Cyberpunk, as a genre, has seen a renaissance in recent times. With media like Altered carbon, Blade Runner 2049, and the sprawling expanse of Cyberpunk 2077, anyone looking to escape into a futuristic tech world backed by slimy and greedy societies can simply turn on a TV and be submerged. Or, you can buy a Zero motorcycle.
We have already covered the fully electric motorcycles from Zero to Jalopnik. The verdict? They are pretty good! The company recently updated most of its lineup with new tech for 2022, but its road-focused SR lineup was conspicuously missing from the upgrade list. Now we know why: The SR base is totally new for 2022, and it introduces the company’s new Cypher III + operating system lineup – and with it, app-compatible upgrades for your bike.
We saw subscription upgrades for vehicles before, but Zero’s approach is more akin to Tesla’s “Full Self-Driving” package: Pay a few thousand dollars, Zero flips a switch, and suddenly your bike has more range or charges faster. One-time, and not insignificant, fees to access the equipment your bike had from the factory.
Zero’s website claims some upgrades require additional hardware installation done at a dealership, but a press release implies that all – from navigation to heated grips – can be purchased and activated through the company’s “Cypher Store”. It is not known whether these improvements would pass on to successive owners, or whether the next buyer will have to pay again.
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Personally, I’m waiting for third-party methods to unlock these features. I can’t wait to buy a Zero in ten years, plug in a microcontroller and a mess of wires, and suddenly have supercar acceleration. Give me electric bikes covered in breadboards, with ammeters and seven-segment LCDs randomly mounted on the bars. This is the future cyberpunk that I want. Hack the planet.