Harley Davidson joins electric vehicle revolution
21 August, 2018
Harley Davidson has unveiled their first ever electric motorcycles, in a sign of a major shake-up at the legendary manufacturer.
Last month, the US firm launched five new electric motorbikes, alongside a new electric bicycle, in what appears to be a significant change of direction.
The launch comes hot on the heels of the company’s recently-released Q2 report, which shows domestic sales fell 6.4% year-on-year.
But Harley Davidson hopes its move into electric bikes will prove a fruitful strategy, as it looks to respond to widespread changes across the transportation market.
Matt Levatich, CEO, called the new models “lightweight, urban” transportation products designed to appeal to “young adults, globally, living in dense urban spaces.”
But he was quick to defend the move from critics who have accused the firm of deserting a customer base invested in classic bikes and their full-size Harley Davidsons.
Mr Levatich said: “We are not running away from our core.”
Indeed, the move isn’t completely out of the blue after Harley Davidson announced its LiveWire electric prototype back in 2014, before investing in electric motorcycle company Alta Motors earlier this year.
The new electric bikes, which will be on sale in 2022, are the latest models to enter the increasingly lively EV market.
Earlier this week Elon Musk, billionaire CEO of Tesla Motors, revealed details of what could be expected from the innovative manufacturer.
In an interview with YouTuber Marques Brownlee, Mr Musk admitted that production of a cheaper electric vehicle is possible but not likely from the American firm.
He said: “To get ultimately to something like a $25,000 (£19,500) car, that’s something we could do, but that’s probably three years away if we work really hard.
“In order to make cars more affordable, you need high volume and economies of scale. Because the other car companies make a lot more cars than we do, they’ve got way better economies of scales that we do.”
What are your thoughts on popular classic car and classic bike brands looking at moving in to the electric vehicle market?