Harley-Davidson is releasing details about the electric motorcycle it's rolling out this year. The company hopes it will capture the imagination of a new generation of riders and put a charge into its diminishing sales.
The LiveWire, which will soon be available in a limited number of dealerships, will cost nearly $30,000 and can go zero to 60 mph in three seconds. There's no clutch and no shifting. Harley said Thursday buyers will have access to free charging at participating LiveWire dealers for the first two years.
The Milwaukee motorcycle company has struggled with declining sales and an aging client base in the U.S. and abroad. Its U.S. motorcycle sales declined 4.2%, and international sales fell 3.3% in the first quarter of this year.
Harley's traditional, gasoline-powered cycles range from about $6,900 for a compact, urban model to nearly $44,000 for a fully-loaded touring bike.
Additional free charging will be provided by Electrify America, a Volkswagen subsidiary created to build charging sites after Volkswagen settled charges that it cheated on diesel emissions.
Zero to 60 in 3 seconds is certainly fast, but when it comes to electric-vehicle acceleration, a four-wheeler can still go faster. The high-end Tesla Model S (P100D with "Ludicrous Speed") can make that trip in 2.4 seconds.