Germany’s Little Tesla
Hamburg, 28 April 2016
While Tesla has garnered plenty of attention over the last few days with the unveiling of their newest electric car, a German startup from Hamburg is attempting a shake-up of the e-mobility industry all its own. Mellow Boards is a group of boardsports enthusiasts and skilled engineers who have created the world’s first compact electric drive that can be installed quickly under any skateboard – or anything else.
Mellow Boards went live with their project on the crowdfunding platform Kickstarter in May 2015 with backers from all over the globe responding enthusiastically with over 300,000 euros in funding. The intersection of several unique concepts made this project resonate strongly: a modular drive that is easily mountable to any board, with in-wheel motors and swappable battery protected by a lightweight metal housing.
The e-mobility market has exploded due to fascinated consumers, but remains filled with gadgets that are heavy, unstable by design and limited to jogging speeds. Commuters have begun the search for dependable alternatives for daily use. Focusing on this high-end need, Mellow Boards treads its own path by being the first to develop and produce a top quality drive with only local companies in Germany, not overseas. Raising the bar on safety, Mellow certifies all components to be air travel compliant (UN/UL) and waterproof by international standards (IP65/IP67).
“In the early days, it was all about the search for the Endless Ride,” said CEO Johannes Schewe about the company’s origins, “Imagine catching a wave or gliding through powder in the city. We quickly realized that a high-performance system had much more potential than novelty ridables. ”
Mellow Boards CTO Kilian Green adds, “Mellow is serious fun, but not a toy. It is both durable and versatile, adapting to those stepping onto a skateboard for the first time in their lives, while giving unparalled sensations to those who never seem able to get off of one. Mellow lets you put the carve into your commute.“
The electric skateboard drive is clearly just the start for Mellow Boards. This vision had electronics producer TQ-Systems so convinced that, at the end of 2015, they invested 1.5 million euros into the company. Leading car manufacturers have approached Mellow Boards for partnerships.
The decisive advantage of the Mellow Drive compared to any car, even the Tesla Model 3, is its compact size. The drive itself weighs only 3.5 kg and benefits from auto industry-grade state of the art technology. More than just a “last mile” solution, Mellow Boards is a vision of the future of urban transportation.
A recent post on Facebook showing a mock-up of the “Mellow Car” shows just how comfortable the Mellow Boards team feels in its role as a pioneer. Although it turned out to be an April Fools joke, cheers from followers nonetheless confirm that this vision of the world’s smallest car isn’t too far-fetched, especially not for this team from Hamburg.
About Mellow Boards
Mellow Boards is a Hamburg based start-up providing a smart alternative for urban transportation. It all started with the dream of the Endless Ride – bringing the feeling of surfing and snowboarding to the streets. Three years of design, prototyping and fine-tuning of more than 300 custom-made individual parts followed. The result is a mountable electric skateboard drive – a high quality product for high-performance use, made in Germany. With the help of a successful Kickstarter campaign in 2015 and the cooperation with investor and production partner TQ Systems, Mellow Boards launched the final Mellow Drive in March 2017.