When the light turns green and the two-lane road begins an ess turn, it’s clear the Zero DS is a true motorcycle, not just a scooter with sport bike pretensions. This is an electric hoon machine that will put you ahead of almost anything on four wheels. Going from a standstill to 60 mph takes a tick over five seconds, and high-end torque slings the bike through on-ramps with aplomb. The Zero has the power to inspire that smirk of speed euphoria I crave from a bike — something that hasn’t been lost with the removal of a traditional internal combustion engine.
This is a new sensation for an experienced rider. But that doesn’t mean you have to have experience to ride it.
Zero provided me with one of the first available test bikes from its 2013 lineup, a group of two-wheelers with performance nearly double their predecessors in the most important fields: range and horsepower.