wahoo kickr launches
Tuesday 25th January 2021
Is indoor cycling replacing outdoor rides? You'd think so with the amount of Zwifters there have been lately and we're one of them. With indoor trainers selling like hot cakes thanks to continuous lockdowns coincided with Winter, it's well timed that Wahoo's next generation KICKR bike comes with integrated buttons for steering and better connectivity via their Direct Connect accessory. Tempted?...
Wahoo is pleased to announce its new KICKR Direct Connect accessory, designed to ensure that all riders can complete virtual rides and races without worrying about signal loss. KICKR Direct Connect is the world’s only device that allows riders to create a wired connection between their modern indoor ride simulator and their home network.
The KICKR Direct Connect, available now, costs £79.99. As of today, Wahoo’s SUF Training System, TrainerRoad, FullGaz, and RGT Cycling are compatible. Other platforms are expected to become compatible in the coming months, including Zwift.
“We’re extremely proud to be the only indoor riding brand to offer our customers a way to hard-wire KICKR into their home network,” said Wahoo KICKR Product Manager Tyler Harris. “While a wireless connection works very well for most riders, those who have connectivity challenges, or those who simply cannot risk a dropout during an important race or workout will be able to ride with increased confidence and reliability by using KICKR Direct Connect.”
To create a wired connection, users will connect an ethernet cable to either their personal computer or home network router, and plug the other end into their KICKR Direct Connect, which then plugs into a port on KICKR. By wiring KICKR into their device or home networks, Wahoo is able to add a layer of security for riders whose riding environment is crowded with radio frequency (RF) signals, who regularly have problems with dropouts during their rides, or who require maximum confidence in their equipment for virtual rides and racing.
At present, the newest generation of KICKR (V5), the first choice for many indoor cyclists thanks to its class-leading ride feel and Wahoo KICKR ecosystem integration, is the only Wahoo indoor ride simulator compatible with KICKR Direct Connect.
The recently announced update to Zwift’s platform will allow KICKR BIKE riders to use thumb buttons located on the inside of the left and right brake lever hoods to utilise Futureworks steering functionality within the game.
“When we designed KICKR BIKE, we intentionally built in features we knew wouldn’t be usable at launch, but which would be huge assets to our riders once the software platforms caught up to our hardware,” said Harris. “Now that Zwift is ready to roll out steering to more users, we’re excited that KICKR BIKE will give our riders a seamless way to enjoy Zwifting, and to immerse themselves even more fully in virtual rides and races.”
KICKR BIKE steering leverages existing thumb buttons to let riders navigate around the Zwift universe. Zwift automatically detects that KICKR BIKE supports steering and introduces riders to the Futureworks steering feature. The left button steers you left and the right steers you right. The bottom auxiliary button performs a U-Turn.