October 18, 2022
By Kali Kotoski
If Harley-Davidson’s subsidiary LiveWire listing on the New York Stock Exchange—raising $334 million on the first day of trading on September 27—is not a clear sign of the current and future market potential for EV motorcycles, it is hard to say what is.
LiveWire already has a showroom product for investors, unlike other EV startups that run on hype. Thinking of the long-awaited Rivian truck that was glowing red hot with investment until this year’s market collapse. LiveWire now has a clear runway to dominate the EV motorcycle market without counting electric scooters and whatnot.
The listing comes from a $1.77 billion merger with AEA-Bridges Impact Corp., a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC), and the formation of a new company.
“This transaction represents a proud and exciting milestone for LiveWire towards its ambition to become the most desirable electric motorcycle brand in the world,” said Jochen Zeitz, Chairman, President and CEO of Harley-Davidson, and Chairman and CEO of LiveWire. “We believe LiveWire is well positioned to define the two-wheel EV market, and we’re excited about the future.”
Harley-Davidson still retains a 74 percent stake in LiveWire, according to Reuters.
Harley-Davidson first launched the LiveWire motorcycle in 2019. Soon after, Harley decided to relaunch the bike as its own sub-brand, a move that hoped to recoup its lost market share as it’s core baby-boomer customers have aged out of riding.
The same day LiveWire began trading, the company announced its second model, the S2 Del Mar, is on track to be delivered in the Spring of 2023. When LiveWire first started taking reservations in May, it sold out in 18 minutes, according to the company. As a result, a new round of reservations is now taking place.
The Del Mar Launch Edition models will feature three unique colors: Pacific Gray, Nightfall Blue, and Asphalt Black at an MSRP of $16,999. The bike is expected to produce 80 horsepower and put 184 ft-lb of torque. With a charging time on level 2 chargers at around 75 minutes, the 431 lb bike will be able to go from 0-to-60 in 3.1 seconds. Del Mar range in city riding is targeted to be 110 miles.
“Today, we are pleased to be opening reservations for the production edition of the S2 Del Mar – our second LiveWire motorcycle and the next step in the evolution of the LiveWire Brand,” said Zeitz. “The modular ARROW architecture underpinning the Del Mar, developed in-house at LiveWire Labs, demonstrates our ambition to lead in the EV space.”
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.
In November, American Motorcyclist reported how the Inflation Reduction Act did not include tax credits for EV motorcycles. This move by Harley and LiveWire, plus lobbying efforts, may see that change. However, tax rebates exist in some states and jurisdictions.