UPDATE: A new video about the Harley-Davidson LiveWire versus the Tesla Model 3 Performance drag race was released on April 2, 2020, and this time, we get the answer to our question "who actually won the race?". The first video frustratingly ended before we got the results.
In this new (and longer) video, the guys at Drag Times thoroughly document the drag race and even take us behind the scenes as the LiveWire and the Model 3 get ready to hit the track.
We get to watch the race until the end—whew!— as well as from different angles thanks to a set of cameras attached to the Model 3. The footage from the camera mounted to the side of the Tesla is really cool and gives us a sense of how fast the two competitors were going. The best part is that we finally know who won the race. Who did you put your money on?
It turns out that the LiveWire was the fastest one to reach the finish line on both outings, preceding the Tesla by less than a tenth of a second. While the Harley got a head start on the Tesla, the car ultimately managed to catch up to the bike.
On the first run, the LiveWire crossed the finish line in 11.67 seconds and reached a top speed of 109.87 mph versus the Tesla that recorded an 11.72 time and a top speed of 113.19mph.
On the second run, this time the LiveWire clocked in at 11.65 seconds and finished with a top speed of 110.53mph while the Tesla finished at 11.71 seconds with a top speed of 114.11mph.
As we suspected, the Model 3 managed to reach a higher top speed on both runs and likely had a lot more to give. Had the race been even only a few seconds longer, it easily would have passed the motorcycle. This means that the LiveWire's superior power-to-weight ratio is perfect for sprints while the Tesla's superior output allows it to perform better in "marathons". That being said, even though the Tesla almost caught up, the Harley-Davidson LiveWire is the rightful winner of this all-electric duel and receives all the bragging rights.
Original article follows.
Electric vehicles are fast. Whether they have two wheels or four, there’s one perk going green has to offer and that’s instant power and loads of torque. Companies like Energica and Tesla have taken full advantage of that feature—I mean, the Tesla “Ludicrous” drive mode says it all. We got to experience it first hand in the saddle of the Zero SR/F in 2019, the company’s first performance-oriented motorcycle.
Now, as we’ve documented before, the SR/F measuring up to a Tesla makes perfect sense considering the Zero’s performance aspirations, but what happens when you swap the Zero for a Harley? This is what happens.
Though Harley-Davidson sounds tremendously proud of the LiveWire—the Motor Company "premiered" the bike more than once at different events—it didn’t design its first electric motorcycle with speed in mind. That hasn’t been the focus of the LiveWire’s sales pitch, at any rate. That being said, it doesn’t mean that the bike isn’t fast. After all, the powertrain is rated at 105 electric ponies, 85.5 lb-ft of torque, and can reach a top speed of 110 miles per hour.
Obviously, when this video of a drag race opposing a Harley-Davidson LiveWire to a Tesla Model 3 Performance on the drag strip surfaced, we had to check it out. Just how fast can the H-D go? The answer to that is pretty darn fast. While the video ends before the official times show up on the displays, we get to watch the LiveWire smoke the Tesla.
From the moment the two vehicles take off, the LiveWire zips off the starting line and manages to stay ahead of its car competitor for most of the race. The problem is: we don’t know who the winner is. As they reach the end of the track, it looks like the Tesla might have caught up to the Harley. Then the video cuts.
For reference, the Tesla Model 3 Performance is rated at 450 horsepower—but it has the all-wheel-drive and weighs a hefty 4,072 pounds and therefore has a disadvantageous power-to-weight ratio which impacts the takeoff. However, the Tesla has the ability to catch up to the LiveWire as it can achieve a top speed of 162 mph.
Your guess about who the winner is as good as ours. So, what’s your guess?