Zero’s new FXE electric motorcycle could be the ultimate lane-sharing ninja
What exactly is the Zero FXE?
It’s Zero’s new affordable electric commuter motorcycle. Developed in collaboration with the famous Huge Design of San Francisco, Zero FXE is billed as “the bike of tomorrow, available today.“Granted, this off-road motorcycle-like street bike looks a lot like the all-terrain motorcycle-like FXS that came before it; However, this model has significant aesthetic, ergonomic and performance advantages over it. These upgrades are reflected in the price: FXE starts at $ 11,795, which is $ 1,850 more than FXS.
Is FXE New?
Relatively. The Zero FXE was rolled out to dealerships in late July.
What makes this Zero special?
The aforementioned association with Huge Design brought this concept vehicle to life with unusual panache. The FXE features custom LED headlamps and a glued TFT display, along with a surprisingly functional, comfortable, and downright dope form factor that makes it super easy to handle, even with a seat height (32, 9 inch) which might be difficult for a rider start … or a 29 inch crotch like yours.
The main reason: This bike weighs only 298 pounds, which makes it quite easy to stand upright with just one foot on the ground.
Another standout feature is what’s hidden under the proverbial hood. The FXE features a Z-Force 75.5 air-cooled brushless electric motor that produces 78 lb-ft of torque and 46 horsepower. It might not sound impressive, until you factor in the weight and consider the resulting power-to-weight ratio (and convincing enough). Meanwhile, the 7.2kWh lithium-ion battery is good for a century of city mileage. For context, that’s double the range offered by FXS – which alone could make the price difference a paltry sum.
In addition, the FXE has a fairly seamless interface with the built-in technology of the bike. The Cypher II operating system, paired with a Bluetooth connection, allows the rider to change torque, top speed, regenerative braking and other preferences with the push of a button. You can also quickly switch the ride mode from the fuel-efficient Eco to the Black-cut Sport directly from the handlebars.
How does it roll?
When I wrote about Indian Boy Scout Bobber Sixty almost a year ago, I mentioned that I couldn’t wait to get to this section. And I feel the same with FXE, but for totally different reasons. While the Sixty was ideal for city cruises, the FXE is virtually unmatched when you need to move across town …quick.
Like Teslas on two wheels, every Zero bike benefits from acceleration that will leave just about any of its gas-powered brethren in the dust. This one is fast enough that, even on the West Side Highway, where the traffic lights are quite wide apart, I can get in front of the line, turn the throttle when the light changes – and be on the guard. – rear shocks from cars in front while they still saw red.
Another anecdote to prove it, perhaps? On a jaunt on Sixth Avenue, I waited several seconds after the light had turned green, then passed everyone else as the lights changed just in time for my future cycle to sink beneath them. And yet, what really impressed me about the FXE wasn’t just the torque, but how the combination of pickup and handling allowed me to get in and out of traffic in an amazing way. effective, satisfactory (and probably illegal).
One Friday night, on my way to the west side of Manhattan to a birthday party at a living room in downtown Brooklyn, I intentionally left a little late just to see how much time I could save. Thanks to the sleek profile and nimble handling of the FXE, I really felt like a video game character as I silently basked on Bleecker and hurtled down Chrystie Street toward the Manhattan Bridge. I flew over the water, zigzagged through countless cars on Flatbush Avenue … and stopped at the party before the birthday girl had even arrived.
While the advertised top speed (85 mph) and highway range (40 miles at 70 mph) make this bike a fishy proposition for long distances, experiences like these almost supersonic round-to-round frolics convince me. that in the urban travel game, the FXE is a world class contender.
Is there anything else that stands out from FXE?
Here’s the catch, which I hate to say that comes up every time I write about Zeroes. As impressive as e-bikes are, city apartment dwellers face a real obstacle: recharging. This particular model comes with a cable that easily fits into a small slot under the passenger footrests, plugs into any standard 110-volt or 220-volt outlet, and charges the bike 95% in 9.2. time. That makes it pretty much perfect for overnight replenishment … for anyone with a garage.
Someone like me – who lives in an apartment – has to take her to a parking lot in the city. With the bike’s range being roughly as advertised, I only took it once to charge it, on a Sunday morning – and paid $ 36 to park on 19th Street for three hours, plus $ 5 per hour for loading (which the attendant simply pocketed). That’s a total of $ 51, or more than a dollar per mile. Considering that I can fill my old Triumph Bonneville T100’s small tank with premium gasoline for around $ 12 and go something like 150 miles, the math here is… grim.
In fairness, this conundrum isn’t Zero’s fault; Manhattan is one of the most expensive places to park in the whole country, and one of the worst places to own any type of electric vehicle. If I actually owned a Zero and had a monthly garage parking pass, I imagine I could set up a pretty comfortable charging situation. There is also a good chance that in ten years we are all in or on electric vehicles – and the motorcycle of tomorrow will not only be available, but easily billable.
How much does it cost ?
The Zero FXE starts at $ 11,795. Adding the optional fast charger, which drastically cuts charge time by 95% – from 9.2 hours to 3.6 hours – raises the price from $ 600 to $ 12,395.
2022 Zero FXE
Base price: $ 11,795
Powertrain : 78 lb-ft of torque, 46 hp
Drums: 7.2 kWh
Vary: 100 miles (city) / 40 miles (highway, 70 mph)
Standard charging time: 9.2 hours
Unloaded weight : 298 lbs
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