Livewire ‘a couple of years’ from release

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Harley-Davidson boss Matt Levatich has officially said that their bold electric roadster, dubbed Livewire, will not make it into production for at least another couple of years due to current battery technology constraints.

Levatich is the recently appointed CEO of Harley-Davidson and has taken over near to the end of a year-long global demonstration of the Livewire, which has seen more than 30 bikes undertake nearly 7000 test rides.

But while the Livewire shows potential for Harley-Davidson to enter the electric bike market for the first time, Levatich has said the company is content to sit back and let others take the lead while the American company concentrates on its core business.

Speaking to the Wall Street Journal, Levatich said there is no imminent planned launch for Livewire “in the next couple years but it’s not past 2020 either, unless we run into some impossible barrier.”

Improvements to battery technology to extend the Livewire’s range to a minimum of 100 miles are needed before the firm will commit to production.

Harley have been recruiting electrical engineers in the R&D departments over the previous six months, indicating that they are serious about an electric future, but Levatich added: “Will we get to that Nirvana that customers say they want? Probably not. Will we get close enough? I believe we will.”

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Andy Downes

By Andy Downes

Former MCN Senior Reporter