Harley-Davidson showcases first-ever electric motorcycle

By on June 19, 2014, 11:15 AM
harley davidson, electric motorcycle, motorcycle, electric motor, bike

Iconic motorcycle maker Harley-Davidson on Thursday revealed an ambitious project called LiveWire, the company’s first-ever electric motorcycle.

The bike packs a three-phase induction motor with an output of 55 kW, or just under 74 horsepower in traditional terms. With 52 lb-ft on tap, it’s enough to propel the electric Harley from 0-60 in just four seconds.

Range, however, isn’t so stellar at just 50 miles. But keep in mind that we’re talking about a concept device here. Should it ultimately make it to market, Harley will no doubt look to improve on this figure if they want riders to take the bike seriously.

If you haven't already figured out, the bike isn’t for sale just yet. Instead, the company will use LiveWire to get insight into rider expectations of an electric Harley. Starting next week, select consumers across the country will get the opportunity to ride the electric hog and provide feedback about the experience to help craft future models.

Marketing an electric bike to a customer base that’s described by Autoweek as half Hell’s Angel and half weekend-warrior poser could be a steep proposition. After all, the brand has earned a reputation for aggressive exhaust tones and the like.

A bike that sounds less like a gas-guzzling monster and more like a fighter jet on an aircraft carrier – Harley’s description, not mine – may not appeal to the same audience, but then again, maybe they are after an entirely different market with LiveWire.

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