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The Birth of the Charging Across America Challenge 2022

Rob Swartz and the record setting 1924 Ford Model T Speedster he built before he was old enough to drive. (Photo by Eric Studer)

Eric Studer

Rob Swartz has a simple mission statement for each of his motorcycle businesses, “Make every client’s next ride their best one.” He is often referred to as the “motorcycle marriage counselor” since his client’s most frequent compliment is, “You made me fall in love with my bike all over again.”

Swartz was eight when his father’s friend taught him how to drive a 1925 Model T and said, “Take some laps kid.” Barely able to grasp both sides of the steering wheel or reach the pedals, Swartz proceeded to do exactly as instructed, driving countless circles around a rural airfield till the Speedster’s tank ran dry.

Combining frugality, a multitude of odd jobs and a burning drive to go fast, Swartz owned three cars before getting a driver’s license. At 15, he built his first and favorite ride from spare and donated parts. It’s no surprise it was a 1924 Model T Speedster like the one he drove when he was eight. Decades later, Swartz still cruises the favorite Ford around his Gardner, Massachusetts hometown and races it at Loring Timing Association speed competitions and other events.

Opened in 2004, Rob’s Dyno Service (RDS) has grown to become New England’s premier motorcycle tuning facility for any internal combustion, electric or high-performance motorcycle. RDS also offers maintenance and repair services for any brand of motorcycle, in addition to components and accessories personally designed by Swartz.

Cross-country map for the “Charging Across America Challenge” following the original 2,906-mile route of the Cannonball Run from New York City to Redondo Beach, California.

Following the success of RDS, he opened MOTUS of New England (MONE) in 2017, selling and servicing MOTUS motorcycles, a premium sport-touring bike produced from 2014 to 2018 in Birmingham, Alabama. MONE is the nation’s largest source of MOTUS parts and continues tuning, repairs and total rebuild services for this rare and coveted American-made bike.

Convinced that electric power will lead the future of transportation, Swartz opened one of America’s first Energica electric motorcycle dealerships in 2020. Energica of New England (EONE) is the only bike dealer offering an in-house Dynostar Dyno calibrated for testing, tuning and performance optimization for any internal combustion or electric motorcycle brand.

Dedication to ensuring client riding enjoyment led Swartz to designing parts and accessories found nowhere else. Swartz has consulting relationships with leading after-market and Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM), including Energica Electric Motorcycles, Helibars, MOTUS motorcycles, Woodcraft and others to manufacture his custom designed components under the Rob’s Dyno Service brand.

His designs include front forks for select Indian models, in addition to LED light packages, foot pegs and handlebars for Energica electric motorcycles. His popular custom Indian front forks and rear shocks have popularized Swartz’ unique designs with dedicated riders around the globe.

The world’s fastest female motorcycle racer and “America’s Queen of Speed” celebrates top speed records with Rob Swartz and his Motus 1650cc at Bonneville Motorcycle Speed Trials 2021. (Photo by Eric Studer)

Ever the promoter, Swartz is organizing the first-ever “Charging Across America Challenge” event. Swartz and co-riderSteven Day will attempt to break the Cannonball cross-country electric motorcycle record of 178 hours and 17 minutes piloting Energica electric motorcycles. Both riders will simultaneously ride coast-to-coast in opposite directions following the 2,906-mile route of the original Cannonball Run, creating a unique “race within a race.” The event starts April 18 with finish-line completion April 22 – EARTH DAY. The promotion is designed to accomplish three primary goals:

Change American consumer perceptions on viability of electric vehicles

Build awareness of growing the national EV charging station network

Demonstrate superiority of Energica’s zero-emission electric motorcycles vs. direct competitors and internal combustion-powered brands

This will be a fun and history-making event providing numerous tie-in and PR opportunities for savvy marketers seeking unique messaging for their brands. Professional videographers will follow both riders providing real time downloads during the 3+-day trek.

Swartz and his team are seeking financial support or in-kind contributions needed to offset event-marketing expenses. When he’s not servicing customer’s bikes or promoting zero-emission vehicles, you’ll find Rob at the racetrack tuning client’s bikes as well as his own. Today, he is a 21-time land speed record holder piloting his Ford Model T Speedster, a Dodge “company truck” named “The Beast” and of course, very fast motorcycles.

Eric Studer’s award-winning career is focused on building segment-leading brands like Holiday Inn, Red Roof Inn, Rent-A-Center, Hilton International and “America’s Queen of Speed” and the world’s fastest female motorcycle racer, Valerie Thompson.

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