Way back in 2006 a former NASA engineer who had done some design work for Bay Area bicycle companies figured out a way to make electric motorcycles somewhat viable. Fifteen years later, that company is known as Zero and it builds some of the most technologically-advanced electric motorcycles in the world. The DSR has proven to be among the company’s most successful models, and to celebrate fifteen years of electrified two-wheeling, as well as the fact that today is Earth Day, Zero teamed up with the National Forest Foundation to offer five new colors inspired by the people’s parks.
Back in 2006 the company was known as Electricross, and its first model — the Drift — was a combination of mountain bike and motorcycle parts fitted with a commercially-available DC motor from a washing machine. The Drift weighed a hundred pounds less than a similarly-sized Honda CRF150 and had twice the go-fast with 19 horsepower and 50 pound-feet of torque. With four lead-acid batteries onboard, range was not its strong suit, but it was quick and a lot of fun.
I recently tested Zero’s DSR for a few months and while it wasn’t the perfect motorcycle, it was a damn good one. I didn’t particularly like the black colorway of the Black Forest model I was on, but these 15th anniversary bikes are available in five nature-inspired colors; green, orange, tan, white, and black. If you get white or black you’ve chosen incorrectly.
“Zero was founded with a passion for off-road motorcycles that could be ridden in the Santa Cruz Mountains. It has been our mission to transform the riding experience with pure electric vehicles, and a passion for conservation is deeply rooted in our DNA,” said Sam Paschel, Zero Motorcycles CEO. “Our bikes are an incredible way to experience off-road riding, including in America’s National Forests, and we stand with the National Forest Foundation in their mission to guarantee access to those lands for future generations.”
These 15th Anniversary models are powered by Zero’s Z-Force 75-7 motor capable of 116 ft-lb of torque, 70 hp, a top speed of 102 mph, and up to 163 miles of range per charge and sell for $15,495. In celebration of Earth Day, Zero will hand $500 of that price tag directly to the National Forest Foundation.
I just love these little graphics they made, don’t you? Very twee. The desert-inspired orange is obviously the one I gravitate toward. I love loud colors, and I love the desert.