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Eurobike 2016: Indoor Trainers
Posted by: Editor
Posted on: Friday 2nd September 2016


Tags  Cycleops  |  Eurobike  |  Richard Melik  |  Tacx  |  Wahoo  |  Zwift


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Eurobike 2016 Part One - Turbo Trainers...

Richard Melik, owner of London-based bike fitting company Freespeed (www.freespeed.co.uk), and a regular contributor to our annual Kona coverage here on Tri247, has just returned from a whirlwind trip to the trade show monster that is Eurobike in Germany.

In this first update, he provides some product release information and updates on the indoor trainer market that we know many of you will be resorting too in a month or two when the UK winter strikes and weather is cold and the evening's are dark.


First time for me at the enormous trade show that is Eurobike (www.eurobike-show.com). The scale of the event is overwhelming with 95% of it being of limited interest, so searching out the latest triathlon tech and exciting new product launches was a challenge in the 48 hours I spent in Germany.

Turbo trainers...

As we transition from Summer to Autumn the weather will inevitably deteriorate and indoor training options will once again be on triathletes’ minds. Direct drive turbos have taken the sector by storm in the last year with the Wahoo Kickr and Tacx Neo gaining good ground in spite of their high price points, driven in large by the popularity of smart training software such as Zwift and TrainerRoad.

Tacx, Wahoo and Cycleops all debuted new products at the show:

Tacx Flux

The baby brother to the Neo this keeps many of the features and whilst not as quiet as the Neo it was still significantly quieter than other trainers I have tested. Not quite silent, but not far off.

Smart compatibility with all the major software via Bluetooth and Ant+, the trainer has a power capability of 1500 watts and is able to simulate a 10% slope. It is smaller and lighter than the Neo but still heavy and solid enough to feel stable during riding.

At a price point of around £700 it is a lot cheaper than its sibling too and makes it a serious contender in the mid range smart trainer sector. Available from end of September 2016.

Tacx Flux

CycleOps Hammer

An impressive new direct drive offering from CycleOps, the brand behind Powertap pedals and hubs, this has the performance to match its looks.

It can handle 2000 watts of power and simulate slopes of 20% and as with all the trainers mentioned has bluetooth and Ant+ connectivity features, making it a great choice to pair with smart training software.

Priced around £1100 and should be with dealers very soon.

CycleOps Hammer

Wahoo Kickr version 2

Technically not a new release, but an improved and refined version of the existing and much loved Kickr. Obvious changes are that it is quieter than the previous model, more responsive to speed and gradient changes and has better portability thanks to a redesigned handle.

There is also the slightly offset belt positioning to allow better compatibility with long cage derailleur and disc brake equipped bikes.

Cost remains £949 and is available immediately.

Wahoo Kickr version 2

Tacx Magnum

Not strictly a turbo trainer but this was one of the products at the show that really caught the eye. A fully functioning running treadmill that also doubles up as a bike treadmill. It uses sensors to automatically speed up or slow down the belt depending on whether the bike inches forward or drops back.

In theory this means it should be impossible to be sent flying backwards off the belt, an understandable concern! In practice it is much easier to ride than rollers, even if it feels a little precarious and takes some getting used to, this could be a perfect addition to an upscale home gym although with a price of 8000 euros this probably won’t be featuring in many man caves in sheds at the bottom of the garden.

Still awaiting final safety and testing certificates, it should be available in 2017.

Tacx Magnum

Zwift iOS launch

Still in beta testing, Zwift were demoing their platform on iPads and iPhones. This will inevitably take their already successful virtual training and racing software to the next level, making it more portable and easier to access for a wider audience.

Use a Wattbike in the gym? Take your phone along, pair it up and join in one of their regular group rides or races.

The graphics are super crisp and the smoothness of the on screen experience is as good, if not better, than I have been used to on a high spec PC.

I’ll be doing a full review of the new technology shortly as there is a lot to share with some more announcements in the pipeline of particular interest for triathletes.

Congratulations to the small team at Zwift as they deservedly won a Eurobike award in the innovation category.

Zwift iOS launch


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