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Ikea recalls all Sladda bikes, offering full refund

The faulty belt drive did it in

So long, Sladda.
Ikea

Ikea is slamming the brakes on one of its most interesting offerings in recent years: the clean-lined, relatively affordable Sladda bike designed to make cycling a palatable mode of transportation to the urban masses. Now this initiative is coming to an end, as the Swedish furniture giant has announced it’s recalling all Sladda bikes and doing away with them entirely, Fast Company reports.

The stylishly pared-back Sladda, which started at $399 for Ikea Family members, had its fans when it was revealed, even winning a Red Dot award for product design. But ultimately, something that contributed to its streamlined look and low-key appeal also led to its downfall. According to the recall notice, the company received 11 reports worldwide (none in the U.S.) of the belt drive breaking, including two that led to minor injury.

The belt drive, which came with a 10-year warranty, was supposed to last longer than traditional chains and require less maintenance. Ikea told Fast Company that it hasn’t been able to find a feasible fix—though, with only 4,900 Sladda bikes sold in the U.S. since 2017, perhaps repairing the bikes is just not worth the effort.

A closer look at the belt drive.
Ikea

Instead, the company has recalled all Sladda bikes, urging customers to stop using them and offering a full refund. Sladda accessories, while not recalled, are also eligible for a refund.

It’s a shame that this project geared towards creating more sustainable urban commutes didn’t work out. But perhaps the next opportunity is already emerging: electric bikes and scooters.