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Local shop amped about new electric motorcycle models

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By Emile Hallez

Staff Writer

A local motorcycle dealership is first in the state to carry a new line of electric hogs — street-legal bikes that don’t sip a drop of gasoline.

Beginning last week, Littleton’s Grand Prix Motorsports began selling a small stock of Zero Motorcycles, plug-in two-wheelers that can reach speeds of 70 mph and travel up to 35 miles on a single charge.

“It just seems to be a natural trend for the nation. Everyone’s looking for green alternatives,” said Grand Prix Motorsports manager Tony Hayter. “Colorado has been very supportive of the electric-vehicle movement.”

By supportive, Hayter is referring to the state’s alternative-fuel vehicle income tax credit, a program that when combined with federal tax incentives can bring the net cost of an electric motorcycle down to about $4,000, he said.

Tax credits aside, the motorcycles are priced from $7,995 to $10,495.

“The credits aren’t applied at the dealership. They’re applied on your income taxes,” he said.

The store currently has five of the electric bikes in stock. Two different battery sizes — large or small — are available. With a small battery, the motorcycles are capable of reaching up to 55 mph. With a large battery, the potential speed is increased to about 70 mph, Hayter said. Ranges for the two different sizes are about 25 miles and 35 miles, respectively.

Much like electric or hybrid cars, the motorcycles are extremely quiet during operation, an experience far different than that of riding a custom chopper with an ear-splitting exhaust system.

“They’re an exciting vehicle to ride,” he said. “It’s kind of a like a (bicycle) on steroids. They’re almost silent.”

 

Contact Emile Hallez at emile@evergreenco.comor 303-933-2233, ext. 22. For updates, check www.ColumbineCourier.com.