2016 Zero Electric Motorcycles: 2 New Bikes, Faster Charging, New Motor Design


The 2016 lineup of electric motorcycles from Zero Motorcycles features two new models, faster charging, extended range on all models and a new motor that won’t overheat.

With continual effort from its R&D department, the entire lineup goes farther, and the company’s sportiest bikes go faster for longer without the overheating issues riders have experienced in previous years.

The new models include a Dual Sport Racing (DSR) bike and a Supermoto (FXS) bike ready for street racing.  The DSR utilizes the chassis and components of the DS with a size 6 controller that can draw more current from the battery (660 amps instead of 420 amps), giving it 67hp and a whopping 106 ft-lbs of torque.

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With all that power, Zero developed a new version of its motor with Interior Permanent Magnets (IPM) which allows for more effective cooling under hard riding conditions.

A Charge Tank has been added to the available options to give riders the opportunity to recharge in one third of the time. The charge tank lets the rider charge using 3.8 kilowatts of power, including 2.5 kW from the charge tank and 1.3 kW from the onboard charger.

A single J1772 plug at any electric-car charging station will utilize both chargers at the same time, providing a full charge in as little as 2.5 hours.

2016 Zero DSR, detail of charge tank plugged in and recharging2016 Zero DSR, detail of charge tank plugged in and recharging

The charge tank precludes attaching a power tank since they take up the same area, but it is backwards compatible with 2015 models.

Zero has made incremental but significant advances in its bikes over the past few years. In 2012, the Zero S with a 9-kilowatt-hour battery cost $14,000.

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This year, by comparison, a 2016 Zero S with a 9.8-kWh battery costs $10,995 and has far better suspension, tires, anti-lock brakes, a better instrument panel, and faster charging.

Here are highlights of each model.

2016 Zero S and 2016 Zero SR2016 Zero S and 2016 Zero SR

Zero S and SR – Streetfighter

The flagship model, Zero SR, gets an updated motor providing the same power and torque but with more effective cooling. The new IPM motor significantly improves cooling under hard riding conditions.

With 106 ft-lbs of torque, the Zero SR demands hard riding but previous models would overheat under certain conditions.  The new motor promises to allow spirited riding or racing without concern about overheating the motor.  The onboard charging system is a 1.3-kW charger.

Both the Zero S and SR come with Showa suspension, Bosch ABS brakes and Pirelli tires.  The Zero S has Pirelli Sport Demon tires and the SR has Pirelli Diablo Rosso tires.  The main difference between the Zero S and SR is the motor, the S has a 54hp, 68ft-lb motor while the SR has a 67hp, 106ft-lb motor.  The Zero S will come in yellow and the SR will be available in red.

  • Zero S ZF9.8 – $10,995 – Max Range = 121mi – Highway range (55mi/hr) = 74mi
  • Zero S ZF13.0 – $13,995 – Max Range = 161mi – Highway range (55mi/hr) = 98mi
  • Zero S ZF15.9 – $16,669 – Max Range = 197mi – Highway range (55mi/hr) = 120mi
  • Zero SR ZF13.0 – $15,995 – Max Range = 161mi – Highway range (55mi/hr) = 98mi
  • Zero SR ZF15.9 – $18,669 – Max Range = 197mi – Highway range (55mi/hr) = 120mi
  • Charge tank: $1,988
2016 Zero DSR2016 Zero DSR

Zero DS and DSR – Dual Sport

The Dual Sport model now comes with the option to have the larger controller, giving the DSR the same power as the Zero SR.  With 68hp and 106ft-lbs of torque, the DSR will have incredible power both offroad and on.  Both the Zero DS and DSR come with Showa suspension, Bosch ABS brakes and Pirelli MT-60 tires.