Electric cars are inevitable. New gas powered cars are being regulated out of existence in much of the world by 2035. EV cars have a demonstrably and substantially smaller carbon footprint over miles driven in their lifetime.
At the moment, there’s no such regulatory push to do the same for motorcycles. If you’re buying an electric motorcycle, you’re doing so, because you want an electric motorcycle… and have the means to do so.
Compared to cars, motorcycles have always been cheap to operate and great on gas. A person riding a modern Euro 5 compliant motorcycle is considerably friendlier to the environment than a person riding in a gas powered car. Even with an ICE power train, motorcycles are far better than a gas powered car when it comes to emissions and environmental impact.
If you buy a gas powered motorcycle and ride it, recreationally, for a limited number of miles every year, like most Americans, the carbon footprint of your ownership experience is a non-factor and less than the production of an electric bike. Yes, the manufacturing process of an ICE motorcycle has a smaller carbon footprint than the production of an electric motorcycle. You have to put some serious miles on your electric motorcycle before it has a smaller lifetime carbon footprint than the typical gas powered motorcycle. Most motorcycles in the US never see the mileage necessary for the carbon footprint math to work for an EV motorcycle.
The case for an electric motorcycle is not an environmental one. Yes, they’re amazing and quick, but they are very much expensive toys. This is the problem for the LiveWire SPAC and electric motorcycle industry at large.
I love EVs. I love my LiveWire.
We don’t own a gas powered car or lawn equipment. The only thing that we own that is gas powered is my Ducati.
I realize I am an early adopter on the EV motorcycle front compared to most. I thought about buying a Zero many times but there was always something missing on them. They go to about 80% of what I wanted/needed/expected but never got high enough to actually pry the money from my wallet.
I had made up my mind to buy an Energica and somehow ended up with the LW. Part of the reason was I had concerns about the long-term viability of Energica and its parent company, Ideanomics, was seeing a very substantial trend down in its stock price. HD seemed like a more stable option. In the end the LW has turned out to be pretty much what I was looking for other than the terrible rear shock.
I really want to see LiveWire succeed but I think they also need to make some bikes that compete in under the $10k price point. At first I thought the OG LW at $30k was over priced. I still think it was after owning mine for a while but my opinion has softened a lot in that area. I am almost to the point, but not quite, that factoring in what I know now, I might have spent the money on it when it came out. I am also glad I waited and saved a lot of money on it. I really think the HD dealers had no idea how to promote it and I am not sure the LiveWire dealers are going to be much better.