Zero Motorcycles has released its 2011 lineup, with some significant upgrades to its machines.â€¨â€¨ The biggest news for the electric motorcycle company’s bikes this year is their improved charging time.
Like most electric bikes, Zero’s machines were somewhat hampered by slow charging times, but the 2011 models feature a quick-charge option that can bring charge time down from four hours to as low as two hours for a 90 per cent charge.
That should help riders get their bike back on the road much more quickly. Also, with an optional accessory the bikes can be juiced using the SAE J1772 charging receptacle, which was recently standardized for electric cars, something Zero claims is a first for electric motorcycles.â€¨
Zero has also updated the bodywork on all its bikes, and developed a maintenance-free belt drive for the street and dual-sport models. The company’s trail and motocross bikes come with a street-legal option now, including such necessities as a light kit, gauges and different gearing.
Bikes across the lineup received upgraded suspension and brakes from HB Performance; Zero says many changes were made with aftermarket compatibility in mind, giving owners more customization and performance upgrade options.
The Zero S street bike has been lowered to improve street handling. All models’ power packs have a 12.5 per cent increase in capacity to give them more range (although it works out to just over 90 kilometres, so you can forget those Iron Butt rally plans).â€¨â€¨
The 2011 models are scheduled to begin shipping in March, and will have a two-year limited warranty.
Zero motorcycles are distributed in Canada by National Motorsports.â€¨â€¨