Swisher’s Entry into the eCig Market (A Review)
Not too long ago, I pointed out in an e-cigarette news update that cigar company Swisher was coming out with a line of e-cigarettes. The line was going to include both kits and disposables, along with a disposable cigar with their unique Swisher Sweets flavor. I reached out to the good folks over at Swisher since I knew some of my readers would be curious. They sent me their line of products to try and write a Swisher electronic cigarette review. So, let’s take a look at the cigar maker’s foray into our world of e-cigarettes.
Swisher’s e-cigarette lineup includes both disposable and rechargeable kits. The kits and disposables are both available in a traditional tobacco (called Natural Smooth) and menthol (Menthol Breeze). In addition, the disposable lineup includes an “e-cigar” in Sweet Essence flavor, which presumable is supposed to resemble their iconic sweet cigar flavor.
I’m not quite sure why the cigar flavor is not available in a kit as well.
According to Swisher’s e-cigar site, the line will be available in both 12 and 18mg/ml. When I spoke to their marketing person, he said that initially, only 18mg will be widely available.
The site above will give you lots of information about the company’s offering, especially about its rigorous testing and manufacturing process for its cartomizers. They apparently put a lot of effort into ensuring consistent batches of e-liquid as well as automated filling to guarantee each carto has the same amount of e-liquid. However, you won’t be able to buy their kits online.
The products will be available strictly in bricks and mortar locations, mostly convenience stores. They do offer a handy store locator on their website, which tells me nobody around where I live carries them yet.
Swisher Rechargeable Kits
Swisher’s kits are pretty basic stuff.
Each starter kit comes in a small box that perfectly resembles a cigarette pack. Or, since this is Swisher, a little cigar pack. Oddly, the boxes open at the top like a normal cardboard box, rather than having a flip-top like most hard cigarette packs.
Inside the first thing you’ll see is a little red notice telling you to contact their support hotline if you have a problem with the product instead of taking it back to the store.
Once you get the paper notice out of the way , there’s a smaller cardboard box inside with cutouts for the battery, charger and carto and a little instruction booklet.
Perhaps you were astute enough to notice all the items in that list above were singular. That’s correct, this kit comes with only one battery and one cartomizer.
Even most of the cheapie “express” packs you see from other companies come with at least two cartomizers. Naturally, you can buy more cartomizers in three packs wherever the kits are sold.
The battery uses the KR808 standard threading, however it seems they’ve done something funky with the way the air vents are built into the cartomizers. I could get the Swisher battery to run a standard 808 carto. But, there was no air flow at all when attempting to use a Swisher carto on a V2 Cigs battery.
I suppose in the end, being able to use their battery with different cartomizers is better than the other way around.
I’m going to forego the usual performance review here. To be honest I didn’t test it extensively, the one carto that came with my traditional kit was DOA, and I’m not a big menthol fan so I didn’t spend much time with the kits. From the few drags I took of the menthol, I thought it was a little more pepperminty than menthol (mentholy?) Performance was not what I would call stellar, especially when compared to something like the V2 or Smokeless Image kits.
I’m going to go ahead and fast forward to the part people are probably the most interested in. The e-cigar.
Really the only thing that makes it a cigar as opposed to an e-cigarette is the fact the battery is brown and the logo is red mimicking the Swisher look. Otherwise, the disposable is exactly the same as its disposable siblings.
The thing that caught my attention about these disposables is that they are small. Most disposables are fairly large, generally bigger than a standard sized traditional electronic cigarette. These disposables are not only smaller than other disposables, they are smaller than Swisher’s own rechargeable (which are in turn a little smaller than other 808 batteries).
In fact, these disposables are the same size as a traditional 100 cigarette. Naturally, they light up with an orange LED. This will likely make them popular with transitional smokers since they are a very good approximation of a regular cigarette (or tiny cigar). Naturally, the e-version is going to be heavier than a real cigarette.
The print on the back of the retail packaging claims that this device is good for up to 400 puffs. I didn’t actually count puffs, but I’m pretty sure I didn’t get close to that especially considering each drag I took was about 4 puffs.
Vapor production was a little week, so I had to take several quick puffs in a row and then a long puff to get a satisfactory amount of vapor. I probably got a little bit over an hour out of the device, which is a bit less time than I’ve gotten out of other disposables.
Aside from the vapor being a little thin, I also found it interesting there wasn’t a lot of throat hit going on either. This especially interesting because I was at 18mg of nicotine which is quite a bit higher than the 12mg I normally vape.
All that leaves is flavor. I’m guessing this little section down here is probably the entire reason you read this review to begin with. So, how much does this e-cigarette taste like a Swisher Sweet cigar?
I have to admit I’m going from memory here. I haven’t smoked a Swisher Sweet in a very long time. Still, I remember the cigars as being, well sweet. Very sweet. I think that the filter itself or the paper on those cigars are actually sweetened.
It could explain why the e-cigar is actually only slightly sweet. It has a little bit of a cigar vibe going, but it’s probably a little more basic tobacco flavored e-cigarette than cigar.
I’d have to say the flavor has a definite hint to the Swisher thing, but it’s no real stretch to say the flavor is far from exactly like the cigar.
I might have to take a mulligan on this one and say if you’re a Swisher Sweet fan you might want to try a disposable for yourself and see if it does anything for you. For me, it didn’t really bring back old college memories of cheap beer and Swisher Sweets.
Too Long; Didn’t Read
Swisher has entered the e-cigarette game. They offer some very basic e-cigarette kits and disposables in traditional and menthol flavors. What caught my eye was a disposable intended to recreate the Swisher Sweet cigar feel. For me, the performance was not the greatest and the flavor was reminiscent of the iconic cigar, but not quite the same (though I admit my memory might be a little foggy). If you’re a Swisher fan, it might be worth checking out the disposable to see if it rings any bells for you.
- Focus on liquid safety and consistency
- Disposables should be very familiar for transitional smokers
- Dedicated customer support team for issues
- Kit batteries can accept standard 808 cartomizers
- Kits offer only one cartomizer
- Disposables are small and seem to have fairly short run time
- Lackluster performance
- Cigar flavor doesn’t invoke any nostalgia in me
- Cartomizers not compatible with other batteries
Product: Swisher e-Cigarette
Available at: Local retailers (store locator)
Price: Kit: $19.99 (MSRP) Disposable: 7.99 (MSRP)
Disclosure: I received this product from Swisher for review purposes