American electric bike manufacturer Zero today announced its 2018 range, which promise faster charging and better battery life.
Visually there is no change to the six bike range, barring new colours, but it’s under the skin that the Californian company has been working hard to make the bikes more practical.
The big news is that the battery power has been increased, giving a claimed increase of 10% in range. Zero says that its batteries are ‘the electric vehicle industry’s most energy and power dense battery packs’ and claims that the Zero S and SR equipped with the largest ZF14.4 battery offers 18kWh of energy will run for over 220 miles of urban riding. Based on Insidebikes’ test of the 2017 model, and the fact that Zero has traditionally been quite cautious with its mileage claims, we think that should equate to around 100 miles of mixed riding.
The other step forward is that Zero’s road-biased S, DS, SR and DSR models can be fitted with a new ‘Charge Tank’ option, which allows the motorcycle to be connected to public ‘Level 2’ EV charging points. When connected to these outlets, the Zeros can be charged at speeds of over 100mph or over six times faster than the standard onboard charger.
These changes look to go some way towards addressing some of the perceived objectives traditional motorcyclists have towards electric vehicles, namely that they don’t go far enough between charges and take too long to recharge. Connected to the public Level 2 chargers Zero state that the Charge Tank equipped models take two hours, as opposed to almost nine hours when connected to a domestic three point plug.
Other small changes include more powerful electric motors for the S and DS models and an upgraded App, which lets riders tailor the custom riding mode through their mobile phone and also allows them to download any firmware upgrades from the factory.
Pricewise, the 2018 Zeros are more or less the same as the models they replace, although the range topping SR and DSR, which deliver an almighty 146Nm of torque, have attracted another £500 to the screen price.
Prices start at £10,490 for the dirt bike styled FX and rise to £15,690 for the SR and DSR models. All models are eligible for the British government’s low emissions vehicle grant of £1500 and the Charge Tank is a £2300 factory fit option on the S, SR, DS and DSR models. Visit www.zeromotorcycles.com/eu for further information.