Wahoo’s new ultimate high-end trainer is much more than just a smart trainer. The KICKR BIKE is smart, integrated and pushes the gamification of bike riding even further forwards. How does it compare to the competition and is it the perfect tool for Zwift and company?

In our overview article “The best bike trainer 2020” you will find everything you need to know about indoor bike trainers for Zwift and Co.

Wahoo KICKR BIKE | 42.39 kg | € 3,299.99

The technical and futuristic look of this steel and aluminium bike isn’t pretty, but it doesn’t look as overly overbuilt and heavy as the spin-bikes we all know from the gym. We can’t tell you much about putting it together as the bike was delivered fully assembled. However, the two rear legs are attached with just two bolts, allowing it to be “stowed” away quickly when not in use. In addition, the rollers on the feet let it be moved around easily though we do feel that this machine will be happiest being kept in one place.

Key specs for the smart KICKR BIKE

Price € 3,299.99
Weight 42.39 kg
Weight limit 113 kg
Maximum power (40 km/h) 2.200 W
Power meter accuracy ± 1 %
Maximum simulated gradient -15 % to +20 %
Body size range 152–192 cm

The adjustment options on the KICKR BIKE are basically limitless: reach, stack, saddle height, seat angle and even the crank length can be changed. The Wahoo app helps with initial setup for riders of all abilities. It also shouldn’t be a problem for sporty families or people living together to share the trainer, as long as you’re between 152 and 192 cm tall and weigh less than 113 kg. Four adjustment points let you find your ideal position. That also allows the KICKR BIKE to mimic the geometry of other bikes for you to try out and could also make it an interesting proposition for bike fitters. The app allows Shimano, SRAM and Campagnolo shifters to be simulated and the KICKR BIKE can simulate everything from 1 x 9 to 3 x 12 groupsets, while the chainring and cassette sizes can be adjusted individually. When you change gears, you’ll get realistic-feeling haptic feedback. The cleverly positioned display lets you know which gear you’re in, what gradient you’re riding and other key stats.

Big, bigger, KICKR BIKE
It might have rollers on the feet and be easy to move, but this trainer is so big that it needs a dedicated spot in your apartment.
Lots of adjustments
Reach, stack, seat angle, saddle height and crank length can all be adjusted individually on the KICKR BIKE. The Wahoo app will help ease the initial setup.
Five crank lengths
Perfect for anyone who’s ever wanted to experiment with different crank lengths.
Warning dogs and cats!
The external flywheel successfully simulates a natural ride but it’s in a relatively exposed position.
Ride in the hills
The KICKR BIKE realistically simulates climbs and descents and makes riding on Zwift more fun.
Easy to read LEDs…
… provide information about the gear you’re in, the gradient of the terrain and connectivity.
Not so smart?
Unfortunately the KICKR BIKE has to be attached to an external power source. The Tacx NEO 2T is a step further here.

All the contact points can be easily swapped out for your components of choice. Do you want to see how shorter cranks, a longer stem, or a seat post with less offset might feel on your bike? No problem! What would otherwise be a costly proposition can be achieved with a few adjustment clicks. The only fly in the ointment: where there’s lots of adjustability, there’s also lots of opportunity for play to develop. That’s especially noticeable around the cockpit on the KICKR BIKE. The trainer will be available in Europe from February 2020 according to Wahoo.

Brakes. WTF?
Yes, you can brake. However, that only has an influence on the hardware and has no effect in simulators like Zwift.
The KICKR BIKE is the most stable in the whole test. However, the play in the adjustment mechanism is particularly noticeable in the cockpit.

Our test trainer is a pre-production model that was on show at EUROBIKE. According to Wahoo, it’s louder than the production model but despite this, the KICKR BIKE is among the quieter smart trainers in our test. Without the noise from a chain, the sound produced is more of a jet engine like hum. It’s the only indoor trainer in the test that also gives off a slight sound when not in use, even if this is barely noticeable.

The app lets you simulate everything from 1 x 9 to 3 x 12 groupsets, and also lets you tune the individual chainring and cog sizes.
All the current drivetrain options from Shimano, SRAM and Campagnolo can be simulated with the 10 buttons and brake levers on the cockpit.

Similar to when the KICKR CORE is paired with the KICKR CLIMB, the KICKR BIKE is also able to simulate climbs and descents, allowing those living in flatter areas to work on their climbing technique. There’s a lot of gamification here and it’s possible to feel completely integrated with the world of Zwift. The KICKR BIKE is on another level compared to the other smart trainers in our test.

The KICKR BIKE is the ultimate smart trainer for Zwift

Working hard in the saddle, the bike is completely stable and the most secure trainer by a large margin. However, if you get out of the saddle you will notice the play in the adjustment areas. The solid platform together with the realistic simulation provides a lot of fun. The Wahoo KICKR BIKE has a perceivable amount of flex but it doesn’t match the natural ride feel of the Tacx NEO 2T Smart. While the brakes have an effect on the bike hardware, they aren’t (yet?) relevant for Zwift or other simulators. Thanks to the excellent shifting simulation, you’ll feel right at home on the KICKR BIKE and the flywheel generates a natural feeling ride that also simulates freewheeling effectively.

The KICKR BIKE has one additional advantage over other smart trainers. During the indoor winter season, your own bike won’t have to be subjected to riding loads, drivetrain wear and sweat marking the finish of your precious carbon bike. That prevents additional wear and tear and your bike will always be ready to go out for a ride. Unfortunately, despite its high price, the KICKR BIKE has to be powered externally. We would like to see it work without a power source, just like the Tacx NEO 2T Smart.


For the Zwift champion who rides indoors all year round, for all those who are looking for professional equipment for the ultimate Zwift experience, or for sporty groups who want to share a smart trainer, the KICKR BIKE is a great option. It’s a luxury solution that will be ready at any time and will take the pressure of your precious carbon steed during the winter. The well thought-out package is the perfect tool for the world of Zwift, offering huge amounts of adjustability and integrated gradient simulation.


  • the highest level of Zwift fun
  • adjustability and individualisation factor
  • stable platform
  • shifting simulation


  • needs a dedicated space
  • play in the adjustment

More information at: wahoofitness.com

All turbo trainers in review

In our overview article “The best bike trainer 2020” you will find everything you need to know about indoor bike trainers for Zwift and Co.

Elite Direto X | Elite Nero | Relaxdays Rollentrainer | Tacx NEO 2T Smart | Tacx Satori Smart | Wahoo KICKR BIKE | Wahoo KICKR CORE

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Words: Photos: Benjamin Topf, Jonas Müssig