In all the rushing around that goes on at Dealer Expo, there were two other organizations that deserve mention. They are Speed-Way Motorsport Shelters and Zero Motorcycles.
Speed-Way Motorsport Shelters -
Speed-Way Motorsport Shelters offers a tidy alternative to leaving your two-wheeled pride and joy out in the open in your driveway or apartment parking space. The Speed-Way Shelter is a portable (and ground-anchor installable) motorcycle, scooter and ATV shelter that offers reasonable security and protection that is rapidly accessible and easy-to-use.
I spoke with Donald Reeves, President of Speed-Way and he was brimming with enthusiasm for their product. Donald calls the Speed-Way a "personal motorsport garage that is perfect for many bikers." He continued with the company's clever catchphrase - “Solving the Homeless Problem for Motorcycles.” Falling quickly into a speech he probably gave 500 times at Dealer Expo, Donald told me that the Speed-Way Shelter is a "full-protection, affordable motorsport garage that is perfect for securing your bike both indoors and outdoors." One look at the reinforced, tough-looking shelter and I started to believe him.
When I asked him how it worked, he stepped back and let their booth professional demonstrate the ease in which a big bike can be completely secured and weatherproofed in a matter of seconds… literally. The young lady simple faked pulling the bike into the space (with the hood retracted, naturally), and stepped back, leaned over the bike and pulled the metal rod-reinforced hood up and over the bike to the frame on the ground. It took probably five seconds and she demonstrated where a lock could secure the bike within the shelter in another few seconds. There is a LED-equipped internal light that is standard equipment with the Speed-Way, and an optional diamond-textured vinyl floor is available for keeping out dust and moisture while also providing a fully-finished look. The two sizes offered also both have additional tie down straps for truly windy weather as well as dual mesh windows to aid in keeping air flowing through the shelter so that moisture doesn't collect.
The Speed-Way Motorsport Shelter is a neat solution for indoor or outdoor secure shelter for your pride and joy, and is offered in a cool over-the-shoulder portable packaging so it's easy to take with you.
Pricing is $325.95 for the standard model that fits all mid-size motorcycles including all sports bikes (ideal for most scooters) and for $425.95 for large touring bikes like Goldwing or a fully-dressed Harley Davidson. It might be a great solution for securely storing your scoot in Detroit.
Donald finished up by saying that the Speed-Way Shelters are distributed by Tucker Rocky/Bikers Choice and Western Power Sports, which should make them available at retail bike stores and internet outlets across the United States.
Zero Motorcycles -
I ran into Zero Motorcycles when I visited the Progressive International Motorcycle Show at Indianapolis. They didn't make the show when it visited Novi, so I made a point of crossing over from the Dealer Expo to the Motorcycle Show in Indy to see what was on offer from Zero.
Zero had their entire line-up at the show and I spoke with Mike Cunningham, the director of sales and dealer development about Zero. He told me that "Zero is a motorcycle company first and foremost, but one that happens to believe in the next step of motorcycle evolution, and that is by combining the best of motorcycle technology with the promise of high-performance electric power." As he took me down the line-up of their offerings he rapidly switched from the left to right brain reasons for going with Zero for your next motorcycle purchase. He cited the variety of available models (everything from an almost-scooter-like commuter to a true electric sport bike), accessible costs (from $7,995 to $15,995) and the technology that allows true range (up to 126 miles) plus the benefit of the "incredibly low maintenance costs" that Zero bikes provide. Then he spoke about the thrill and exhilaration that riding one of their bikes provides - the effortless acceleration, smooth power and true motorcycle handling ("unlike some competitors") of the Zero bikes.
He told me that their off-road bike is perhaps the perfect compromise between "thrills and logic" and that the starting point of their offerings, the Zero XU Urban Crosser, is one of his favorites, in that it offers easy accessibility, low-seat height and a removable power pack for charging on the road.
Before he had to run off to talk to a potential new dealer, Mike told me that the technology underpinning the Zero bikes is constantly evolving, with better power and range coming from less expensive batteries, and asked me to keep an eye on Zero, because "we are bikers, electric bikers, but bikers first."
What's next: The future of Dealer Expo