02/09/2018 / By David Williams
You have probably already heard plenty about the many electric cars that will start hitting public roads at some point in the near future. The designs of these cars draw some inspiration from current gasoline-based cars, which is to say that the old models you may know and love could be adapted to electric vehicles with changes in the right places. So why hasn’t the same been done to motorcycles yet?
At least one prominent motorcycle company has been doing just that. Harley-Davidson has announced that it has ramped up its internal launch schedule for the world’s first electric Harley, and at the current rate of progress, they should be finished and ready to release it in the next 18 months. This is according to a news release posted on the official Harley-Davidson website, titled, “Harley-Davidson Announces Fourth Quarter, Full-year 2017 Results.” Although it is mainly about the company’s earnings, it has a section in it that talks about their upcoming all-electric motorcycle.
The yet-to-be-named Harley-Davidson electric motorcycle doesn’t have any features that are known to the public just yet, but it is highly expected to be based on LiveWire electric motorcycle concept first showcased by Harley-Davidson itself back in 2014, when it was taken on tour to gather customer reactions. In 2017, the company said that it planned to launch an electric motorcycle by 2021, but based on their most recent news announcement, it’s clear that their engineers are going to deliver much sooner than that.
The company notes in its news announcement that it is planning to “invest more aggressively in leading in the application of electric motorcycle technology” to basically attract new customers. Matt Levatich, Harley-Davidson president and CEO, also said as much in a statement. “Our actions to address the current environment through disciplined supply and cost management position us well as we drive to achieve our long-term objectives to build the next generation of Harley-Davidson riders globally,” he said.
Talking specifically about the electric vehicle (EV) market, Levatich said that there would be most likely a huge role for Harley-Davidson to play in it. “The EV motorcycle market is in its infancy today, but we believe premium Harley-Davidson electric motorcycles will help drive excitement and participation in the sport globally,” he explained. “As we expand out EV capabilities and commitment, we get even more excited about the role electric motorcycles will play in growing our business.”
An electric motorcycle is expected to bring about many benefits, not just to the riders that will be using them but also to the environment. Of course, the elimination of a gas-guzzling motor unit will take away any resulting exhaust fumes as well. The electricity needed to power them can also be drawn from renewable energy sources, which could theoretically be installed in various charging stations that could simply be made available to riders along the way inroads, much like gas stations today.
Other more obvious changes to motorcycles that will be apparent in electric models include the removal or reduction of mechanical components since much of it can be made electronic. Electric motorcycles are also likely to be so quiet that they might as well be completely silent. Until the first real prototypes or Release-To-Market units finally roll around, it’s hard to say for sure what the Harley-Davidson electric motorcycle can or can’t do for now. But if the company is to be believed, then all will be revealed in only one year and a half.
Find out more interesting electricity-powered machines at Inventions.news.