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Harley-Davidson Allows Riders To Test New LiveWire Electric Motorcycle

Chaparral Motorsports
December 19, 2014
Harley-Davidson Project LiveWire

Harley-Davidson is often known for its brute and heavy-duty cruiser motorcycles, but the manufacturer surprised many in the industry after it released its new electric motorcycle prototype, Gas 2 reported.

The Harley-Davidson LiveWire shocked many of the Japanese original equipment manufacturers by presenting the U.S. market with an American-made electric bike. Of all motorcycle manufacturers, many experts would pick Harley-Davidson as one of the last to jump on the electric motorcycle market.

However, Harley-Davidson toured the nation and showed up at events like the International Motorcycle Show in Long Beach, California, to let riders test out the new LiveWire. The company allowed riders to take the LiveWire for a demo run through the Long Beach area, which shows how nimble and versatile the lightweight bike is for city riding, the source cited.

Harley-Davidson Project LiveWireThe power delivery is much smoother than fuel-powered motorcycles since the bike dons an electric powertrain that was developed by Harley-Davidson and Mission Motors as well. According to the source, the regenerative breaking also gives the motorcycle a smooth ride, and people new to electric motorcycles are learning about what the breaking system actually does for riders.

The system needs a delicate throttle roll off, but the strong breaking system is extremely smooth on a variation of speeds. According to Motorcycle USA, the ride feels solid and keeps that element of the burley Harley-Davidson. The natural-feeling ride could be a great introduction to newer riders when compared to its much louder, more powerful and vibrating gasoline-powered Harley-Davidson relatives.

LiveWire Set For Hollywood Cameo

Harley-Davidson Project LiveWire

According to the BBC, the LiveWire will join other Harley-Davidson motorcycles featured in Marvel Comics films, as Black Widow's ride in the newest film Avengers: Age of Ultron, set to be released in May 2015. The sleek black and silver bike has a 74-horsepower engine and 52 pound-feet of torque, which can get the bike to speeds of 60 mph in less than four seconds.

What will surprise most riders is its lack of a multi-ratio transmission. The LiveWire is a single-speed motorcycle that can reach around 60 miles in a single ride as of right now, but the design of the bike is still a prototype. That's why Harley-Davidson is letting riders take the LiveWire for a spin - to find out what range they would prefer and how much they'd pay for those extra miles. According to Gas 2, as of right now, the bike could fit a larger battery in its chassis, but that could take away some of its lightweight appeal.

Harley-Davidson Project LiveWireThere are still a lot of specs about the motorcycle that have yet to be released by the manufacturer. There's still no weight listed, but the majority of riders that have tested the LiveWire say it's extremely nimble and lightweight.

Harley-Davidson is still tweaking its newest bike and hasn't released a price range yet. According to the BBC, the company is attempting to move its heritage of gasoline-fueled bikes into a new generation of electric bike enthusiasts.

Harley-Davidson LiveWire Image Gallery

(Click for full size images)

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