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Zero DS Electric Dual-Sport First Look

Wednesday, July 29, 2009
Zero Motorcycles has released the Zero DS, a new dual-sport electric motorcycle. The street-legal Zero DS is a spinoff of the street-only predecessor, the Zero S, but combines the off-road capability of Zero's first electric creation - the Zero X motocrosser.
Zero DS Electric Dual-Sport Motorcycle
The Zero DS is on/off-road legal and uses the same electric motorcycle technolgy as the rest of the Zero product line.

“The Zero DS is designed for those who want the freedom to ride wherever they want,” said CEO Gene Banman in a press release. “Take a new route into the office. Bypass the ordinary. Blast down a gravel road or a dusty trail. When you’re ready, silently pass from the sublime to the civilized as you arrive at your destination.”

The DS looks to be very similar to the S model with the exception of knobbier tires, a 17-inch front wheel, updated suspension and a new headlight. DS models use a round lamp versus the projector beam style on the street-only cycle. Zero’s Z-Force power pack doles out the juice from the lithium-ion battery. Charge time is said to be less than four hours with the onboard charging system and using standard 110 or 220-volt outlets. Weighing a claimed 270 pounds, the DS has a range of around 50 miles and a top speed of 55 mph with the single-speed, clutchless gearbox.

Suspension settings are said to be custom to the DS model and the inverted fork offers an additional two inches of travel (10 total). The rear shock provides nine inches of movement to absorb on/off-road punishment. The wheelbase is slightly longer than the street model at 56.75 inches but seat height is the same. Zero slows things down with a dual-piston caliper up front and single piston in the rear, both grabbing wave rotors.

Zero DS Electric Dual-Sport MotorcycleZero DS Electric Dual-Sport MotorcycleZero DS Electric Dual-Sport Motorcycle
The DS blends dirt and street performance with updated components mated to the existing Zero S design.
The bike retails for $9950 with a standard $500 shipping charge anywhere in the Lower 48. Don’t forget that this electric bike is eligible for a federal tax credit and sales tax deduction. For more information on the Zero DS, visit the Zero Motorcycles website.

Zero DS Specs:
Top Speed: 55mph
Motor Type: Type Brushed permanent magnet electric, patent-pending lithium ion array
Capacity: 4 kWh (58volts @ 70Ah)
Range: Up to 50 miles
Recharge Time: Less than 4 hours
Input: Standard 110V or 220V
Transmission: Clutchless one speed
Drive System: 17T / 61T, 420 Chain
Front Suspension: Travel 10 inches
Rear Suspension: Travel 9 inches
Front Brakes: 2 Pot Hydraulic, Stainless Rotor, Hand Actuated
Rear Brakes: 1 Pot Hydraulic, Stainless Rotor, Foot Actuated
Front Tire: 3.25-17
Rear Tire: 110/90-16
Front Wheel: 17 x 2.15
Rear Wheel: 16 x 3.0
Wheelbase: 56.75 inches
Seat Height: 35.5 inches
Head Angle: 26 degrees from vertical with 10 inch fork
Trail: 3.26 inches
Frame Weight: 29 pounds
Power Pack Weight: 80 pounds
Total Weight: 270 pounds
Typical cost to recharge: Less than $.01 per mile or kilometer
MSRP: $9950

Check out the video clip below courtesy of Zero Motorcycles.

Zero DS Electric Dual-Sport Photos
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robert day -what the hell  November 12, 2010 03:58 PM
what is wrong with you people? This bike is innovative in design and performance. All of you snobs should be ashamed of your negative comments.
Mxster -ugly  September 14, 2009 07:37 AM
Look its the first dirbike for Astronauts! Its perfect for lunar table tops. Its the right idea in the right direction but its wayy too ugly, it seriously looks like something that NASA would've come up with for the moon.
andy -way to go  August 2, 2009 02:19 PM
I like the idea about electric bikes a lot , but I am with tessier...when its buttugly like this is it won^t sell ...period...who the hell designed that frontlamp...he should be send back to school...lol
JSH -Not at all useless  July 30, 2009 06:04 AM
Different people have different needs. Not everyone needs to go 150 miles non-stop. In my suburban area I could use a vehicle like this for ~90% of my travel. It is rare for me to go more than 50 miles in a day.
luiz -sound  July 30, 2009 05:26 AM
the sound is terrible, awww , sorry global warming but i like the sound of 4 cilinder inline roaring in the morning, its better then coffee to get you awake
mark -...?  July 30, 2009 04:50 AM
Even a 100-mile range is kind of useless. Once they can manage a 150-mile range with a 70mph top speed and the ability to recharge the batteries in 5 minutes, I'll be interested. Until then I'll stick with an internal combustion engine. In this case, what were they thinking with a 17" front wheel on a dual-sport? You can't even get a decent selection of knobby front tires in that size. Why not a 19"? Strange.
Tessier -Ugly  July 30, 2009 04:26 AM
Seriously this look's like a product that some day with improved battery technology is really going to take off, but this particular one? No way it's way to UGLY. Couldn't they have hired someone to pretty it up and could you get rid of those freaken mountain bike fork's.
babyadolph -Kinda cool  July 29, 2009 10:14 PM
Hey AK, I'm a Commercial Transport Mech.and I gotta say I hate trucks! Especially noisy die sels. Bbbbut one sound I love, is the sound of a Jimmy (GMC 2stroke diesel)a rarity these days in Van. BC Can.Anywayss, I'm biased cause I'm a 2 stroke guy, love the sound!! Ride a RM 250!! We must evolve! But listen to all that clattering, sounds like parts falling off all over the trail, and it still looks like CRAPP it's gotta look good or it will never get out of the show room (AMC still has lodes of Gremlins and Pacers in their car lots). Duh, Maybe I just don't get it!!
AvengingKnight -Cool  July 29, 2009 01:41 PM
Having a degree in Electrical Engineering I like this. All of those poor Mechanical engineers who are still perfecting the inefficient internal combustion engine. But the limiting factor will always be the battery technology. Get this bike up to a 100 mile range and then you have something really viable in the market place.