“A swag what?” Anthony asked me. “A SwagCycle,” I repeated. “We’re getting a SwagCycle in to review.”
“A swag what?” he repeated, now realizing that he understood the word, but wanted to know what it did.
“It’s a cute foldable electric bike,” I said. “How cool is that, right?” He laughed as we review so many things in so many different categories, I saw him imagining us testing it out on the very tall hill in our San Francisco neighborhood with an uh oh look on his face.
Truth be told, the SwagCycle Pro, which is the unit we got in to review, doesn’t do well with tall hills, at least not San Francisco hills. That said, remember just how unique and rare San Francisco is compared to most cities in the world who have “normal” hills.
Imagine how fun it would be to ride the SwagCycle Pro in Amsterdam or Copenhagen? It’s a great option for travel as well as for errands, quick trips, supermarket runs, commuting to work if it’s fairly close by and more.
Quite frankly, I’d argue that the SwagCycle Pro is more of a godsend in a city than in more rural areas and small towns. Why? Think of how hard it is to park in a city, especially one with expensive parking garages and consider how much time you’d save in rush hour traffic if you could zip through and around rather than get stuck in the mud.
And, unlike a motorbike, you don’t have to pay for gas to get your bike to go.
What’s nice is that because it’s both electric and foldable, you can pretty much use it anywhere.
The SwagCycle Pro has a foldable frame, which is reinforced with durable metal — durable enough to support up to 264 pounds.
Additionally, the SwagCycle Pro can withstand water splashes with an IP54 rating, and the tires are 12″ in the front and 10” in the rear, making it “the ultimate joyride” for even rough riders.
Navigation is very easy — one side turns it on and off, there’s a break where you’d expect to find a break on a bike and also a built in battery monitor so you know when you’re close to needing a recharge.
About those hills…..we did decide to test it out on a tall San Francisco hill and it worked like a breeze going down hill, but at a steep slope like this one, we had to use our feet to help the bike’s power make it to the top. But note that this was a very steep hill, which isn’t typical of what you’d find in other American cities.
Note that the SwagCycle Pro comes in both white and black and has a completely zero emission and is oddly enough pedal-free. For some reason, I thought there was going to be pedals on the bike but not the case.
I suppose you could say that it’s for the lazy man or woman — serious cyclists might say so — however, I’d suggest that it’s for those who are simply busy. Whether you are racing to work, catching an early train, or exploring new corners of a city, this motorized bicycle will get you there without breaking a sweat!
Simply sit back, rest your feet on the e bike’s built-in foot pegs, and let the SwagCycle Pro do all the work. A battery indicator is situated atop the handlebars to keep you alert on how much juice is left to last another round of exhilarating fun.
Decent battery life — included is a 37V lithium-ion battery which gives you up to 15.5 miles of riding on a single charge! Although for one longer test, we simply threw our accessories and chargers in a small backpack, there is a small hidden compartment where you can keep your charging cables neatly in place.
There’s a built in USB plug so you can charge nearly anywhere you go.
You can also download the SwagCycle iPhone app which connects to your electric bike so you can track your trip, adjust your preferred unit of measure, or optimize your maximum speed up to 18 mph.
The app offers real-time speed and distance tracking.
The SwagCycle Pro Experience
The experience riding the SwagCycle Pro is quite relaxing. You simply sit back, rest your feet on the bike’s built-in foot pegs, and let the SwagCycle Pro do all the work.
We really love the location of the battery indicator because you can’t miss it. If you’re running out of power, it will let you know immediately.
Located atop the handlebars to keep you alert on how much juice is left, you minimize the chance of getting caught somewhere without enough battery life to get you home or wherever you may be going.
If your phone is running low on battery, you can charge your phone directly from your SwagCycle since there’s a USB port built into your bike’s battery to keep you charged and connected throughout your day or evening.
Its compact design is a godsend for all travelers. Imagine getting to your destination and simply collapsing your electric bike’s stem and handlebars so you can carry it into your meeting.
For night driving, there’s a luminous headlight to alert oncoming vehicles of your presence so you can ride safely. The SwagCycle Pro’s’ speed goes up to around 18 mph and it can escalate inclines up to 12° on bike’s robust zero-emission motor.
As we mentioned earlier, we think the SwagCycle is most useful in urban areas. Every time I run an errand in San Francisco, it involves navigating the parking situation, which is either expensive or on a slanted hill with small parking spaces on both sides of a driveway. This makes parking in the city a pretty stressful endeavor.
With the SwagCycle Pro, you can fold it as soon as you arrive it at your destination. Because it’s also quite small, you can store it in your car trunk or on public trains and buses. Think about a situation where you might want to go to a concert in a park where there will be significant traffic and limited parking. If you could park your car a mile or so away and then zip to the concert from there, it saves both time and money.
The same holds true with errands. Now, I can simply zip down to a corner store without having to worry about parking and be back home in half the time. The SwagCycle Pro rates very high on the convenience scale.
Set up was dead easy — we had it going in around 15 minutes, the trickiest bit being the bike seat. They include tools in the box with set-up instructions so it’s pretty straight forward .
When we were on a flat path, we were able to go up to around 18 mph (check out the app SwagCycle II on both iOS and Android) and in normal mode, you’ll find that the speed is around 10-12 mph in our experience.
We charged the bike before we began our first test and it took around five hours out-of-the gate — useful for pre-planning.
Two thumbs up from our WBTW team! For more information on the SwagCycle Pro and some of their other models, visit the Swagtron website. The bike goes for around $499.99 (and as low as $44 a month).
Swagtron also has scooters, hoverboards and skateboards as well as other models of e-bikes to choose from, so a wide array of options. Be sure to also visit our Lifestyle Products section for more fun offerings for travel and at home.
Renee Blodgett is the founder of We Blog the World. The site combines the magic of an online culture and travel magazine with a global blog network and has contributors from every continent in the world. Having lived in 10 countries and explored nearly 80, she is an avid traveler, and a lover, observer and participant in cultural diversity.
She is also the CEO and founder of Magic Sauce Media, a new media services consultancy focused on viral marketing, social media, branding, events and PR. For over 20 years, she has helped companies from 12 countries get traction in the market. Known for her global and organic approach to product and corporate launches, Renee practices what she pitches and as an active user of social media, she helps clients navigate digital waters from around the world. Renee has been blogging for over 16 years and regularly writes on her personal blog Down the Avenue, Huffington Post, BlogHer, We Blog the World and other sites. She was ranked #12 Social Media Influencer by Forbes Magazine and is listed as a new media influencer and game changer on various sites and books on the new media revolution. In 2013, she was listed as the 6th most influential woman in social media by Forbes Magazine on a Top 20 List.
Her passion for art, storytelling and photography led to the launch of Magic Sauce Photography, which is a visual extension of her writing, the result of which has led to producing six photo books: Galapagos Islands, London, South Africa, Rome, Urbanization and Ecuador.
Renee is also the co-founder of Traveling Geeks, an initiative that brings entrepreneurs, thought leaders, bloggers, creators, curators and influencers to other countries to share and learn from peers, governments, corporations, and the general public in order to educate, share, evaluate, and promote innovative technologies.