Zero Motorcycles, a California based company, won its first European competition when it took first place in the Electric Motorcycle Challenge organized by the French Federation of Motorcycles. The company heard about the race only two weeks before it happened and had to scramble to assemble a race team and get prepared.
According to Reuters, the Challenge took place in Gironville, France with over 250 riders participating. Not only did the Zero MX win the competition against the other electric motorcycles but went on to win against gas powered motorcycles that were also participating. Edwin Belonje, Director of European Sales & Marketing for Zero Motorcycles had this to say after the competition was over, "We are excited to capture
this win and are looking forward to taking on even more competitors as the
development of electric motorcycles continues to evolve."
The Zero MX, which was designed for track and motocross racing, is extremely light. The frame is made of aircraft grade aluminum and weighs only 18 pounds. The total weight for the bike is 156 lbs. Of that 156 lbs, only 45 lbs is the battery pack.
It uses a proprietary Z force lithium ion battery pack that was developed by Neal Saiki, the founder and inventor of Zero motorcycles. The battery pack as designed is non toxic, light weight and powerful.
The suspension was developed in house specifically for use with Zero’s light weight motorcycles and track requirements. Highlights of the suspension include: “externally adjustable compression and rebound damping, inverted front fork to reduce unsprung weight (48 mm fork leg), a custom rear shock with adjustable spring preload and damping” and a “unique double diamond aircraft grade aluminum rear swingarm for reduced weight and increased torsional rigidity.”
The MX has a brushed permanent magnetic motor with 23 horsepower and 50ft/lbs torque. It has a clutchless one speed drive train. The bike will go from 0-30 mph in under two seconds.
The Zero MX has a running time of two hours per charge and a distance of 40 miles per charge. It only takes two hours to fully recharge the battery pack and can use any 110V or 220V electric outlet to do so.
The MX is a light, quiet, powerful motorcycle that has proven its motocross superiority at the Electric Motorcycle Challenge in France. Unlike many other electric vehicles, you can order one for $8,250 from the Zero Motorcycle website.