Wahoo Fitness has introduced steering to Wahoo X via its RGT virtual cycling platform and a new accessory called Wahoo Kickr Steer.
As well as using the Kickr Steer, steering on RGT is controllable via Wahoo’s software and the existing Wahoo Kickr Bike.
Up until now, your position on the road when using RGT – which is part of the Wahoo X indoor training package – was automated with riders simply using their power to move around other cyclists.
“Now with RGT Steering, manoeuvring around fellow riders becomes part of the experience – adding a new level of strategy and engagement to virtual rides,” says Wahoo.
“Similar to real cycling outdoors, riders can find the sweet spot in the middle of the pack, push the pace at the front, cut a sweeping corner to gain position or pull around to mount an attack. When combined with Race Radio [a voice chat feature], riders can communicate and interact, to benefit from group dynamics.”
Wahoo says that steering offers a performance advantage, enabling riders to choose their desired line, which riders your avatar drafts and so on. It is still possible to use RGT without this functionality.
Accessing the steering function can be done in multiple ways, Wahoo saying that it wants to make it as accessible as possible. The first way is by using the shifter buttons on the Wahoo Kickr bike. Second, you can use the a and d buttons on a keyboard. Thirdly, you can steer via touchscreen buttons on a smartphone running the companion app.
Finally, as part of this launch, Wahoo is introducing the Kickr Steer. This hardware accessory mounts to your road bike bars and you put your smartphone in it.
Using tabs on either side of the mount, you then utilise the phone’s inbuilt accelerometers to control your avatar. The mount is floating and tilts down depending on which paddle you press.
This hardware accessory is for now only compatible with RGT but Wahoo tells us that it expects this technology – and therefore the accessory – to be used with other apps like Zwift in the future. This would require Zwift to build in the required software to their companion app.
Wahoo has also added a new Kickr Race Mode which “harnesses the WiFi and Direct Connect capabilities of its indoor trainers to broadcast power up to 10 times faster than standard trainers (currently 1Hz), giving riders a competitive advantage at critical race stages”.
Race Mode is available on new Kickr Smart Trainers with built-in Wi-Fi and Wahoo says it is coming to Kickr Bike soon. It is also available on previous versions of the Kickr with the use of the Kickr Direct Connect Wi-Fi adapter (£79.99).
In this mode, which is accessed via the Wahoo app, your trainer relays data to the training software of your choosing at a rate of 10 times per second as opposed to once per second.
Although this will not affect the power number which appear on the screen (which is usually either a 1-second or 3-second average) it will increase the responsiveness of your on-screen character and could help improve e-sports racing. This update is available now and we expect to see e-sports racers exploring this new functionality before the 2023 UCI Cycling Esports World Champs on February 18th.
The Wahoo Kickr Steer is priced at £89.99.
You can buy a Wahoo X annual membership and Wahoo Kickr Steer Bundle for £179.99 (which is £45 less than buying them separately).
Wahoo says that the Kickr Steer will be available at a preferential loyalty price, for a limited time, for existing Wahoo X subscribers.
We have a Kickr Steer accessory in for testing so we’ll be letting you know our full verdict soon…
Find out more from Wahoo Fitness.
Jamie has been riding bikes since a tender age but really caught the bug for racing and reviewing whilst studying towards a master's in Mechanical engineering at Swansea University. Having graduated, he decided he really quite liked working with bikes and is now a full-time addition to the road.cc team. When not writing about tech news or working on the Youtube channel, you can still find him racing local crits trying to cling on to his cat 2 licence...and missing every break going...