With the 15.5kWh battery lurking in between the cast aluminium frame, the LiveWire does look bulky. After all, that battery pack contributes to around 113kg of the motorcycle’s 249kg weight. So does it feel like a traditional Harley? Not quite. Once the bike is off the side stand, all that weight is hardly noticeable. It is designed to be a streetfighter of sorts and offers a slightly leaned-forward riding position and rear-set foot pegs to complement the character.
The LiveWire can be turned on like any other Harley-Davidson motorcycle; only when you crank it up, there is absolutely no sound. The display lights up with green ‘ear-like’ lights and the motorcycle sends pulsating vibrations to the seat to let the rider know that it is alive. Now, the LiveWire offers seven ride modes- Eco, Rain, Road and Sport along with three customizable modes that allow the rider to adjust power, regenerative braking and throttle response. Mighty cool indeed!
Well, we were advised to begin testing on 'Road' mode before switching to 'Sport'. One twist of the throttle and I knew why. With the entire 116Nm of torque available right from zero, the LiveWire surges through with a jet-like whir and sans any lag whatsoever. With a little dramatic slide from the rear wheel, the LiveWire hits triple-digit speeds in the blink of an eye and is sure to leave one grinning from ear-to-ear.
As fast as it is in a straight line, the LiveWire feels effortless to tip into corners. Yes, the suspension feels a bit stiff, but the handling is precise and the motorcycle feels well balanced overall. And to bring it to a halt, the LiveWire employs Brembo callipers on both ends which offer good bite and feedback. The regen braking further helps in reducing speed and compensates for the clutch which would normally be used for engine braking.