Meet the Live Wire - The electric Harley Davidson
Harley Davidson has announced the arrival of their first electric motorbike. Some of you that know the history of Harley Davidson or keep an eye out on Motorcycle news, may have some words for me but don't worry, I know what you mean. I will explain all about the LiveWire and its odd experimental life.
Back in 2014, Harley Davidson started the Project LiveWire: an electric motorcycle prototype that is very modern but still very much in the spirit of the company. Keith Wandell - Harley's CEO - said they wanted to make a bike that reached out to a bigger and diverse group of riders. This was to try to include a younger customers base, women and African-Americans and Hispanic riders into the brand. With the back history of the bike cleared now, let's get onto the regeneration of this project.
Ready for an upgrade
With the information and feedback Project LiveWire gave Harley Davidson, they improved and carried on with the idea of the electric bike. Like all great ideas, there were issues to be solved, such as the way the regenerative braking system was tuned didn't agree with everyone who tested it. Another way to gauge how the general public would take to the design was to show off to a vast viewership, how do you do that? Put it in a movie, specifically Avengers: Age of Ultron, that's how.
Details on the final specifications are still unclear as of now but we do have the numbers and fact from the Project bike, so if anything they will be based on those - and hopefully, so much better.
The electric motor is mounted longitudinally, either for greater weight balance or just to be different - Showoff. The 'twist and go' function of the LiveWire should give it a good zero-60Mph time for 4 seconds or less, depending on power and weight. The bevel gears gives the drivetrain a distinctive sound, some have compared it to a jet turbine, some saying it sounds like a massive vacuum. Not sure what is less scary.
Harley Davidson plan for the bike to be launched in early 2019, more information and a presentation of the LiveWire be shown at Milan’s EICMA 2018 on November 6th. Harley Davidson say more models will follow this electric bike in the future, hopefully all available by 2022.
So, we now know that the end of Project LiveWire and that it will carry on, safe in the knowledge that the electric motorbike is going to be in one word - amazing. The bike itself looks amazing, the engineers have listened to the public in what they want and now we all get a bike we always wanted - even if it's a guilty pleasure - An electric Harley. Rock on!