Harley-Davidson Hybrid Idea First Look [Commentary]

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Harley-Davidson way back found that the key to survival within the bike enterprise—certainly, any enterprise—is the power and agility to alter with the occasions. The Motor Firm’s 120-year historical past is that of a dwelling, dynamic enterprise, quite than a footnote in America’s industrial historical past, is as a result of it has tailored, modified, diversified, retrenched, and superior as obligatory to achieve extra prospects and extra markets, enduring when financial issues had pressured others to shut their doorways.

Harley-Davidson Hybrid Concept First Look: drivetrain

Now, 10 years since Harley-Davidson launched its first-ever electrical bike with Challenge LiveWire, fuel/electrical hybrid fashions may very well be on the horizon. It might probably be one strategy to tamp down the backlash by some H-D trustworthy in opposition to the plan for going all-electric within the “coming a long time” voiced by the CEO, President and Chairman of the Board Jochen Zeitz. Zeitz additionally heads the LiveWire electrical bike operation spun off from Harley-Davidson nearly three years in the past. In fact, that by itself wouldn’t be ample motive.

Some might have taken Zeitz’s remark to imply Harley-Davidson’s product line can be restricted to electrical bikes completely. Given the restrictions of electrical bike capabilities and real-world person considerations resembling cost time, vary, and charging areas, locking The Motor Firm into that single lane is an unlikely technique for the foreseeable future.

As international vitality pricing and availability modifications and regulatory environments evolve, hybrid electrical autos (HEV) provide a versatile platform, providing the zero-tailpipe emissions benefit of an EV throughout some intervals of operation, together with the longer-range functionality of an inside combustion engine-powered automobile. When the inner combustion engine is operating, its charging system replenishes the battery, although a plug-in hybrid is undoubtedly potential.

I took a have a look at the issues that go together with electrical bikes just lately. The electrical bike lane is crowded, as I discovered in creating our Electrical Motorbike Purchaser’s Information.

Hybrid know-how has been utilized to two- and three-wheel autos for over a decade. Examples we’ve lined embrace the Piaggio MP3 fuel/electrical hybrid scooter previewed in 2010, Can-Am’s Hybrid Spyder idea, introduced in 2011, and the Honda PCX hybrid scooter in 2019. Kawasaki is already hitting the streets with the roll-out of its fuel/electrical hybrid 2024 Ninja 7 and Z 7.

Harley-Davidson is recruiting staff with “confirmed technical information and design expertise of current automobile applied sciences in addition to consciousness of future automobile applied sciences, with a capability to tell future automobile designs,” based on one job providing. This means that some design/engineering roles require expertise and expertise past present manufacturing platforms.

Harley-Davidson Hybrid Concept First Look: Commentary
The creator at work.

Exactly what a Harley-Davidson Hybrid would possibly seem like triggers limitless avenues for wild, whimsical hypothesis, which is my favourite sort.

As radical a departure from Harley-Davidson custom as a fuel/electrical hybrid can be, there would most likely be an effort to retain a number of the bedrock conventional character that has lengthy outlined the model. But, a hybrid’s purposeful necessities require design concessions.

There are numerous causes to get into the hybrid energy sport, together with improved gasoline economic system, lowered tailpipe emissions, and pavement-wrinkling energy boosts.

Constructing out the facility bundle for a “parallel hybrid”—a automobile that may use the ICE or electrical motor individually or each concurrently for drive energy—suggests utilizing a mid-size inside combustion engine that leaves room within the chassis for the area and weight of an electrical drive-motor and bigger battery.

Utilizing an current platform saves time and capital in comparison with clean-sheet growth, and the V-twin configuration preserves that look of H-D lineage.

Two potentialities are the XG500 V-twin used within the discontinued Road 500, and the X500 parallel twin present in non-US Harley-Davidsons. Each motors use liquid-cooling and four-valve cylinders, with the newer X500 having a DOHC valvetrain.

The X500 is a latest results of a joint effort between Harley-Davidson and the Zhejiang QuianJiang Motor Firm (QJ Motor) in China. The compact engine/transmission bundle, and maybe another elements, current an attention-grabbing platform for potential adaptation for an H-D HEV.

What would possibly such Hybrid Harleys seem like? For that, I went to my old style Vemco V-Trac drawing board to sketch an XG500 V-twin idea Harley-Davidson hybrid, which I named the Idea Harley-Davidson HEV-1. The X500 parallel twin model is named the Idea Harley-Davidson HEV.

2017 Harley-Davidson Street 500 Review
Harley-Davidson Road 500.

To go together with my sketch, we additionally provide up a speculative spec sheet that features the 2 variations paired for comparability. In my imaginings of the configuration, I speculate that as many current elements as potential go into the hybrid fashions. On account of area wants for a bigger battery, the traction motor, controller, and different parts, there’s a barely stretched chassis. There would, little doubt, be a myriad of modifications that aren’t all that obvious. You will need to keep in mind that we acquired no inside info from Harley-Davidson about any hybrid mannequin designs. I’m wingin’ it—it’s extra enjoyable that method.

Certainly, I may very well be fully off-base on the hybrid product concept. I’ve been incorrect earlier than, and I’m not afraid to confess it. Many of the specs are based mostly on current mannequin info. The opposite objects associated to the speculative hybrid variations, such because the traction motor, chassis dimensions, and weight, the place I’m merely speculating, guesstimating, and theorizing. It may very well be Harley-Davidson hybrid bikes on the horizon will probably be focused to off-shore markets the place zero-emission zones exist already or quickly will.

Will Harley-Davidson develop and market any hybrid fashions? That’s anyone’s guess, and possibly even Harley-Davidson doesn’t know for certain. 

SPECS Idea Harley-Davidson HEV-1 (XG500-based) Idea Harley-Davidson HEV (X500-based)
ENGINE    
Kind Revolution-X 60-degree V-twin Parallel twin
Displacement 494cc 499cc
Bore x stroke 69 x 66 mm 69 x 66.8 mm
Valvetrain SOHC; 4vpc DOHC; 4vpc
Compression ratio 10.5:1 11.5:1
Fueling Digital Sequential Multiport Gas Injection; ride-by-wire Digital Air Consumption Gas Injection ESPFI; ride-by-wire
Transmission 6-speed w/ automated shifting in ECO mode 6-speed w/ automated shifting in ECO mode
Clutch: Guide actuated, besides in ECO and Tread modes Guide actuated, besides in ECO and Tread modes
Closing drive Kevlar belt Kevlar belt
MOTOR    
Energy 8.5 kilowatts (10.5-kilowatt peak) Liquid-cooled 8.5kW (10.5kW peak) Liquid-cooled
Battery: 10.5-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion 10.5-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion
Cooling Liquid Liquid
Charging: Engine generator and regenerative brake system Engine generator and regenerative brake system
HYBRID    
Journey modes: ECO/City: EV solely, 45 mph high velocity

STD/Cruise: ICE solely

Sport/Interstate: EV and ICE in launch; ICE solely at freeway velocity

Tread: EV solely, strolling velocity ahead/reverse

ECO/City: EV solely, 45 mph high velocity

STD/Cruise: ICE solely

Sport/Interstate: EV and ICE in launch; ICE solely at freeway velocity

Tread: EV solely, strolling velocity ahead/reverse

Most energy 50 hp @ 8000 rpm (ICE solely); 62 hp w/ electrical motor engaged 47 horsepower @ 8500 rpm (ICE solely); 59 horsepower w/ electrical motor engaged
Most torque: 30 ft-lbs @ 3500 rpm (ICE solely) 34 ft-lbs @ 6000 rpm (ICE solely)
Instrumentation 8-inch TFT colour adaptive show, Bluetooth connectivity, system updates, on-board navigation, USB-C charging 8-inch TFT colour adaptive show, Bluetooth connectivity, system updates, on-board navigation, USB-C charging
CHASSIS    
Body: Tubular metal Metal trellis; careworn member engine
Entrance suspension; journey Spring-preload adjustable Showa fork; 4.8 inches Spring-preload adjustable Showa fork; 4.8 inches
Rear suspension; journey Spring-preload adjustable Showa shocks; 4.8 inches Spring-preload adjustable Showa shocks; 4.8 inches
Wheels Forged aluminum Forged aluminum
Entrance tire 100/80 x 17 100/80 x 17
Rear tire 140/75 x 15 140/75 x 15
Entrance brake: 300mm disc w/ Brembo twin-piston caliper 300mm disc w/ Brembo twin-piston caliper
Rear Brake: 255mm disc w/ Brembo twin-piston floating caliper w/ regenerative help 255mm disc w/ Brembo twin-piston floating caliper w/ regenerative help
ABS Commonplace Commonplace
DIMENSIONS and CAPACITIES    
Wheelbase: 61.7 inches 61.7 inches
Rake 32 levels 32 levels
Path 5 inches 5 inches
Seat Peak: 28.3 in. unladen 28.3 in. unladen
Gas capability: 3.5 gal. 3.5 gal.
Curb weight: 540 kilos 525 kilos
Worth $TBA MSRP $TBA MSRP



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