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Zero XU electric motorcycle caters to city dwellers

Santa Cruz’s Zero Motorcycles first electrified two wheels with the dirt-slinging Zero X, took to the streets with the Zero S, and now hopes to capture the attention of urban hooligans everywhere with the Zero XU.

Though similar in appearance to the supermoto-styled S, the XU actually uses an evolved version of the same aluminum frame used in the off-road X, making it a bit of a hybrid. It adapts to urban environments with an upright riding position, low seat height, light weight (just 218 pounds) and most importantly, a new removable battery.

Unlike all previous Zero batteries, the 2kWh model in the XU can actually be pulled from the bike in an instant and topped off away from the bike. This opens the opportunity to urban riders to charge the motorcycle even if they can’t park near an outlet, and in a fleet scenario with multiple batteries, potentially makes it possible to ride indefinitely by charging one battery while another runs down.

A smaller battery does inhibit the XU with a top speed of only 51mph (the Zero S can do 67) and range of only 30 miles, but both should be plenty for urban riders who just need to shoot from side street to side street. And they’ll get a nice price break on it, too: The XU retails for $7,995, a full $2,000 less than the Zero S and comparable to the original Zero X.

Check out video of the XU in action in the video below.

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