In our quest to design the perfect shared bike, we decided to be different – by being the same.
Our bikes aren’t like those of other bike shares; rather, they’re much more like the bikes you grew up with, the bikes you know and love.
To some, this may seem counterintuitive. After all, why would we try to adapt a machine that’s intended for a different use rather than building one to suit our purposes? It’s not for lack of design capabilities or R&D funding – it’s an intentional choice.
Designed For Riders
Zagster’s strategic partnership with ASI allows us to build our bikes on the Breezer Uptown EX-LS platform, and we feel that its design makes it ideal for bike sharing. The Uptown EX-LS has a wealth of features that make it perfectly suited to our riders:
Its design caters to the needs of novice riders without constraining experts. Many bike share riders are relatively new to cycling; experienced users often own their own bicycles, but utilize bike shares to reduce their theft risk and maintenance costs, and to run errands for which performance-oriented bikes are ill-suited.
The frame geometry puts rider in an upright body position, eliminating stress on the back, shoulders, hands, and neck so you can sit up and enjoy the ride.
The long wheelbase gives it stable handling that compensates for lack of experience, poor coordination, and even mild balance disorders, making it accessible for the masses.
Wide tires provide great traction in a variety of weather conditions as well as a built-in suspension, mitigating the hazards of potholes, speed bumps, and gravel.
Its step-through frame offers a twofold advantage. First, riders with limited flexibility can easily mount and dismount, which is difficult or impossible for many older people on standard bikes. Second, it offers more everyday utility, as loaded baskets unbalance bikes and make it difficult to mount in standard fashion by tipping them to the side. Try mounting a traditional-frame bike with a gallon of milk loaded in the basket sometime!
The Breezer’s intuitive shifting system can be used by anyone. Twist the shifter toward you and pedaling is easier; twist away, you go faster – but not too fast, as the gear range is designed to make pedaling up hills easier while limiting top speed to prevent serious injuries.
Perfect For Our Partners
Our bikes offer a lot of benefits to the folks paying the bills, too. Most other bike shares use custom-built cycles, making them expensive to produce and maintain, and slow to deploy.
Zagster doesn’t share those problems. In fact, basing our bikes on a stock model offers numerous benefits to our partners in sharing:
Our bikes cost one-third as much as those of other bike shares, giving Zagster the only economically self-sustaining deployments on the market.
Damaged and stolen bikes can be easily and more affordably replaced with no degradation of the user experience.
Maintenance costs are lower because the bikes use industry-standard components.
Our fleets can be deployed rapidly – installed and ready to ride on two weeks’ notice. Contrast this to New York City’s CitiBike rollout, which was delayed for more than a year when its custom-manufactured bikes were ruined by Hurricane Sandy. If this had happened to a Zagster fleet, the delay would have been measured in weeks or even days.
Streamlined For Everyone
The Zagster philosophy of keeping things cheap, simple and high-quality extends to all the key components of our rental system:
Familiarity with standard U-locks means riders can use our system intuitively and lock up anywhere they like. Shedding the constraints of station-to-station biking means the world (or at least as much of the world as is within biking distance) is their oyster.
We maintain relationships with multiple component distributors, so we never have availability issues for replacement parts.
If a bike becomes unrideable and needs to be repaired quickly, a replacement part can be shipped from a distributor’s local warehouse, so even fleets on the other side of the country from our Boston headquarters don’t need to wait for repair parts to arrive.
For reliable, easy-to-use shared bikes that make life easy on riders while keeping costs down and avoiding maintenance issues, you can’t beat Zagster.
Talk to our experts about how you can get started on your own bike share so your community can enjoy the beauty of simplicity.