Posts Tagged ‘Zero Motorcycles’

 

bikes and breakfastWe recently discovered a motorcycle meetup called “Bikes and Breakfast“.  So we decided to take a ride to the nearest event to check it out.

In our area there are three events each month:

Bikes & Breakfast Virginia- second Sunday of each month at The Pub in Clifton, VA.

Bikes & Breakfast Maryland-the first and third Sunday of each month at The Watershed Cafe in Poolesville, MD.

As it was the first Sunday and Poolesville is not far away we decided to visit that one first.  From the pictures I think you get the idea that the turn at was not to bad. During our hour there over 100 motorcycles pulled in and out of the parking lot.IMG_20190707_101549346_HDR

Almost all makes and all brands were represented including 3 electric motorcycles. A Zero SR/F and DSR (both of which I recently test rode) and an EGO, I had never heard of EGO electric motorcycles.  The EGO bike was pulling out when I walked up so I did not get to check it out.

If you live in this area you should check out Bikes and Breakfast at least once.

Oh, and there is one in New York too:

Bikes & Breakfast New York-the first Sunday of each month at The 9W Market in Palisades, NY.

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I recently got to test ride a couple of Zero motorcycles. The Zero SR/F and the DSR. The Zero SR/F is their sport bike motorcycle and the DSR is more along the line of an adventure motorcycle.

Riding the SR/F first, I was impressed with the motorcycle! Fit and finish seemed spot on and the styling was better than many of the other sport bikes on the market, at least to my taste.

With torque rated at 140 and horsepower at 110 the SR/F is an awesome bike off the staring line…not that I tried anything like that.IMG_20190621_111105207_HDR

The route we took for the ride did not truly allow for an assessment of the motorcycles handling but swinging between potholes and road debris leads me to think that the SR/F might be a well handing machine. It comes with Bosch’s Motorcycle Stability Control and several modes of operation including “sport” which maximizes the performance of the motorcycle.

At 161 mile “city” range (200 with the “power tank”) and an optimal charge time of 80 minutes it seems right for the urban commuter. On my commute I would have grave range anxiety and there is no recharging station at work. It is something I would like to try although, a SR/F with saddle bags on my commute for a couple weeks would be intriguing.

On this limited test ride I give the $19K Zero SR/F motorcycle a BIG THUMBS UP!!! (can’t give it a start rating due to the limitations of the test ride)

The Zero DSR with torque rate at 116 and 70 HP rode quite comfortably on our potholed road test. I intentionally road across and trough the bumps to get a fell for the suspension of the motorcycle. I was pleasantly surprised, it is not a $20K BMW adventure bike but, it was a quite a smooth ride.

IMG_20190621_111209428_HDRThe DSR’s range is 163 city and 78 highway. Again, not something I would trust my commute on but for an afternoon of backroad travels, I would love to give it a try. Charging time for the DSR ranges from 2.5 to 12 hours depending on configuration and options.

I don’t feel I can give this motorcycle a thumbs up or down based on the limited test ride. It seems fun and agile, but I can’t tell for sure.

As a point of comparison…. I have, on one other occasion, got to test ride an electric motorcycle, the Harley Davidson Live Wire prototype. Of the two Zero bikes I rode the SR/F was the closest to the Live Wire.

The Harley Live Wire is a very cool motorcycle and the Zero SR/F is a very cool motorcycle. But at $9k price difference I would lean towards the SR/F.

Special THANK YOU to Motorcycles of Dulles for hosting this test ride!!!

Ride On, Ride Safe

 

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2014_zero-s_product-page_overview-imageI have been reading a lot about electric motorcycles lately.  About how they are getting improved performance, more versatility and better range. But here in the metro Washington DC area there will have to be revolutionary changes to range and attitudes before they can even begin to be discussed in the same sentence to their fossil fuel brothers and sisters.

Depending on which building I am working my commute is either 25 miles or 36 miles in length, one way, which can translate to up to an average of an hour and thirty minutes.  My commute is average a best and great compared to some of my neighbors.

The range on most of the bikes indicate that I would have no problem getting to work but as for recharging the batteries while at work, it is not going to happen.  At one of my buildings, I drove through the entire parking garage and found no outlets, let alone a dedicated charging station.  At the other, there is a conventional outlet but I would have to carry a 100 foot extension cord to connect the bike.  I did not ask the building owners if they would let me “plug in”, but I think the answer would be no.

So that would leave the trip home.  According to the propaganda/literature (Zero motorcycles claim that their range is up to 171 miles in the city) I should be able to make it home with out a recharge.  But, that assumes the temperature is not to hot or too cool, that there are no hills (there are) and limited stop and go traffic (DC, LOL)!  I would need Xanax every afternoon to cope with the range anxiety….but most drivers in this area should be on that drug!

Now with all that being said I will stick with my Harley but, if one of these companies would like to me to test a bike come spring I would consider being a test subject.

As a retired soldier I am always interested anytime the Army does something with motorcycles.  During my time served the closest I came to bikes in the Army was when the MP’s pulled me over! 

This electric “Stealth Bike” is an interesting concept, and very cool looking, but I am not sure how practical it would be in combat situations. A two hour run time does not give me a high degree of comfort, but maybe the manufacturer’s congressmen think otherwise!

P.S.   LOL..note the police bike version!

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