Motorcycle maker Harley-Davidson’s EV motorcycle division is now a privately traded company that might boost the company’s sluggish sales.
- Yesterday Harley-Davidson spun off its electric vehicle (EV) motorcycle division of the company, creating a separate privately traded entity.
- The EV motorcycle developer LiveWire merged with AEA-Bridged Impact Corp in a $1.8 billion SPAC (special purpose acquisition company) merger in an effort to fund further development of EV motorcycles.
- Shares of LiveWire were trading at $7.91 at market open today.
- Harley-Davidson has retained a 74% stake in LiveWire.
Why it’s news
Harley-Davidson is known for producing what are referred to as hogs—massive, noisey motorcycles. But the traditional bike that has been a favorite of previous generations isn’t as popular among younger motorcycle enthusiasts.
Sales of the bikes have been gradually declining as the company tries to find a way to reach other demographics.
LiveWire could be Harley-Davidson’s way to stay connected to the younger generation. The electric bikes are lighter and quieter than a traditional hog, but the environmentally friendly option may appeal to younger consumers.
Current Harley-Davidson CEO Jochen Zeitz will serve as LiveWire CEO for at least the next two years. The new company will focus on what he calls “urban adventure” motorcycles.
Short-range bikes like the S2 Del Mar, capable of traveling 110 miles, are expected to be released early next year. Development of longer-range bikes is expected in the future.
Harley-Davidson plans to be carbon neutral by 2050, though transforming the traditional hog into an EV could prove to be a challenge.