The Jetson Bolt is a cute little electric rideable that makes it easy and affordable to get around. While it may look like an electric bike, the Bolt isn’t packing any pedals or gears, which makes it easy for just about anyone to simply hop on, twist the throttle and go.
Disclaimer: Jetson sent the Bolt to the author free of charge for the purposes of this review.
As an electric rideable, the Bolt is well suited to excel. It is compact, it is relatively lightweight, and the handlebars fold down for easier storage in the trunk of a car or to bring it onto a bus or train. At just $399, it’s hard to find any faults with the Bolt and that’s ok. The seat isn’t adjustable, but you don’t need to adjust it because you won’t be pedaling.
Just sit down, grab on, and twist the throttle and you’re off to the races. As a compact bike, it arrives mostly assembled. We had it out of the box and ready to ride in about ten minutes. Most of that was spent pulling off the packaging that ensures it arrives at its destination unscathed.
After topping the battery up, we headed out for a ride and found the Bolt to be extremely easy to use. A twist throttle outright controls how much power the 250 watt motor puts out, complemented by a simple 4-bar LED indicator that lets you know how much battery power is left. The focus is on simplicity and it works brilliantly.
Below the battery state of charge indicator is a small cruise control button. After getting the throttle to the right position, simply tap the button to maintain that throttle setting until the brake is pressed. It’s a simple yet effective way to eliminate the need to hold the throttle torqued back for long rides. On the left hand side, a massive toggle button switches the integrated front and rear LED lights on and off with a power button just below. A small but effective bell is the final addition to the handlebars.
How quickly you are able to get up to speed with the 250 watt motor depends on your weight. At just over 200 pounds, the Bolt isn’t a rocket with me on it, but it does a fine job of moving me around on flat land. Gradual inclines are possible, but come with a noticeably reduced acceleration. Any sort of serious incline brings the acceleration to a crawl and definitely has an impact on the distance that can be traveled on a charge.
The Bolt’s small size makes it the ideal vehicle for use on public transit. Ok, maybe you won’t use it *on* a bus or train, but it’s a great form factor for getting from the house to the bus station or from work to the train. When the time comes to get on board, the integrated carrying handle provides a convenient, centered lifting point for the Bolt.
Two small pegs provide a place for your feet to perch while underway. They don’t look like much, but they were fine with me on it and I’m at the upper end of the weight capacity.
Overall, the Bolt proved to be a rather capable little electric people mover as long you realize its limitations. It is not a bicycle, does not have pedals, and has a relatively low-power motor. All of that was done with intention as it translates to a low cost, lightweight people mover that’s easy to use and store.
It would make a great people mover over short, flat terrain like on college campuses, work campuses, around downtown areas while on vacation, to and from transit stops, and much more. Its compact size make it easy to store in an RV or boat and the lack of a chain means you don’t have to worry about getting grease all over your things.
Head over to Jetson’s site for all the details about the Bolt or to purchase one for yourself for $399. As of this writing, they also have refurbished models available for $299, which feels like a solid deal as well.
Jetson Bolt Rideable Electric Specs
- Motor: 250 watt rear hub motor
- Battery: 36V, 5.2Ah rechargeable lithium-ion
- Range: Up to 17 miles per charge
- Max Speed: Up to 15 mph
- Weight: 34 lb
- Weight Capacity: 250 lb
- Tires: 12 1/2″ x 2 1/4″
- Connectivity: Bluetooth connectivity via Jetson’s app
All images credit: Kyle Field, CleanTechnica
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