Zero -- aka the electric motorcycle company anyone references when talking about electric motorcycles -- is at it again. This time, it's taking the bones of its electric streetfighter, and then tossing a fairing on it. That's right, folks, Zero is making a sportbike -- kinda -- and it debuted Wednesday in New York.
It's called the SR/S, and its stats -- while not world-beating -- are pretty impressive. To start, the SR/S is claiming a respectable 110-horsepower and a very exciting 140-pound-feet of torque. Next, it offers a range estimate of 161 miles in the city, though that drops to just 82 miles once you hit the highway. Top speed is 124 miles per hour.
Those numbers jump up to 201 city/103 highway if you add Zero's optional Charge Tank battery. Charging times -- ever an essential metric for EVs -- aren't shabby either. If you get the base model SR/S, you're looking at four hours to charge to 95%. If you splash out for the premium model, that drops to just two hours. Splash out even more for the 6-kilowatt rapid charger, and those times drop to 1.3 and 1.0 hours, respectively.
This all sounds pretty good, right? Well, here's where things take a slight turn for the worse. See, you can't build a battery-electric motorcycle without batteries, and batteries are still pretty heavy. The base model SR/S tips the scales at 505 pounds, while the premium models pay a weight premium for its added charging performance with a curb weight of 516 pounds. They're not fully-loaded-ADV-bike-heavy, but they're not precisely featherweights either.
Also significant is the fact that it has a tall-ish seat height of 31 inches. This means that shorter riders might struggle a bit to keep a foot flat on the ground while at a stop. We didn't get official chassis geometry numbers, but based on the press photos, we can see that despite its sporty fairing, the SR/S' ergonomics are pretty relaxed. The bars are tall and relatively wide, and the foot controls are sporty but not extreme. In short, this should be a pretty comfortable beast to ride.
Thewhen talking about electric motorcycles -- aside from weight -- is cost. The fact is that these are low-volume, special-interest machines and they're priced to match. The Zero SR/S in premium trim with the 6-kW charger option and heated grips will set you back the not-inconsiderable-sum of $21,995. The base model with a 3-kW charger is $19,995. Want the added range of the Power Tank? Tack on another $2,895.
The good news is that the Zero is eligible for a 10% federal tax credit for plug-in vehicles, up to a maximum of $2,500, but that's small potatoes with staring down the barrel of a $22,000 motorcycle purchase.
Still,since we threw a leg over a Zero, and the company is markedly different now than it was back then. We're looking forward to getting some seat time on the SR/S soon and letting you know how we like it.