Harley Announces Details Of New 2019 LiveWire Electric Bike At EICMA | Motorcycle Cruiser
Courtesy of Harley-Davidson
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Harley Announces Details Of New 2019 LiveWire Electric Bike At EICMA

The Motor Company drops some more in-depth info on the soon-to-be-released electric bike

In a year of what feels like dozens of course-changing and earth-shattering announcements issuing forth from Milwaukee, H-D has added even more fuel to the fire with the European debut of the all-new LiveWire electric bike at the 2018 EICMA Show in Milan. Sure, we've seen the bike already in the States, but The Motor Company has also tossed out a few more juicy details for the upcoming model, which is set to be released in just a few months' time.

It’s teased us throughout the year with multiple pronouncements before finally unveiling a built motorcycle in Milwaukee at the company's 115th anniversary back in August, and now many of the eagerly awaited specifications on LiveWire are here at last.

2019 Harley-Davidson LiveWire

The 2019 Harley-Davidson LiveWire will be released in January 2019.

Courtesy of Harley-Davidson

The first spark behind H-D's electric motorcycle began with Project LiveWire, first revealed as a prototype in 2014 meant to gauge the potential of Harley's idea of an electric-powered motorcycle in the market. But LiveWire didn't get the actual production go-ahead until the company's announcement of an accelerated rider-building strategy (“More Roads To Harley-Davidson”) in July of 2018. And then, we finally saw a built motorcycle in Milwaukee at the company's 115th anniversary back in August.

The bike in EICMA appeared as a production-ready motorcycle, and Harley says it's looking to deliver a full portfolio of electric motorcycles by 2022. During the presentation, Vice President of Product Planning and Portfolio Marc McAllister revealed the finer details about the first electric two-wheeler from Harley-Davidson.

2019 Harley-Davidson LiveWire motor

The permanent magnet motor is mounted longitudinally under the frame to keep the center of gravity low.

Courtesy of Harley-Davidson

So what about that electric powerplant? Turns out it's a permanent magnet electric motor that produces torque the instant that throttle is twisted, no clutch or shifting required. The LiveWire's motor sits low in the frame to shift the center of gravity and improve handling at any speed, and because there's none of the rumble you'd find with an ICE, the bike is designed to emit a tone that increases in volume with speed. In a world of annoyingly quiet Priuses, it's a nice touch. Supporting the motor is a RESS (Rechargeable Energy Storage System, or the main battery) composed of lithium-ion cells surrounded by a finned, cast aluminum housing.

2019 Harley-Davidson LiveWire

The motor is also a stressed member in a rigid aluminum frame.

Courtesy of Harley-Davidson

The powertrain is complemented by an aluminum frame, in which the motor is also a stressed member, thereby increasing rigidity. Suspending the LiveWire's form is a premium, fully adjustable Showa system, consisting of a BFRC-lite (Balanced Free Rear Cushion-lite) monoshock rear and an SFF-BP (Separate Function Fork-Big Piston) up front, which has been tuned to balance the rear shock and deliver superior low-speed damping.

2019 Harley-Davidson LiveWire suspension

Big news here are the fully adjustable Showa suspension components, both front and rear, both tuned to complement each other.

Courtesy of Harley-Davidson

Of course, you have to control the whoa too, and for that the LiveWire is outfitted with Brembo Monoblock front brake calipers and dual 300mm discs, all enhanced with an Antilock Braking System (ABS) and Traction Control System (TCS)—both are standard features.

2019 Harley-Davidson LiveWire brakes

Brembo Monoblocks act on big dual discs, with ABS and Traction Control as standard equipment.

Courtesy of Harley-Davidson

Tech components go hand in hand with electric-anything, and here it's a color touchscreen TFT display above the handlebar to give the rider a wide range of information and allow access to Bluetooth connectivity, navigation, music, and more. The LiveWire can also be further dialed in with seven selectable riding modes—four of which are set from the factory and three that can be selected by the user. The LiveWire is also equipped with a small 12-volt lithium-ion battery to run the lights, controls, horn, and display. Charging is done via an on-board Level 1 charger that plugs into a standard household outlet, and all Harley dealers who sell the LiveWire will offer a public charging station.

2019 Harley-Davidson LiveWire cockpit

A color touchscreen display above the handlebar is tilt-adjustable and offers riding info and access to navigation, music, and more.

Courtesy of Harley-Davidson

The focal point on any given Harley model is invariably the glittering V-twin engine, and the LiveWire is no different—except that it has no V-twin engine. But with its eye-catching case and muscular shape, it's obvious the electric motor still is the main focus of this Harley too. To define it even more, the cast aluminum case for the RESS has been styled with functional cooling fins, and even the bodywork looks like it's made of anodized metal.

2019 Harley-Davidson LiveWire fairing

The bodywork is finished with an advanced paint technology to give the look of anodized metal.

Courtesy of Harley-Davidson

The all-new Harley-Davidson LiveWire will be on sale next year, and further details, more product information, and details of the pre-order process and pricing are to be released January 2019.

2019 Harley-Davidson LiveWire front

From the front, the LiveWire looks equal parts menacing robot and rider-friendly commuter.

Courtesy of Harley-Davidson

2019 Harley-Davidson LiveWire

Harley has styled its electric bike to be visually interesting and it sure doesn’t look like anything else we’ve seen out of Milwaukee.

Courtesy of Harley-Davidson