Eurobike 2022 has proven to be a fruitful ground for indoor training enthusiasts, with several launches spanning both software and hardware.
Here we round up the latest products to head to the show, including a professional running simulation platform, a new robotics-based trainer, an ANT+ fan, as well as a new indoor smart bike making its way to the UK and beyond.
Phew! caused a sensation
One of Eurobike’s biggest stands came from UAE-based online training and racing platform Whoosh!.
The booth included a number of smart trainers to try out the software, as well as an immersive virtual “cave” that gave a 270-degree look at what immersive indoor training could one day become.
The app is currently free, features training sessions and programs put together by UAE team coaches, and offers the opportunity for esports competitors to compete for cash prizes.
At present, the app is limited to two virtual worlds based on UAE roads, but we’re told it will be expanded to incorporate more real-world WorldTour races.
The elite keeps us cool
Ahead of Eurobike, Elite launched the new Justo smart trainer, and at the show paired it with a brand new Bluetooth and ANT+ fan – the Aria.
It can simulate changing wind conditions in response to speed, power, heart rate and body temperature, while Elite says its responses can be customized to offer more or less wind simulation depending on the rider preferences.
The Aria can also simulate wind direction changes, offers wind speed simulation over 30 mph (48 km/h) and has an odor reducing filter system.
Back to Justo’s latest smart trainer and Elite builds on the success of the Direto XR.
Major updates include improved power accuracy (now +/-1%) and “Flex Fleet,” which is meant to simulate the side-to-side motion of riding a bike.
It’s also claimed to be smaller (33% narrower than the Direto XR) and quieter, while new features include auto-calibration and a ‘standalone mode’, whereby the trainer can be used without connecting to an app. or a diet.
Truekinetix uses robotics
When does a trainer get really smart? Not yet, but Dutch brand Truekinetix stood out from the crowd at Eurobike by using ‘robotics’ to power its new TrueTrainer, after initially introducing the technology in its TrueBike smart bike.
In short, Truekinetix says the robotics allows the trainer to simulate different gear ratios than what you have installed on the bike.
For example, you can ride a bike equipped with a compact crankset and an 11-28t cassette, but accurately simulate 53/39t chainrings with an 11-32t cassette.
Visibly, the TrueTrainer looks like a regular direct-drive smart trainer, but beneath the skin Truekinetix has incorporated its “TrueForce” technology, which is claimed to deliver the most natural pedal stroke currently available.
We had a quick pit ride and can confirm the feel is more realistic than your average direct-drive trainer, despite only being a short pedal ride at a trade show.
Power accuracy is claimed to be accurate to +/- 0.5%.
The TrueTrainer is available in three versions: a base model and ‘Shift’ and ‘Max’ versions that offer the full range of capabilities of the TrueTrainer.
Both top models have a USB port and can be connected directly to a monitor/TV via HDMI, with TrueTrainer software built into the trainer (so you don’t need an intermediate computer to run the software) .
Pricing starts at €1,499 for the base model and goes up to €1,799 and €1,999 respectively.
Zycle Smart Z Bike is now coming to the UK and beyond
From Spanish indoor cycling brand Zycle, the Z Bike is set to be available across Europe.
The Z Bike can handle up to 2000 watts and is said to deliver quiet performance thanks to the frictionless magnetic system used to apply resistance to the 14kg flywheel. Zycle claims it’s one of the quietest smart bikes on the market today.
Otherwise, Zycle claims +/- 3% power accuracy, and the Z Bike can connect to major indoor cycling apps.
The Z Bike is adjustable for people between 160cm (5ft 3in) and 195cm (6ft 5in) tall and comes with combination pedals compatible with flat and SPD.
Run like a pro with VirtuPro
Finally, still in beta, VirtuPro caught our eye with its fledgling platform, which it claims offers the most realistic virtual racing experience.
The platform is expected to launch officially in the coming months and features a range of interactivities including live management, communication with your (virtual) team, as well as the ability to “look around” in the virtual world as you ride.
VirtuPro says the platform uses a smart engine that, with each race, randomizes rider and team tactics, so no two races are ever the same.
The on-screen graphics were also impressive, which in our view were arguably the most advanced and realistic presented at Eurobike 2022.
VirtuPro is expected to launch in fall 2022, where all features and subscription package pricing will be revealed.