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Elite Suito Review

This direct drive trainer stands out for being more portable and easy to set up compared to others in its price and performance tier
Elite Suito
Photo: Amazon
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Price:  $1,120 List | $849.99 at Amazon
Pros:  Simple setup, lightweight, 11-speed cassette pre-installed
Cons:  Requires calibration, annoying power drops and slower responsiveness, unit may wobble slightly
Manufacturer:   Elite
By Ryan Baham ⋅ Review Editor  ⋅  Jan 12, 2021
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71
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#4 of 11
  • Connectivity and Power Accuracy - 25% 7
  • Road Feel - 25% 7
  • Design - 20% 7
  • Setup - 20% 7
  • Portability - 10% 8

Our Verdict

The Elite Suito is clearly a high-end direct drive trainer. You get the more realistic feel of a direct-drive unit (and you get to spare your tires), plus you get smart control so you can immerse yourself in virtual training worlds like Zwift, The Sufferfest, TrainerRoad, and the rest. Think of this as the first tier of the top-shelf smart trainer world. It's lighter, and it already has an 11-speed cassette installed, so it's easy to transport and setup, but it has its drawbacks, too. Namely, we experienced power drops, slower responsiveness, and a step behind top models in road feel.

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Elite Suito
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Elite Suito
Awards  Editors' Choice Award Best Buy Award Best Buy Award Best Buy Award 
Price $849.99 at Amazon$1,399.99 at Backcountry
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Pros Simple setup, lightweight, 11-speed cassette pre-installedDoes not require calibration, realistic road-feel, broad compatibility, wider support for 3rd party appsLower price range for a premium trainer, good responsiveness, smooth, high power accuracyAffordable, simple to set up, easy to take on the road, great control for a tire drive trainerCrazy light, super affordable, spectacularly simple
Cons Requires calibration, annoying power drops and slower responsiveness, unit may wobble slightlyPower output/response can lag, pricey, heavy, somewhat of a pain to move around and set upRequires calibration, heavy, slightly aggressive in ERG modeResistance unit is just a bit bulky and heavy, manual drum adjustment, lower responsivenessSlightly limited compatibility, not much resistance, no sensors
Bottom Line This direct drive trainer stands out for being more portable and easy to set up compared to others in its price and performance tierEasily the best bike trainer on the market for supercharged workouts in-season and off-season conditioningAn affordable training companion to get you through winter, rain, and turbo-charged training sessionsGet access to all the awesome performance of a smart trainer at a fraction of the price and effortThis is your basic no frills trainer that you can take just about anywhere and get in a quick spin
Rating Categories Elite Suito Tacx Neo 2T Smart Saris H3 Direct Drive Kinetic Road Machin... Blackburn Tech Mag 1
Connectivity And Power Accuracy (25%)
7.0
9.0
8.0
6.0
1.0
Road Feel (25%)
7.0
9.0
8.0
6.0
2.0
Design (20%)
7.0
9.0
9.0
7.0
5.0
Setup (20%)
7.0
8.0
6.0
8.0
10.0
Portability (10%)
8.0
6.0
8.0
8.0
10.0
Specs Elite Suito Tacx Neo 2T Smart Saris H3 Direct Drive Kinetic Road Machin... Blackburn Tech Mag 1
Type Direct drive Direct drive Direct drive Tire drive Tire drive
Weight (lbs) 32 lbs 47 lbs 47 lbs 28 lbs 15 lbs
Compatible Platforms-TrainerRoad, Zwift Zwift, TrainerRoad, Kinomap, Rouvy, The Sufferfest and Bikevo Yes, both. Also Tacx Films, Rouvy, Sufferfest, Kinomap, FulGaz, BKool, and Road Grand Tours. Yes, both. Also Rouvy. Yes, both. Also Kinetic Fit, Rouvy, Kinomap, The Sufferfest and FulGaz. None.
Communication Protocol ANT+ FE-C or Bluetooth FTMS ANT+ FE-C, Bluetooth FTMS ANT+ FE-C, Bluetooth FTMS ANT+ FE-C, Bluetooth FTMS None
Dimensions L-H-W (inches) 30 x 22 x 20 22.6" x 29.5" x 21.7" 31” x 18.5” x 19.5” 32"x22.4"x16" 21.7"x21.7"x16.3"
Storage Dimensions LxHxW (inches) 26 x 22 x 20 24.4" × 10.2" × 17.3" 8.5” x 18.5” x 19.5” 20.75"x8.25"x21.5" 21.7"x6.3"x18.9"
Power Comparison 2-4 watts, 2% 1-3 watts, 1% 1-3 watts, 1% 10 watts, 5% N/A
Decibel @ 230 Watts 62.7 dB 57.8 dB 55.3 dB 55.9 dB 60 dB
Roll Out Time @ 200 watts 17 seconds 26 seconds 58 seconds 17 seconds 4 seconds
Flywheel 7.7 lbs Virtual 20 lbs 12 lbs Magnetic
Additonal Cassette included No Cassette included No Cassette included Skewer included Quick release skewer included
Axel compatibility 130–135x5mm QR and 142x12mm thru axle 130mm, 135mm || Adaptors for 142mm and 148mm available through Tacx. 130mm, 135mm compatible || Thru-axle available for 142mm and 148mm through CycleOps. 130mm, 135mm || 142mm and 148mm adaptors available through Kinetic. 130mm and 135mm || May need 3rd party adaptors for 142mm and 148mm

Our Analysis and Test Results

Performance Comparison


The Elite Suito is a good entry point into the controllable smart...
The Elite Suito is a good entry point into the controllable smart trainer world.
Photo: Ryan Baham

Connectivity and Power Accuracy


This trainer uses ANT+ FE-C and Bluetooth FTMS wireless to connect to your device for control and communication. This is an area we spend a lot of time on because you're paying a premium to get this high-tech functionality specifically, and it's a real bummer when it falls short. For that reason, we were a little grumpy with the Suito. We were frustrated at the power drops and lag in responsiveness.

No problem initially connecting over ANT+ or Bluetooth, but there...
No problem initially connecting over ANT+ or Bluetooth, but there are occasional drops during rides.
Photo: Ryan Baham

Most of us are data nerds training to the numbers, and seeing frequent drops and spikes in your data can be infuriating. It can also come out in ERG training where you're required to put out a specific wattage over a timed segment, and drops or spikes can screw that up too. To the point on responsiveness, you notice it in the virtual training programs when terrain shifts or resistance levels quickly change, and the trainer lags behind your output a bit. No, it's not the end of the world, but it could be better.

Road Feel


With the Suito, you get smart control, which is the biggest selling point of the trainer. That automatically bumps it up into the high-immersion world of virtual training. This is what techy indoor trainers are all about. That said, you're not getting the best immersion here. The Suito uses a 7.7-pound flywheel that is best described as serviceable. You're not getting the inertia you get with more robust trainers with heavier flywheels, so letting off the pedals or changing terrain is going to feel a little hollow compared to the road.

Design


What we really like about this trainer is its practicality. It's 10-15 lbs lighter than other direct drive trainers, easy to setup and put away, compatible with all the major training programs, uses both Bluetooth and ANT+, and can even take 1,900 watts and simulate 15% grades. It checks all the important boxes for training. Maybe the only structural issue we found was that the base was a bit wobbly no matter how we adjusted the legs or knobs.

The adjustable legs were smart and compact, but did wobble a bit.
The adjustable legs were smart and compact, but did wobble a bit.
Photo: Ryan Baham

Setup


The Suito is really close to plug and play, and for that reason, it's among our favorites regarding setup. Nothing wins the heart quite like requiring no effort. It comes with an 11-speed Shimano (or equivalent generic) already installed, so that will save what for many is the most tedious step. Here, the caveat is that some folks won't have a drivetrain that's compatible with an 11-speed Shimano cassette (or don't want to use that). In that case, your specific setup experience is going to be less convenient.

Make sure you're checking instructions so you get the adapters right...
Make sure you're checking instructions so you get the adapters right for your dropouts and axle.
Photo: Ryan Baham

The rest of setup is quick and easy. Pull the legs out, lock them in place, yank your wheel out, throw the bike on, tighten the skewer. Then you just need to calibrate the trainer. That's mostly universal across smart trainers. Your training programs will give you an option to calibrate at the beginning of workouts. It's a brief process that typically requires you to ride at 20mph for a few moments and then let the trainer roll out to zero. This is among the easiest direct drive trainers to get rolling.

Check compatibility on your components, but most of us will be fine...
Check compatibility on your components, but most of us will be fine to jump on the 11-speed cassette they send pre-installed. We were even able to get an older Campy drivetrain to take without too much grousing.
Photo: Ryan Baham

Portability


So far as smart trainers go, this is one of the lightest and easiest to grab and move around. It collapses nice and tight to slip into corners or under beds. The legs are sensible in their breakdown and lock into place. And, of course, the handle is super practical. You really only need to worry about the wheel block and power cord, but they will easily fit into a bag or corner. If you're out on the road a lot and need a trainer for your bike, the Suito is your friend.

Value


The Suito comes with a hefty price tag. It has some frustrating hiccups and performance gaps relative to the other expensive trainers that might justify spending the extra money for a nicer trainer. However, those who want to travel with a direct drive trainer will likely find the most value in this lightweight model that sets up quickly.

Conclusion


All things considered, the Elite Suito is a solid smart trainer. It's not the best smart trainer, but it gets you into the higher-end of training by bringing you all the basic functionality you need to get an excellent workout. It's quick and easy, with an 11-speed Shimano (or equivalent generic) cassette pre-installed, which should work for most cyclists. We even got a good fit with more recent Campy drivetrains. While you can find better performance at this same price level (or even less), this model is a favorite direct drive model for taking on the road.

Compact, light, easy to carry, simple to setup. Those who want to...
Compact, light, easy to carry, simple to setup. Those who want to take their direct drive trainer with them frequently will get the most satisfaction out of this model.
Photo: Ryan Baham

Ryan Baham