Terry Hershner drives 3000 on one of the two TTXGP Zero Motorcycles racers from coast to coast. The only problem was a lack of charging stations in Texas.
Terry Hershner knows a thing or two about electric vehicles, EV and alternative energy. His house is off the grid and has been building electric motorcycles. In order to celebrate with Zero Motorcycles the unveiling of its new 2013 line of motorcycles in Long Beach, he decided to drive coast to coast. He modified his Zero Motorcycles Z and rode over 3,000 with the original sticky race tires.
3,000 On An Electric Motorcycle. Terry started from Orlando and went to Miami before heading out to Los Angeles. Ironically enough, Terry had to stop in Texas because he couldn’t find enough charging stations. While he technically didn’t drive coast to coast, we can’t blame it on the Zero Motorcycles that now has 140 miles of range but on a lack of infrastructure in the petroleum state. Nonetheless, a sea to shining sea trip o electrons alone is a possibility these days if you take the Northern highways.
Preparation For The Ride. Terry modified his Zero Motorcycles by adding 4 extra on-board chargers allowing a charge potential of up to 7.6 kWh, up from the original 1 kWh. This gives Terry the [possibility to recharge 95% in less than an hour, more than enough to get to the next charger and tap over 3,000 miles of highways on electrons.
While Recharging. I asked Terry what he did when he stopped to recharge his Zero Motorcycles. Terry opens up his laptop, checks emails, does a few trades, recharges his iPhone, gets a bite to eat, and takes a little walk, enough to feel refreshed and get back on the bike both fully charged. In fact, most of the time the bike recharges faster than his lunch breaks.
Riding A Zero Motorcycles Z. Unfortunately, words can only go so far describing the experience of an electric motorcycle. Let’s start with the funny part. I told Terry I would tap his shoulders to signal where to turn. He laughed and reminded me we were on an electric motorcycle with no need to shout. Again, you just have to ride an EV to get it. Something Terry said I found interesting is that he can drive 60 miles with his electric Zero Motorcycles with a hot cup of coffee in his left hand. this is obviously something you can’t do on a regular motorcycle with its clutch and selecting gears. He also said that he was able to listen to music longer since he didn’t have to blast the music and drain the battery. What was funny in the end is that my helmet was noisy… due to the wind. This is something I had never p[aid attention to on a regular motorcycle.
Signal Hill is famous for one of its roads up, one of them I particularly like, it is a 25% uphill incline. If you recall a few years ago I drove my friend’s Tesla Roadster uphill on it and was exhilarated. We decided to up the ante and see how the Zero Motorcycles Z would do on it but this time with two people. And the results were even more impressive than I thought possible. Terry had to let the accelerator handle because we were at the top already. The Zero Motorcycles proves that the problems electric motors had up a hill a long time ago are a thing of the past.
We Need More Chargers. I asked Terry about what would make EV trips easier and a reality for the vast majority of people. His answer was simple, we need more chargers at restaurants. After all, we all eat and taking a break is an intelligent thing to do on a motorcycle. And to that point, how hard is it to recharge an EV? The hardest thing is you need an opposing thumb. Watch the videos below to see. In the meantime, we’ll go grand a bite that will take longer than it takes to recharge the 40% drain we put on the battery pack.
Oil Drills Use Electric Motors. In a delightful twist of irony, I decided to bring Terry to Signal Hill, long time known for its crude oil production and once upon a time called Porcupine hill due to its oil rigs. Terry was fascinated seeing the gigantic oil pumps extracting crude oil. What was so bizarre? Those rigs use efficient electric motors to drive the highly inefficient oil out of the ground. Oh, the irony of it all!
There is something to be said about the hard work those pioneers and visionaries are doing to bring us the possibility of electric cars and motorcycles. By proving us that even laptop battery technology can work and once we tap into the even better lithium-phosphate technology, we can surpass yesterday’s wildest imagination. It’s hard to imagine we were debating whether to build EVs first or charging stations 6 years ago. Look how far we have come in so little time. Stay tuned for more on my interview and meeting with Terry.
Check out Terry’s Facebook page here. You can see more of the videos I shot with him here, and sorry, they’re fully edited yet. You can also see more of my stories here on TorqueNews, and Michelin’s Challenge Bibendum.
Today Terry Hershner showed us it you can ride and even drive from Orlando to Los Angeles on a Zero Motorcycles modified Z using the northern highways.