Taking a major departure from its very traditional V-twin motorcycle line up is Harley-Davidson (H-D) with release on specifications for its first electric motorcycle, the 2019 Harley-Davidson Livewire. First shown as a prototype in 2014, the Livewire will go on sale in January 2019, the first of a range of H-D electric motorcycles (e-bike) by 2022.

Using a permanent magnet electric motor that produces torque from zero rpm – H-D neglected to announce any performance numbers – Livewire is said to handle well at all speeds with performance and range targetted at the urban street rider. Electrical power is stored in lithium-ion cells surrounded by a finned, cast-aluminum housing.

A separate 12-Volt lithium-ion battery provides power for lights, controls, horn and instrument display. Charging is done via the on-board Level 1 charger located below the seat or a Level 2 or 3 DC Fast Charge (DCFC) charger.

Styling on Livewire is rather more like a motorcycle than the traditional H-D cruiser, with lines mimicking H-D’s Sportster range. Suspension and braking is brought into the modern era with adjustable Showa SFF-BP front forks, Showa BFRC monoshock and Brembo radial-mounted Monobloc front brakes clamping 300 mm diameter twin discs.

Standard on the 2019 Harley-Davidson Livewire electric motorcycle is a touchscreen full-colour TFT-LCD display which is tilt-adjustable for optimal viewing angle that comes with Bluetooth connectivity. Also standard equipment on Livewire is ABS and traction control with seven riding modes – four factory settings and three custom modes.