The next time you head to your local IKEA to pick up some bookshelves and a bathroom faucet, you’ll be able to add a bicycle to your list. In fact, with the SLADDA family of products, you’ll be able to completely outfit yourself for a ride – even if that includes hauling bulky gear around town. Last year, IKEA announced that they would be be adding a new bicycle to their catalog, and it looks as if the time is finally come for IKEA shoppers in the United States. The bikes, and all the accessories, are now up on the website and available for purchase…
If you’ve ever wondered what goes into the naming of an IKEA product, clearly the team behind this bike had some fun with it. Named SLADDA, the name translates from Swedish as… skid. I imagine that most users won’t be laying sick skids on their new SLADDA bikes, but it’s evident that there are some fun loving cyclists behind the design – which is also demonstrated by the smart build.
At $499 ($399 for IKEA Family members), the SLADDA is not an expensive bike, but you’re getting a lot for those dollars. For starters, the bike relies on a belt drive instead of a chain, and the belt powers a SRAM Automatix 2 speed hub. That makes the SLADDA a little more versatile than a single speed, but still keeps the price down and provides multiple gears without the need to shift. However that does mean there is a coaster brake for the rear, mixed with the mechanical disc brake up front. Overall the spec looks pretty decent for the price with details like metal bodied pedals, fenders, and it even comes with front and rear lights plus a center kickstand.
The trade off seems to come from the fact that there are only two sizes, and those are based on the size of the wheel. Offered in 26″ or 28″, the 28″ most likely refers to the 622mm ISO bead seat diameter, which means the same thing as 700c. With a single frame design, the SLADDA is unisex with a kink in the (very low) top tube to make it easier to get on and off. The bikes are also on the heavy side with all of those accessories, coming in at 33lb (15kg) for the 26″ and 35lb (16kg) for the 28″.
One of the more intriguing features is the integrated rack system which has been designed for quick installation and removal. The frame includes post built into the frame that the front and rear racks slide onto. Then once in place, set screws clamp it down to make sure it doesn’t move. Since the front rack attaches to the frame, it frees up the front wheel and handlebar for easier steering. The front rack carries a maximum load of 10kg, while the rear is a bit more at 25kg. Sold separately, the rear rack sells for $19.99 while the front is $24.99 for IKEA Family member pricing – given that IKEA Family is free to join, the likelihood that someone will pay full price is pretty slim.
Of course, if you’re going to have a rack, you’ll need a bag. IKEA’s SLADDA Bag slips onto the rack with two hooks, and then turns into a backpack with hidden straps. Sold for $29.99, the bag is water resistant, with a water repellent bottom.
If you need to carry even more gear, the SLADDA is looking pretty good at $129 ($169 regular). With a 108lb maximum load, the trailer can be connected to the bike at the rear axle, or your can flip the hitch upwards and use it as a hand cart. Weighing in at 24 lbs, the trailer uses 20″ wheels with their own fenders.
To make sure you’re ready to ride, the SLADDA family also includes a helmet, a pump, and a lock to keep your bike safe. The helmet is available in medium or large and features a dial type retention system and a price of $23.99. A Pump with a fold out floor peg and flexible hose could be a steal at $6.99, and the lock which appears to have a 2/5 ART security rating sells for $14.99 with a mounting bracket.
All of this makes the SLADDA family look pretty appealing, but there are some catches. For starters, just like every other IKEA product, the SLADDA bike comes flat packed. That means you’ll be struggling to decipher the same wordless instructions, only this time for something you have to trust your life to. I’d highly recommend that if you purchase one and aren’t absolutely sure of your mechanical abilities, that you bring it into a shop for assembly. Also, at the time of writing this the bikes were able to be ordered online, but my local IKEA store does not have them in stock (they are in stock at select locations). In order to get one, I’d have to pony up another $99 for delivery. However, I imagine they will be in all stores shortly, and if you’re OK with assembling it yourself or paying to have it assembled, it looks like a solid addition to the IKEA catalog.