The partially-motorized bikes are intended to speed up orders in areas with traffic and parking issues.

By Mike Pomranz
Updated August 14, 2019
Credit: Domino's

In the world of food delivery, pizza used to rule supreme. Not that you wouldn't have chosen pizza for your Super Bowl party, but back before the days of Tom Brady, not many other restaurants even offered to bring grub to your door. Thanks to online ordering, that's all changed, and now America's largest chains are looking for ways to stay on top. For Domino's, the brand's latest innovation is a tech-savvy spin on a 19th-century invention: the bicycle.

Domino's is hoping to make delivery faster by allowing some locations to switch to an inherently slower mode of transportation. "Cars aren't always the most efficient way to get hot, delicious pizzas to hungry customers," the chain explains." A bike is often a better solution to traffic congestion and parking challenges." With this in mind, Domino's is partnering with North America's largest e-bike brand — Rad Power Bikes — to give locations across the country the option to deliver on bikes with "small integrated motors to assist with pedaling."

"Domino's tested e-bikes in a number of corporate-owned stores across Houston, Miami and New York earlier this year, and those stores saw improvements in overall delivery and service," Tom Curtis, Domino's executive vice president of corporate operations, said in the announcement. "They also experienced labor benefits, as the stores were able to hire from a wider pool of candidates, including those who might not have a car or driver's license. Plus, stores that were already delivering with traditional bikes saw improved team member satisfaction with e-bikes."

Yes, turns out adding a small motor can make bikers happy. "While delivery on a traditional bike solved many of our traffic and parking issues, the hills in Seattle were tough on even our best cyclists," Greg Keller, a Seattle Domino's franchisee, added. "E-bikes were a game-changer for us, and we've been delivering with them for three years now."

Domino's says these bikes are able to hold 12 large pizzas at a time in attached Domino's Heatwave bags. They have a top assisted speed of 20 miles per hour and can run for up to 40 miles before needing a recharge depending on the situation. The bikes will arrive in more corporate-owned stores in Miami, Salt Lake City, Baltimore, and Houston later this year. Meanwhile, franchises will have the option of buying the bikes if they feel they can improve service, according to Nation's Restaurant News.