Upgraded suspension, improved range, and full fairing separate the SR/S from the SR/F

EV bike builder Zero Motorcycles beefs up its street-centric offerings ahead of the 2020 model year with its new SR/S. This ride carries a bit more in the way of bodywork than usual to break new ground for the marque, but the grunt-tastic performance remains in line with its super-naked sibling, the SR/F. As with most of the rest of the on-road lineup, the factory has a full line of accessory goodies that let you mix and match for just the right combination of range and recharge times to suit your riding style.

  • 2020 Zero SR/S
  • Year:
    2020
  • Make:
  • Model:
  • Top Speed:
    124 mph
  • Price:
    19995
  • Price:

2020 Zero SR/S Design

  • 5-inch color TFT display
  • Aerodynamic efficiency increases range 13% over the SR/F
  • More ergonomincally comfortable than the SR/F
  • Larger pillion area
  • LED lighting
2020 Zero SR/S
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2020 Zero SR/S
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The SR/S is a not-quite-naked machine that leads the way with windtunnel-tested fairings to split the wind and lend a significant increase to efficiency on the superslab – to the tune of a whopping 13 percent. A sculpted front fender leads the way with foil-shaped uprights that double as guards for the swept area of the inverted front forks and as wind shunts that steers the incoming air outboard and into laminar flow with the engine cowling.

The fender is cut down to the limits of function as a spray-containment feature to keep unsprung weight at the front axle low. A broad front fairing carries dual headlights in recessed housings with a broad face and swooped-back windshield to increase penetration, and the pocket formed by the glass gives you plenty of room to tuck in out of the slipstream.

The fairing extends down both sides of the bike to form a sporty cowling scoop as well as a chin fairing where they meet up again down at the bottom. I know this is all about performance, but in the looks department the bodywork hides much of the non-standard drivetrain to make the SR/S blend in more readily with a pack of smokerbikes.

Instrumentation is as advanced as the drive with a color, five-inch TFT screen that bundles all the pertinent metrics together in one place and that is supplemented by a wireless cellular connection and the app that pulls your smartphone into the loop. Monitor your bike’s status, charge state, and ride data and plan your rides accordingly, and cycle through the preset and programmable performance profiles to dial in your motor’s temperament.

Although the fuel-tank hump is a lie – it could house a Power Tank, Charge Tank or nothing at all – its shape is exactly what you’d expect from a non-electric bike, and this gives it even more curb appeal and camouflage.

The pilot’s seat is set low in the machine for ample man-machine integration and it slings your butt at 31 inches off the deck for confidence at stops. A lofted pillion pad joins a set of flip-up footpegs and a pair of generous J.C. handles to wrap up the passenger’s amenities. The rear blinkers ride in short-standoff housing similar to the front turn signals along with a compact taillight, all in LED technology.

2020 Zero SR/S Chassis

  • Decidedly agile handling
  • Fully adjustable suspension
  • Showa Big Piston Separate Function forks
  • 40 mm Showa piggy-back rear shock
  • Motorcycle Stability Control provides ABS and traction control
2020 Zero SR/S
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2020 Zero SR/S
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2020 Zero SR/S
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A tubular Trellis frame provides the main structure on the Zero SR/S with an asymmetrical swingarm to complete the assembly and keep curb weight down to 516 pounds total. Zero punches up the bikes sportbike chops with a steering head that establishes a 24.5-degree rake angle and short, 3.7-inch trail figure to place it at the decidedly-agile end of the spectrum. This makes it quick to flick with excellent cornering performance, though it naturally comes at the expense of tracking to make this machine somewhat tender in a crosswind.

The suspension comes fully adjustable at both ends. The SR/S leads the way with a set of 43 mm inverted, Showa Big Piston Separate Function forks that segregate the support and damping functions to deliver a superior ride, and out back, a 40 mm Showa piggy-back shock supports the tail and dampens the swingarm motion. Suspension travel is rather generous for a streetbike with travel measurements of 4.72-inches and 5.51-inches on the front and rear, respectively.

Cast-alloy rims round out the rolling chassis with a 17-inch diameter at both ends and Pirelli Diablo Rosso III hoops to make the connection to the concrete. A 120/70 front tire and 180/55 rear provide generous contact patches and grippy performance.

J-Juan radial calipers bite dual 320 mm front discs and the 240 mm rear disc via pressure from radial master cylinders that deliver more braking effort with less lever motion than what you get from conventional equipment. Bosch supplies the ABS protection with its Motorcycle Stability Control feature that pulls double duty as a traction control device as well.

ModelStandardPremium
Front suspension: Showa 43 mm Big Piston Separate Function forks, with adjustable spring preload, compression and rebound damping Showa 43 mm Big Piston Separate Function forks, with adjustable spring preload, compression and rebound damping
Rear suspension: Showa 40 mm piston, piggy-back reservoir shock with adjustable spring preload, compression and rebound damping Showa 40 mm piston, piggy-back reservoir shock with adjustable spring preload, compression and rebound damping
Front suspension travel: 4.72 in (120 mm) 4.72 in (120 mm)
Rear suspension travel: 5.51 in (140 mm) 5.51 in (140 mm)
Rake: 24.5° 24.5°
Trail: 3.7 in (94 mm) 3.7 in (94 mm)
Front brakes” Bosch Advanced MSC, dual J-Juan radial 4-piston calipers with radial master cylinder, 320 x 5 mm discs Bosch Advanced MSC, dual J-Juan radial 4-piston calipers with radial master cylinder, 320 x 5 mm discs
Rear brakes: Bosch Advanced MSC, J-Juan single piston floating caliper, 240 x 4.5 mm disc Bosch Advanced MSC, J-Juan single piston floating caliper, 240 x 4.5 mm disc
Front tire: Pirelli Diablo Rosso III 120/70-17 Pirelli Diablo Rosso III 120/70-17
Rear tire: Pirelli Diablo Rosso III 180/55-17 Pirelli Diablo Rosso III 180/55-17
Front wheel: 3.50 x 17 3.50 x 17
Rear wheel: 5.50 x 17 5.50 x 17

2020 Zero SR/S Drivetrain

  • 200 mile range with the optional Power Tank
  • ZF75-10 electric motor
  • 110 horsepower
  • 140 lb-ft of torque for solid holeshots
2020 Zero SR/S
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2020 Zero SR/S
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2020 Zero SR/S
- image 891577

Of course, the real star of the show is the all-electric drivetrain. It starts with the air-cooled, Z-Force 75-10 motor that churns out an impressive 110 horsepower at 5,000 rpm. One of the perks of electric motors is that the full torque output is available as soon as it starts to rotate with no need to spool up to develop the full 140 pound-feet of grunt. That’s more torque than the typical comparable literbikes, so you can count on solid holeshots, especially since the MSC feature will prevent spinout due to an overenthusiastic throttle technique.

It’s a direct-drive system that operates sans clutch with twist-and-go operation. Since there’s no transmixxer, the carbon-reinforced belt goes straight from the motor to the rear wheel, and the overall drive ratio turns in a top speed of 124 mph in short bursts, but the max sustained speed is clocked at 110 mph.

The stock, 14.4 kWh lithium-ion power pack will deliver up to 161 city miles, 99 miles at 55 mph or 82 miles on the superslab. If you need more range, the Power Tank will provide the juice for up to 200 miles between chargings. However, if it’s faster charging times that you need, you can upgrade from the 3 kW on-board charger for one twice as big with a 4.5-hour and 2.5-hour recharge time, respectively. The Rapid Charge option can reduce the full-charge times down to a scant 1.5 hours, so you can tailor the power/recharge system to suit.

ModelStandardPremium
Motor Type: Z-Force 75-10 enhanced thermal efficiency, passively air-cooled, interior permanent magnet AC motor Z-Force 75-10 enhanced thermal efficiency, passively air-cooled, interior permanent magnet AC motor
Controller: High efficiency and power dense, 900 Amp, 3-phase AC controller with regenerative deceleration High efficiency and power dense, 900 Amp, 3-phase AC controller with regenerative deceleration
Peak torque: 140 lb-ft (190 Nm) 140 lb-ft (190 Nm)
Peak power: 110 hp (82 kW) @ 5,000 rpm 110 hp (82 kW) @ 5,000 rpm
Top speed (max): 124 mph (200 km/h) 124 mph (200 km/h)
Top speed (sustained): 110 mph (177 km/h) 110 mph (177 km/h)
Power pack: Z-Force® Li-Ion intelligent integrated Z-Force® Li-Ion intelligent integrated
Max capacity: 14.4 kWh 14.4 kWh
Nominal capacity: 12.6 kWh 12.6 kWh
Charger type: 3.0 kW, integrated 6.0 kW, integrated
Charge time (standard): 4.5 hours (100% charged) / 4.0 hours (95% charged) 2.5 hours (100% charged) / 2.0 hours (95% charged)
└ With 6 kW Rapid Charge option: 1.8 hours (100% charged) / 1.3 hours (95% charged) 1.5 hours (100% charged) / 1.0 hour (95% charged)
└ With EVSE cord and standard outlet: 8.5 hours (100% charged)/ 8.0 hours (95% charged) 8.5 hours (100% charged) / 8.0 hours (95% charged)
Transmission: Clutchless direct drive Clutchless direct drive
Final drive: 90T / 20T, Poly Chain® HTD® Carbon™ belt 90T / 20T, Poly Chain® HTD® Carbon™ belt

2020 Zero SR/S Pricing

2020 Zero SR/S
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2020 Zero SR/S
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2020 Zero SR/S
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You can score a base-model 2020 SR/S in blue or gray for $19,995. If you want those premium electrics, you can expect to shell out $21,995 bucks. The 6 kW Fast Charge option will set you back another $2,300 if you choose to go that route.

ModelStandardPremium
Warranty:
└ Standard motorcycle warranty: 2 years 2 years
└ Power pack warranty: 5 years/unlimited miles 5 years/unlimited miles
Price: $19,995 $21,995

2020 Zero SR/S Competitors

2020 Zero SR/S
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2020 Harley-Davidson LiveWire
- image 804461

Since Harley-Davidson has finally launched its LiveWire electric motorcycle, I think it’s fair to see how it stacks up against a bike from a proven manufacturer, so here we go.

Harley-Davidson LiveWire

2020 Harley-Davidson LiveWire
- image 804460

At a glance, the LiveWire has more in common with Zero’s naked SR/F than the fairing-bearing SR/S, but since this is the only thing The MoCo has going, so this is what we have to work with. Harley does little to make the drivetrain area blend in with the crowd, though the head-on visage is pretty ordinary looking and the profile looks like a smokerbike with a faux fuel tank that fills out the flyline.

Needless to say, with its bodywork the SR/S enjoys more efficient penetration into the wind. Harley uses adjustable Showa products front and rear to more-or-less break even with Zero, and Brembo provides the brakes. Since H-D has its own system for power modes, traction control, and ABS, the LiveWire actually breaks even yet again – something we couldn’t say just a year ago.

H-D’s Revelation motor generates 105 horsepower and 86 pound-feet of torque to fall well short of the 110/140 figures from the Zero, and since the LiveWire can go a max of 146 city miles or 95 combined miles between charges, it falls short in the stamina department as well. However, the DC Fast Charge feature can slam an 80-percent charge in the battery in just 40 minutes, and that’s pretty doggone fast by anyone’s standards.

The LiveWire hands the biggest win to Zero at the checkout counter with its lofty, $29,799 price tag that is half again more than the base SR/S’ MSRP.

Read our full review of the Harley-Davidson LiveWire.

He Said

“In full disclosure, Zero has a reputation for being generous with the power/speed/recharge numbers, but to be fair, all manufacturers are guilty of that to some degree, am I right? That said, Zero still has the best thing going in my opinion, and if I were in the market for an electric bike, Zero is much more likely to get my money than H-D.”

She Said

My wife and fellow motorcycle writer, Allyn Hinton, says, “This is new territory for Zero in a full-fairinged bike. It’s basically the same as the SR/F, but with enough brushed up to make it a new release. The torque figure looks mighty impressive, but remember that this is a direct drive so the torque doesn’t give you the same result as a bike with a transmission. Still, there is plenty here to give your heinie-dyno a thrill. Suspension is sporty and the bike is quick and fast. Charging times are into ’practical’ range and while the bike is a bit pricey up front, remember that there’s hardly any maintenance, just some chassis stuff like brakes to contend with after the sale.”

2020 Zero SR/S Specifications

ModelStandardPremium
Range:
City: 161 miles (259 km) 161 miles (259 km)
Highway, 55 mph (89 km/h): 99 miles (159 km) 99 miles (159 km)
└ Combined: 123 miles (198 km) 123 miles (198 km)
Highway, 70 mph (113 km/h): 82 miles (132 km) 82 miles (132 km)
└ Combined: 109 miles (175 km) 109 miles (175 km)
Motor:
Motor Type: Z-Force 75-10 enhanced thermal efficiency, passively air-cooled, interior permanent magnet AC motor Z-Force 75-10 enhanced thermal efficiency, passively air-cooled, interior permanent magnet AC motor
Controller: High efficiency and power dense, 900 Amp, 3-phase AC controller with regenerative deceleration High efficiency and power dense, 900 Amp, 3-phase AC controller with regenerative deceleration
Peak torque: 140 lb-ft (190 Nm) 140 lb-ft (190 Nm)
Peak power: 110 hp (82 kW) @ 5,000 rpm 110 hp (82 kW) @ 5,000 rpm
Top speed (max): 124 mph (200 km/h) 124 mph (200 km/h)
Top speed (sustained): 110 mph (177 km/h) 110 mph (177 km/h)
Power system:
Power pack: Z-Force® Li-Ion intelligent integrated Z-Force® Li-Ion intelligent integrated
Max capacity: 14.4 kWh 14.4 kWh
Nominal capacity: 12.6 kWh 12.6 kWh
Charger type: 3.0 kW, integrated 6.0 kW, integrated
Charge time (standard): 4.5 hours (100% charged) / 4.0 hours (95% charged) 2.5 hours (100% charged) / 2.0 hours (95% charged)
└ With 6 kW Rapid Charge option: 1.8 hours (100% charged) / 1.3 hours (95% charged) 1.5 hours (100% charged) / 1.0 hour (95% charged)
└ With EVSE cord and standard outlet: 8.5 hours (100% charged) / 8.0 hours (95% charged) 8.5 hours (100% charged) / 8.0 hours (95% charged)
Drivetrain:
Transmission: Clutchless direct drive Clutchless direct drive
Final drive: 90T / 20T, Poly Chain® HTD® Carbon™ belt 90T / 20T, Poly Chain® HTD® Carbon™ belt
Chassis:
Front suspension: Showa 43 mm Big Piston Separate Function forks, with adjustable spring preload, compression and rebound damping Showa 43 mm Big Piston Separate Function forks, with adjustable spring preload, compression and rebound damping
Rear suspension: Showa 40 mm piston, piggy-back reservoir shock with adjustable spring preload, compression and rebound damping Showa 40 mm piston, piggy-back reservoir shock with adjustable spring preload, compression and rebound damping
Front suspension travel: 4.72 in (120 mm) 4.72 in (120 mm)
Rear suspension travel: 5.51 in (140 mm) 5.51 in (140 mm)
Rake: 24.5° 24.5°
Trail: 3.7 in (94 mm) 3.7 in (94 mm)
Front brakes” Bosch Advanced MSC, dual J-Juan radial 4-piston calipers with radial master cylinder, 320 x 5 mm discs Bosch Advanced MSC, dual J-Juan radial 4-piston calipers with radial master cylinder, 320 x 5 mm discs
Rear brakes: Bosch Advanced MSC, J-Juan single piston floating caliper, 240 x 4.5 mm disc Bosch Advanced MSC, J-Juan single piston floating caliper, 240 x 4.5 mm disc
Front tire: Pirelli Diablo Rosso III 120/70-17 Pirelli Diablo Rosso III 120/70-17
Rear tire: Pirelli Diablo Rosso III 180/55-17 Pirelli Diablo Rosso III 180/55-17
Front wheel: 3.50 x 17 3.50 x 17
Rear wheel: 5.50 x 17 5.50 x 17
Dimensions & Capacities:
Wheelbase: 57.1 in (1,450 mm) 57.1 in (1,450 mm)
Seat height: 31.0 in (787 mm) 31.0 in (787 mm)
└ Accessory, low: 30.3 in (770 mm) 30.3 in (770 mm)
└ Accessory, tall: 31.9 in (810 mm) 31.9 in (810 mm)
Curb weight: 505 lb (229 kg): 516 lb (234 kg)
Carrying capacity: 495 lb (225 kg) 484 lb (220 kg)
Equivalent fuel economy (city): 430 MPGe (0.55 l/100 km) 430 MPGe (0.55 l/100 km)
Equivalent fuel economy (highway): 219 MPGe (1.08 l/100 km) 219 MPGe (1.08 l/100 km)
Typical cost to recharge: $1.61 $1.61
Details:
Warranty:
└ Standard motorcycle warranty: 2 years 2 years
└ Power pack warranty: 5 years/unlimited miles 5 years/unlimited miles
Price: $19,995 $21,995

Further Reading

Zero Motorcycles

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TJ Hinton
T.J got an early start from his father and other family members who owned and rode motorcycles, and by helping with various mechanical repairs throughout childhood. That planted a seed that grew into a well-rounded appreciation of all things mechanical, and eventually, into a formal education of same. Though primarily a Harley rider, he has an appreciation for all sorts of bikes and doesn't discriminate against any particular brand or region of origin. He currently holds an Associate's degree in applied mechanical science from his time at the M.M.I.  Read More
About the author

All images featured on this website are copyrighted to their respective rightful owners. No infringement is intended. Image Source: zeromotorcycles.com, harley-davidson.com

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