Ten turbo trainers from £150 to £2,250
Our pick of the best turbo trainers to suit all budgets
Come on, admit it, you've been tempted recently to cancel a ride or training session because outside the comfort and warmth of your home it's been lashing down with rain or is just horribly dark? That's where turbo trainers come in, allowing you to still get some saddle time in when you can't, or don't want to, face the outdoors.
If you read our guide to buying a turbo trainer, you might be interested and in the market to buy one this winter. They are a great investment even for the less serious cyclists among us, and the great thing is there's probably a trainer to match every budget. From the entry level but thoroughly decent trainers to the all-singing all-dancing fully equipped trainers that cost the same as a new bike, there's something for everyone.
Here's 10 that we've picked starting at £150 and rising all the way to £2,250.
Minoura B60-R Trainer £149.99
Minoura's affordable B60-R turbo is well designed with a sturdy frame. The resistance unit is magnetic and uses a 0.6kg dual steel disc flywheel with seven levels of resistance to allow you to tailor the intensity of your session. The remote adjustment lever can be clamped to the handlebars so you can make adjustments without having to get off the bike. www.zyro.co.uk
Elite Nova Trainer £179.99
The Nova Force has replaced Elite's previously best-selling Nova Mag and has been given an improved Mag Force drive unit. This provides more resistance and the heavier flywheel is said to deliver a smoother, more realistic, ride feel. It is supplied with adaptors to fit any wheel size (even a 29er mountain bikei) and has five levels of resistance. www.madison.co.uk
Tacx Satori High Power Turbo Trainer £249.99
A very popular choice at this price point is the Tacx Satori. It's a magnetic turbo with a neodynium magnet and an extra-large steel flywheel, and it offers 10 levels of resistance, adjustable via a quick release lever. Like most trainers the Satori folds flat when not in use and rather neatly a front wheel support is included which doubles as a carry handle for the trainer. www.fisheroutdoor.co.uk
CycleOps Fluid 2 indoor trainer £265
The mid-range Fluid 2 is CycleOps' most affordable fluid resistance trainer. Fluid resistance units give a very smooth feel when you're cycling - as close as you'll get to the real thing. There's no manual adjustment of the resistance, instead the resistance builds with the intensity of your pedalling. The idea is that you have a unlimited range of resistance. Read our review.
Kurt Kinetic Road Machine turbo trainer £299.99
Kurt Kinetic isn't the biggest name in the world of turbos but this one ticks most of the boxes. It's ultra-sturdy and the fluid resistance uses silicone in the chamber which isn't affected by heat so you have consistent resistance no matter the air temperature. Read our review.
Elite Qubo HydroMag Digital Trainer £334.99
The brand new Qubo uses a frame that provides a wider platform with adjustable feet for both improved stability, handy when doing intervals, and a lower bike height so you don't need so many books under teh front wheel. It has a larger ElastoGel rollder and the fluid resistance unit provides better simulation of riding on the real road, and the rollers automatically calibrate to the rear wheel. A head unit displays speed, distance, time and watts.. www.madison.co.uk
Bkool Turbo Trainer £399.99
Trainers from Spanish firm Bkool have a unique concept that attempts to make training on your own more interesting by using online route sharing and real world video training rides. Hook the trainer up to your computer and you can watch real-world video from around the world while you train with more videos being uploaded all the time. One really neat feature is the ability to download a friend's training ride and ride against them as a virtual partner. And when you do venture out on the real roads, you can record it with your GPS device and upload that route to the trainer. More details.
Lemond Revolution trainer £399.99
The Lemond differs from other turbo trainers in that rather than the rear wheel being clamp into the frame, it is removed. Your bike fits to an axle and cassette setup. It uses a belt drive to transmit your effort to the flywheel fan and as a result gives a very realistic feel. At 14kg it's a solid lump on the floor. Read our review.
CycleOps Indoor Cycle i100 Pro £1,150
If we were to get snowed in for the entire winter we can't imagine a more complete indoor trainer that we'd rather be stuck with. It can be fully adjusted to match the fit of your bike and you can change the saddle and pedals too. The size and weight of the frame means a very stable platform for the hardest intervals, and the 48lb flywheel gives a very precise and wide range of resistance control. More info.
Famously designed with input from Sir Chris Hoy, the Wattbike is a staggeringly good bit of kit but its price limits it to those most seriously interested in home trainer. If you're interested in the Wattbike you'll want to know that it's one of the most advanced home trainers currently available. Smooth resistance with stacks of adjustment from the huge fan up front, and it spits out more data than you'll know what to do with. It can be plugged into your computer to thoroughly analyse each session. Read about our experiences.