Harley-Davidson hires Ryan Morrisey to head up electric division

Harley-Davidson has planted the seeds of its dedicated electric vehicle division with the appointment of a new team leader

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HARLEY-DAVIDSON has appointed a new team leader for its fledgling electric vehicle division, with ex-Bain & Company exec Ryan Morrisey.

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The move is all part of the Harley Hardwire business strategy and is a move to develop a separate electric division with its own leadership structure. Morrisey, formerly of automotive consulting firm Bain & Company will officially join the team on April 1st.

Morrisey’s previous role was as senior partner and head the automotive and mobility practice in the US. There he focused on the transition from petrol to electric vehicles, using fleet and blue-chip tech as the vehicle for change.

One of Morrisey’s first tasks is likely to be overhauling Harley-Davidson's new electric vehicle project, with Harley CEO, Jochen Zeitz that a more autonomous to this side of the business could allow the firm to partner with other leaders in the field.

Speaking of Morrisey’s appointment, Zeitz said:

“Ryan has extensive experience with leading OEMs, working on building businesses to develop, commercialize and support electric vehicles… I'm excited to have him join the team to help us lead in electric.”

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This spirit of collaboration with other companies could help Harley break down one of the barriers holding back its LiveWire electric motorcycle project. The LiveWire was launched in 2019 and despite being one of the best electric motorcycles on the market, sales have been slower than H-D execs would have liked.

If Harley were to partner with other leaders in the electric powertrain and battery field, development costs could feasibly be reduced, increasing the desire to switch to electric and removing one of the main complaints of potential electric motorcycle buyers.

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