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2018 Wahoo KICKR 4 Cycling Trainer Review (Quietest Cycling Trainer) Eurobike

Today Wahoo announced the new 2018 Wahoo KICKR Trainer 4 at Eurobike and the specifications look fantastic.

2018 Wahoo KICKR 4 Cycling Trainer Review Eurobike

Back in March we wrote an article on some of the Wahoo KICKR Trainer Rumors and with the release of the new 2018 Wahoo KICKR later this month, we were anxious to see what if any rumors came true.

Our Wahoo KICKR Rumor list included

  • Quieter Trainer
  • Weight Reduction
  • More Accurate
  • No Need For Calibration

REVIEW

2018 Wahoo KICKR 4 Cycling Trainer Review

Here is our mini review of the 2018 Wahoo KICKR 4 and what you might expect to get.  From our observations, there are 2 key improvements that were made to the KICKR including noise reduction and the addition of a heavier fly wheel.   Minor updates include additional thru axle compatibility (12×142 and 12×148 thru axle), updated handle placement to alleviate disc brake issues.

So whether you call it the KICKR 2018 Edition or the KICKR 4 or 2018 Wahoo KICKR, it’s the best version yet.

Wahoo KICKR 2018 Edition Noise Level

One of the biggest complaints driving sales towards other trainers had to do with the noise level of the KICKR.  While the 2017 KICKR was more quiet than previous versions, it still had a bit of a high pitched hum.  All things being equal, many people opted for the Tax NEO simply because it was quieter.

This year Tacx might be in for a bit of a bother, because the team at Wahoo have indeed made the trainer much more quiet and in fact appear to unseat the Tacx Neo, whose trainer noise level was considered to be one of the most quiet.

Wahoo transitioned the trainer from using a timing belt to a V-belt which has reduced overall trainer noise and makes the trainer much more quiet.  Beyond the KICKR, Wahoo also released it’s little brother called the KICKR Core.

Wahoo KICKR 4 Weight Reduction

Believe it or not, while the KICKR 4 weighs the same as it’s predecessor, namely the 2017 Wahoo KICKR or KICKR Version 3, Wahoo engineers have actually managed add a significantly heavier flywheel 16 pounds vs 12.5 pounds.  So while the trainer doesn’t weigh less, it has a much more substantial flywheel, which translates to a better road feel.  The theory is with a 16-pound flywheel, the KICKR will create a more realistic indoor-riding experience.

For those that thought the trainer was too heavy to lug around, it is certainly a beast.

Wahoo KICKR 2018 Accuracy and Calibration

From all the research have done, both the Accuracy and Calibration haven’t changed much if any for 2018.  You are still required to calibrate the KICKR trainer and the accuracy is still +/-2%

Other KICKR Updates

2018 Wahoo KICKR 4 Cycling Trainer Review Handle

The new KICKR comes with a different handle position.  The handle was repositioned to help accommodate bikes with disc brakes.

2018 Wahoo KICKR 4 Cycling Trainer Review Thru Axle

Additional thru axle compatibility was added to accommodate 12×142 and 12×148 thru axles as well as the standard 130/135mm quick release.

 

 

Product Specs

2018 Wahoo KICKR 4 Product Specifications

KICKR Version: 4

  • Dimensions (legs open): 20″L x 28″W x 17″H
  • Dimensions (legs closed): 20″L x 9″W x 17″H
  • Weight: 47 lb
  • Rear Wheel Size: 24″ RD / 24″ MTB / 650c RD / 26″ MTB / 700c RD / 650b MTB / 29″ MTB
  • Hub Types: 130/135mm QR, 12×142, and 12×148 Thru Axle – Adapters included
  • Drivetrain: Out of Box: 11 Speed Cassette – Requires Purchase/Installation of New Cassette: 8/9/10 Speed SRAM/Shimano
  • KICKR CLIMB Compatible: Yes
  • KICKR HEADWIND Compatible: Yes
  • Cadence: RPM Cadence Sensor included
  • Front Wheel Block: Not needed
  • Resistance Type: Electromagnetic
  • Accuracy: + / – 2%
  • Wireless Software Updates: Yes
  • 3rd Party Power Meter Support: Yes
  • Connectivity: ANT+, ANT+ FE-C, and Bluetooth
  • Devices: iOS, Android, PC (Mac and Windows)
  • Max User Weight: 250 lb
  • Power Requirements: 100-240V~1.5A 50-60 Hz
  • Flywheel Weight: 16 lb
  • Maximum Simulated Grade: 20%
  • Maximum Power Output: 2200W

Q&A

Who is more quiet, the Tacx NEO or KICKR?

It’s pretty close, but I would give the thumbs up to the new KICKR

What is the difference in weight between the 2017 KICKR and the 2018 Flywheels?

3.5 lbs.  The 2017 KICKR’s flywheel is 12.5 lbs and the 2018 KICKR is 16 lbs

Bottom Line

Final Thoughts – Wahoo KICKR 2018 Version

For those who were on the fence trying to decide between the KICKR and the Tacx NEO, I think you will now agree that the 2018 Wahoo KICKR is the top dog for Trainers this year.  For those looking to save a bit of money, the KICKR Core is a great trainer for $300 less.

Wahoo KICKR Core Trainer Review

Top Indoor Electric Bike Trainers | 2018

Wahoo KICKR Climb Review 2018

Tacx NEO vs Wahoo KICKR Trainer (2018 Comparison)

About The Author

Tom Crandall

Tom has been writing about photography, cycling, running and fitness since 1988, covering everything from the product reviews to the latest in fitness trends. Tom is the Editor-in-chief of GearMashers.com, 10KstepsDaily.com, EndTheTrendNow.com, AntiqueOutings.com, MiniatureReview.blogspot.com and a few other publications, he began racing in college while getting an Information Resource Management degree at George Mason University. Based in the photography and cycling-crazed city of Austin, Texas, with his wife Kathleen and pug Olaf, Tom enjoys running, walking or riding most every day.

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