Nautilus U614 Upright Exercise Bike Review
Nautilus U614 Overview
There are always going to be pieces of exercise equipment that are superior and those that are lesser. To what degree, this can vary. In the world of upright exercise bikes, for example, there can be multiple bikes from one manufacturer that can all be good, but vary in comparison to each other. On the flip side, you have those that can be consistent, but relatively below par across the board. You’ll find that the Nautilus U614 upright bike is in one of the former categories. The Nautilus upright bikes that we’ve reviewed so far (the U618 and U616) have been some of the best upright bikes that we have seen. While the Nautilus U614 doesn’t quite match up to the same sort of stellar levels that its sibling reach, it still turns out that it is worth investigating. But we’ll save our final piece for the conclusion. With all of that out of the way, let’s hop into our review of the Nautilus U614 upright bike!
One of the points that everyone starts at when looking for one of these bikes is the price that it comes with. As the last in the Nautilus lineup of upright bikes, you shall find that the Nautilus U614 costs a fair bit less than the others. It can be found for around $300, which is $400 less than the Nautilus U618 and $180 less than the Nautilus U616. It’s also fairly cheap for an upright bike in general. This does mean that it makes some sacrifices, starting with the warranties that the Nautilus U614 comes with. You still get 10 years on the frame, but you only get 1 year on the electronics, 2 years on the mechanical parts and 90 days on the labour. We never like to see warranties go down, but we still have to admit that this new warranty lineup is about what you expect from this price range. The shipping process should only take about 1-2 weeks, although this can depend on a variety of outside factors. Human error, weather and the pandemic are just a few of those factors. Once it arrives, you will find that the Nautilus U614 stationary bike is pretty easy to assemble. It has a clear instruction manual that will give step-by-step instructions that will make anyone able to put it together.
One of the highlights of these Nautilus bikes has most certainly been their monitors. Their monitors comfortably blow anything else at this price out of the water and into space. The Nautilus U614 upright bike still has a good monitor, but you will find that it might not fly as high as some of the others Nautilus puts out. The non-backlit LCD monitor is formatted with the controls and resistance setting sitting right below it. The monitor will display statistics like your time, speed, distance, RPM, resistance level, calories burned and heart rate. You can view these statistics in either metric or English measurements, which is always a nice touch. There are preprogrammed workout programs available onboard, although there are only 22 compared to the 29 available on the U618 and U616. Still, this is a heck of a lot in comparison to other bikes in this price range. You have options like Rolling Hills and Interval training, which is nice. These programs just give more variation to your workouts and are always welcome. Unlike the other Nautilus bikes, there is no Bluetooth connection to be found. You don’t get to experience those same fun connections to the Explore The World app and other data tracking apps on your phone. Unfortunate, but those connections aren’t necessary to enjoy the monitor. But overall the monitor is still quite good, especially when looking at the price.
The resistance is another of the most important features of these bikes. After all, they are what gets you fit and makes the bike a good piece of exercise equipment. The Nautilus U614 uses a magnetic resistance system with 20 different levels of resistance to pick from. Again, this is technically 5 levels less than the other Nautilus bikes, but it is still a great deal more than other bikes of this price. The high amount of levels of resistance are good because they allow for more customization during the workout, because you can get that specific level that you are looking for in any given exercise session. Combine this resistance with the belt resistance system of the Nautilus U614 and you have a quiet experience with minimal maintenance concerns. The flywheel of the Nautilus U614 upright bike weighs 13 lbs (5.9 kg), which might be a bit smaller than some wish. However, it still delivers a good challenge to all. The crank of the bike is a 1-piece one, which is not good to see. These are little more than a single piece of welded metal holding the pedals together, which is.always inferior to the 3-piece cranks, which We don’t know the specifics of the Q-Factor, which is the distance between the pedals. If it was too wide, people could get uncomfortable, while a narrow Q-Factor could do the same in addition to the injury it could cause. However, since there are no complaints about the Q-Factor, it doesn’t seem to be an issue with the Nautilus U614 upright bike.
It typically helps people to have an idea of how large a home exercise bike is when planning to purchase one. After all, nobody wants to buy a bike that is too large for their home or simply can’t be moved at all. Fortunately, that shouldn’t be an issue with the Nautilus U614 upright bike. It measures out to be 41.8 in (104 cm) long, 21.6 in (55 cm) wide and 57.6 in (146 cm) tall. It is the lightest of the Nautilus upright bikes, weighing 59 lbs (26.8 kg) and can hold a maximum weight of 300 lbs (136 kg). It has a standard steel frame that you’ll find on many bikes like this. There are floor stabilizers on the back to keep you steady on those more intense workouts. Then there are transport wheels on the front in order to allow for easier transport around the home.
We’ll finish out our examination of the Nautilus U614 cardio bike with the rest of the physical elements that it has, starting with the handlebars. They are multi-grip, which is always nice to see. They are nicely padded and you’ll find no big issues with the comfort of them. They do lack the resistance control and pulse monitors of those upper Nautilus bikes, but that is not really a surprise considering the price. Up next is the saddle. The saddle shares the same vulnerability of many different upright bikes in that it isn’t particularly comfortable. It also lacks the same sort of horizontal adjustments that the other Nautilus bikes have. These are definitely weaknesses, although the Nautilus U614 should still be able to fit anyone between the heights of 5’0″ and 6’5″ (153 – 196 cm) comfortably enough. The saddle tube is a tad thin, so you might find that you still shake around on the more intense workouts, even with the stabilizers holding the bike as a whole still. The pedals of the Nautilus U614 aren’t anything to write home about. They are simple non-slip pedals that have adjustable straps to keep your feet in place. But that’s about it. Nothing special, but they do the job. Finally, there are a few nice little bonus features that can be found here. You’ve got a water bottle holder underneath the console, MP3 speakers on the console, and even little fans on the bottom of the console. None of these are game changers, but they all contribute to the value of the Nautilus U614.
Nautilus U614 Upright Bike Pros:
- Magnetic resistance and belt drive combine to be quiet and smooth.
- 20 levels of resistance is a good number
- Bonus features like water bottle holders and speakers are nice additions
- Monitor has 22 preset programs
- Monitor can track stats in metric or English measurements
- Frame warranty is still a good 10 years
- Small footprint while retaining a solid build
- Assembly and maintenance are both nice and easy
Nautilus U614 Upright Bike Cons:
- Parts and labour warranties are shorter than other Nautilus bikes
- Saddle is only vertically adjustable and not so comfortable
- Monitor is not backlit
- Monitor doesn’t have any Bluetooth connections
- 1-piece crank is always inferior
While the Nautilus U614 upright bike might not stand up to the absurd levels of quality that its more advanced siblings do, it still offers a pretty good deal for anyone with a lower budget. It still offers excellent resistance and a good monitor for the price. One of the biggest hits definitely comes in the form of the reduced warranties. You never really want to see that, but it kind of makes sense for the price. So if you are looking for a quality bike, but are absolutely set on a budget of no higher than $300, the Nautilus U614 upright bike makes an extremely strong case for your attention.