I transformed my bike into an electric bike: test of the best Brompton conversion kit, the Switch Bike after 750 km

Swytch Bike is on their second evolution of their e-bike conversion kit. It is the solution to switch from a traditional bike to an electric, inexpensive and ecological version. Hard to beat.

Summary

  • The compact and stylish electric bike
  • Installation of the winding conversion kit
  • Swytch Bike e-bike screen
  • Smooth ride on an e-bike
  • Range and battery of the Swytch Bike conversion kit

The Swytch Bike company has been around since 2017 and is trying to make a name for itself in the e-bike world. But with two Kickstarters already, the start-up is today became the alternative solution to bulky conversion kits and unattractive.

Technical sheet :

Engine power 250W
Max assisted speed 25 km/h
36V battery 15 / 30km
Weight < 3kg
Compatibility 99% of bikes
Price 600€ – 1000€

The compact and stylish electric bike

The final design of your kit will be very dependent on your base bike. On the other hand, it adapts perfectly to any type of bike: modern, road, foldable, MTB or even oldschool. The main visual element is the battery which is found in several colors. Inside it is the same, only the rubber protection changes. It is possible to choose between black, blue, red, yellow, white or orange, like our copy.

I transformed my bike into an electric bike: test of the best Brompton conversion kit, the Switch Bike after 750 km

Most people seeing this battery think it is a speaker. Which is understandable, especially in its orange color which is not discreet. For my bike, the black version would have been more sober and more happening everywhere.

The motor is found in the hub of the front wheel. This simplifies assembly and keeps it discreet. Especially since it has a chrome design, which also takes up that of the rear wheel. Thus, it does not shock and complements the general design well.

However, there is a serious problem, the cables. Already a basic Brompton has quite a few, it becomes really disturbing. There should always be some play to avoid bending or pulling them. Which is a lot of extra lengths and the attachment to the chassis is complex.

Installation of the winding conversion kit

The wheel with the motor installed is received in a box. All it takes is one to add their own tire. The packaging is well done and exudes solidity. There is little risk of damage during transport.

We discover in a video of 1:42 min the entire assembly procedure. On the site you can even read ‘installation in 4 simple steps’. Well, despite my experience in mounting and repairing bikes, on a Brompton, it’s not that easy. Already there is the choice of the location of the battery. On a folding bike you will either have to take the luggage rack adapter, if you are not using it, or mount it upside down towards you. This serves the overall aesthetic a bit.

I transformed my bike into an electric bike: test of the best Brompton conversion kit, the Switch Bike after 750 km

The front wheel was pretty easy to install. It will just take a little play with the adjustment of the fixing screw so as not to add drag. Although this is unavoidable, since the motor will slightly restrict the normal bearing. Be careful not to pinch the cable and to properly install the washer with the notch for it.

I transformed my bike into an electric bike: test of the best Brompton conversion kit, the Switch Bike after 750 km

The bottom bracket sensor is a bit difficult to understand. There are two options, I chose the simplest with the magnetic hook along the bottom bracket. The sensor must be perfectly placed on the frame, with a spacer to bring it 5mm closer to the rotating magnetic sensor. Once you understand the system, everything becomes simpler.

I transformed my bike into an electric bike: test of the best Brompton conversion kit, the Switch Bike after 750 km

All the cables connect very easily thanks to a color code and different tips. It is then very difficult, even impossible to connect the wrong cables. There is also an accelerator pedal, but we will have to talk about it in the driving section.

On a Brompton it will also be necessary to shift the two handles to leave room for the screen on the left and the accelerator on the right. This will prevent it from obstructing the use of the bell and gear changes.

In total, with the long battery life, the bike weighs about 3 kg more. A substantial addition to a compact bike.

Swytch Bike e-bike display

There is a screen that allows both to control its different power levels as well as to view its speed. This is a generic display, suitable for the Swytch Bike kit. The coupling is quite good, even if the autonomy displayed on the screen is not the same as on the battery by pressing the button. You must always refer to the one remaining on the screen after driving for at least 1 minute.

I transformed my bike into an electric bike: test of the best Brompton conversion kit, the Switch Bike after 750 km

The electric bike has 5 power levels. These are only available using the footswitch. With the accelerator you are automatically at level 5 only. This level will allow you to choose the acceleration, but also the speed uphill. The slopes will be much more easily climbed at 5 than at 2. Level two is also the recommendation for regular riding. In town you will rarely need to go up to 5.

I transformed my bike into an electric bike: test of the best Brompton conversion kit, the Switch Bike after 750 km

The screen therefore displays the instantaneous speed, the average and the maximum speed reached. We also find the distance of the trip and that traveled in total. The functions are therefore basic, no Bluetooth, but that is enough.

Smooth ride on an e-bike

The ride is very pleasant and fluid. Acceleration is gradual. There’s not that sudden acceleration, even with the throttle. For everyday use, it’s just perfect. No need to take off every time you start. However, the power remains quite sufficient. to leave in the first at a traffic light for example.

The motor is very quiet and almost imperceptible. Sometimes it makes you wonder if he is really active. It’s a real achievement and it’s a change from some other models that make you think you’re driving in Formula E, but without the speed.

On the other hand, we can regret that the speed is often limited to 23 km / h. Yes I say often, because sometimes it reaches 25, but on rare occasions. This as much by using the pedals as the accelerator only.

Moreover, it is necessary to approach the subject of the accelerator. In France, the law obliges bicycle manufacturers to have an accelerator that does not exceed 6 km/h. The 25 km/h is pedaling with motor assistance. Which implies that on the kit you buy in France, you should not take the accelerator option, or you risk a fine, or even the removal of the bike.

Range and battery of the Swytch Bike conversion kit

There are two battery options: 15 km and 30 km. These are ultra-compact models that can be “put in the pocket”. Well, for the small version OK, in a large jeans pocket. On the other hand, the large battery does not even have to be thought about or in the pockets of Shaquille O’Neal.

I transformed my bike into an electric bike: test of the best Brompton conversion kit, the Switch Bike after 750 km

The Air version, at 15 km, weighs 700 grams while the Max version, 30 km, weighs 1100 grams. This is the version I highly recommend. This obviously depends on the distance of your daily commute. I do about 20 km every day and in order not to carry the charger everywhere I need a great autonomy. The Air battery can be carried on the plane, while the Max cannot.

I transformed my bike into an electric bike: test of the best Brompton conversion kit, the Switch Bike after 750 km

We can regret that on such a battery there is no USB port to watch a smartphone for example. Speaking of charging, it connects with a proprietary adapter that does not allow charging with a USB-C cable for example. It would have been great to be able to charge at his desk, like his phone. Well, hard to blame him since no manufacturer does, but the idea would be interesting to exploit.

The Swytch Bike conversion kit with a Brompton: the perfect fusion

Strong points

  • Smooth ride
  • Does not affect handling
  • Complete and well finished kit
  • Compact
  • Removable battery
  • Sleek design

Weak points

  • Assembly a little difficult on a Brompton
  • Weighed down by 3kg
  • The purchase system under pre-order and with a high price to have it before

The combo between a Brompton and the Swytch Bike kit is just perfect. With the luggage attachment and a more subdued colour, this is the perfect bike for commuting to work every day. Whether sunny or rainy. This combo allows you to take public transport without taking up more space than cabin luggage. Admittedly, this weighs down the bike, but the phases of carrying it are rather rare, while riding is the main time. Especially since the price remains affordable at just over 600 euros for the complete kit. This is also a higher price for the folding bike version.

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