Dirt Legal. Harley electric dirt bike

Dirt Legal

View Original

Trade BRAAPs for Zaps with the Honda CR Electric Dirt Bike

This post was created in conjunction with our sister site, GritShift. Specializing in electric dirt bikes from Sur Ron, Segway, Talaria, and more, GritShift’s in-house RD team designs and builds quality components in addition to stocking riding gear and complete e-bikes for the electric future. Check us out at GritShift.com.

At the 2019 Tokyo Motorcycle Show, Honda released their CR Electric dirt bike concept. It’s taken several names since then, but a promising sign is that it hasn’t gone away yet.

In numerous YouTube videos, you can get a glimpse of the Honda CR Electric dirt bike in action, but we wanted to take a closer look at what to expect. Let’s see how the electric Honda dirt bike stacks up and the performance it offers.

Honda CR Electric Dirt Bike

Before we dive into the specs, it makes sense for you to see it run. Here is one of the YouTube videos that show what this electrified dirt bike is capable of.

Future of Electric Dirt Bikes

While the electric dirt bike market isn’t overflowing with enthusiasts, there is a market for these bikes. Honda needs to get into the field while there isn’t a lot of competition to truly make their mark.

dirt, legal, harley, electric

Over the next few years, we anticipate many other Japanese motorcycle manufacturers and some of the European ones as well will release their best try at an electric dirt bike. We will see Yamaha, Kawasaki and Suzuki release their ideas very soon.

In fact, it wasn’t that long ago that The Big Four announced their plans to work together on producing an electric motorcycle battery. They also plan to collaborate on a standard charging system. With them working together, the consumer ends up winning.

Who will win our attention?

Who will be the first to win the consumer’s loyalty? Likely it will be whoever produces the best equipment first. A few years ago, Kawasaki filed a patent for a swappable battery pack for an electric Ninja. Even Harley is planning a light electric dirt bike according to those in the know.

These are all promising endeavors, but we’re convinced that the future of electric motorcycles will start in electric dirt bikes, not electric road bikes. Why? These bikes have to stand up to the rigors of off-roading: jumps, mud, water, and all manner of impacts with anything from rocks to sticks to other bikes.

Designing an electric powertrain that can withstand all those challenges and still compete with the best gas-powered dirt bikes is a huge challenge, and if an OEM can manage it, road bikes should be a comparative walk in the park.

It’s all up to the market, though. Will motocrossers and trail riders give up their BRAAPS for zaps?

Would you ride an electric dirt bike?

What are your thoughts on the future of electric dirt bikes? Would you ride the Honda CR Electric concept or will you hold out for another option? Let us know your thoughts.

Already electrified?

If you already have an electric dirt bike, like a Sur Ron, Segway, or Talaria, why not make it street legal? Take your fun to the road with the help of Dirt Legal.

Street-Legal Electric Motorcycles You Can Buy in 2022

If you want a street-legal electric motorcycle in 2022, Zero, Cake, and Energica have entire lineups, but the LiveWire One and BMW CE 04 are also worth considering.

Street-legal electric motorcycle guide highlights:

  • In 2022, only Zero, Cake, and Energica offer full lineups of street-legal electric motorcycles
  • The 2022 LiveWire One isn’t branded as a Harley-Davidson, but it’s essentially an electric Harley
  • It’s arguably a scooter, not a motorcycle, but the 2022 BMW CE 04 is an excellent choice for urban two-wheeled EV customers

Slowly but surely, electric power is coming to the motorcycle world. But you don’t have to wait for some startup to rev up production to get seat time on a two-wheeled EV. Some companies already have street-legal electric motorcycles you can ride straight out of the dealership. And because they’re automatic, there’s no need to worry about mastering a clutch lever. So, if you’re in the market for an electric bike, here’s what’s on offer in 2022.

It doesn’t have a Harley badge, but the 2022 LiveWire One is Harley-Davidson’s street-legal electric motorcycle

2022 LiveWire One
Motor Liquid-cooled permanent-magnet AC
Horsepower 100 HP
Torque 84 lb-ft
Battery capacity 15.4 kWh
Claimed maximum range 146 miles (city)95 miles (combined)70 miles (highway)
DC fast-charging time 0-80%: 40 minutes0-100%: 60 minutes
Front suspension and travel 43mm fully-adjustable Showa SFF-BP inverted fork; 4.5”
Rear suspension and travel Fully-adjustable Showa BFRC monoshock; 4.5”
Seat height 30″
Curb weight 562 lbs
Starting price 21,999

Technically, LiveWire is now a Harley-Davidson sub-brand. So, you won’t find a Bar and Shield decal on the One, which is currently LiveWire’s only electric motorcycle. However, the One is mechanically identical to the outgoing Harley-Davidson LiveWire, only significantly cheaper. And that means more people can experience its thrills.

Although you feel the One’s 562-lb curb weight while stationary, this electric motorcycle is easy to control at speed. Its upright riding position and mid controls are great for urban commuting and country road carving, as are the easy-to-modulate Brembo brakes. Also, with no clutch to regulate, the LiveWire One’s instant torque is even more giggle-inducing.

Admittedly, 22K is quite a lot for a motorcycle, though it’s on par with rivals like the Zero SR/F Premium. The SR/F is also noticeably lighter and sportier, though it’s slightly slower and has a shorter range. Nevertheless, even if you’re not a Harley-Davidson fan, the LiveWire One is a premium street-legal electric motorcycle worth checking out.

Whether you like carving city corners or slinging dirt, Zero has a bike for you

Speaking of the SR/F Premium, it’s just one of several bikes in Zero Motorcycles’ all-electric lineup. And while that lineup is split between ‘street’ and ‘dual sport’ models, all of Zero’s motorcycles are street-legal. Here’s how the split works out:

After over a decade in the electric motorcycle business, Zero made some updates for 2022. Firstly, the 2022 S, DS, and DSR have full-color TFT displays and new operating systems. Secondly, the new 2022 SR introduced optional larger-capacity battery packs, though you need an app to unlock the ‘true’ max capacity. And thirdly, it now has a supermoto electric motorcycle, the 2022 FXE.

Regardless of which Zero you get, though, you get features like a carbon-fiber drive belt, J. Juan brakes, Showa suspension, and additional adjustability via an app. You’ll need the optional Charge Tank to get Level 2 charging capability, though. However, this also makes Zero’s bikes cheaper. Although the full-fairing SR/S Premium sportbike starts at 22,695 before options, you can get a base FX for 9795.

In short, no matter your riding style or budget, Zero likely has a street-legal electric motorcycle for you.

Some Cake electric motorcycles are off-road-only, but it has street-legal bikes, too

2022 BMW CE 04
Motor Liquid-cooled permanent-magnet synchronous motor
Horsepower 42 HP
Torque 46 lb-ft
Battery capacity 8.9 kWh (gross)8.5 kWh (usable)
Claimed maximum range 80 miles (WLTP testing cycle)
Charging time Standard charger: 3.5 hours (0-80%), 4.33 hours (0-100%)Optional quick charger: 1.1 hours (0-80%), 1.67 hours (0-100%)
Front suspension and travel Telescopic forks; 3.9”
Rear suspension and travel Preload-adjustable monoshock; 3.6”
Seat height Standard seat: 30.7”Optional comfort seat: 31.5”
Curb weight 509 lbs
Starting price 11,795

Technically, BMW calls the 2022 CE 04 an electric scooter. However, Cycle World notes that some states consider it a full motorcycle, not a scooter. Also, with 42 HP on tap, it’s significantly more powerful than an electric Vespa, which is a proper scooter. So, we’ve included it here.

Once you get past the semantics, it’s clear that there’s a lot of substance behind the 2022 BMW CE 04’s style. No, it doesn’t have fully-adjustable suspension, but it does have a 10.3” full-color TFT display with navigation, traction control, regenerative braking, and optional heated grips. But it doesn’t need fancy suspension to be comfortable and easy to ride, especially around crowded cities, Roadshow reports. And its brakes are strong even before the regen kicks in.

Furthermore, it has two lockable storage compartments: one for a helmet, and another ventilated one with a USB-C outlet. Plus, its electric powertrain is basically a scaled-down version of what BMW’s i-Series models use. And it has optional heated seats. It’s not really a street-legal electric motorcycle for highways, but it makes a lot of sense on crowded city streets.

Follow more updates from MotorBiscuit on our page.

Harley-Davidson’s first electric motorcycle has been a total flop, but here are 12 other e-bikes from scrappy upstarts that may find the success it couldn’t

Email icon An envelope. It indicates the ability to send an email.

Email icon A stylized bird with an open mouth, tweeting.

LinkedIn icon The word in.

  • Harley-Davidson’s CEO stepped down late last month amid struggles at the company, including lackluster sales of the brand’s first electric motorcycle, the LiveWire.
  • The LiveWire’s steep MSRP and low range meant it didn’t catch on with young riders as Harley had hoped, but there are plenty of EV bike manufacturers looking to challenge the industry icon.
  • Zero Motorcycles, Cake, Lightning, and others sell electric motorcycles without household names, and their lineups are expanding by the day.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Between an aging customer base, slumping sales, and new tariffs eating into profits, Harley-Davidson has had a rough go of it as of late. On top of all that, plenty of upstart motorcycle companies are looking to steal market share with their forward-looking, battery-powered bikes.

Late last month, amid the above issues, Harley-Davidson CEO Matthew Levatich abruptly stepped down after 26 years with the company. Levatich had bet that Harley’s first electric offering — the LiveWire — could jump-start sales and attract younger riders, but the electric motorcycle has, so far, failed to deliver.

Manufacturing issues delayed LiveWire deliveries, while a steep MSRP of nearly 30,000 likely put off younger, less affluent riders. A limited combined city-highway range of only 95 miles also cuts down on the LiveWire’s appeal — for just a few thousand more, you can buy a Tesla Model 3 with a claimed 250 miles of range.

But the LiveWire isn’t the only option for motorcycle riders in the market for a greener alternative to their gas-guzzling bike. Several electric-bike startups — based in the US and abroad — are looking to get in on the EV trend.

Take a look at some of the electric motorcycles competing with Harley’s LiveWire below:

Lightning is one of the more established electric-motorcycle manufacturers in operation, and the Strike is its latest bike.

Lightning, which has been around since 2009, has a carbon-edition Strike now available for preorder. The bike claims a combined range of up to 152 miles, a top speed of 150 mph, and a motor good for 120 horsepower.

It comes with a sticker price of just under 20,000.

Lightning says its LS-218, with a claimed 218-mph top speed, is the fastest production motorcycle in the world.

The sport bike is available with three different battery packs and offers a maximum range of 180 miles, but if we’re honest, this bike really isn’t built for long cruises — its speed runs prove that.

dirt, legal, harley, electric

The LS-218 carries a base MSRP of 38,888.

Zero Motorcycles has a full lineup of electric motorcycles, including the Zero S and SR.

The S and SR models sport combined ranges of 60 miles and 120 miles, respectively. But an optional long-range upgrade bumps the SR’s range to 150 miles combined, or 223 miles in the city. The more powerful SR gets a motor worth 70 horses and 116 pound-feet of torque, according to Zero.

The base-model Zero S costs 10,995, while the Zero SR can be had for as low as 15,495.

Zero’s FX and FXS are the brand’s lightest and most wallet-friendly bikes.

Both supermotos sport the same electric powertrain that serves up 27 horsepower, 78 pound-feet of torque, and a top speed of 85 mph, according to Zero.

The FX is more catered toward off-roading while the FXS is built more for off-road and on-road travel, but both models will run you 8,995 without options.

Like the FX lineup, Zero’s dual-sport DS and DSR bikes are meant for both on-road and off-road use, but they pack a bit more punch and a higher price tag.

The DS sports a 7.2-kWh battery pack, along with what Zero claims to be a top speed of 98 mph, a city range of 82 miles, 46 horsepower, and 78 pound-feet of torque.

The DSR has a 14.4-kWh battery, and a higher marks on everything else as well: a city range of 163 miles, a power output of 70 horses, and 116 pound-feet of torque.

dirt, legal, harley, electric

The DS starts at 10,995, while the DSR commands 15,495.

Zero’s SR/S and SR/F are the most powerful bikes in the lineup, delivering a claimed 110 horsepower, 140 pound-feet of torque, and a top speed of 124 mph.

According to Zero, they each offer up a combined range of 109 miles thanks to a 14.4-kWh battery pack. They also both offer fast-charge capabilities, claiming the ability to reach a 95% charge in a little over an hour.

The SR/F costs 21,495, while the SR/S starts at 21,995.

Swedish manufacturer Cake was founded in by a former Ikea designer, hence the utilitarian, minimalist look of its Kalk bike.

Since the Kalk originated as an off-road-focused bike called the Kalk OR, it’s essentially a street-legal electric dirt bike. It sports a relatively small, 10-kW motor, but what the Kalk lacks in power it makes up for in size — it weighs only 174 pounds, a fraction of most street bikes.

The Cake Ösa, which Cake calls a modular utility motorcycle with off-road capabilities, has a claimed top speed of 63 mph and a range of up to 63 miles.

Inspired by work benches, it can be modified with accessories to fit each rider’s needs.

Italy-based Energica was born out of a project to build electric racing motorcycles, and its street-legal bikes — including the Ego — are just as high performance as you’d expect from a company with racing pedigree.

Energica’s Ego has a 13.4-kWh battery that provides up to 100 miles of combined range, according to the company. Energica also says the Ego puts out 148 pound-feet of torque and 145 horsepower.

The sportier Ego benefits from a larger battery pack, which ups range to 143 miles combined and boosts torque to a whopping 159 pound-feet, the company says.

The Eva, Energica’s naked sport bike, offers a more comfortable riding position than the racing-inspired Ego but packs plenty of power nonetheless.

The bike comes in two versions. The Eva Ribelle claims 145 horsepower, 159 pound-feet of torque, and a top speed of 125 mph. There’s also the toned-down Eva EsseEsse9, with more classic styling and slightly different stats: 109 horsepower, 148 pound-feet of torque, and the same top speed.

The Eva EsseEsse9 starts at 17,620.

Brutus Electric Motorcycle isn’t trying to reinvent the wheel with its V9 bike — instead, it’s relying on tried-and-tested cruiser design.

That classic look may just win it some of Harley‘s business if and when electric motorcycles become mainstream.

The hefty, roughly 800-pound bike can be optioned with an 18.8-kWh or a 33.7-kWh battery pack. According to Brutus, the V9’s electric motor puts out 88 horsepower along with 92 pound-feet of torque.

dirt, legal, harley, electric

Brutus builds its bikes custom to order.

Unlike its massive big sibling, the light and compact Brutus 2 was designed for quick commutes around town.

The Brutus 2 has a smaller, 10-kWh battery pack, but it still has all the retro styling of the V9 — especially in its café-racer version, aptly called the Brutus 2 Café.

Today, electric vehicles make up a scant 2% of car sales worldwide, so it’ll likely be a long while before any of these startups pose a true threat to Harley-Davidson or any other well-established motorcycle manufacturer.

But there’s little doubt that the future of transportation is electric, and it’ll be interesting to see which e-motorcycle winds up on top.

LiveWire Unveils S2 Del Mar Electric Motorcycle

Harley-Davidson and its LiveWire brand introduced the S2 Del Mar today, a smaller, lighter, and less expensive electric motorcycle than the LiveWire ONE. The street-tracker is said to produce 80 HP and weigh less than 440 lbs, yielding a 0-60-mph time of just 3.5 seconds. City range is said to be 100 miles, and highway range will be significantly lower.

The S2 Del Mar was designed at LiveWire Labs in Mountain View, California, in the vicinity of Silicon Valley companies like Apple, Google, and Meta. It’s built around a new, scalable “ARROW” architecture that uses a proprietary battery, motor, charging, and control systems. The powertrain serves as the central component of the chassis and is a modular design so it can be adapted to future models.

LiveWire offered 100 serialized “Del Mar Launch Edition” models with an exclusive paint scheme and a unique wheel design for 17,699, but all were sold out in the first 18 minutes. Those who missed the opportunity can get their name on a waiting list for when regular production models (15,000) are shipped from Troy, Pennsylvania, in the spring of 2023. The press release below includes more details.

LiveWire is set to bring advanced design, technical innovation, and engineering expertise to urban riding and beyond, with the all-electric S2 Del Mar motorcycle, the first LiveWire model to feature the new S2 ARROW architecture.

  • The first 100 units will be built to order and serialized as Del Mar Launch Edition models, which can be reserved now at livewire.com for expected delivery in the spring of 2023.
  • The 100 Del Mar Launch Edition models will feature an exclusive finish and wheel design and an MSRP of 17,699.
  • The production S2 Del Mar will deliver immediately after the launch edition, with a target MSRP of 15,000 USD.
  • The S2 Del Mar features a targeted output of 80 horsepower (59.6 kW), and less than 440 pounds of weight, delivering projected 0-to-60 mph times of 3.5 seconds or less.
  • Del Mar range in city riding is targeted to be 100 miles.

“The S2 Del Mar model represents the next step in the evolution of the LiveWire brand,” said Jochen Zeitz, Chairman, President and CEO of Harley-Davidson. “The ARROW architecture underpinning the Del Mar, developed in-house at LiveWire Labs, demonstrates our ambition to lead in the EV space and establish LiveWire as the most desirable electric motorcycle brand in the world.”

Advanced LiveWire ARROW Architecture

LiveWire’s scalable ARROW architecture with proprietary battery, motor, charging, and control systems debuts on the Del Mar model and was designed at LiveWire Labs in Mountain View, California. The ARROW architecture is intended to be modular and serves as the central component of the motorcycle chassis.

Del Mar is designed to offer its rider thrilling performance with a targeted output of 80 horsepower (59.6 kW), delivering projected 0-to-60 mph times of 3.5 seconds. City range is expected to be 100 miles. The Del Mar model weight target is 440 pounds or less.

Urban Street Tracker

Del Mar presents a street-tracker stance on 19-inch front and rear wheels equipped with custom developed LiveWire Dunlop DT1 tires equally capable on paved and dirt surfaces. The slim seat tops a short tail section. A tracker-style handlebar fronted by a thin flyscreen places the rider in an upright position for a comfortable and controlled riding experience.

Launch Edition Model

Only the 100 examples of the Del Mar Launch Edition models will be made, featuring an exclusive finish and wheel design. The graphics and paint – in a choice of Jasper Gray or Comet Indigo – are applied by hand using a process that takes 5 days to complete. The design employs an opposing-fade, representing and celebrating both the exciting and soulful experiences of riding LiveWire electric motorcycles. The intricate pattern of the 19-inch PCB cast-aluminum wheels evokes the dense patterning and framework found on printed circuit boards. The vaulted and tapered spoke design promotes lateral stiffness for enhanced handling performance, while also pushing the boundaries of casting technology.

The Del Mar Launch Edition model debuts with an MSRP of 17,699, while the production version is expected to launch with a target MSRP of 15,000. Delivery of the Launch Edition and production versions of S2 Del Mar model are set for the spring of 2023. All LiveWire S2 Del Mar motorcycles will be assembled at Harley-Davidson Vehicle Operations in York, PA.

To learn more about the LiveWire S2 Del Mar Launch Edition motorcycle visit: livewire.com/delmar.

The all-new LiveWire S2 Del Mar Launch Edition sold out its 100 reservation deposits in 18 minutes today. Customers can still add their names to a wait list for the standard S2 Del Mar motorcycle expected to begin deliveries in Spring 2023 at livewire.com.

Range estimates are based on expected performance on a fully-charged battery and are derived from SAE J2982 Riding Range Test Procedure data on a sample motorcycle under ideal laboratory conditions. Your actual range will vary depending on your personal riding habits, road and driving conditions, ambient weather, vehicle condition and maintenance, tire pressure, vehicle configuration (parts and accessories), and vehicle loading (cargo, rider and passenger weight).

2024 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R | First Look Review

10 Комментарии и мнения владельцев

I agree, especially when it only gives you a max of 100 miles in urban use, and where a ride from Topeka to KC will give you a chance for a layover and a recharge in order to get back. The novelty isn’t close to being worth 17K.

I like it. One of the better-looking electrics and 15k is getting close. It’ll be telling to find out what actual range people can get off of a charge.

Oh boy! 15,000 tax tags insurance electricity a range of “significantly less than 100 miles!” Sign me up!………Just kidding. I’d rather buy a second hand 72, and spend the savings on lowering the ape hangers, and painting over that ugly sparkled OM paint that came on it.

Okay, tell me the truth. If you guys came up with a new motorcycle engine design that could only go 75 miles on the gas that could be held in the largest gas tank you could possibly fit onto a motorcycle, and the motorcycle you designed for it would have to sell for 15,000 for you to make money, would you produce it? Then why are you building this piece of crap and trying to sell it? I’d buy this thing for my kid for around 2500. That is what it is worth. Get back to me when you have a bike that’ll go 400 miles on a charge at 32° F, quick charges in 30 minutes, weighs 450 lbs., can carry two 200 lbs. adults 100 lbs of supplies, and can go from 0 to 80 in 7 seconds. I’ll buy one of those.

The overall look of the bike is very nice, the graphics need a lot of attention. That alone would clean it up nicely. Me, I have issues with full electric bikes. There is no acceptable room for batteries that will give you a respectable 250 mile range. Electric bikes need standardized batteries you can swap out at a service station in 5 minutes. Then they become viable. Good luck with that happening. The only acceptable electric two wheelers right now are scooters that are meant for local transportation and have enough range to get to your high school, college classes, work, or grocery store. Just a thought, how about a hybrid Harley-Davidson? Add a small gas engine to an electric motorcycle that can run the vehicle at a reduced speed if the battery is low. The engine could also recharge the battery in an emergency if you are stranded in the boonies. We have hybrid cars, why not hybrid motorcycles? Electric dirt bikes make sense if you in an enclosed off road park. The make sense for MX, DT, trials bikes, trail bikes, and local commuters. But long distance commuting/touring? Batteries will have to come a long way first. Leave the full electric to cars/trucks/fork lifts/lawnmowers/weed whackers.

Beside the milage, it’s great to see they’re working towards electric. We’ll get there. they’re way better for riding than noisy smelly fuel guzzlers…no plugs, cylinders, valves, transmission, carbies …no more burnt knuckles…and just cents to run… Ppl love to complain, like all these negative Nancy’s in the Комментарии и мнения владельцев.i don’t get it. get supportive y’all Bring on the electric revolution! Good work Harley Davidson

Why One Of The Greatest Electric Motorcycle Companies Failed

In 2016, the Alta Motors Redshift MX made history by becoming the first electric motorcycle to earn the number one spot at the AMA EnduroCross racing event (via Dirt Rider). The Redshift MX also won the Geneva Supercross in 2017, beating the odds against a gas-powered motorcycle. The glory just kept coming, and Alta Motors made another impression at the Reno Endurocross. It was obvious that Alta Motors was trying to prove a point; it was in the business of making electric motorcycles that were just as good, if not better, than gas-powered motorcycles.

But a wave of dark clouds was forming on the horizon, and shortly after Alta Motors gained some traction in the motocross world, it packed its bags and closed up shop. Our sincere gratitude goes to all those who have believed in Alta over the years, the company said in a farewell message on October 18, 2018. Since then, we haven’t heard from Alta Motors. Of course, it begs the question — why did Alta Motors fail?

It ran out of funds

When Alta Motors was the new kid on the block, it raised capital totaling 8.2 million by 2014 –- this was back when it was known as BRD Motorcycles. By 2017, Alta Motors had fundraised 27 million to expand its production of electric motorcycles. Everything was going according to plan considering that Alta Motors sold 1,000 electric motorcycles in 2018 and it was scheduled to deliver 300 more units the same year (as reported by Electrek).

But behind the scenes, Alta Motors was struggling to stay afloat due to cash flow issues, and it was searching for more investors to finance its operations. Like most startups, Alta Motors failed to secure enough funding to sustain its manufacturing operations and it eventually closed down. By the time Alta Motors was winding down, it had secured about 45 million of capital funding (via TechCrunch), but that wasn’t enough to save it.

A big deal falls through

When Alta Motors was looking for investors to jump on board, it just happened that Harley Davidson was planning to produce electric motorcycles. As a result, a scratch my back, I scratch yours opportunity presented itself — Harley-Davidson and Alta Motors struck a deal in March 2018. According to Reuters, Harley Davidson was going to invest in Alta Motors in exchange for Alta to develop electric motorcycles for it. Even though Harley Davidson didn’t divulge the financial details of the deal with Alta, it had separately pledged to invest 25 to 50 million every year in electric motorcycle technology.

However, just six months after Harley-Davidson invested in Alta Motors, it reportedly pulled out of the deal. One week after the deal was supposedly scrapped, Harley-Davidson revealed plans to open its electric motorcycle research facility in Silicon Valley (via Auto Evolution). Unfortunately, Alta Motors couldn’t find another investor on time, and it closed down a few weeks later. Harley Davidson eventually released its electric motorcycle and we reviewed it.

It’s difficult to sell electric motorcycles

As reported by the New York Times, fewer Americans were buying motorcycles after the 2008 recession. Even Harley-Davidson, the biggest motorcycle manufacturer in the U.S., was experiencing a sales decline in the domestic market (via Reuters). Besides Alta Motors, other electric motorcycle brands such as Polaris and Arc Vector have quietly disappeared from the domestic market in the previous decade. Not to forget, Harley-Davidson’s electric motorcycle, the LiveWire, was a flop, and it’s one of the reasons its CEO resigned (via Business Insider).

According to John McInnis, a former employee at Alta Motors who is now working for Harley Davidson, the biggest obstacle to electric motorcycle adoption is cultural aspect, since the older generations favor gasoline vehicles. It could be a while before electric motorcycles become mainstream, but electric bicycles have become more popular –- and even automakers such as Ford have ventured into the e-bike business. As for Alta Motors, we think it’s not coming back considering that the company that bought its intellectual property (BRP) has no interest in reviving it.

Leave a Comment