Get ready, all you naysayers. Harley is entering the electric vehicle space for the 2019 model year. And yes, it's still called LiveWire.
Off to a rocky start in 2014 when it was first introduced, the LiveWire has evolved and blossomed into the fully contained package you see here. The company committed to putting an electric motorcycle on the market way back in January of this year, but no one was sure then what it would be called or if there was an actual production date.
Harley-Davidson’s first electric motorcycle is a reality now, and we know it'll still be called LiveWire. We have no specs for this newest Harley electric just yet, but presumably the 2019 model will build on the somewhat lackluster rollout of the original prototype LiveWire presented in 2014. When we rode it then, the bike was able to go from 0–60 mph in under four seconds, which we thought was awesome, but it was limited to just 55 miles of range. That was four years ago, so no doubt things have changed for the better.
If this one photo is any indication, the MoCo's engineers have been putting in some serious hours, and stylists have gone overboard to package all the components tightly. The aluminum perimeter frame looks to be a similar shape to the original, though the flow is more refined and more sport-oriented than the longer, OG LiveWire. The swingarm looks tweaked, the rake appears to be a bit steeper, and the latest ’Wire also gains a fairing and some reworked body pieces while the brake discs get upgraded to dual Brembo units up front. They’re all the right tweaks from a performance standpoint. The laydown rear monoshock is still there, but now it looks adjustable too.
Harley says it’s the first in a broad, no-clutch “twist and go” portfolio of electric two-wheelers, and that LiveWire will be followed by additional models through 2022 to broaden the range with more accessible products for new riders. It’s a nod to the future and an acknowledgment that Harley has to roll with the times. And rolling it is.