Peloton Bike+ Review
Cons: Expensive, limited functionality without the app, Peloton App subscription cost
Compare to Similar Products
|Price||$1,995 List||$1,799 List|
$1,500 at Amazon
$1,500 at Amazon
$799.99 at Amazon
$299.99 at Amazon
|Pros||Peloton app, swiveling touchscreen has excellent picture quality, sleek appearance, professional assembly included, optional auto-follow resistance, lots of features||Unique lean feature, loaded with features, capable of streaming entertainment and working with 3rd party apps, JRNY app costs less than the competition||iFit app, adjustable incline, AutoAdjust resistance and incline, narrow Q-factor, feature-packed, swiveling touchscreen||Smart/connected features, excellent warranty, 100 levels of magnetic resistance, comes with hand weights||Affordable, smooth belt-driven weighted flywheel, infinitely adjustable resistance, stable and sturdy|
|Cons||Expensive, limited functionality without the app, Peloton App subscription cost||Slightly larger footprint and heavier weight, JRNY app isn't quite as developed as some others, smaller screen (larger screen available at a higher price), screen has limited range of adjustability||Connectivity issues (eventually resolved), incline adjustability results in slightly reduced stability, ICON Fitness has a history of poor customer service, fan is somewhat noisy||More expensive, inaccurate speed and distance readings, doesn't work perfectly with Peloton or Zwift||Basic display, no program workouts, no connectivity|
|Bottom Line||It may be expensive, but it is undoubtedly the best for the at-home studio cycling experience||The unique lean feature and compatibility with streaming entertainment and 3rd party apps set this model apart from the competition||This bike's auto-adjusting speed and incline work with the excellent iFit app to simulate real-world riding||A reasonably priced, high-quality spin bike with connected features||A simple, effective, and affordable spin bike that lacks connected features|
|Rating Categories||Peloton Bike+||Bowflex VeloCore 16||NordicTrack Commerc...||Schwinn IC4||Yosuda Indoor Cycli...|
|Exercise Quality (35%)|
|Companion App/Connectivity (%)|
|User Interface (20%)|
|Setup and Portability (10%)|
|Specs||Peloton Bike+||Bowflex VeloCore 16||NordicTrack Commerc...||Schwinn IC4||Yosuda Indoor Cycli...|
|Console||23.8" HD rotating touchscreen||16" HD tilting touchscreen||22" HD rotating touchscreen||LCD display, tablet holder||LCD display|
|Companion App||Peloton (subscription required)||JRNY (also works with Peloton and Zwift) (subscriptions required)||iFit (subscription required)||JRNY (subscription required) (also works with Peloton and Zwift)||N/A|
|Resistance Settings||100 levels||100 levels||24 levels||100 levels||Infinite|
|Max. Weight Capacity||297 lbs||325 lbs||350 lbs||330 lbs||270 lbs|
|Recommended Height Range||4'11" to 6'4"||5'1" to 6'5"||not specified (13 inches of seat height adjustment)||4'6" to 6'6"||25" to 35" inseam height adjustment|
|Measured Dimensions||59" L x 22" W x 59" H||59.8" L x 25.5" W x 52.5" H||58" L x 22" W x 60" H||48.75" L x 21.25" W x 52" H||40.5" L x 21.5" W x 45" H|
|Weight||140 lbs (claimed)||158.3 lbs (claimed)||203 lbs (claimed)||106 lbs||68.8 lbs|
|Resistance type||Magnetic with Digital Adjustment||Magnetic||SMR Magnetic||Weighted flywheel with adjustable magnetic resistance||Weighted flywheel and adjustable resistance pad|
|Resistance Adjustment type||Knob with Auto-Follow resistance option||Knob||Handlebar buttons or AutoAdjust||Knob||Knob|
|Connectivity||Bluetooth 5.0, WiFi, ANT+||Bluetooth, WiFi||Bluetooth, WiFi||Bluetooth||N/A|
|Heart Rate Sensor||Not included, but pairs with Bluetooth and ANT+ sensors||Bluetooth armband included||Not included, but pairs with Bluetooth sensors||Bluetooth armband included||No|
|Other Features||Delivery and assembly included, Transport wheels, 4 GB RAM, 16 GB internal flash storage, 2.2 Channel stereo speakers and woofers, headphone jack, 8 megapixal camera, built-in microphone, USB-C charging port, delta compatible clipless pedals||Transport wheels, Bluetooth heart rate armband, 3 lb dumbells, leaning mode, dual-sided pedals, speakers, device shelf, USB port||Transport wheels, 2 water bottle holders, 3 lb dumbells, adjustable fan, adjustable incline (works with AutoAdjust), Google Maps integration, two 2" speakers||Bluetooth, works with Zwift and Peloton apps, USB charging port, device shelf, 2 water bottle holders, 3 lb weights, weight cradles, Bluetooth Heart rate armband, dual sided pedals with cleats||Bottle cage, device shelf, cage pedals, flywheel brake, transport wheels|
|Warranty||12-month limited warranty||Frame and Parts: 2 years, Electronics: 1 year, Labor: 1 year||Frame: 10 years, Parts: 2 years, Labor: 1 year||Frame: 10 years, Parts: 3 years, Labor: 1 year||1 year parts replacement|
Our Analysis and Test Results
Peloton recently lowered the price of the Bike+ by $500 from $2,495 to $1,995. While it is still expensive, we feel it is a much better value at the reduced price. Interestingly, the price of an All-Access Peloton app membership is reportedly being increased by $5/month to $44/month starting June 1st, 2022. -April 2022
When it comes to home fitness, Peloton is probably the most recognizable name in the industry, particularly in the context of exercise bikes. We thought it was only fitting to include the Bike+ in our test of the best exercise bikes on the market. Sure, the bike itself is sturdy and sleek, but it's the Peloton app that truly sets it apart from the competition. After spending weeks testing this bike side-by-side against a fleet of similar models, we're not surprised that Peloton and the trainers that lead their live and on-demand studio classes have such a devoted following. Yes, the Bike+ and the app subscription cost is expensive, but we feel it easily beats the other studio focused options on the market.
Peloton has quickly grown into one of the leaders in the exercise bike market, and that is based largely on the experience that they provide. Sure, the Bike+ is a nice piece of equipment, but realistically, it isn't physically much different from the competition. That said, it is a refined, streamlined, and comfortable bike that is plenty sturdy with 100 levels of super quiet and smooth magnetic resistance. The Peloton app is undoubtedly what makes the experience, however, and for at-home studio cycling, it is second to none in terms of production quality, instructors, and the sheer number of live and on-demand classes available.
The Bike+ looks nearly identical to the Bike with just a few subtle changes that differentiate it from the original. While there isn't anything particularly groundbreaking about the bike itself, it is a very nice-looking and high-quality piece of equipment. It has 100 levels of magnetic resistance that is virtually silent in use and provides more than enough range to satisfy users of all fitness levels. With so many levels, the changes in resistance are quite subtle, and we often found ourselves turning the knob quite a bit to make larger changes in resistance. The bike is structurally very sturdy and we found it to feel stable when riding out of the saddle no matter how hard we mashed on the pedals. The huge range of fit adjustments also makes it easy to adjust the bike perfectly to your body for comfort and performance.
One can't talk about the exercise quality of the Bike+ without mentioning the Peloton app. Turns out, there's a reason that everyone loves Peloton so much, and that is because of the live classes, thousands of on-demand videos, excellent instructors, production quality, robust user community, and integration of the bike and app. As far as at-home studio cycling is concerned, we don't think it gets any better than this. You can find any type of workout you're looking for, and the motivating and engaging instructors will get you to push yourself and have you coming back for more. The tilting and rotating screen also allow you to position it however you like to take full advantage of the myriad off-the-bike workouts as well.
The Bike+ uses WiFi to connect to the Peloton app. Through the screen, you can choose your WiFi network, and we never experienced any issues with it dropping the connection during workouts. It also uses Bluetooth to pair with heart rate monitors or wireless headphones, so you can exercise without disturbing anyone else in the house. We found it easy to connect to Bluetooth accessories, and never had any issues with dropped connections once paired.
Peloton has made quite a name for themselves over the past few years, and that is due to their excellent app. To access the app through the Bike+ you need to get the Peloton All-Access membership which costs $39 a month (it increases to $44/month as of June 1st, 2022). This includes unlimited profiles for every member of your household, and it can be used with the Bike, Bike+, and the Peloton Tread. The basic Peloton app is also available for $12.99 for an individual, but it doesn't provide access to the classes through the Bike or Tread. The basic app membership can be used on your phone or tablet, so you can use it with other exercise bikes that support that connectivity. Either way, the membership cost is something to consider when purchasing a Peloton product, but we imagine most people who are willing to spend the money on the Bike+ are already well aware of the costs associated with the app.
Using the Peloton app through the touchscreen on the Bike+ is straightforward and intuitive, but often finding the workout you're looking for can be a daunting task due to the sheer number of live and on-demand classes at your fingertips. Thankfully, you can use the filter to sort through classes by time, type, difficulty, music genre, or your favorite instructor to narrow down the incredible amount of available options. Peloton is constantly adding new content with numerous live classes daily that are uploaded to the ever-growing library of on-demand videos. The vast majority of content is the studio-style workouts, and the instructors are truly top-notch, providing motivation, energy, and tips while you ride. The classes range from 10-90 minutes in length, with the majority of them falling in the 20-45 minute range, and they always include a short warm-up and cool-down that sandwiches the meat of the workout itself. They include all of the typical ride types, with HIIT, endurance, rhythm, speed, bike boot camp, tabata, hills, and many more. There are also a number of scenic rides that give you something to look at while you pedal, and some are guided by instructors that are a lot like the studio workouts with a beautiful backdrop. No matter the workout you choose, the production quality is high and the resolution on the screen is the best of all the models we tested.
Peloton's studio cycling workouts are based on cadence and resistance, and those stats are displayed on the screen so you can easily follow along with the class and instructor's prompts. Resistance can be controlled manually by turning the knob, but the Bike+ also features Auto-Follow that changes the resistance based on the class you're following. This is a cool feature that allows you to focus more on the ride and get even more immersed in the chosen workout. Additionally, the screen displays other data like power output, a timeline showing elapsed and remaining time, heart rate and heart rate zones (if using a connected monitor), and the music playing. There is also a leaderboard for those who like to see how they stack up against other riders whether you're in a live or on-demand class, and it can be hidden if you're not the competitive type. Peloton has a huge community, and if you have friends who are using it, you can give them high-fives or even video chat with them during workouts using the camera integrated into the screen. Of course, Peloton keeps track of your rides and data, plus you can also choose to sync your rides to Strava or Fitbit, and the Bike+ is also compatible with the Apple Watch (though Apple Watch is not supported on the original Bike).
Peloton has also been adding to their library of off-the-bike workouts, and there's no shortage of non-cycling exercises to choose from. This is really where the upgraded rotating screen comes in to play, as you can turn and tilt it to face your workout space no matter where it is in relation to the bike. The off-bike workouts include everything from HIIT, Barre, pilates, strength, boxing, running, walking, stretching, and even meditation. This really increases the versatility of the Bike+, making it great for much more than just cycling.
The Bike+ is undoubtedly a comfortable bike. With a 297 lbs weight limit and a large range of comfort adjustments, it should be suitable for most users. Like most high-end spin bikes, it has a performance-oriented design that lends itself well to tackling the studio-style workouts that Peloton is known for. The bike's adjustability, however, allows the user to set it up however they like to match their comfort preferences.
Peloton claims a large recommended user height range of 4'11" to 6'4". This is achieved with 14-inches of seat height adjustment along with 4-inches of fore/aft adjustability. Changes to seat height and position are quick and easy with numbered markings that make it easy to find and identify your perfect fit. This comes in handy when multiple people are sharing one bike and frequent changes are made to the seat's position. At the front of the bike, the handlebar also features 6-inches of height adjustability, although it does not have the ability to move fore/aft the way some other models do. There is plenty of range to find your ideal handlebar height, and you can alter your distance from the handlebar using the seat's fore/aft adjustability. A low step-over height of just 18.5-inches makes it easy to get on and off the bike. We measured the Q-factor as well, the horizontal distance between the crankarms where the pedals attach, and it was 180mm, or 7-inches. This is a little bit wider than a traditional road bike, but not quite as wide as some other models which are up to 203mm. We think this Q-factor hits a good middle ground and should feel pretty normal to most riders.
Peloton has the touchpoints of the Bike+ pretty well dialed. The seat is typical of studio-style spin bikes with a fairly slim and performance-oriented shape and an ergonomic pressure relief channel. While it is very well suited to the type of workouts that Peloton offers, it may feel a bit narrow for those who are accustomed to a more supportive platform. The large coated bullhorn style handlebar offers plenty of hand placement options whether you're seated or jamming on the pedals out of the saddle. The Bike+ comes with Delta-compatible clip-in pedals that require cycling shoes with a three-bolt pattern. You can upgrade your purchase of the Bike+ with various packages that include cycling shoes, or according to the website, you can chat with their customer service team to arrange for different pedal options.
Among the models we tested with a touchscreen, we feel the Bike+ has the best of the bunch. At 23.8-inches diagonal, the anti-reflective HD screen is quite large and provides a view that almost makes you feel like you're in the studio with the instructors. This screen is a couple of inches larger than the one found on the original Peloton Bike and all of the other bikes we tested, plus it has been upgraded with the ability to rotate a full 360-degrees. So, not only can you tilt it to get the ideal angle for viewing while you ride, but you can also orient it in any direction for following along with the variety of off-the-bike workouts on the Peloton app. The screen itself has very little glare, excellent color, and awesome picture quality. Touch sensitivity is also fantastic, and navigating the app to find the ride or workout you like is straightforward and intuitive. A power button on the back of the screen allows you to turn the bike off when not in use, and two large buttons on the side of the screen make it easy to control the speaker volume, even while riding.
Like the original Peloton Bike, the Bike+ has a knob below the handlebar to manually adjust the 100 levels of resistance. Turning it clockwise increases the resistance and vice versa. The knob also functions as a brake, and pressing down on it will bring the flywheel and pedals to a stop. Unlike the original Peloton Bike, the Bike+ also features an Auto-Follow option, and when selected, the bike automatically makes changes to the resistance to follow the instructor's cues.
The Bike+ comes with a number of useful features that help to enhance the user experience. Considering the price, however, we think it would be nice if it came with some more extras. Instead, Peloton sells a number of Bike+ packages, Starter, Select, and Ultimate, that include more bells and whistles for an additional fee. On its own, the Bike+ isn't quite as feature-packed as some of its lower-priced competition, but that doesn't mean it's not one of the best exercise bikes on the market.
One of the primary features that sets the Bike+ apart from the original Peloton Bike is the upgraded touchscreen. We went over the screen itself in more detail already, but the real highlight is the ability to swivel it 360-degrees in addition to adjusting the angle. This allows you to view the screen from whatever angle you like while you follow along to any of the off-the-bike workouts like strength training and yoga. Additionally, they gave it Bluetooth 5.0 connectivity, a USB-C port to keep your devices charged while you exercise, and added Apple GymKit integration so you can sync with your Apple Watch to keep track of your workouts and training metrics. The Bike+ also has an Auto-Follow option, and the bike can automatically change resistance based on the program you're following. The screen/console also has upgraded speakers with two 2-channel front-facing speakers and two 2-channel rear-facing woofers that put out some pretty impressive sound. Lastly, it has an 8-megapixel camera with a privacy cover that can be used for video chats with friends (a feature that only works if you're following each other and taking the same class at the same time).
Moving on from the screen, the bike features a huge range of fit adjustments to suit riders of varying sizes. It has independent levelers at all four corners to keep it steady, as well as transport wheels integrated into the front stabilizer. There are two bottle holders at the front of the bike below the handlebar to keep fluids at arm's reach, and a plastic bracket behind the seat to hold small hand weights (weights are not included with the Basic package but they do come with the upgrade packages). The price of the Bike+ includes delivery and assembly, assembly is not included with the original Bike, so you can be sure that it is done right. And, last but not least, the bike's seamless integration with the Peloton app and everything that entails.
Setup and Portability
While the Bike+ undoubtedly commands a high asking price, it does include professional delivery and assembly. When you purchase your bike through Peloton, you will be given available delivery dates and asked to choose one that best fits your schedule. In our case, this was several weeks after we placed the order, but that may vary depending on your location and proximity to one of their distribution hubs. Regardless, they will contact you prior to your delivery date to provide you with an estimated delivery time. In preparation for the bike's delivery, you need to clear a spot where you'd like the bike to be assembled. The delivery team will transport the bike to that spot, which is great because it is quite heavy, and assemble it for you. While it isn't particularly difficult to put this type of bike together yourself, it's nice that Peloton does it for you, and you can be sure that it is done correctly and everything works properly from the get-go. It doesn't get much easier than that.
Due to the fact that the Bike+ has a heavy flywheel and a steel frame, it weighs in right around 140 lbs. This heavy weight makes it an impressively sturdy bike, but it also means that it's a bear to move up or down a flight of stairs. Thankfully, the integrated transport wheels on the front stabilizer make it fairly easy to roll around on firm surfaces, but realistically, this is the type of bike you'll want to set up in your dedicated workout space and leave it there. It has a fairly small footprint at 22-inches wide x 48-inches long, although when you consider the weight bracket and screen, the bike is 59-inches in length with a maximum height of 59-inches. It takes up about the same amount of space as similar exercise bikes, and while it won't disappear in any room, its sleek design looks good and may even be a desirable addition to some people's homes. In fact, you can even scan a QR code on the Peloton website to virtually see the bike's size and appearance in your home.
Should You Buy the Peloton Bike+?
For anyone seeking the pinnacle of the at-home studio cycling experience, the Bike+ is hard to beat. Yes, it is quite expensive, but that price gets you an excellent and sleek-looking bike, an impressive swiveling touchscreen, free delivery and assembly, and top-notch integration with the outstanding Peloton app. In a market full of imitators, there is still only one Peloton, and while testing, we learned there's a reason for its popularity, and that's because it's really, really good.
What Other Exercise Bikes Should You Consider?
If you're sold on the Peloton experience but don't want to spend as much as the Bike+, the original Peloton Bike is another option that costs significantly less. Structurally, the bike is nearly identical, but it has a slightly smaller screen that flips but does not swivel, it does not have auto-resistance, but it works with the Peloton app which is the cornerstone of the experience. The MYX II Plus is another interesting option that comes with a set of weights, mats, and extras to build a small home gym, and it costs a fair bit less than the Bike+. The MYX bike isn't quite as sleek, but it works well and integrates with the studio-focused OpenFit app through the large swiveling touchscreen for Peloton-esque workouts. If you can't imagine spending that much, the Schwinn IC4 ditches the screen, but it works with apps like Peloton through your own device, and it costs a lot less.
— Jeremy Benson
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