Zero Motorcycles recently presented their 2010 product lineup and because the Zero S is their first and most advanced street model yet, the plug-in bike demads a fair share of attention. While most will consider it the electric equivalent of a supermoto powered by a 250cc internal combustion engine, as we’ve come to find, this think is capable of offering an entirely different riding experience due to the lack of engine sound and a classic transmission, all despite it’s limited 67mph top speed.
Zero Motorcycles, the global leader in the electric motorcycle industry, announced today the debut of its 2010 Zero S electric motorcycle. Its flagship street legal supermoto now has more power, increased acceleration, and enhanced power pack technology. Continuing the innovation that they are known for, Zero has integrated its newly developed Z-Force™ Air Induction System into the Zero S to enable greater performance. The cumulative result of this technology is a higher top speed, better performance off the line and improved ride quality. In addition to more performance, Zero is offering, for the first time, color graphics packages and two new Corbin seat options.
“The Zero S is the most advanced production electric motorcycle on the market and now it’s even better. Enhancements for 2010 make it faster, more durable and better looking," says Gene Banman, CEO Zero Motorcycles. "With significant performance improvements, the Zero S is ideal for urban riding and short trips on the freeway. We invite riders of all types to schedule a demo ride in their area and discover a new experience that will leave them grinning."
Central to the performance improvements on the Zero S is the revolutionary Z-Force™ Air Induction System. The newly developed system allows Zero to produce more horsepower from a light and compact motor by increasing the airflow through the heart of the motor. Zero is also introducing a new throttle technology that modulates the increased power to provide riders with exacting control over the acceleration. The 2010 Zero S is powered using the latest generation of Z-Force™ power pack technology that includes more precise cell monitoring and lightweight lithium ion technology.
In addition to the increased performance capabilities, consumers now can choose between color graphic packages or Zero’s classic white on all four models. This allows riders to express themselves through personalized styling. The new seat options on the Zero S are specially designed by Corbin to provide a more comfortable and performance-oriented ride. Those interested in reducing the stand-over height of the motorcycle can now select a Corbin low seat option. The aesthetic changes in combination with Zero’s signature exposed twin spar aircraft grade alloy frame make for a sleeker and more visually appealing motorcycle.
The 2010 Zero S offers instant torque and power from a standstill, plus smooth acceleration as you race out of turns—all without ever needing to stop at a gas station. Built from the ground up using Zero Motorcycles’ proprietary Z-Force™ power pack and aircraft grade alloy frame, the Zero S features an industry leading power-to-weight ratio that increases its range and maneuverability. At 270lbs, the Zero S has a range of up to 50 miles and a GPS verified top speed of 67 MPH. The Zero S is designed for optimal performance off the line, in sharp turns and while navigating obstacles. Instant acceleration and lightweight design enable the Zero S to take on any city street, hill or obstacle.
The Zero S is priced at $8,995 (after a 10% U.S. federal tax credit). Some states and provinces offer additional incentives. Consumer financing is available in the United States for those who qualify. The motorcycle can be purchased online now and will begin shipping in the United States at the end of March. The Zero S comes with a2-year limited warranty.
“The S feels similar to a standard supermoto, with a narrow frame and hard, skinny seat. The reach to the bars is too low for a supermoto; more like a mountain bike. But the seat was low, like the center of gravity, but the bike felt heavier to me than its claimed 225 pounds.” – motorcycledaily
"The power delivery is instantaneous and seamless. But acceleration initially feels strange, lacking the punctuation of power bands and gears. Yet the force pulling your shoulders back from the bars indicates that the S should keep up with gas-powered supermotos and street bikes in a straight line." – popularmechanics
"The S handled very well in the corners and braking power seemed sufficient for the bikes capabilities. Considering the S will appeal to city folks I would try to improve the turning radius a bit. The bike would make a fantastic commuter and would be a lot of fun on a tight road track or local backroad twisties." – plugbike
"As it is maximum velocity is a paltry 60 mph, and while that’s presumably limited to preserve motor and battery, if the Electric Motorsport GPR-S can go faster with far less power we’d like to see what the Zero S could really do with another gear. As it is this bike isn’t really a safe on highways." – engadget
So you’ve seen what Zero have to say about their street bike and also what the motorcycle press thinks of it. We must add that this is a newly conquered market share and competition is poor, meaning the 2010 Zero S is pretty much the option for those willing to stay green and save money…for now.
- Type: Brushed permanent magnet electric
- Top speed: 67 mph (105 kph)
- Type: Patent-pending lithium ion array
- Capacity: 4 kWh (58volts @ 70Ah)
- Range: Up to 50 miles (80 km)
- Recharge time: Less than 4 hours
- Charger type: On-board
- Input: Standard 110V or 220V
- Transmission: Clutchless one speed
- Drive system: 16T / 53T, 420 Chain
Chassis / Suspension / Brakes
- Front suspension travel: 8 inches (203.2 mm)
- Rear suspension travel: 8 inches (203.2 mm)
- Front brakes: 2 Piston hydraulic, stainless Rotor, hand actuated
- Rear brakes: 1 Piston hydraulic, stainless rotor, foot actuated
- Front tire: 110/70-16
- Rear tire: 140/70-16
- Wheel base: 56.8 inches (144.3 cm)
- Seat height (standard): 34 inches (86.4 cm)
- Low seat height (option): 32 inches (81.3 cm)
- Rake: 22 degrees
- Trail: 3.26 inches (82.8 mm)
- Steering angle: + 35 Degrees, -35 Degrees
- Frame: 18 pounds (8.16 kg)
- Power pack: 95 pounds (43.1 kg)
- Curb weight: 273 pounds (123.8 kg)
- GVRW: 575 pounds (260.8 kg)
- Carrying capacity: 302 pounds (136.0 kg)
- Typical cost to recharge: Less than $.01 per mile or kilometer
Features & Benefits
Frame / Bodywork
- Aircraft grade aluminum is exclusively used in the construction of the lightweight and rigid Zero S twin spar frame. One look at the frame and it speaks for itself. It is aggressive, strong and one of the main reasons that the Zero S can take on anything in an urban environment. Designed to have a low center of gravity, the Zero S is highly maneuverable and responsive. The body is completed using custom injected molded plastics to give it aerodynamics and aggressive supermoto styling.
- Frame and bodywork designed from the ground up by Zero Motorcycles
- Extremely rigid and lightweight twin spar aircraft grade aluminum frame
- Custom injected molded plastics with new color graphics for aggressive styling and aerodynamics
- Designed to have a low center of gravity for better maneuverability and responsiveness
Power Pack / Electronics
- Years of development and proprietary Z-Force™ technology make the Zero S a leader in acceleration, range and longevity. Using an advanced monitoring system, each cell in the power pack is individually controlled during charge and discharge. The onboard charger integrates into this system and uses a specially developed charge profile to optimize the power pack’s recharge time. Using isolated power systems the Zero S uses a standard 12 volt current to run the dash, lighting and other on board accessories.
- Proprietary Z-Force™ power pack for increased acceleration and range
- Redundant safety features to accommodate extreme conditions
- Isolated power systems and 12 volt system for running accessories
- Onboard charger that uses a specially developed charge profile
- Keyed ignition tied to a solenoid switch for a safe and instant power up
Motor / Z-Force Air Induction
- A compact and powerful motor drives the Zero S. The new Z-Force Air Induction system allows the Zero S to output more power from the motor by efficiently moving air through its core. Mounted low on the frame to increase maneuverability, the highly efficient motor lowers the center of gravity while providing high torque and acceleration.
- Z-Force Air Induction system allows for increased motor performance
- Powerful, low weight and compact motor
- Highly efficient and low maintenance permanent magnet motor design
Wheels and Brakes
- The Zero S wheels are engineered to minimize unsprung weight and reduce rotating mass. Designed specifically for the Zero S, the lightweight construction includes custom hubs, spokes, and rotors. To maximize overall wheel strength the hub is configured to use straight pull spokes. The resulting wheel is lighter, stronger and more responsive.
- Specially developed high performance wheel set
- Aggressive profile street tires
- Custom designed hubs for reduced weight and maximum wheel strength
- High strength/lightweight straight pull spokes
- Full float calipers
- Custom foot actuated rear and hand actuated front brake
- The suspension on the Zero S was developed by Zero to take advantage of the motorcycles’ lightweight design. Its inverted front fork is among the lightest in the industry and can be externally adjusted to dial in compression and rebound damping. A rigid double diamond rear swing arm keeps the wheel planted using a custom rear shock with a fully adjustable spring preload and easily tuned damping.
- Zero designed lightweight front end (lightest in the industry)
- Inverted front fork to reduce unsprung weight
- Fully adjustable rebound and compression damping on the front
- Custom rear shock with adjustable spring preload and damping
- Unique double diamond aircraft grade aluminum rear swingarm for reduced weight and increased torsional rigidity
Dash / Lights
- The dash is designed by Zero to quickly and accurately provide information on speed, charge and motor temperature. In the evening the dash lights up with the flip of a switch and is accompanied by a high intensity headlight.
- Digital and analog speed display
- Motor temperature sensor
- A clutchless one speed, the Zero S is geared for rapid acceleration and increased efficiency. Using a direct chain drive and hardened alloy sprockets the Zero S is able to achieve minimal frictional loss. This increases the overall range and channels power into speed.
- Clutchless one speed
- Geared for rapid acceleration and maximum efficiency
- Minimal maintenance