Daniels debuts new all-electric Harley Davidson

Purdue President Mitch Daniels rolled up to work Monday on Harley Davidson's new LiveWire motorcycle.

Posted: Sep 16, 2019 11:19 AM
Updated: Sep 16, 2019 12:13 PM

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) — You may have seen a motorcycle escort driving around West Lafayette this morning. If you saw it, you probably didn't hear it. That's because the bikes are all-electric.

Purdue President Mitch Daniels rolled up to work Monday on Harley Davidson's new LiveWire motorcycle. It kicked off Harley Day on campus, where the company will be recruiting Purdue students. 

"It's more of a sport bike so you're leaning forward," said Daniels on how it rides. 

The all-new bikes can go 0 to 60 miles per hour in under three seconds.

"I have now verified that," Daniels said.

"The first question is, 'Harley Davidson? Electric? Can they truly deliver something that's not a big twin internal combustion engine that goes potato-potato-potato,'" said Jim Federico, Harley Davidson Vice President of Engineering. 

"You don't have a clutch. It's just twist and go. So you literally grab the throttle and it's very intuitive," said Harley Davidson Vice President for Product Development Bryan Niketh.

Some of the technology behind the bikes is thanks to Boilermakers. Harley Davidson has more than 40 employees who are Purdue alums. Niketh is one of them.

"This is like the marriage of two loves. My love of Purdue University and my love of Harley Davidson. Never would I have dreamed 20 years ago graduating from Purdue that I would be here doing this today."

Daniels is a lifelong Harley owner. He wants one, but has to get past the boss first.

"Is my wife listening? I'm not sure but those who do are going to be very very pleased," Daniels joked.

The LiveWire motorcycles will be available for purchase this fall. The starting price runs about $30,000.

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