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Here’s how Zero turned the SR/F streetfighter into a racing electric motorcycle

Zero is taking their new SR/F electric motorcycle to the Pike’s Peak hill climbing race later this month. While the bike began life as a fairly stock SR/F, it has undergone some interesting modifications to morph into a full-blown racer.

Zero SR/F at Pike’s Peak Hill Climb

Zero has been preparing for their new SR/F electric streetfighter to take on Pike’s Peak with the help of a number of industry partners.

Zero’s internal engineering team, along with several brand partners including Gates Carbon Drive, Showa, Pirelli Tires, SME Group, Dymag and Hotbodies Racing have made a number of modifications to the Zero SR/F headed up the mountain.

The Showa suspension received an upgrade, swapping in the rare Balance Free Front Fork (BFF) and Balance Free Rear Cushion lite (BFRC-lite) rear shock.

Dymag helped shave a few pounds off the SR/F with its forged aluminum wheels, and a few more pounds were saved by removing the on-board charger. And to keep those Dymag wheels firmly on the ground, traction will be provided by Pirelli Superbike Slick tires.

Zero SR/F pikes peak

The SR/F tackling the climb will also be sporting a rarely seen feature on a motorcycle: a second hand brake lever. Instead of a foot brake for the rear wheel, rider Cory West is getting a second brake lever on the left handle bar. That makes it easier to modulate rear braking, especially on sharp right hand turns where the rider’s toes are already inches from the pavement. It’s also another advantage that electric motorcycles can claim over gas-powered motorcycles, as the latter require a clutch lever on the left handlebar.

However, despite the racing upgrades, the core bike is still not that far off from a stock Zero SR/F electric motorcycle. While most race bikes opt for a chain kit to replace the standard belt drive, Zero and Gates are betting that the Zero’s belt drive will handle the grueling climb.

According to a statement from Zero:

“The hope is that the smooth delivery of torque from the concentric pivot and constant tension belt will give the SR/F an advantage when pitted against gas bikes, which need to shift and respond to power pulses and surges from internal combustion engines.”

It is worth noting that Zero Motorcycles does not have a dedicated Pike’s Peak race team or staff. Instead, their race efforts are completely supported by Zero employees who are dedicated to seeing their bikes compete and take home racing honors. Many of these team members are working on their own time to prepare Zero bikes for the track.

According to Zero:

“The racing effort for Pikes Pike at Zero is entirely run with internal engineering staff, who mostly commit their lunches, nights, and weekends to the cause. No dedicated team members or factory-level budgets here. The bike was built with the support of key suppliers to the Zero production line, plus some clever designs from an engineering team let loose to experiment.”

Last month we got our first sneak peak at the livery on Cory West’s Zero SR/F.

The competition will take place on June 30th. Make sure to check back with Electrek, where we’ll be bringing you news on how Zero performs on the mountain.

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Avatar for Micah Toll Micah Toll

Micah Toll is a personal electric vehicle enthusiast, battery nerd, and author of the Amazon #1 bestselling books DIY Lithium Batteries, DIY Solar Power, The Ultimate DIY Ebike Guide and The Electric Bike Manifesto.

The e-bikes that make up Micah’s current daily drivers are the $999 Lectric XP 2.0, the $1,095 Ride1Up Roadster V2, the $1,199 Rad Power Bikes RadMission, and the $3,299 Priority Current. But it’s a pretty evolving list these days.

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