In an effort to break away from its baby boomer customers, Harley-Davidson has announced a raft of electric bikes, under the banner of LiveWire. I’ve ridden one, a concept machine, and it was fine. But I have no idea who it is for. They will be too expensive as commuter bikes, to weird as day-to-day transport, not capable of taking on modern petrol-powered sportsbikes… so who will buy them?
Let me know your thoughts in the comments.
– Nigel Paterson
Harley-Davidson, the company that has defined the motorcycle industry for the past 115 years , showcased its next generation of two-wheeled transportation at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, unveiling the full product specification, connectivity and pricing for the first time.
LiveWire, Harley-Davidson’s first electric motorcycle, and the most connected motorcycle experience ever, will be available for delivery later this year in selected markets.
The LiveWire motorcycle represents the future of Harley-Davidson, bringing high-performance electric propulsion, evocative design, and cellular connectivity to today’s rider. The first of a new portfolio of motorcycles that provides an all new two-wheel experience, the LiveWire motorcycle delivers thrilling acceleration, agile handling, premium materials and finishes, and a full suite of electronic rider aids and interfaces for a completely connected experience.
The performance of the LiveWire motorcycle will deliver an exhilarating ride for seasoned motorcyclists, while its clutch-free design also makes the experience for new riders easier than ever Hmm… high performance and new riders, there’s a great combination]. The launch of the LiveWire model supports Harley-Davidson’s 2027 strategic objectives to reinvigorate its U.S. business, accelerate the pace of international growth, build the next generation of riders globally and establish the company as the leader in the electrification of two-wheeled transportation.
“We’re at a historic juncture of the evolution of transportation, and Harley-Davidson is at the forefront,” said Harley-Davidson CEO, Matt Levatich. “Innovation that moves the body and soul has always been at the heart of our brand, and this next chapter in our history is about creating products and opportunities for existing and aspiring riders of all ages and walks of life.”
An all-new Riding Experience with Iconic Harley-Davidson Power
Accessible to new motorcyclists and a thrill for accomplished riders, the LiveWire motorcycle is the perfect combination of power, performance and technology. Features include:
Powerful acceleration: from 0 to 60 mph in under 3.5 seconds. The instant torque provided by the H-D Revelation electric powertrain can produce 100 percent of its rated torque the instant the throttle is twisted, and 100 percent of that torque is always available.
Twist-and-go ease of use: Electric power requires no clutch and no gear shifting, greatly simplifying operation for new riders. All riders will appreciate the braking effect of the power regeneration mode as it adds charge to the battery, especially in stop-and-go urban traffic.
H-D Connect Service: The LiveWire motorcycle is equipped with H-D Connect, which pairs motorcycle riders with their bikes through an LTE-enabled Telematics Control Unit coupled with connectivity and cloud services using the latest version of the Harley-Davidson App.
This technology makes the LiveWire motorcycle the first North American mass-market cellularconnected electric motorcycle. With H-D Connect, data is collected and transferred to the app to provide information to the rider’s smartphone about:
Motorcycle status: Information available through H-D Connect includes battery charge status and available range from any location where sufficient cellular signal is available. This allows the rider to remotely check the charge status including charge level and time to completion. Riders will be able to locate a charging station with ease thanks to an integrated location finder built into the H-D App.
Tamper alerts and vehicle location: H-D Connect indicates the location of the parked LiveWire motorcycle and alerts can be sent to the rider’s smartphone if the bike is tampered with or moved. GPS-enabled stolen-vehicle tracking provides peace of mind that the motorcycle’s location can be tracked (Requires law enforcement assistance. Available in select markets).
Service reminders and notifications: Reminders about upcoming vehicle service requirements and other vehicle care notifications will be provided to the rider through the H-D App. In addition, riders will receive automated service reminders.
Performance and range optimized for the urban street-rider: With the ability to travel an estimated 110 miles of urban roads on a single charge.
Handling and control: The LiveWire motorcycle chassis is designed to deliver agile handling for confident control on urban streets and a thrilling ride on curving backroads. The H-D Revelation powertrain sits low in the motorcycle to lower the center of gravity and help the motorcycle handle well at all speeds and make it easier to control when stopped. The motorcycle also features premium technology — Electronic Chassis Control is standard and features a cornering-enhanced Anti-lock Braking System and Traction Control. The systems are fully electronic and utilize the latest inertial measurement unit and ABS sensor technology.
Distinctive Harley-Davidson sound, minimal vibration: The LiveWire motorcycle features the HD Revelation electric powertrain which produces minimal vibration, heat, and noise, all of which enhance rider comfort. The LiveWire model is designed to produce a new signature Harley-Davidson sound as it accelerates and gains speed; this new futuristic sound represents the smooth, electric power of the LiveWire motorcycle.
From Project LiveWire to LiveWire Motorcycle
The vision behind the production LiveWire motorcycle began with Project LiveWire, revealed as a prototype in 2014. Through a traveling demo program, Project LiveWire gave potential customers the opportunity to provide feedback on what they would want from a true Harley-Davidson electric motorcycle and shape the evolution of the motorcycle in keeping with the Motor Company’s customerled approach. The response was very enthusiastic – and the production LiveWire motorcycle incorporates knowledge gained from the development of the prototypes, feedback from customer demos, further design progress at Harley-Davidson and the latest advanced technology.
Harley-Davidson Reveals Two Groundbreaking Lightweight Electric Concepts at CES
Harley-Davidson, also revealed two new concepts in its next generation of two-wheeled transportation at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas. Alongside the production 2020 Livewire motorcycle, these two concepts look towards a new electrified chapter of Harley-Davidson’s story that will continue with innovative approaches to transportation and technology, wrapped up in evocative styling and design.
As part of the push towards a different future, these concepts explore the potential of urban mobility and two-wheeled adoption. Both concepts bring Harley-Davidson’s expertise in expressive twowheeled experiences and push boundaries in design and technology.
In 2018, Harley-Davidson’s More Roads announcement provided a vision that includes new products in additional motorcycle segments, broader access, and to strengthen our dealer network. These two concepts are proof positive of that vision, alongside the production 2020 LiveWire, and point to a broad portfolio of electric two-wheelers designed to establish the company as the leader in the electrification of mobility over the next several years and inspire new riders with new ways to ride.
The all-new Harley-Davidson LiveWire Motorcycle will be on sale in only select markets this year. For Australia and New Zealand markets, the Livewire will be released in late 2020. For more information on the new Harley-Davidson LiveWire motorcycle, as well as updates on future additional bikes, please visit h-d.com for more details.
Let us know what you think in the comments.