Peloton Bike Review (2022): Does It Live Up to the Hype?

man riding peloton bike

If you're in the market for a high-quality stationary bike for your home gym, then you probably have heard the name Peloton. The Peloton Bike is considered one of the best in-home exercise bikes on the market and often takes the top spot even against popular exercise bike brands like Echelon. With thousands of five-star customer reviews, 27 instructors from various backgrounds, a top-of-the-line HD Bluetooth-connected touchscreen, and a history of delivering diverse workout content, it’s easy to see how the Peloton Bike has landed in millions of living rooms around the world.

However, just because it's uber-popular doesn't mean it's the right fit for everyone. That's why it's important to research home exercise equipment before you make a purchase. This gives you a chance to see if it fits your budget, needs, and preferences. In collaboration with the ACTIVE Reviews Team, I'm here to break down the pros, cons, favorite features, and pricing of this sought-after workout bike. As someone who's used their Peloton for close to five years, I have plenty of knowledge to help you decide if it's the right bike for you.

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A Quick Look at the Peloton Bike

Peloton hit the at-home exercise scene in 2012 when John Foley brought instructor-led cycling classes and bikes to the home. By 2013, Peloton began manufacturing its trademark product—the Peloton Bike. Since then, the company has released the Peloton Tread in 2018 and the Peloton Bike+ in 2020, but they continue to manufacture and sell the original Peloton Bike.

The original Peloton Bike is still a fan favorite even after the release of the Peloton Bike+. More affordable than the Peloton Bike+, it’s often on sale and provides riders with a similar experience (compact footprint, large touchscreen, and access to thousands of classes with membership). But with a sticker price of $1,195+, a $250 fee for shipping, delivery, and set-up the Peloton Bike isn’t exactly budget-friendly. Add on the monthly membership fee of $39—soon to be $44—and you’ll see why we encourage you to do your research before investing in this high-end bike.

But despite its high cost, there’s no denying that the Peloton Bike is a quality piece of workout equipment that’s comfortable, easy to use, sturdy, and provides one of the most comprehensive programming platforms of any exercise bike.

peloton bike

BUY: The Peloton Bike

The Peloton Bike

SPECS

  • Dimensions: 59" L x 53" H x 23" W, 4' x 2' footprint
  • Weight: 135 lbs.
  • Frame: Welded steel, ED and powder coated
  • Max user weight: 297 lbs.
  • Pedal Style: Delta-compatible aluminum pedals
  • Resistance: Resistance knob for manual control, up to 100 levels of manually controlled magnetic resistance
  • Display: 21.5" 10-point touchscreen
  • Console Connectivity: Bluetooth 4.0 connectivity, WiFi, ANT+ wireless
  • Programming: Live and on-demand classes with paid subscription, $39/month
  • Key Features: Individual profiles for household access, scenic rides curated to music, thousands of live and on-demand classes, ergonomically-designed handlebars and seat, small footprint
  • Warranty: 12-month limited warranty on parts and labor, plus 5-year coverage on the frame

Dimensions

Ideal for those limited on space, the Peloton Bike only requires a 4-feet by 2-feet area. If you purchase the bike mat (which is helpful in stabilizing the bike and protecting your floors, but not necessary), you'll need a space that can accommodate 36 inches by 72 inches (the size of the mat). The bike itself has a smaller footprint at 59 inches long, 53 inches high, and 23 inches wide, which is smaller than a standard yoga mat.

Weight

At 135 pounds, the Peloton is heavier than several competitor bikes like the Echelon GT+, which weighs 88 pounds, and even the company's premium bike, the Echelon EX-8s, which weighs 124 pounds.

Frame

Constructed with welded steel and powder coated for a nice matte black finish, the Peloton Bike is built to last. With five years of use, I can attest to the sturdiness and high-quality finish on the frame. I’m definitely not easy on equipment, yet my Peloton Bike still looks brand new.

Pedal Style

The Peloton Bike uses delta-compatible aluminum pedals that are compatible with three-hole cleats. You can purchase clip shoes from Peloton or use your own if they work with the pedals. Some people choose to swap out the pedals to match their cycling shoes.

Resistance

The wide range of resistance levels is one notable feature that sets the Peloton Bike apart from its competitors. Starting at zero and going up to 100, the Peloton Bike comes with plenty of levels of magnetic resistance, allowing you to amp up workout intensity as much or as little as you’d like. Simply turn the adjustable dial in the middle of the frame to match your desired resistance.

Console Connectivity

Peloton set the standard for connectivity with its large, 21.5-inch HD touchscreen. This allows you to enjoy an interactive workout experience without having to connect to a smartphone or tablet. Connect your bike to live and on-demand classes with Bluetooth 4.0 connectivity, WiFi, and ANT+ wireless connection. And for those early-morning workouts when you want to avoid disturbing your roommates or family, feel free to connect your wireless headphones to the console. The console also tracks and displays key metrics like time, distance, calories burned, resistance level, cadence, speed, total output, watts, and more.

Programming

The programming is one of the bike's most-loved features because it offers such a wide variety, setting it apart from other bikes in this at-home workout space. An All-Access membership allows you to choose from instructor-led classes, the 'Just Ride' option, or scenic routes (my favorite program!). The 'Just Ride' program is a great option for those who want to watch Netflix, stream a podcast on their tablet or phone, or just listen to their own tunes while cycling.

I’ve found that the scenic routes really mimic the sensation of riding outdoors on my bike, but with the added option to tour Hawaii, Italy, San Francisco, and Greece, among many other locations. Routes vary by time and distance, with timed rides ranging from 10 minutes to 60 minutes and distance rides of 5 km or 10 km. Both time and distance rides are set to music that Peloton changes frequently.

I also really love the trademark instructor-led classes which have made Peloton such a huge success. Recently, they added Peloton Lanebreak, a gamified workout inspired by music. If you have any motion sickness, make sure to check out the scenic rides and Lanebreak ahead of time—one member of my family felt a little queasy after both programs. In addition to cycling programs, Peloton has instructor-led classes for bootcamp, cardio, yoga, strength training, boxing, meditation, Pilates, barre, and walking.

Warranty

The Peloton Bike comes with a 12-month limited warranty that covers the HD touchscreen, pedals, and components like the belt, seat post, and handlebars. This is a pretty standard warranty length as far as stationary bikes go.

The limited warranty also applies to labor. Peloton protects the frame against defects in workmanship and materials for five years from the date of delivery, but you must be the original owner to submit a warranty claim should you experience any defects or damage.

PROS

  • Offers a 30-day, commitment-free home trial; allows you to test run the bike and try various workout classes; if the bike or classes aren't to your liking, Peloton will pick the bike up and refund your order
  • Able to try out a Peloton bike in person; plenty of locations in different cities across the country that offer a test experience
  • Comprehensive fitness app offers on-demand and live classes for cycling, bootcamp, cardio, yoga, strength training, boxing, meditation, Pilates, barre, and walking
  • Large, supportive community of riders accessible through live and on-demand classes
  • Bike is very quiet when in use
  • Steel frame and solid construction make for a secure and sturdy ride; also increases its durability, able to outlast many years of use
  • Ergonomic and adjustable handlebars allow for proper posture during workouts, also creates a more comfortable ride
  • Personalized emails sent out weekly with classes curated to your preferences

CONS

  • More expensive than other home exercise bikes
  • Requires a monthly subscription for instructor-led classes and scenic rides
  • Due to its high demand, delivery can take several weeks to months, depending on where you live
  • Delivery and set-up costs an $250 fee
  • Screen doesn't rotate for off-bike classes or workouts, but the Peloton Bike+ (costs about $500 more) does

BUY: Peloton Bike

Final Thoughts on the Peloton Bike

There's no question that the Peloton Bike is one of the best indoor exercise bikes on the market. We love how it offers a whisper-quiet ride, 100 levels of magnetic resistance, smooth transitions between adjustments, motivation and support through a large fitness community, top instructors, and rich content covering a broad spectrum of listening preferences, fitness levels, and riding needs.

However, we have to admit that there are comparable stationary bikes available that aren’t quite as expensive. And if you don’t anticipate taking full advantage of the variety of workout classes offered, then the monthly subscription fee won’t be worth it. So if cost or consistent use is your main concern of yours, we'd recommend checking out other, more affordable options.

But, if you don't have any qualms about spending a little more (and paying for the monthly subscription fee), we think this is an exceptional exercise bike to use. All in all, the Peloton Bike gets a thumbs up from the ACTIVE Reviews Team.

FAQs About the Peloton Bike

Is the Peloton Bike worth it?

Whether or not the Peloton Bike is worth it depends on your personal budget and fitness needs. The initial investment will cost about $1,500 between the base price of the bike and the shipping and delivery fee. You also have the ongoing monthly subscription fee, which costs $39 per month. So, at a minimum, you can expect to pay $468 per year for the All-Access Membership.

While Peloton does offer financing for those who qualify, this price point might not be realistic for some budgets. So be sure to check out other options like the Echelon and Bowflex if you're not able to invest in the Peloton.

If these costs don’t bother you, and you plan on working out on the bike consistently, making full use of the workout classes, then you may find the Peloton is worth the higher price. The construction and design are exceptional, and the diverse, expansive library of workout classes is a top feature.

Will the Peloton Bike give me a good workout?

The answer to that question depends on how intensely you work out on the bike. It's up to you to either follow along with the classes, or to amp up the intensity, but if you do either one of those (or both), then you’re in for a high-intensity cardio session. You can also pair the bike with other smart home gym equipment for a more well-rounded workout.

Feel free to adjust the resistance for a customized session, ranging from steady-state cardio to high-intensity-interval training (HIIT). Classes are categorized based on type and fitness level, so you can find the workout that best fits your abilities. Choose from low-impact, beginner, power zone, climb, intervals, and heart rate zone classes.

Can I watch Netflix on Peloton?

Unfortunately, you aren't able to watch Netflix on a Peloton. The HD touchscreen that comes with the Peloton Bike only streams Peloton content. However, you can position a computer, tablet, or phone on a table in front of your bike and choose the 'Just Ride' program and watch Netflix. I've watched several movies and shows while pounding out 20+ mile rides. The 'Just Ride' option displays all of your metrics like speed, resistance, calories, time, and cadence, without video or audio.

What's included in the All-Access membership, and do I have to join to use the Peloton Bike?

The Peloton All-Access membership is the monthly subscription that comes downloaded onto your bike's screen, but you have to pay $39 per month to use its services. It’s also required with your purchase of the Peloton bike. This membership gives you unlimited access to live streaming, on-demand classes, scenic rides, challenges, and real-time performance tracking. Plus, you can create profiles for everyone in your home.

Keep in mind that this membership is different from the Peloton App membership, which anyone can access. The App membership is $12.99 per month and doesn't require a Peloton product to use. So if you're looking to invest in a more affordable stationary bike, you can still stream and follow along with the Peloton workout classes through the Peloton app. This is a great option for those on a tighter budget.

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