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2018 Zero Motorcycles: These electric bikes go farther and recharge faster

Charles Fleming, Los Angeles Times on

Published in Automotive News

Zero Motorcycles' 2018 lineup features notable improvements over previous models. The new battery-powered electric bikes accelerate faster, travel farther and can be recharged more quickly than previous machines from the Santa Cruz, Calif., company.

GOING FASTER AND FARTHER -- WITH SHORTER CHARGE TIMES

Zero's Z-Force electric power packs are lighter and denser. The ZF7.2 battery delivers 11 percent more torque. The ZF13.0 battery delivers up to 30 percent more.

Greater distances are possible with the ZF7.2 and ZF14.4 power packs, which now allow for up to 223 miles of all-electric riding between charges.

Charge times have come down, too. The Zero S, ST, DS and DSR bikes can be charged six times faster than previous models, when they are mated to ZF7.2 and ZF14.4 power packs. Using an optional Charge Tank accessory -- a $2,295 upgrade -- the ZF7.2 battery can recharge in an hour; the ZF14.4 takes about two hours.

ALL THAT POWER? IT COSTS MONEY

The new technology doesn't come cheaply. The most advanced electric motorcycles in the world come with some higher costs. Base models are still affordable, and the DS and DSR models are only $500 more expensive this year than last. But the extended-range machines, fitted with the higher power batteries, are pricey.

Zero DSR and DS models have risen $500 in price for the base models.

Zero DSR and DS models have risen $500 in price for the base models. Zero Motorcycles

Models with smaller batteries are more affordable:

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