Harley Davidson readies first electric motorbike for market
Finally. Four years after the LiveWire project, Harley Davidson confirms that an electric motorcycle is to hit the road for real. The latest strategy strengthens electrification and the first electric Harley is to go on sale within the next 18 months.
The news of an all-electric Harvey came amid the announcement of the Q4/2017 results. The company stated that Harley Davidson “will invest more aggressively to lead in the application of electric motorcycle technology.” The first electric motorcycle to come out of this new strategy will hit the market “within 18 months.” That is mid-2019.
What kind of electric Harley it will remains open. Matt Levatich, president and CEO of Harley-Davidson, would not confirm whether the bike would build on the Livewire project. He made more common place arguments such as “premium Harley-Davidson electric motorcycles will help drive excitement and participation in the sport globally. As we expand our EV capabilities and commitment, we get even more excited about the role electric motorcycles will play in growing our business.”
Levatich saw the potential years ago though. Back in 2014, Harley’s first electric motorcycle Livewire took the market by storm. Or could have. Set up as a test ballon by Harley, the electric motorbike never made it onto the shelves. Instead a few working prototypes were built and toured the States but that was it.
Despite the enthusiasm, Harley Davidson did not feel the technology was up to their standards. Still in 2016, the company said good enough batteries would be 5 years away as they aim for 150 km range on one charge at least (we reported).
What new technology will feature in the production electric Harley Davidson remains yet to be seen. But with Levatich wanting his company to be on the leading edge of technology, it is likely to be exciting when Harley Davidson replaces wroom wroom by humm humm. Is anyone else thinking of a new movie called Easy Glider?!
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