'Harley and the Davidsons' season 2 news
A poster from the Discovery original miniseries "Harley and the Davidsons" Facebook/Harley and the Davidsons

“Harley and the Davidsons” may not return at all. The future of the series is unclear as of now, despite the roaring TV ratings the show received when it aired last year. But what’s more compelling is that the network doesn’t want to deviate from the unscripted and documentary style format.

The six-hour miniseries secured 3.4 million viewers on its opening night, the same score on the second night, and a slightly less 3.34 million on the third and final nights. Night one’s opening boosted Discovery’s timeslot performance in the demo by more than 61 percent. Night two boosted the network’s performance by 73 percent, and night three by a whopping 158 percent. The show was rated No. 2 freshman series in 2016, after FX’s “The People vs OJ Simpson,” per Deadline.

Recently during an earnings call, CEO David Zaslav assured investors that the network is currently not moving into the direction of scripted series. “Scripted is not the core of what we do. It’s part of a tentpole [strategy],” said Zaslav, according to Fierce Cable. “We don’t see cost being an issue and we’re not moving more into scripted, which is more expensive,” he added, despite the series performing well in both Discovery’s US and global market. It won a total of 14.73 million viewers, taking all premieres and encores into account.

Zaslav further commented on the increasing competition Discovery has been facing from Nat Geo. “We’re focused on what they’re doing … they’re very good,” the CEO said, adding that Discovery has advantages over Nat Geo and is at par with the competitor in almost every market. Check detailed ratings for each channel here.

Zaslav also discussed the challenges the channel has lately encountered from the History Channel. “History woke us up a few years ago. Six or seven years ago we were cheating on the brand,” Zaslav said. He explained that the competition from the rival channels have only made the network better.

Discovery’s “Harley and the Davidsons” follows the story of “Harley Davidson’s” founders Walter and Arthur Davidson and their friend Bill Harley. The series charts the birth of the iconic bike brand during the early 20th century. Harley Davidson Company opened up its archives, it has been alleged, and that all the motorcycles used in the miniseries were made from scratch.

Update March 3: The original draft of the article pointed to a planned second season of the show. This is incorrect as the show was always intended to be a one-off miniseries, a Discovery rep has said.