Swedish furniture giant Ikea is extending its product line beyond furniture and home accessories. In March, the company released an indoor gardening kit that uses hydroponics to produce home-grown food. Now, it has announced the release of the Sladda, a chainless bike tailored to urbanites.
Designed by Oskar Juhlin, Jan Puranen, and Kristian Eke of global design consultancy Veryday, the bike is designed to be as easy to maintain as it is to ride. A corrosion-resistant cogged drive belt replaces the chain and sprockets, eliminating the need for oil. The gears fit inside a sealed hub in the rear wheel. And the frame is made from aluminum, making it light enough to carry up stairs.
The aim is to offer an affordable commuter bike that is clean, efficient, and requires little technical expertise—something chainless bikes have been touting for years. In the same way that Ikea flat-pack furniture brings Swedish design to the masses, the Sladda seems aimed squarely at people who don't currently ride but are interested in the rising popularity of bike commuting.
The Sladda will be available for purchase this August in Europe and sometime late summer/early fall in the U.S. Though U.S. prices have not been announced yet, in Europe it will be priced at $797 for the general public and $569 for members of the Ikea family loyalty program.
All Photos: courtesy Ikea