LiveWire Project—Harley Davidson Electric Motorcycle Prototype
I was one of the lucky ones to be chosen to test ride the Prototype motorcycle for the Harley Davidson electric motorcycle.
This was a national tour of Harley shops across the nation….so when it was coming to my hometown i had to throw my name in the hat of eligible riders.
So i show up on a Friday morning….the HD shop had a large semi truck set up in the back with a display of new helmet visual gear, a Livewire bike set up to try for those who wanted and did or did not have a MC license…it was set up on a wheel stand so you could get it up to 60 mph.
Also, of course, a table of iPads with a survey that you can take to see what your thoughts are on the entire concept.
i did do the test bike while i was waiting for the real test ride. They had only 4 bikes to go out each trip. This was a nice number to ride in a group…one leader and a tail also.
Before the test ride we had to sign our lives away on liability forms (i always say you are not having a good time if you are not signing your life away) and then watch a short video. Then when your name was called, go over to the bike area for a short briefing on what we would actually be doing. The Harley employee told us about the controls on the bike and the route we would be taking. This route was approximately 7 miles and had a few turns, and a couple of straight sections where you could really test out the acceleration.
Looks: the bike is very sexy looking, it is more cafe racer style, then sport, cruiser or enduro. The seating position is comfortable and the height is average. The dashboard screen has large numbers and is easy to read. It shows you the power used, power left and speed. This bike also has 2 modes, one for sport performance and one for economy performance. The battery only has a life span of about 58 miles. However do keep in mind that it is a prototype.
Performance: once we took off….the acceleration was very smooth, there is no choppy clutch to fumble around with. The deceleration is almost instantaneous, so this is something to keep in mind when coming to a stop, for when to put your feet down, also when slowing up around curves or corners, as the rapid deceleration seems like it could through you off balance.
This bike is COMPLETELY silent when totally stopped, and the throttle is very touchy, so if you are at a light, i recommend to keep your right hand off the throttle completely. I consciously kept mine on the tank.
The Livewire has a very rapid acceleration and i can imagine if given the proper time and place to use its full power…not only would this be a blast, but also seems could get you in trouble.
All in all …this bike is a unique and fun ride….
I would not replace my current motorcycle with it, however to have it for a fun in town zip, would be great.
I would not return it, if it showed up in my garage!
Also note…one of the riders that was on the test ride before mine, went down from hitting the throttle in a turn to much…due to this “crash” the street had to be closed down and HazMat crews were sent in for battery cleanup. Apparently the battery was cracked and was completely unstable and therefore quite dangerous. So something to keep in mind, if you own this bike and drop it…your EPA bills could be very costly. By the way the guy who crashed is fine.
I was happy to be able to participate in this event and take such a unique and extraordinary motorcycle for a test ride.
for the love of 2 wheels…
Specs and history:
Project LiveWire website: