Swytch works by hiding an electric motor inside a specially built front wheel, available in all standard sizes as well as a for other sizes on request. The wheel is then linked up with a lightweight and removable power pack that sits between the handlebars like a basket. Inside the power pack is a battery, user display, controls, front light, and USB output for charging other devices.
Instead of plugging in multiple cables, the Swytch power pack connects automatically once inserted into the mounting clip. Once connected, the electric motor kicks in as soon as the rider starts peddling. In Europe, the motor assist reaches a top speed of 15 miles per hour, while other countries including the United States can reach 20 miles per hour.
Depending on the rider’s preference, there are two different models available with varying range. One has a range of 25 miles with about three to four hours of charging. The other doubles the range to 50 miles, with a slightly longer charge time of five to six hours.
“I’ve wanted to design a simple, inexpensive, and convenient to install and use ebike system for several years now,” inventor Oliver Montague said. “I’ve gone through many prototypes and visited many suppliers and am now ready to launch what I believe is a ground-breaking product.”
What really sets the Swytch apart from competitors is its versatility. To better demonstrate this, the startup has also launched a limited-edition range of custom electric bicycles. This includes a bamboo bike, a vintage street cruiser, and probably the first electric penny-farthing.
The Swytch ebike kit is available for pre-order on IndieGoGo starting at $299 for the base 25-mile kit. For those without a bike already, the campaign also offers a complete bike option with the 50-mile system for $599. For added convenience, a twist-grip or thumb throttle is also available as a $15 add-on.