The 2018 Zero Motorcycles lineup of electric motorcycles is here, so let’s take a look at what’s new for 2018 from Zero. Here are the must-know essential facts:1. There are three basic models of 2018 Zero motorcycles. You can choose from the upright sporty S, the dual-sport DS, and the supermoto-style FX models. Each of those three models has an upgraded version—the SR, DSR, and FXS—along with different battery options (16 versions, in all). The SR and DSR get the new high-performance ZF14.4 battery, while the FX and FXS retain the option of the low-weight, shorter-range ZF3.6 battery.
2. Three new Z-Force lithium-ion batteries address charging and range concerns on the 2018 Zero motorcycles. The new ZF14.4 and ZF7.2 batteries are upgrades from previous editions and have 10 percent more capacity than the batteries they replace. The ZF14.4 is the flagship of the batteries, putting out 18 kWh of energy. According to Zero, this means you’ll be able to get 223 miles in the city on a single charge, if you go for the optional ZF3.6 Power Tank ($2295 MSRP).3. A new Charge Tank accessory significantly shortens recharging times on the S, SR, DS, and DSR models. Compatible with the Level 2 EV charging stations that can be found in many urban areas, the 6 kW Charge Tank charges up six times faster than when using a standard 110-volt outlet. If you use the Charge Tank in conjunction with the standard charger, you can power up a ZF7.2 battery from zero to 95 percent charge in one hour, and two hours needed for the ZF14.4 battery.4. The new batteries also have improved performance. Torque is up 11 percent on the ZF7.2 battery, while the older ZF13.0 battery found in the Zero S and Zero DS has more power at high speeds. This allows the Zeros to compete more effectively on urban freeways.5. Firmware can now be updated on the Zero using your smartphone or tablet. Previously, you had to go to a dealer for firmware updates, but the new Zero app allows you to perform this function yourself.6. All six 2018 Zero Motorcycles have ABS. The Bosch Gen 9 ABS works with the J-Juan calipers and a new 320mm disc in the front, with the exception of the FX, which has a 240mm front disc.7. Although the FX and FXS are both supermoto inspired, only the FXS get true supermoto wheels. The FX has the 18-/21-inch wheel combo with Pirelli Scorpion MT-90 tires, while the FXS has 17-inch wheels at both ends shod with high-spec Pirelli Diablo Rosso II tires—just like the S and SR street bikes.8. The 2018 Zero DS and DSR dual sport bikes don’t get true dual sport wheels. While the FX has the 18-/21-inch wire-spoke rims, the DS and DRS have adventure-spec 17-/19-inch street-style wheels with Pirelli MT-60 tires.9. Showa suspension is used on all 2018 Zero Motorcycles. All six bikes have fully adjustable Showa suspension at both ends.10. You can chose between light-weight and long-range. The 2018 Zero FX ZF3.6 weighs just 247 pounds, but has a claimed range limited to 46 miles in the city (and costs just 40¢ to recharge). At the other end of the spectrum, the 2018 Zero SR ZF14.4 + Power Tank has a city range of 223 miles, but weighs 458 pounds.11. Zero is paying attention to appearance. The graphics and paint has been upgraded for 2018, with Zero making a new focus on the experience of riding, rather than focusing on the technology of its electric motorcycles.For prices and a photo gallery, click to page 2
Hello everyone and welcome once again to Ultimate Motorcycling’s weekly Podcast—Motos and Friends.
My name is Arthur Coldwells.
This week’s Podcast is brought to you by Yamaha motorcycles. Discover how the YZF-R7 provides the perfect balance of rider comfort and true supersport performance by checking it out at YamahaMotorsports.com, or see it for yourself at your local dealer.
This week’s episode features Senior Editor Nic de Sena’s impressions of the beautiful new Harley-Davidson Low Rider ST that is loosely based around the original FXRT Sport Glide from the 1980s. Hailing from The Golden State, these cult-status performance machines became known as West Coast style, with sportier suspension, increased horsepower, and niceties including creature comforts such as a tidy fairing and sporty luggage.
In past episodes you might have heard us mention my best friend, Daniel Schoenewald, and in the second segment I chat with him about some of the really special machines in his 170 or so—and growing—motorcycle collection. He’s always said to me that he doesn’t consider himself the owner, merely the curator of the motorcycles for the next generation.
Yet Daniel is not just a collector, but I can attest a really skilled rider. His bikes are not trailer queens, they’re ridden, and they’re ridden pretty hard. Actually, we have had many, many memorable rides on pretty much all of the machines in the collection at one time or another.
From all of us here at Ultimate Motorcycling, we hope you enjoy this episode!