They didn't, as Harley quickly changed course and spun off the electric model into a distinct brand, probably in a bid to not dilute the image it has built over the past 120 years of motorcycle making.
LiveWire the Harley motorcycle is now nowhere to be found and purchased new in the U.S. It's now called One, and it's selling as part of the LiveWire brand together with the S2 Del Mar.
The electric Harley gamble went by almost unnoticed in the custom industry, usually quick to jump on anything the American bike maker spits out. We've had almost no conversions of the LiveWire bike, and the ones that did make it into the open were quickly forgotten. Just like the electric bike.
Not by all, though, as some guys over in Switzerland, collectively called Bundnerbike, seem to still remember the bike and the failed attempt of the Americans to make a name for themselves in the new segment.
One of Bundnerbike's most recent builds, a converted Breakout, is shamelessly called Petrolwire. That's both a slap in the face of electric bikes, and yet another sign the EVs will take a very long time to replace conventional machines in the custom industry.
I mean, how could you make a custom Harley look apart and impressive without two big and fat KessTech exhaust pipes shooting out from a V-twin that looks simply right in the bike's frame?
A quick look at the project, also called GTO 6 because of the family of customs it's part of, still uses a lot of the original Harley-Davidson parts, including the wheels, the front fork and rear swingarm, and the braking system.
Bundnerbike did contribute a lot to the ride, though, including large and very visible parts like the fuel tank with a keyless cap, the two fenders, and the seat. Other pieces of hardware, including the always useful air suspension and often overlooked controls for gas and clutch are also of Swiss origin.
The Harley-Davidson Petrolwire is fresh on the Bundnerbike lot, but that doesn't mean the shop parted ways with tradition and revealed the project's cost – so that will remain a mystery for everyone except potential customers planning to have something similar made.