Harley-Davidson’s approach to electric vehicles makes for an interesting case study in branding. After spinning off its e-bike division – which is now called Serial 1 – the firm has now decided it will also sell its electric motorbikes under a different name.
“This is not the founder-led start-up that has no history,” said Harley-Davidson chief executive, Jochen Zeitz. “This is a [more than 100]-year-old company with a solid management team that is spinning off a business that we believe in.
“When it comes to product testing or the infrastructure manufacturing supply chain, all of that is daily business for us and has been for over 100 years, and I think that is a big differentiator from those companies that haven’t done this before.”
An electric motorbike model known as the LiveWire was first displayed to the media in 2014. The bike finally went on sale in 2019.
The LiveWire One followed earlier this year and dropped the Harley-Davidson name. Its US price tag of $21,999 is roughly half that of its predecessor. The bike is due for a European launch next year.
LiveWire’s ‘roadmap’ shows plans to follow the Livewire One with the Livewire S2, a middleweight bike; the Livewire S3, a lightweight bike closer in spec to an e-moped; and the Livewire S4, a heavyweight model.