First Look: Wattbike Atom Loaded With Iconic American Climb Simulations

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Courtesy Wattbike

Earlier this fall, indoor performance cycling company Wattbike finally brought the Atom, its most advanced cycling trainer yet, to U.S. riders. To complement the U.S. launch, Wattbike has just released simulated rides of eight iconic road climbs from New York to Hawaii in its native training app, the Wattbike Hub. The thought of hopping on a home trainer to tackle a favorite road climb, or prepare for an upcoming cycling trip is endlessly alluring. Here’s our first take on the release.

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To start, the Atom was first released as a smart bike trainer in 2017. It pairs magnetic resistance with Bluetooth and ANT+ connectivity to communicate with device apps. The recent advent of smart trainers like Peloton, Wahoo, and Wattbike—a leader in smart trainers since launching its first product in 2008 as a collaboration with British Cycling—integrate technology capable of broadcasting a rider’s wattage output. Added-value capabilities, including fluid resistance, have led to more fascinating indoor cycling experiences all around.

The climb simulations engineered for Wattbike’s Hub are a collaborative effort with VeloViewer, an analytical cycling data company whose tools are used by professional teams to prepare for the world stage of racing. Wattbike and VeloViewer map out a profile of these climbing routes as precisely as exists in the industry. Match VeloViewer’s route analytics with Wattbike’s Real Ride Feel technology, which CEO Richard Baker says replicate riding outside better than any other product on the market, and what you have is a stationary bike that will take you up 4,000 feet of elevation to the top of Colorado’s Independence Pass the same way it would unfold on your next trip—except for the cold air, altitude, and stray rock to dodge.

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The first set of U.S. climbing simulations to hit the Wattbike Hub in February were not chosen lightly. “We wanted climbs that were iconic, bucket-list rides,” says Baker.

Along with Independence Pass, the other simulated U.S. climbs include Mount Washington, New Hampshire; Whiteface Mountain, New York; Mount Evans, Colorado; Pikes Peak, Colorado; Mount Lemmon, Arizona; Hurricane Ridge, Washington; and Kaloko Drive, Hawaii.

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The beauty of the Wattbike model is also in the fine print: in comparison to competitors such as Peloton, Wattbike’s native app environment does not require a monthly subscription. The Hub includes a range of workouts and tests built around the brand’s identity of high-performance training. The Atom also has the ability to integrate with third-party apps like Sufferfest, or Zwift (the increasingly popular app that turns indoor cycling into a first-person, social-gaming experience).

“We don’t want a subscription to be a barrier to using our product,” adds Baker, in reference to third-party app integration. “With the launch of the Atom we always wanted to be agnostic with our software. What we have done in the meantime is add more value to our app.”

Wattbike has plans to release additional U.S. climb simulations to the Hub with the partnership of Veloviewer in the near future. The Wattbike Atom retails for $2,599, available directly through Wattbike.com.

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