Review of Harley-Davidson LiveWire 2020: plugged in
Harley-Davidson surprised many in 2014 when he posted information about his LiveWire Project, The Motor Company's first electric motorcycle. More than 12,000 people around the world built and tested thirty-three demonstration bikes.
Harley took that information and completed the final design of its LiveWire production, which is presented as a 2020 model. Harley-Davidson says that the production version is 100% different from the Project LiveWire version.
HD unveiled the production version during the 2018 Milan Motorcycle Show (EICMA), and anticipation began to test a very unexpected creation of a company known for its 45-degree V-twins and the demographics of the largest purchaser. age.
We headed to Portland, Oregon, to ride the Harley LiveWire. Here are the quick facts.
1. Riding an electric motorcycle is something everyone should experience, especially at the 2020 Harley-Davidson LiveWire. I have driven EV bikes before, although not at the performance level provided by the LiveWire. LiveWire provides a perfect acceleration experience, with all the power available immediately. This, coupled with the lack of clutch, gear shifting and multiple gears, creates a truly unique driving experience. Just twist and go.
2. Once you stop grasping the clutch or gear lever, you can really commit to the moment. It's a time when there's almost no noise, except those around you, whether it's a squirrel crunching through the leaves on the road near an intersection of back roads, or a couple arguing in the middle of the corner .
3. When it flows with the fixed accelerator, it is as close as it can fly, not to fly inside a mechanical machine, but to a bird. The LiveWire produces some whining when accelerating and lowering the motor brake. The seat belt sometimes sounds like a quick screech from a police siren just behind (I was worried twice!).
4. The 15.5kWh lithium-ion battery has a claimed range of 146 miles from the city range: 70 miles of sustained use of 70 mph on the highway and 95 miles of urban and combined highway driving. I rode about 65 miles, with most of those miles in energetic non-urban environments and had 19 miles left in the load. For the intended market of city travelers, this range presents no problems. As for weekend excursions as you travel the roads at a faster pace, passengers should plan their trips around the charging stations.
5. The LiveWire has fast charging technology. Owners can move from a zero charge to a 100 percent load in a Level 3 station in an hour, or an 80 percent load in 40 minutes. The LiveWire includes a load that uses the typical 120V household outlet and stores under the seat. The load takes much more time, more than 10 hours for a full charge. Harley-Davidson says the solution here is to treat the motorcycle as a cell phone and charge it every night after use. For those who require a quick charge at home, an electrician can install a 240 V Level 3 system.
6. The LiveWire has 105 horsepower and 86 feet / pounds of torque at 0 rpm. Yes, all the power is available immediately, which helps speed up this Harley EV from 0 to 60 mph in 3 seconds and from 60 to 80 mph in 1.9 seconds. Of course, the software fills in the response to make the motor usable. The EV motor is called Revelation by Harley-Davidson and is an internal permanent magnet synchronous motor with water jacket cooling. It rotates up to 15,000 rpm. Harley-Davidson claims a top speed of 110 mph, although I saw 116 mph.
7. The throttle response is sharp and provides a large amount of instantaneous energy. When driving through fast corners or slow traffic in the city, I was able to control delivery without problems. When lowering the accelerator, the battery enters regeneration mode. This adds a charge to the battery to add range. Important for the driving experience, the regeneration mode adds engine braking.
8. The 2020 Harley-Davidson LiveWire weighs 549 pounds, although it feels much lighter. The battery itself is 250 pounds, which on paper looks like it could cause some imbalance problems. Harley-Davidson designed the motorcycle to optimize the center of gravity. Although it seems that the massive battery could cause some uncomfortable driving problems, that could not be further from the truth. The weight of the LiveWire is imperceptible, even at slow maneuvering speeds through parking traffic.
9. Other sports drivers can demolish the LiveWire on the straights, but in very twisted sections, this motorcycle will have zero problems. The torque is always there, and without worrying about the changes, users can stay more focused on the task at hand, having fun.
10. Harley-Davidson was completely premium with electronics in the LiveWire 2020, which includes a six-axis IMU. It has what H-D calls the Reflex Defensive Riding System, a set of technology that optimizes traction during acceleration, deceleration and braking, and everything is available during cornering. I tried to break the loose back in some wetter corners and stepped on the brakes at some model city emergency stops. The mounting aid systems work exactly as they should, and with little detection of participation. ABS is not switchable, although traction control can be overcome with the push of a button while stopping. I turned off the traction control because I constantly felt the need to smoke the rear wheel: it is an extraordinary feeling when you see smoke and do not hear the noise.
The integration of the following electronic components is perfect, even when commercial names are uncomfortable:
- Improved anti-lock braking system in curves (C-ABS): the brake pressure required to initiate wheel slip when the curves are typically lower than the pressure required in a straight line operation. This system is adjusted for that.
- Mitigation of rear wheel lift: this system uses the C-ABS sensors and the six-axis inertial measurement unit (IMU) to manage the rear wheel lift during intense braking and a further deceleration of the balance and control of the rear wheels. user.
- Improved traction control system in curves (C-TCS): designed to prevent the rear wheel from turning excessively when accelerating or turning in curves.
- Drag-and-Torque Sliding Control System (DSCS): designed to control the slippage of the rear wheels and prevent locking of the rear wheels during regenerative braking, which may occur when the driver slows down on wet or slippery surfaces, variation of the electric motor in the clutch concept of the shoe.
11. The 2020-Harley-Davidson LiveWire with four driving modes (Sport, Road, Rain, Range) and personal modes that can be fully customized. Sport is an undeniable favorite, as it provides high levels of engine braking and minimal amounts of TC and ABS. Surely you can feel the differences between the modes, especially between Sport and Range. The range is an economical mode with a smoother acceleration response and more regenerative motor braking. The customization of the maps is simple due to the touch-sensitive 4.3-inch TFT color board. For example, adjustment of the traction control is done by simply sweeping a finger from low to high.
12. Ergonomics is typical of a naked sports bike in a vertical position, the LiveWire places it in a slightly forward-leaning position. It is enough for sports ergos, but not enough to put weight on the wrists while driving. The handlebars are wide, which helps easy maneuverability during slower parking speeds and in city traffic. The configuration was comfortable for my frame of almost six feet and a seam of 32 inches, although long stretches of miles would make me move a bit to be comfortable. The 30.7-inch-tall seat allows limited movement during longer trips. Once again, this motorcycle is optimized for city driving.
13. Harley was also premium with the Showa suspension components, which helped in the acute and sporty handling. The LiveWire has a 43 mm inverted separate function fork – large piston (SFF-BP) and a non-equilibrium rear shock absorber (BFRC-lite). I did not feel the need to adjust the suspension, although it was a bit harder in the most turbulent sections of the city. The chassis maintains a clear line during cornering, and is stable in case of intense braking and acceleration.
14. Michelin Scorcher Sport tires are also attributed to stellar handling, allowing an easy turn due to their high-performance sidewall design. Footwear on five-spoke wheels made of cast aluminum 17 inches that look very good like Marchesini, the sizes are 120/70 and 180/55. This means you will have many options available if the Michelin does not meet your needs.
15. Harley-Davidson chose the Brembo brakes for the LiveWire. A monobloc four-piston caliper tightens a 300mm disc in the front, and a two-piston caliper on the back modulates the 260mm rear disc. The front brake has an easy pull of the brake lever and an accurate hitch for smooth braking. Speaking of the latter, I quickly stopped track braking, and relied on the regenerative engine to slow down the bike when cornering. The LiveWire chassis sits fast, which allows me to maintain a smooth line in the corners before or after braking hard.
16. Although electric, Harley includes a "Haptic Pulse" that reminds pilots that there is still a Harley engine under them. Activated by the magnets in the Revelation engine, the LiveWire emits a subtle pulse, like a heartbeat that lets you know that the engine is really alive. Remember to push your friend's rear tire at a stop? This is how it feels: someone is tapping the back of the bicycle when you sit in a light or at any other stop. You can deactivate it through your dealer or configure it in high or low pulsation. The haptic pulse stops once it circulates and only feels while standing to reproduce a sensation of inactivity. It is a good reminder that the engine is running.
17. Some do not like the look of a large battery inside a motorcycle, so the Harley-Davidson design team focuses on the engine under the battery through some sleek lines and the silver background of the motorcycle. engine. The tailpiece is sporty and clean, especially the bar that appears as a horseshoe on the rear tire and connects to the swingarm. This maintains the brake light, license plate and rear turn signals; The skinny brake light is especially attractive. Seeing the LiveWire from behind, I would never recognize that it was a Harley-Davidson, it seems more European than American. The LED lights add more to this European aspect, especially the rear brake light, the headlight and the front turn signals. The LiveWire seems to have a gas tank, although that area serves as the location of the cargo port. When plugged in, the plug is where the fuel would traditionally be filled.
19. The LiveWire is compatible with H-D Connect, which allows you to download an application (iOS or Android) and connect the motorcycle directly to the application. The application allows brokers to check several operations:
- State of the motorcycle (battery status and available range, driving mode, driving statistics)
- Improved security (location of the bicycle, if someone is manipulating it, suspects a stolen alert)
- State of charge and notifications (percentage of battery charge, locations of the level 3 charging station)
- Service reminders and notifications.
20. Harley-Davidson has not provided any production numbers. Starting in September, the LiveWire 2020 will be available at 250 authorized dealers around the world, with 150 of them in the United States. Each of these dealers will have a minimum of one mechanic and trained LiveWire salesperson, along with a free Tier 3 loading station.
21. Harley-Davidson says that the LiveWire battery has an unlimited mileage warranty for five years. H-D says that the longevity of the battery is ten years, depending on how much it is used. In addition, the LiveWire comes with 500 kW of free charge in the fast charging stations of Electrify America, although it only has two years to use it.
22. Like the technology and the chassis, the price is also higher: the Harley-Davidson LiveWire 2020 sells for $ 29,799 (MSPR).
23. When addressing the typical EV buyer, think about the typical Tesla owner's culture, Harley-Davidson made it. Harley-Davidson unapologetically markets the LiveWire to a new demographic group of well-off brokers: those with diversity in mostly urban areas who are willing to go against the status quo. The Harley-Davidson LiveWire 2020 is designed for potential customers with other luxury items in their lives, such as clothing, homes with technology and, of course, four-wheel EVs. This premium motorcycle does what it takes and has the power and comfort enough to appease different levels of driving, from commuting in the city to the energetic tearing of cannons.
- Helmet: Shoei GT Air
- Jacket: Roland Sands Ronin
- Gloves: Racer Guide
- Jeans: Alpinestars Crank
- Base layers: Woodcraft Stay Dry
- Boots: Alpinestars Oscar Rayburn.
Specifications of Harley-Davidson LiveWire 2020
Seat height, loaded / unloaded
30 in. (761 mm) / 30.7 in. (780 mm)
Michelin® Scorcher® "Sport"
Tires, front specification
Tires, rear specification
Classification of gross vehicle weight
Classification of gross weight of the axle, front
Classification of gross weight of the axle, rear
Spiral conical gear, ratio 55/17
Gear ratio (general) 1st (* Cert) (X.XXX)
Separate inverted function forks SHOWA® 43 mm – Big Piston (SFF-BP®), fully adjustable
SHOWA® unbalanced rear cushion (BFRC-lite®), fully adjustable
Cast aluminum divided with 5 black spokes
Wheels, Front Dia. / Width
17 in. (432 mm) / 3.5 in. (89 mm)
Wheels, rear day. / Width
17 in. (432 mm) / 5.5 in. (140 mm)
Monobloc double front frame with 4 pistons, two piston rear
Double floating rotors (front), floating rotors (rear)
Brakes, Front Diameter / Thickness
11.8 in. (300 mm) / 0.2 in. (5 mm)
Brakes, Rear Diameter / Thickness
10.2 in. (260 mm) / 0.2 in. (5 mm)
Brakes, anti-lock braking system (ABS)
Suspension Travel, front / rear
4.5 in. (115 mm) / 4.5 in. (115 mm)
Lean angle test method
Inclined angle, right / left (degrees)
Lithium ion, 12.8 V, 24 Wh, 120 A
DC to DC conversion on board
Lights (according to country regulations), lighthouse
All LED, low beam, high beam and signature position light.
Lights (according to country regulations), Cola / Alto
Lights (according to country regulations), Front Signal Lights
Lights (according to country regulations), Indicator lamps
High light, turn signals, ABS, traction control, EV fault
Lights, rear indicators
Color screen TQ WQVGA 480 × 272 4.3 "with ambient light sensor, 9 warning lights, real time clock and integrated Bluetooth connectivity to a smartphone to provide infotainment functions including step by step navigation, telephone, music and speech recognition.
USB type C; Output 5V to 3A
EV Specific content: Motor
Synchronous internal permanent magnet motor with water jacket cooling
EV Specific content: RESS
Total 15.5kWh, 13.6kWh usable min
Specific Content EV: Load
Combined input SAE J1772 (CCS1) / Combined IEC 62196 input (CCS2)
Charger on board, charge rate
AC wall charging time (not verified)
Target – Full load in 12.5 hrs.
Fast DC charge time (not verified)
Target – Full load in 1.0 hr
Specific Content EV: Range
Highway (70 mph sustained)
WMTC (world motorcycle test cycle)
Hands-free mobile phone – via Bluetooth
Voice recognition languages: phone functions only
Through paired iOS or Android devices
Voice recognition languages: Tuner / Media / Navigation
Through paired iOS or Android devices