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The full story (and winner) of the Harley LiveWire vs. Tesla Model 3 electric drag race

Earlier this month we got a sneak peak at the first-ever drag race between a Harley-Davidson LiveWire electric motorcycle and Tesla Model 3 Performance electric car. The original video, shot from the stands, lacked any background info, and the winner of the photo finish wasn’t clear. Now we’ve got the full story behind the race (and we finally know the winner too!).

Harley LiveWire vs. Tesla Model 3 Performance drag race

In the original video, we saw the new Harley-Davidson LiveWire face off against the Tesla Model 3 Performance at the Texas Motorplex.

While the Harley-Davidson LiveWire accelerated quicker and took an early lead, the Tesla Model 3 Performance had seriously narrowed the gap as the two approached the finish, before the video left us in agony by cutting off without the official times.

Now that we have some more background on the race, it turns out that the matchup was orchestrated by the DragTimes YouTube channel on March 7. We just received a much better view of the race from their recently posted video below.

And in fact, the race was actually two races. The results were the same each time. Check out the winner below, or keep reading for the spoiler.

As you might have guessed, the Harley-Davidson LiveWire electric motorcycle won both races. But it was pretty darn close.

In the first race, the LiveWire ran the quarter mile in 11.67 seconds at 109.87 mph (176.82 km/h).

The Tesla Model 3 Performance finished just behind the LiveWire with a time of 11.718 seconds at 113.19 mph (182.16 km/h).

If you do the math (and I did), that puts the Tesla at barely half a car length (or one bike length) behind the LiveWire at the finish. That is close!

The race was run a second time with similar results, though both vehicles performed slightly better.

The LiveWire ran the strip in 11.648 seconds at 110.53 mph (177.88 km/h). The Tesla Model 3 Performance did it in 11.708 seconds at 114.11 mph (183.64 km/h).

Check out the official times below.

harley livewire tesla model 3 drag race times

Electrek’s Take

The results of the race of course aren’t shocking. That Harley-Davidson LiveWire weighs just 550 lb (250 kg) compared to the much heavier 4,000 lb (1,817 kg) of the Tesla Model 3 Performance. And despite the two motors in the Tesla putting out a combined 340kW (456 hp), the Harley-Davidson LiveWire’s 78kW (105 hp) give it a much better power-to-weight ratio. That was pretty evident when you watch how much quicker the LiveWire gets off the line.

The reason the race was as close as it was is because of the LiveWire’s lower top speed. It is limited to just 110 mph (177 km/h), meaning that it was maxed out by the time it crossed the finish line, whereas the Tesla Model 3 was still accelerating and gaining on the bike. If the race had been a quarter mile plus another 30 feet, the outcome might have been different.

As it stands, both vehicles demonstrated how thrilling electric racing can be, even in a straight line. Even without the loud pipes and roaring engines, it was still awesome to watch these two engineering marvels rocket down the track — and some might even say it was better.

If you want to see an up-close look at the Harley-Davidson LiveWire electric motorcycle, check out my recent review. Here’s the video below.

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Avatar for Micah Toll Micah Toll

Micah Toll is a personal electric vehicle enthusiast, battery nerd, and author of the Amazon #1 bestselling books DIY Lithium Batteries, DIY Solar Power, The Ultimate DIY Ebike Guide and The Electric Bike Manifesto.

The e-bikes that make up Micah’s current daily drivers are the $999 Lectric XP 2.0, the $1,095 Ride1Up Roadster V2, the $1,199 Rad Power Bikes RadMission, and the $3,299 Priority Current. But it’s a pretty evolving list these days.

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