Harley-Davidson is an 111-year-old American motorcycle brand steeped in heritage. Its classic chopper-style design is popular the world over. However, in recent years it has diversified its offering to appeal to a wider audience. New designs, including Project Rushmore touring bikes and the Street 500 and 750 models, reveal a departure from its design roots. Enter the next stage of this reinvention: Project LiveWire. The LiveWire electric motorcycle looks like a Harley-Davidson in terms of styling but instead of the traditional V-twin engine, it’s powered by an electric motor.

The aim of LiveWire is 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. 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,” explains Mark-Hans Richer, senior vice president and chief marketing officer, Harley-Davidson.

But many motorcyclists know and love Harley-Davidson’s for the roar of their engines. Would this not be lost with an electric motor? According to the manufacturer, it may not be the same sound but the new sound will not disappoint.

“The sound is a distinct part of the thrill. 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,” adds Richer.

Although the concept has been designed by the Harley-Davidson design team, as part of its customer-led product development approach, customers will be able to ride the bike themselves and provide feedback that could lead to further tweaks to the design. As such, a US tour is kicking off with the concept visiting more than 30 Harley-Davidson dealerships until the end of this year.

In 2015, this Project LiveWire Experience will expand into Canada and Europe. However, those unable to get to see the bike first hand, can still ‘trial’ it though a simulated riding experience called Jumpstart.

“We offer a no-excuses riding experience in everything we do and we are led by what our customers tell us matters most,” says 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.”

Check out more information regarding dates and locations for the Project LiveWire Experience.

 

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