Echelon Smart Connect EX1 – Worth Your Money?
The Echelon EX1 exercise bike is the most affordable bike in the Echelon bike series.
It’s popular with buyers because – like the Peloton or the Nordictrack S15i bikes – it gives you the ability to participate in group spin classes in your home.
You can also ride trails all over the world.
Enjoy the scenery as it passes you by in your tablet or phone screen (using the Echelon Fit App).
This bike runs about half the price of the Peloton (but similar in monthly subscription price).
So it’s a great alternative if you’re on a budget.
Is the Echelon EX1 bike a good choice for your home? How does it really stack up to other models?
Here’s a review of what to know before you buy:
Echelon EX1 Specs:
Resistance Levels: 32
Flywheel: 33 lbs
Product Weight: 105 lbs
Bluetooth Connection: Yes
Footprint: 59″L x 23″ W x 53″ H
Warranty: 1-year Manufacturer Parts Warranty
Echelon EX1 Review – Key Benefits:
Take Streaming Spin Classes From Your Home
You can use your own tablet (or phone) along with the Echelon Fit App subscription to participate in live streaming spin classes from your bike.
Enjoy high-energy, live classes with certified cycle instructors and personal trainers – that are sent directly to your device from the Echelon studios in Tennessee. This can add a lot more enjoyment and challenge to your workouts.
Don’t want to adjust your schedule?
Not a problem.
Select from hundreds of pre-recorded, on-demand cycling classes to take as well. So you can ride on your own schedule.
There are over 30 different instructors (plus guest/celebrity instructors) to choose from. So it’s pretty easy to find an instructor that motivates you. You can follow your favorite teachers and watch all of their past and future classes.
Explore the World
Another thing you can do with the Echelon Fit App is choose from a variety of world-famous trails to ride.
You can ride the streets of Singapore or the French countryside and watch the scenery pass you by as you ride for some virtual reality-style fun. You don’t currently have this option with the Peloton bike – so it’s a nice feature to have here.
Adjustable Bike Seat
The seat on this model is standard. However you can adjust it vertically and horizontally.
Unlike the EX3 model however you cannot adjust the angle of the seat. You also can’t swap it out for your own choice of seat.
If you want to add weights to add some upper body training to your routine, there’s a handheld rack behind the seat to store your hand weights (not included with the bike).
There isn’t a “console” on this bike as you usually see on most bikes (which is one of the reasons the price is so low on these models).
Instead, you connect with your tablet or phone and use the holder on the front of the bike to hold your tablet in place. Then you can see the Echelon classes and workout stats through that.
According to the manufacturer, the Echelon EX1 bike will work with any mobile device screen.
There’s also a Bluetooth connection and charging port near where you place your tablet – which is handy.
Echelon EX1 Bike Review – Any Drawbacks?
The Echelon EX1 bike uses the original Echelon bike frame – the new EX3 model has the upgrades.
So for example, the EX3 seat adjusts using a simple lever – which is easier than the turn-knob adjust on the EX1 model. The EX3 model also upgrades to a newer motor and newer lightweight triangular tubing – which is not found on the EX1 bike.
Basically the Echelon EX1 bike is the older (and more basic) model. It doesn’t give you some of the luxuries or conveniences as higher-end bikes.
Also, the warranty on this bike is only 1 year on parts – which is a bit of a red flag. Compare this to the similar Nordictrack S15i bike – which gives you similar features – but with a much longer warranty, incline and decline with free handweights included – and it does fall short a bit.
Finally, in order to get the Echelon classes, world trails etc, you’ll need to buy a monthly subscription to the Echelon Fit app.
It will run you about $39.99 a month (again, similar to the Peloton). You can however save money on the subscription if you buy yearly or a multi-year subscription.
If you’re looking for a much cheaper alternative to the Peloton bike, then the Echelon EX1 is worth considering.
It’s a bit basic without a lot of frills. And the warranty and overall design could be better. But at this price point, it’s fairly standard.
Plus the entertainment options are excellent.
You can enjoy the group streaming spin classes, plus hundreds of on-demand classes as well. And it adds the world trail riding (which Peloton does not have).
While it does fall down a bit in terms of warranty and other training options, for this price point, it’s not bad.
Where to Buy and Save:
You can get an instant discount on the Echelon EX1 bike with discount shipping here.
Plus you can see the full bike specs, get an extended warranty and order the Echelon Fit App Subscription at the same time if you choose.