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Harley-Davidson LiveWire’s next electric motorcycle: These are the options

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Harley-Davidson LiveWire’s subsequent electrical motorbike: These are the choices

Harley-Davidson is planning to unveil a extremely anticipated electrical motorbike subsequent month, and we’ve gone via the clues to attempt to decide what it may very well be.

For people who haven’t heard, last month Harley-Davidson announced the launch of a new all-electric motorcycle brand, LiveWire.

As an alternative of continuous to develop electrical bikes underneath the H-D badge as the corporate had finished with the original Harley-Davidson LiveWire, new electrical bikes will fall underneath this new electric-only LiveWire model.

On the time, the corporate introduced that “the primary LiveWire branded motorbike is scheduled to launch on July 8, 2021, and to premiere on the Worldwide Motorbike Present on July 9, 2021.”

Whereas we don’t know for certain what the parents in Milwaukee are planning, we will make a reasonably good guess and slender it down to 5 probably choices. Over the past couple of years we’ve watched Harley-Davidson experiment with a number of electrical fashions and prototypes of varied phases of completion. Every may very well be a probable candidate.

It began approach again in 2018 after we had been introduced to the More Roads to Harley-Davidson plan. The purpose was to discover a approach into the hearts, minds, and pocketbooks of youthful riders to assist offset the massive chunk of H-D’s demographic that was getting older out.

Included in these plans was not simply the LiveWire electrical motorbike (which was nonetheless in pre-production kind on the time), but in addition a sequence of 4 sketches of different electrical motorbikes. They included a smaller electrical motorbike with a flat tracker design mashed with city cues, an electrical path/filth bike, an electrical scooter/moped and a full-suspension electrical mountain bike. These 4 ideas (seen under within the unique H-D paintings) may maintain the perfect wager for the primary LiveWire badged car coming subsequent month.

Harley-Davidson electrical motorcycle idea designs, launched in 2018

Possibility 1: LiveWire city electrical motorbike

The $30,000 LiveWire electrical motorbike could have bought sufficient models to turn out to be the No. 1 best-selling electric motorcycle model in North America, but it surely nonetheless priced out a lot of the market – particularly vital youthful riders.

Harley by no means supposed for the LiveWire to turn out to be an enormous vendor although. It was a halo product, whose very definition is serving as a mannequin to display the technical prowess of the producer.

And whereas the excessive value of the H-D LiveWire has usually been bemoaned, the overwhelming consensus within the business is that the LiveWire is a rattling good motorbike.

That’s why it is smart for Harley to followup with a lighter, lower-cost electrical motorbike designed for the city market. The corporate can take the expertise it gained in constructing the LiveWire and apply it to a motorcycle with decrease energy and fewer vary, serving to to cut back the associated fee for a youthful and extra city demographic.

The LiveWire’s 146-mile metropolis vary and 0-60 mph time of three seconds are nice, however they’re additionally greater than most city riders want.

This theoretical little brother to the H-D LiveWire may take the type of the flat tracker-ish bike seen in two totally different Harley-Davidson design sketches (above).

Regardless of the bike borrowing from the flat observe racer world, we will see that it sports activities flip alerts and a license plate holder. These options would solely be there if the bike was destined for road use, not simply filth observe racing.

With extra light-weight city bikes just like the 80 mph and 80-mile range SONDORS Metacycle coming soon, it could make sense for Harley to enter this market early and set up itself as a pacesetter.

For comparability, the massively common SONDORS Metacycle, which is priced at simply $5,000, has a 4 kWh battery and 14.5 kW (20 hp) motor. That’s roughly 1 / 4 of the dimensions of the Harley-Davidson LiveWire’s battery and simply 18% of the LiveWire’s energy.

The Metacycle has proven that for the proper value, city riders are keen to make energy and vary sacrifices for city-focused electrical bikes.

Harley-Davidson ought to take into consideration competing with common upcoming city electrical bikes

Possibility 2: LiveWire electrical filth bike or path bike

The sunshine electrical filth bike is the primary of two unique Harley-Davidson idea electrical prototypes that we truly noticed examined in the true world.

Again in 2019, H-D took this and the scooter concept prototype to the Aspen X-Games the place they let a few athletes rip round on them as an illustration.

As you may see within the testing video under, this isn’t a high-power filth bike, however extra of a mid-power electrical path bike.

It might probably compete towards one thing like the Sur Ron Firefly or maybe the CAKE Kalk OR.

Such a product would fall someplace between high-power electrical mountain bikes and low-power filth bikes, however would additionally open the door to extra urban-adjacent driving (suppose dirt bike parks in a city the place the electrical motor would imply almost silent operation that doesn’t trouble the neighbors).

As an off-road solely car, the principle marketplace for a motorcycle like this could be non-public land house owners or these with close by path entry.

This is able to probably be a smaller marketplace for the LiveWire model, and thus I don’t suppose their first product being revealed subsequent month will goal this area of interest.

However it is extremely probably that we’ll nonetheless see this product sooner or later sooner or later.

Possibility 3: LiveWire electrical moped/scooter

Name it a “moped” in case you’d like (which is the extra acceptable authorized time period as of late for many states and DMVs) or a “scooter” in case you’re an previous fart that may’t settle for that mopeds as of late don’t have to incorporate pedals.

Both approach, that is the second Harley electrical idea that we truly noticed being examined in prototype kind.

This mannequin was additionally delivered to Aspen in 2019 the place it underwent road testing.

Not like the sunshine electrical filth bike from Possibility 2, this Harley electrical moped could be a street-legal machine designed for private transport.

The open body would provide utility and the low-power design would imply that Harley may save a heap on smaller motors and batteries.

Which may even translate into real looking costs that your common faculty scholar may afford.

This mannequin positively seems focused towards a youthful crowd. We’ve seen numerous prototypes to this point with numerous phases of match and end, however all have included considerably skateboard-like decks because the working board foot rests. The unique prototype actually used a skateboard deck sawed in half. If that doesn’t scream “Fellow children,” I don’t know what does.

harley-davidson electric scooter

At this level we do not know what the specs for such a LiveWire electrical moped is likely to be.

It might make sense to restrict the max velocity to 30 mph (48 km/h) as a result of that’s the authorized restrict for moped-class automobiles in lots of US states. With that velocity restrict, many states permit the automobiles to be registered as mopeds, no matter whether or not or not they’ve pedals, after which riders can function them with only a regular automotive driver’s license. Alternatively, there may very well be a number of fashions with totally different energy and velocity ranges to accommodate totally different riders and makes use of instances.

If LiveWire can launch what’s successfully a mini electrical motorbike that doesn’t require a bike license, that may very well be big for accessibility. Startups like Revel and Lime have proven that younger city riders are eager to commute on shared electrical mopeds. Now LiveWire may discover out if those self same riders could be thinking about shopping for one if it seemed cooler and was priced low sufficient.

In actual fact, I wrote an op-ed almost one yr in the past to the day explaining why this must be subsequent electrical motorcycle Harley releases.

I can 100% see this stuff zipping round faculty campuses or seaside cities, younger {couples} driving them collectively as enjoyable and inexpensive transportation. This may very well be for immediately’s younger adults what the Honda 50 was for my dad or mum’s technology: freedom and enjoyable on two wheels. Solely this time, it could be electrical.

Possibility 4: LiveWire electrical mountain bike

The fourth idea seen within the H-D electrical idea artwork grid is a full-suspension electrical mountain bike.

It appears to make use of an identical wanting battery to the sunshine electrical filth bike idea and even shares a number of the identical design. However its practical pedals would clearly make this a bicycle-class product.

Harley-Davidson famously developed multiple urban electric bicycles in house after which spun them off into a dedicated e-bike brand known as Serial 1.

We truly obtained the first-ever press experience to test out the e-bikes in Milwaukee last November, and they’re a masterclass in design.

Regardless of the Serial 1 e-bikes launching as robust contenders within the electrical bicycle area, we haven’t heard a single phrase about any potential full-suspension electrical mountain bikes from Harley.

The one trace that the product was ever in consideration was that unique idea artwork launched in 2018. Ever since, the product has both been on tremendous double secret lockdown or has merely not been explored additional.

I don’t suppose this one is probably going as the primary LiveWire branded product. If a Harley electrical mountain bike is coming in the future, it should nearly actually be launched underneath the Serial 1 model, not as a LiveWire product.

Possibility 5: A LiveWire LiveWire electrical motorbike

The final choice for the primary LiveWire branded product may very well be the LiveWire motorbike itself.

The 2021 bike is technically nonetheless a Harley-Davidson product and carries the H-D badge.

It theoretically may very well be rereleased underneath the brand new LiveWire model. In that case, and if it doesn’t change its identify, then it may conceivably turn out to be the LiveWire LiveWire.

That might be probably the most boring choice of all, so let’s hope that’s not what’s ready in retailer for us on July 8.

harley-davidson livewire electric motorcycle

Electrek’s take

Right here’s the place I get to put my wager.

Of all of the choices listed, I feel the LiveWire electrical moped is the most probably.

Not solely is it the choice with the bottom barrier to entry and the most important potential market, however we’ve seen hints alongside the best way that H-D has truly made stable progress on the venture.

Design filings found early final yr show what appears to be a more production-ready version of the electric moped. That’s hardly a assure although. These filings are almost a yr and a half previous now, and the venture may have been killed off since then.

I additionally occurred to have grilled Harley pretty arduous earlier this spring – maybe too arduous – for letting a Chinese motorcycle manufacturer rip off the moped concept and seem to beat H-D to market with it. So who is aware of, possibly the massive wigs in Milwaukee realized I used to be proper and that it was time to shift their moped into excessive gear (or extra probably that they had this deliberate all alongside and I simply occur to endure from delusions of grandeur).

What do you suppose? Which choice would you prefer to see Harley roll out as the primary LiveWire branded electrical motorbike? Tell us within the feedback under!

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