I do after putting it in gear? Nail the gas, Dump the clutch did a wheelie half way across the yard into a chain link fence! I’m crying my Dad’s laughing my Mom freaked out saying I told you he’d get killed. My Dad knocked on the helmet laughing and said he’s fine! I thought I ruined my first and possibly last dirt bike. But after a few days of my dad working with me? I got it and have always had a motorcycle or ATV. I’m currently going to buy an ATV to have fun with the kids which my wife is completely against but she’ll get over it. I hope anyway. But this is definitely cool. Now being 40 both parents gone I can say that was definitely one of my greatest childhood memories! And they’re the memories I want to have with my kids. Yes! Dad’s reckless abandon for there safety! Good luck guys and really hope this goes to a kid and not a collector.

  5. scooter8

    probably out run & out stop my 74 shovel.LOL.

  6. Andy

    Maybe I’m out of touch with 2016 bike prices, but this seems way high, even though it looks very clean for a 40 year old dirt bike.

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