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Development of the Zero DS

The Zero DS is built on the foundation of the Zero S and incorporates technology from Zero’s highly durable off-road motorcycles. The wheels are designed to be particularly lightweight and strong. In the dirt or on the street the dual sport tires maintain a tight grip and a specially engineered suspension system absorbs the bumps. The result is a dual sport motorcycle that is ready for any surface you can throw at it.

Game Changing Z-Force™ Technology: 100+ Mi Range / 300,000+ Mi on a Power Pack

Zero DS Electric Motorcycle Power Pack

The 2012 Zero DS leverages a completely new battery cell chemistry and configuration. Not only does the ZF9 power pack enable riders to go beyond 100 miles, it is also designed to last the life of the motorcycle. The result of cutting edge research and development, each cell in the power pack is individually controlled and monitored at all times to ensure maximum health. The integrated onboard charger minimizes charge time and can work in parallel with Zero’s quick charge accessories to cut charge times by as much as 75%. What’s this all mean? Simply put, the Zero DS is the leader for production electric motorcycles in acceleration, range, recharge times and longevity.

  • Available in two configurations: ZF6 (75 mi) and ZF9 (112 mi)
  • State of the art new power pack configurations and cell chemistry
    • Cells last 3,000 full charge-discharge cycles before hitting 80% capacity, yielding as much as 302,000 miles on the original power pack
    • Up to 95% higher energy density power packs that yield significant range and performance advantages
    • Elegant new low resistance and highly robust cell interconnect technology
  • New battery management system with enhanced 24/7 cell monitoring and a 92% reduction in power consumption
  • New, higher voltage power system that allows the motor to run cooler and with more RPMs than ever before
  • Scalable quick-charge options available to cut recharge times by as much as 75%
  • Isolated power systems and 12 volt system for running accessories
  • Onboard charger that uses a specially developed charge profile

Brushless Motor and Regenerative Braking: 80 mph Top Speed

Zero DS Electric Motorcycle Motor

A compact and powerful brushless motor provides riders with exhilarating acceleration to a top speed of 80 mph. Completely air cooled, the motor is designed to provide riders with years of fun minus the need for any regular maintenance. When slowing down, the motor works with a new brushless motor controller to recharge the power pack.

  • Completely new maintenance-free, clean, forced-air cooled brushless motor
  • Increased torque and broader power band for much stronger acceleration
  • Quad-level regenerative system recharges the power pack when decelerating
    • Re-gen level is increased during brake application vs. “neutral” deceleration
    • Both braking and “neutral” re-gen levels are set higher in Eco vs. Sport mode

Frame and Bodywork: Lightweight and Stealthy

Zero DS Electric Motorcycle Frame

Aircraft grade aluminum is exclusively used in the construction of the lightweight and rigid Zero DS twin spar frame. One look at the frame and it speaks for itself. It is aggressive, strong and one of the main reasons that the Zero DS can take on anything in an urban environment. Designed to have a low center of gravity, the Zero DS is highly maneuverable and responsive. The body is completed using bold new bodywork to give it a contemporary, aggressive and naked look. The 2012 frame is designed to accommodate a rider and passenger with an optional accessory.

  • Frame and bodywork designed from the ground up by Zero Motorcycles
  • Ability to accommodate a passenger with an optional accessory
  • Better handling with refined frame geometry for 2012
  • Extremely rigid and lightweight black twin spar aircraft grade aluminum frame
  • Designed to have a low center of gravity for better maneuverability and responsiveness
  • Sleek new headlight and turn signals
  • New scoop for ventilating the fully air cooled powertrain
  • New trunk-pan and belt guard

Wheels and Brakes: Robust and Responsive

Zero DS Electric Motorcycle Wheels and brakes

The Zero DS wheels are engineered to minimize unsprung weight and reduce rotating mass. Developed specifically for the Zero DS, the lightweight construction includes custom hubs, spokes, and rotors. To maximize overall wheel strength the hub is configured to use straight pull spokes. The resulting wheel is lighter, stronger and more responsive.

  • New and more robust black wheels
    • High strength/lightweight straight pull spokes
    • Aggressive profile dual sport tires
  • Brakes are more precise, easier to modulate and require less effort
    • Zero designed rotors for optimized performance and reduced unsprung weight
    • Larger front master cylinder bore size for increased stopping power
    • Steel braided lines for superior lever feel and more precise brake modulation
    • High performance compound brake pads

Suspension: The Magic Ride

Zero DS Electric Motorcycle Front Fork

The suspension on the Zero DS was developed by Zero to take advantage of the motorcycle's lightweight design. Its inverted front fork is among the lightest in the industry and can be externally adjusted to dial in compression and rebound damping. A rigid double diamond rear swing arm keeps the wheel planted using a custom rear shock with a fully adjustable spring preload and easily tuned damping. The smooth suspension combines with the silence of the powertrain to yield an exhilarating ride that needs to be experienced to be understood.

  • Robust triple-clamps for improved bearing pre-loading and durability
  • Specialized fork and shock internals
  • Steel stanchions for increased strength, rigidity and control
  • Unique double diamond aircraft grade aluminum rear swingarm for reduced weight and increased torsional rigidity
  • Front adjustments: Compression and rebound damping
  • Rear adjustments: Spring preload, compression and rebound damping

Dash and Controls: Focus on the Ride

Zero DS Electric Motorcycle Dashboard

The dash is designed by Zero to quickly and accurately provide information on speed, charge and motor temperature. For 2012, the Zero DS allows riders to set the motorcycle’s performance to either Sport or Eco.

  • Sport / Eco switch to allow riders to select motorcycle performance
  • New high intensity headlight
  • Exceptionally accurate charge indicator
  • New and innovative State of Charge (SOC) algorithm
  • Ergonomic and durable switch gear (for operation of lights, turn signals, etc.)
  • Keyed ignition switch and steering lock for improved security and peace of mind
  • More comfortable seat to accommodate longer rides

Gearing: Maintenance Free Belt Drive

Zero DS Electric Motorcycle Drivetrain

Featuring a clutchless direct drive, the Zero DS is geared for rapid acceleration and increased efficiency. Using a maintenance free belt system, the Zero DS is able to achieve minimal frictional losses. This increases its overall range and channels power more efficiently into speed. The result is a motorcycle that is quick and responsive.

  • New maintenance free and virtually silent belt drive system
  • Clutchless one speed that simplifies operation
  • Geared for rapid acceleration and maximum efficiency
  • Minimal maintenance
  • A chain drive accessory is available