As electric motors and batteries have steadily become smaller and more powerful, we’ve witnessed an explosion of electric skateboards over the past couple years. Have yourself a quick Google sesh or take a stroll through any crowdfunding website — motorized skateboards are absolutely everywhere.
Mellow is the latest entry into this burgeoning category of personal mobility devices, but it’s a little bit different than the boards we’ve seen before. In fact, it’s not actually a board at all, but rather an attachment designed to fit onto your existing board — which is brilliant. Pop mellow onto the deck you’ve already got, and it’ll transform your boring old push board into a motorized monster.
To use it, you basically just remove the rear trucks of your board, screw in Mellow, and start riding. The retrofittable module includes dual in-wheel motors capable of zipping you around at 25 miles per hour, and a high-capacity lithium-ion battery that’ll keep you going for about 10 miles per charge.
You might be able to squeeze some extra range out of it, too. Mellow is equipped with a regenerative braking system that recharges your battery ever so slightly whenever you decelerate, which helps extend the board’s range. Mellow’s batteries are also designed to be swappable, so you can just pop in a new cell and keep riding once your first pack runs dry.
A small handheld remote control lets you adjust your speed with a slider. Just push forward to accelerate, and pull back to slow down. An integrated LED strip indicates how much power you’ve got at the beginning of your ride, and haptic feedback alarms will let you know when you’re running low, without forcing you to look down and check every hour.
It’s definitely not the only electric skateboard out there, but unlike other boards, the beauty of Mellow is that you can ride it with the deck of your choosing. If you ever feel like changing things up (maybe riding something a bit more springy, short, or with a kicktail?) all you’ve got to do is remove a few screws.
Mellow isn’t out on the streets quite yet, but its creators have recently launched a crowdfunding campaign to get it into production, and you can lock one down for a pledge of $1,000 on Kickstarter. The project has already surpassed its $111,000 funding goal, so as long as there aren’t any major hiccups in manufacturing, the company expects to start shipping sometime around May 2016.