Zero Motorcycle? There’s an App for That

02/19/2013 @ 12:59 pm, by Jensen Beeler4 COMMENTS


Zero Motorcycles has announced the release of the company’s iPhone and Android mobile applications for the Zero’s range of electric motorcycles. A handy interface to change the basic performance settings on the motorcycle’s EV components, Zero’s mobile app connects via Bluetooth and allows a rider to adjust the bike’s top speed, torque, and regenerative braking.

The app also allows the rider to get more detailed information about the state of the motorcycle’s charge, operating temperatures, battery volts/amps, and ride statistics. Additionally, a rider can configure the application to show the money saved using electricity instead of gasoline, C02 spared from entering the atmosphere, etc.

With the mobile interface is available on all of Zero’s 2013 models, one of the more interesting features of the mobile application is that it also allows a Zero owner to send diagnostic information back to Zero HQ for analysis and troubleshooting, saving a trip (and presumably a fee) at the dealership. Chewy.

While it may seem a little gimmicky to some riders, Zero Motorcycle’s mobile application is just the first of many similar apps from electric motorcycle manufacturers, and shows a new platform for enthusiasts to further tinker and customize their motorcycles.

We can think of a few petrol heads who will be put-off by lost romance of cleaning out a carburetor with dirty hands, but the ability to affect the drive performance of tae motorcycle with just a few clicks is a powerful tool, and opens the possibility for even more fine-tuning of the machine by end-users (think MotoGP-level adjustability for laymen).

The phone-home feature to Zero for diagnostics is also very compelling, and could potentially alter the way riders interact with their local dealer. As electric motorcycles become more of a mainstay in motorcycling, and applications like Zero’s become more commonplace, it will be interesting to see how the landscape in motorcycling changes as well.

Source: Zero Motorcycles

  • Richard Gozinya

    While this is interesting, it would be nice if Zero focused on learning how to build a good motorcycle first, before getting into gadgets and gizmos. They still seem hell bent on using the cheapest components they can find. This app would be more compelling if it was for a Brammo Empulse.

  • StuartR

    They use ‘some’ cheap components in an effort to build an affordable bike. I think that’s reasonable when you’re trying to sell into a market that generally resists paying more than the ICE equivalent costs. The App is a genuinely useful tool and they should be applauded for putting into production what many can only talk about.

  • Sean in Oz

    While it may not be viable to allow owners to adjust similar variables on an ICE bike, there is no reason why ICE bikes couldn’t be designed to report performance and diagnostic details in this manner.

    The real breakthrough though is having direct contact with the manufacturer for problem diagnosis, instead of being forced to go through a dealer who typically has a financial interest in stonewalling any potential warranty claim.

  • Bob

    Zero needs to fire the industrial designer for their S and DS bikes. The fairings are ugly. Go talk with the guys from Brammo or Mission; they built very appealing motorcycles.