According to a bit in Motorrad Online, Harley-Davidson is about to drop its Street and Sportster lines in Europe, starting in January, 2021.
Of course, ever-tightening emissions laws are primarily responsible for this. Europe’s new Euro5 measures come into play at the start of next year, and Harley-Davidson’s older Street and Sportster engines supposedly don’t meet this standard. That’s no surprise for the Sportster. It’s an engine with its roots in the 1980s, and even with modern electronic fuel injection, it’s still an air-cooled V-twin with massive pistons—just the sort of engine that fares poorly under current emissions regs.
However, it’s somewhat surprising the Street is getting the axe in Europe, as it’s a fairly modern design, with liquid cooling. Motorrad Online only mentions the 750 version, and not the 500, which you’d think would have less emissions … but it isn’t available in Europe.
At this point, it seems Harley-Davidson’s Milwaukee Eight engines will live on, though, which is good news for the Motor Company, as those engines are in the big money-making models. Of course, Harley-Davidson is also planning to drop a new liquid-cooled V-twin on the market soon; the Bronx streetfighter seems to have been cancelled, but the Pan America adventure bike is still supposedly just around the corner.
As well, the new Chinese-built 350 should hit the market pretty soon. Those bikes haven’t been confirmed for Europe yet, but it wouldn’t be surprising if they were eventually sold there.
Remember, too, that Harley-Davidson is in the middle of trimming away less profitable parts of the company. Dealers are shutting down as H-D pulls out of less profitable markets, and the new CEO has already said it’s also planning to reduce its offerings, ending some models. Looks like that process has already started in Europe.