Cycling technology company Wahoo has launched new versions of its bike training equipment that doesn’t go anywhere.
It has updated both its Kickr Bike and Kickr smart trainer. The latter allows people to use their existing bike to cycle indoors, while the Bike is a fully kitted out equipment to replicate the feeling of being on the road.
The new updates bring a range of new features, including WiFi connectivity to connect directly to the internet. The company claims the update will allow indoor cyclists to use their equipment more reliably and quickly than ever before.
With the rise of indoor cycling has come competitive races that aim to turn cycling into a version of esports. As such, the reliability and speed is likely focused on those who want to ensure they are not left behind in races.
Traditional cycling trainers – and Wahoo’s equipment, until now – have relied on Bluetooth and a specialised wireless standard called ANT+. Those come with a variety of restrictions, including on the number of devices that can be connected.
The new bike and trainer also include a feature called “ERG Easy Ramp” which aims to ensure that indoor cyclists are eased into any change in power, and the bike now has a higher maximum power. They also both have a built-in odometer to check usage, which Wahoo says can be used for checking the wear on a chain, but also may be important when selling the equipment on second-hand.
Wahoo’s new versions of the Kickr and the Bike come ten years after the launch of the company’s first turbo trainer, in 2012. That bike helped kickstart new interest in indoor cycling which led to the flourishing of online games and platforms that were further helped by the lockdowns.
But the updates come amid questions over the future of indoor cycling and the internet-enabled technology that powers it. At the beginning of the pandemic, lockdowns meant that platforms from indoor spin service Peloton to virtual cycling world Zwift became vastly popular – but as restrictions have eased, some of those companies have faced major difficulties.
Wahoo also offers its own virtual training platforming, known as Wahoo X, and bought another in April. Since then, it has focused even more on what it calls its connected ecosystem, which includes not only those online services but also special fans and other equipment for indoor cyclists.
The new Wahoo Kickr costs £1,099.99 or $1,299.99 and the Kickr Bike costs £3,499.99 or $3,999.99. Those are a slight increase on the prices of the old versions.