US-based electric motorcycle brand Zero Motorcycles has teamed up with Australian origin custom bike brand Deus Ex Machina to introduce a custom electric bike. The new bike is a custom cafe racer built by Deus' American outpost, and based on the Zero SR/S electric sportbike. The SR/S is Zero's full-faired electric sportbike introduced earlier this year, and based on the Zero SR/F naked roadster. The SR/S was introduced in February 2020, and immediately got a lot of attention for its full-faired design and extended range. The SR/S boasts of a maximum speed of 200 kmph with a maximum claimed range of 320 km with the addition of Zero's power tank.
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The Zero SR/S has a maximum capacity 14.4 kWh electric motor with peak power claimed at 82 kW (110 bhp) at 5,000 rpm and 190 Nm of peak torque. The bike boasts of high quality components, including Showa 43 mm Big Piston Separate Function Forks with adjustable spring preload, compression and rebound damping, and Showa 40 mm piston piggy-back reservoir shock with adjustable spring preload, compression and rebound damping.
The custom bike has been developed by Michael 'Woolie' Woolaway, who calls the stock bike 'a blank sheet of paper' because without the fuel tank, everything can essentially be removed and pieced back together. It's the first electric bike Woolie has built, and is the result of a chance meeting at last year's Pikes Peak International Hill Climb where Woolie was fielding his Ducati-based race bike, and Zero Motorcycles lined up with a race-prepped Zero SR/F.
"When I met the guys out at Pike's Peak and really got a good look at the bike," says Woolie, "I thought, that bike is the perfect platform to build something with. Because there's no gas tank and there's this trellis frame that's beautiful, and everything else comes off and there's nothing there. So in my mind, quietly, I was thinking, I'd love to do something with that bike because it's a blank sheet of paper."
The SR/S is a modern machine, but Woolie's design take on the custom build was definitely retro. And he shaped a mockup of the bodywork by hand, using foam, instead of using digital 3D renderings. The final bodywork was shaped out of carbon fibre and just three pieces are used, attached to the bike with four bolts on the standard OEM mounting points. Conceived as a track-only bike, Woolie even shaped a couple of winglets to give the bike a proper real racebike look and feel, and the suspension was updated to factory-spec WorldSBK suspension from Showa, and a set of ultra-light Dymag carbon wheels.