Electric-Powered Harley-Davidson Coming?

Are you ready for this? Harley-Davidson is on track to offer an electric-powered motorcycle.

Today the maker of heavy iron from Milwaukee revealed its Project LiveWire, the first Harley-Davidson electric motorcycle.

Starting next week, select consumers across the U.S. will be able to ride and provide feedback on the electric bike, helping to shape the future of its first-ever electric motorcycle, said Harley-Davidson.

While not immediately for sale, Project LiveWire is specifically designed for the purposes of getting insight into rider expectations of an electric Harley-Davidson motorcycle, continued the company.

“America at its best has always been about reinvention,” said Matt Levatich, President and Chief Operating Officer, Harley-Davidson Motor Company. “And, like America, Harley-Davidson has reinvented itself many times in our history, with Customers leading us every step of the way. Project LiveWire is another exciting, Customer-led moment in our history.”

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Spurred by this heritage, say the promoters, the Project LiveWire Experience invites people to test ride, provide feedback, and learn more about the story of the motorcycle. Even those who don’t yet ride will have the opportunity to experience the bike through the Jumpstart demo, which is a simulated riding experience, explained Harley-Davidson.

The company said a 2014 U.S. tour – kicking off with a journey down Route 66 – will visit more than 30 Harley-Davidson dealerships between now and the end of the year. In 2015, the Project LiveWire Experience will continue in the U.S. and expand into Canada and Europe.

“This builds on many recent reinvention successes for Harley-Davidson.” said Levatich. “In just the last few years, we’ve broadened our reach to serve an increasingly diverse society, as well as reinvented our approach to product development and manufacturing. This has resulted in cutting-edge products like the recently launched Project Rushmore, Street 500, and Street 750 [models], and this reveal of Project LiveWire.”

Harley-Davidson stated this exciting new ride blends the styling heritage of the Company with the latest technology to deliver a new expression of the signature Harley-Davidson look, sound, and feel.

“Project LiveWire is more like the first electric guitar – not an electric car,” said Mark-Hans Richer, Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer, Harley-Davidson Motor Company. “It’s an expression of individuality and iconic style that just happens to be electric. Project LiveWire is a bold statement for us as a Company and a Brand.”

The bike is said to offer a visceral riding experience with tire-shredding acceleration and an unmistakable new sound.

“The sound is a distinct part of the thrill,” said Richer. “Think fighter jet on an aircraft carrier. Project LiveWire’s unique sound was designed to differentiate it from internal combustion and other electric motorcycles on the market.”

The motorcycle company explained longer term plans for Retail availability of Project LiveWire will be influenced by feedback from riders along the Project Livewire Experience tour.

“We offer a no excuses riding experience in everything we do and we are led by what our Customers tell us matters most,” said Richer. “Because electric vehicle technology is evolving rapidly, we are excited to learn more from riders through the Project LiveWire Experience to fully understand the definition of success in this market as the technology continues to evolve.”

A dedicated website allows fans to learn more about Project LiveWire, as well as specific dates and locations for Project LiveWire Experience stops.