Schwinn AC Power Review: Unveiling Durability and Value for Money

In the world of indoor cycling, Schwinn’s reputation as an industry innovator remains unchallenged, and their latest creation, the Schwinn AC Power, is a testament to their commitment to excellence.

As we delve into this product review, we’ll explore the AC Power from a user’s perspective, examining its design, technology, and performance to provide you with a comprehensive understanding of its capabilities.

The Schwinn AC Power isn’t just another exercise bike; it’s a seamless blend of cutting-edge features (at least compared to older Schwinn indoor bikes) and thoughtful engineering.

Its user-friendly design makes it suitable for pretty much cyclists of all levels, from novices taking their first spin to elite riders seeking a rigorous training experience.

Beyond its functionality, this indoor bike is a design marvel, with sleek aesthetics and a stable compact footprint that seamlessly fits into any fitness space, making it a standout addition to your home gym.

My review won’t merely scratch the surface – I’ll take you deep into the core of the Schwinn AC Power, sharing quantitative measurements of its performance in various categories.

Additionally, I’ll draw comparisons with other indoor cycling products to help you make an informed decision about the best fit for your specific needs.

The Schwinn AC Power may come with a price tag of $2,999, but as we dissect its features and innovations, you’ll discover why this investment might worth it.

Join me on this journey as I uncover the nuances of the Schwinn AC Power indoor cycling bike. But first, let’s explore how it’s evolved from previous Schwinn models, its unique design choices, and the impact it has on your fitness journey beyond what the manufacturer claims.

How Schwinn AC Power Evolved From Older Models

Schwinn Spin Bikes Comparison
NameVerdictMonitorPedalsWheelResistanceExtras
Schwinn IC2 Indoor CycleOverpricedDistance, Time, Calories, not backlitCage-integrated pedalsFixedFriction, Chain TransmissionNone
Schwinn IC3 Indoor CycleOverpricedRPM, heart rate, distance, time, calories, not backlitSPD clipless and cageFixedFriction, Poly-V Belt TransmissionNone
Schwinn IC4 Indoor CycleGreat ValueBluetooth, Resistance, RPM, distance, time, HR, CaloriesSPD clipless and cageFixedMagnetic, Poly-V Belt TransmissionBluetooth & Dumbbell holder
AC Sport Indoor Cycling Bike w/ Chain DriveOverpricedMpower Echelon2 and Cadence Pro Compatible (not included)SPD clipless and cageFixedMagnetic, Chain TransmissionAluminum frame
AC Sport Indoor Cycling Bike w/ Carbon DriveOverpricedMpower Echelon2 and Cadence Pro Compatible (not included)SPD clipless and cageFixedMagnetic, Carbon Belt TransmissionAluminum frame & Toothed Transmission
Schwinn AC Performance Plus w/ Chin DriveOverpricedMPower Echelon Compatible (not included)SPD clipless and cageFree (Smart Release System)Magnetic, Chain TransmissionAluminum frame
Schwinn AC Performance Plus w/ Carbon DriveOverpricedMPower Echelon Compatible (not included)SPD clipless and cageFree (Smart Release System)Magnetic, Carbon Belt TransmissionAluminum frame & Toothed Transmission
Schwinn AC Power w/ Carbon DriveGood ValueMPower Echelon 2G Comes IncludedSPD clipless and cageFree (Smart Release System)Magnetic, Carbon Belt TransmissionAluminum frame & Toothed Transmission

Schwinn Fitness has been a well-known name in this space for years, and their evolution from previous models to the Schwinn AC Power is important to know when making your purchase decision. Let’s take a closer look at the Schwinn AC Power and how it has improved and addressed issues compared to its predecessors:

Improved Technology and Features: The Schwinn AC Power comes with a host of features that were previously lacking in some of its earlier models. For instance, it includes MPower Echelon 2G, a feature that was previously not included with some of the other bikes. This technology allows for better tracking of your performance metrics and provides valuable data for your workouts.

Enhanced Transmission: One of the major improvements is the transition from chain and poly-v belt transmissions to a carbon belt transmission. Carbon belts are known for their power efficiency, smooth and quiet operation, reducing maintenance and noise concerns. This can significantly improve your overall cycling experience, making it more enjoyable and distraction-free.

Frame and Toothed Transmission: The Schwinn AC Power features an aluminum frame and a toothed transmission system. The aluminum frame adds durability and stability to the bike while reducing its overall weight. The toothed transmission system is better than Schwinn IC series because it helps ensure consistent power delivery, resulting in smoother and more efficient rides.

Value for Money: Unlike some previous models that were deemed overpriced, the Schwinn AC Power offers a better value for the features and quality it provides. With included features like MPower Echelon 2G, Bluetooth, and the Smart Release System, you’re getting a more comprehensive and cost-effective indoor cycling experience.

Connectivity and Holder: The inclusion of Bluetooth connectivity is a welcome addition, allowing you to connect your devices for a more interactive and data-driven workout. Additionally, the dumbbell holder is a thoughtful feature for those who want to incorporate strength training into their cycling routine.

Smart Release System: The Smart Release System is a notable safety feature. It allows for a free-wheeling experience, so when you stop pedaling, the flywheel stops smoothly, preventing any sudden jolts or accidents.

In summary, the Schwinn AC Power has evolved significantly from its predecessors, addressing previous issues and offering substantial improvements in terms of technology, transmission, frame, and overall value for money.

If you’re looking for a reliable and feature-rich indoor cycling bike, especially for your cycling studio, the Schwinn AC Power is a strong contender worth considering in your purchase decision. But if you want to spend a bit less and still get a decent quality Schwinn bike, I would recommend the Schwinn IC4. It’s not for commercial use and doesn’t have an advanced console but it has what it takes to provide a nice indoor cycling workout at home.

Comparable Alternatives to Consider

Schwinn’s reputation in the fitness industry is strong, but at $3,000 in 2023, it may not be the best value for all users. It features an outdated manual magnetic resistance system, which may not offer the latest smart features and technology found in newer models.

Here is my comparison of the Schwinn AC Power indoor cycling bike to the Tacx Neo Bike Smart Trainer, Johnny G Indoor Cycle, and the Echelon Smart EX5 Bike in 2023:

  • 1. Tacx Neo Bike Smart Trainer:

The Tacx Neo Bike is a high-end option for a more advanced and interactive indoor cycling experience. It offers electronically adjustable resistance, simulating gradient changes automatically. With racing-style handlebars, resistance shifters, and multiple crank length options, it’s ideal for users seeking an immersive experience, especially on virtual platforms like Zwift. It even simulates pebble roads on Zwift for a unique riding experience

  • 2. Johnny G Indoor Cycle:

The Johnny G Indoor Cycle is designed for commercial use and comes with a smart electronic magnetic resistance system. This system can automatically adjust during workouts when connected to popular fitness apps. The inclusion of drop grips on the handlebars offers multiple riding positions for added comfort during extended training sessions.

  • 3. Echelon Smart EX5 Bike:

For budget-conscious users who still want a smart indoor cycling experience, the Echelon Smart EX5 Bike, priced at $899, is a compelling choice. It features an intelligent resistance system that adapts automatically during workouts on various platforms. Additional features like a USB charging port and an adjustable tablet holder enhance its versatility for both beginners and experienced cyclists.

In summary, the Tacx Neo Bike Smart Trainer is an excellent choice for those seeking an advanced and immersive indoor cycling experience. The Johnny G Indoor Cycle is ideal for commercial use and dynamic resistance adjustments. If you’re budget-conscious, the Echelon Smart EX5 Bike provides good value. While the Schwinn AC Power has been a reliable choice in the past, in 2023, there are more technologically advanced options in the same price range that may offer better value for your investment.

Last update was on: July 21, 2024 4:46 pm

Schwinn AC Power Indoor Bike Review and Specs:

  • Width: 21”
  • Length: 41″
  • Height: 49”
  • Bike Weight: 120 Pounds
  • Shipping Weight: 130 Pounds
  • Max User Weight: 264 Pounds
  • Tablet Holder: Yes
  • Bottle Holders: Yes
  • Power Source: Self-Powered
  • Transportation Wheels

Offering a water bottle holder built into ergonomic handlebars and a horizontally and vertically adjustable saddle and handlebars, the Schwinn AC Power is built to provide the perfect workout based on you and your needs.

The Schwinn AC Power has everything you could ever need or want in an indoor spin bike, and this luxurious and reliable bike provides accurate, powerful, and consistent exercise every time you use it.

Echelon 2G Digital Monitor with Self-Generator:

  • The monitor that comes with the AC Power spin bike by Schwinn is referred to as 4iiii an 2G.
  • Currently (in 2021), it is the best monitor that Schwinn has to offer for its spin bikes.
  • It is backlit and powers through rider’s effort on the bike so you don’t need to plug in the bike.
  • There is no preset workouts on the monitor but it has Bluetooth and ANT+ connectivity and it is compatible with most indoor cycling applications.
  • The bike tracks the current, total and average of watt/power, RPM/cadence, speed, time, calories, HR (if connect with a wireless chest strap), and distance.
  • The riding data synchs wirelessly from the 4iii cranks to the monitor so it is accurate and there is no cable for additional maintenance.
  • You can also use a USB drive to download your workouts and upload it to your device.

Schwinn’s indoor spin bikes usually do not come with digital monitors, instead requiring you to purchase a digital monitor separately and attach it to the bike. The Schwinn AC Power marks a departure from this tradition with a top-tier digital monitor built into the bike. The Echelon 2G Digital Monitor is self-generating, meaning it powers on as soon as you pedal your bike. The Schwinn AC Power Echelon 2G offers detailed and accurate metrics, including power, RPM, heart rate, pulse, calories burned, and synchronizing with the included 4iiii power meter to track the energy and effort you exude with every pedal.

The 4iiii power meter partners with the technology of the Echelon for a powerful and instant spin ride that helps you accurately measure your crank-based power more closely than any other device on the market. This type of technology is used in international, professional, and Olympian cycling teams, so you can trust that your bike will be working at the highest level of power and feedback.

This bike offers both Bluetooth or ANT+ connectivity, so tracking and saving cycle data to apps like Zwift, Peloton, or any other leaderboard system is incredibly easy. You can track heart rate through the console and connected pulse sensors built into the handlebar, another helpful tool when it comes to monitoring your performance throughout the ride. The thick handlebars mean you could mount phones or tablets for easy entertainment while riding, so you can turn on an episode of your favorite show or movie or follow along to a spin class for maximum power and convenience during your rides. Thanks to the included console and power meter, this bike is tech savvy and totally connected, so you can ride with any cycling app on the market and get immediate results.

Morse Taper Pedals and Q-Factor:

  • Aluminum alloy non-slip pedals have toe cages and buckles for additional security
  • On one side of the pedals there are elements to clip-in your SPD/MTB shoes
  • The Schwinn AC Power Q-factor is 168mm

The pedals included on the Schwinn AC Power bike are professional grade, Double Link pedals with SPD and toe-clip compatibility, meaning your pedals can accommodate both cycling cleats and regular athletic shoes. The double-sided component means you can clip into either side of the pedal, which makes starting from a stationary position a lot easier. Since the flywheel is free and allows for casting, it’s also easy to lock in and lock out when you need to take a pedalling break. SPD compatibility is extremely handy for people using indoor spin bikes to train for outdoor riding, but it also helps anyone doing a more intense spin workout stay securely fastened to the bike as you lift up or back down to the cycle.

The Schwinn AC Power is also compatible with Schwin’s Triple Link pedals. These separately sold pedals accommodate Look, Delta, and SPD style cleats, all simulating an outdoor riding experience from the comfort of your own individual bike. They also convert to traditional athletic shoe compatible for maximum comfort and ease of use no matter what level of cyclist you are. These pedals do need to be bought separately, which can be an added expense, but if you’re looking to upgrade your spin bike it’s nice that these are automatically compatible with the machine.

The Q-factor on the Schwinn AC Power spin bike is measured at 168mm, the perfect q factor for comfortable and ergonomic riding. For many spin bike riders, this type of narrower stance is preferred because it creates a smoothly and ergonomically driven line down between the feet and knees. This reduces strain on your muscles and joints and allows you to transfer power more easily with each of your pedal strokes, creating an authentic yet gentle cycling experience.

Schwinn AC Power Spin Bike Flywheel:

  • 44 Pounds inertia-weighted free flywheel with high-quality sealed bearings
  • Schwinn Smart Release System (when you stop peddling the flywheel keeps turning)
  • Magnetic resistance works with belt transmission to provide smooth and quiet riding experience

The Schwinn AC Power features a revolutionary Schwinn Smart Release System that’s designed with a freewheeling, inertia-weighted flywheel that allows your flywheel to turn independent of your pedalling. This magnetic-powered flywheel boasts six individual magnets that work together to create resistance that slows down the turn of the bike wheel and forces you to exert more energy as you pedal.

The Schwinn AC Power also offers magnetic contactless braking, which will prevent wear and tear to your flywheel caused by friction over the years. The location of the Schwinn AC Power’s flywheel is also beneficial as it promotes forward driving exercise, making it easy to stand or sit while you pedal, a good feature for rides who prefer spin workouts or classes as opposed to simple cycle riding.

The Schwinn AC Power also uses the top-tier Carbon Blue belt drivetrain, a cogged and toothed poly-v belt which is top of the line for the spin industry and features a standard smooth drive. Combining this smooth belt drive with a magnetic flywheel means the Schwinn AC Power offers a smooth, quiet, and ergonomic riding experience for the user. The flywheel is protected with a red bumper and powder coated aluminum finish, making it safe and protective to be used.

Schwinn AC Power Indoor Bike Resistance:

  • The Schwinn AC Power indoor spin bike features a strong variable magnetic resistance system.
  • The resistance knob adjusts on the fly before or during rides, allowing riders to train with their desired resistance levels at all times.
  • This bike’s resistance adjust manually (not electronically) which means applications can’t adjust the resistance.

The Schwinn AC Power spin bike uses high-quality, six-magnet magnetic technology for the AC Power flywheel, allowing users to adjust infinitely depending on your resistance and desires.

The resistance knob is centrally located on the AC Power’s frame, meaning it’s accessible and available immediately during a ride. The AC Power’s magnetic flywheel means that switching between resistance levels during your ride is a simple and smooth process that doesn’t interrupt your regular workout.

Four Way Adjustable Handlebars and Seat:

  • Four way adjustable, multi-positional handlebars
  • Four way adjustable padded saddle for perfect bike setup
  • Lightweight aluminium seat and handlebars post for quick and easy adjustment

The Schwinn AC Power’s handlebars feature comfortable and padded ergonomic design and are able to be adjusted thanks to lever and knob adjustments that slide both vertically and laterally. This functionality means that different riders can choose various handlebar positions depending on their needs and unique size.

The main console sits right in the middle of the handlebar, making it extremely accessible as you ride. The handlebars are thick and sturdy, so you can prop up a tablet or phone to follow along with a workout or as an entertainment source. The handlebars offer multi position use, pulse tracking, and easy access to entertainment and digital monitor functions, and the wide range of adjustment makes them useful for people of many different types.

The Schwinn AC Power’s saddle features identical adjustability to the handlebars, letting users adjust both the vertical and horizontal positioning so riders of many different heights and body types can use it comfortably. The saddle is similar to ones you would find on a typical road cycle which will make it a comfortable and padded fit for most riders.

Carbon Blue Belt Drivetrain:

  • This indoor cycle comes with toothed belt and toothed crank and flywheel pulley system.
  • It is the best type of transmission for indoor cycling bikes because it deliver more power and has less maintenance.
  • In terms of noise, it makes a little more noise than flat poly-v belts because it has teeth but it is much quieter than the chains.

Just like many other popular Schwinn bikes, the Schwinn AC Power incorporates the classic Carbon Blue Belt Drivetrain. This transmission system is high-performing and low maintenance, providing an ideal ride for every user. Belt systems in general require significantly less effort to maintain than chain drives, but the Carbon Blue belt drive takes this a step further by eliminating constant lubrication, tightening, and rust-prevention. These belts stay in top shape for a long time without needing a lot of work. The toothed timing belt drive provides a superior drive experience, including the tight fit to the gears and the smooth overall ride. There’s no stretching, jerking, or slipping with a Carbon Blue belt drive, making it a premium transmission option available on the marketplace.

Pedaling this bike is both quiet and powerful experience that creates a strong drive and tough resistance that will challenge you during any workout. The low-noise component of these belt drives is the best thing about the innovative toothed Carbon Blue belt: when combined with the AC Power’s magnetic resistance system this bike rides softly and silently, meaning you can ride this bike anywhere, anytime without worrying about creating a racket or waking up your household. The gear ratio also contributes to your smooth and quiet ride: the ease of adjustment with the knob-based resistance system contributes to the overall silence of your ride and eliminates the loud cranking and creaking that some older spin bikes or outdoor chain bike models are known for.

Schwinn AC Power Spin Bike Price and Warranty:

  • The Schwinn AC Power spin bike is currently priced at $2,999
  • The Schwinn AC Power spin warranty depends on the manufacturer you purchase it from but you can expect most issues to be covered within 2 years after purchase
  • Generally, the brand offers 10-years for the frame, 2 years for the parts, and 1-year labor for its commercial quality spin bikes.
  • For warranty questions or parts replacement, you can contact the Schwinn manufacturers through their website

Though at first the price of the Schwinn AC Power feels far too high, after factoring in the major positives of this bike, such as powerful SPD pedals and the innovative free flywheel and belt drive, the Schwinn AC Power quickly becomes more and more of a bargain, making it quite a worthwhile price for the high-end features that it offers.

The AC power is absolutely a well-crafted piece of machinery with many good components that will satisfy every need you could have with an indoor spin bike.

Schwinn AC Power Assembly and Shipping:

  • Shipped in a single box that weighs about 130 lbs, with partial assembly required
  • Takes about ten days to arrive depending on your location
  • Includes all tools needed for assembly for Schwinn AC Power

The assembly required for the Schwinn AC Power spin bike is not particularly demanding, and if you follow the instructions included in the package you can have your Schwinn AC Power put together in as little as 20 to 30 minutes. Most of the parts, such as the flywheel and the transmission, come pre-assembled and separately packed.

The only parts that you need assemble are; the bike front and rear feet, seat, handlebars, pedals, and the monitor. Putting these larger parts together will make up most of the construction process of the Schwinn AC Power.

Schwinn AC Power Spin Bike Pros:

Ergonomic and Intuitive:

The Schwinn AC Power indoor bike is a highly attractive combination of both a very sleek build and one that is well-constructed and able to stand up to the needs of any spin cyclist. The Schwinn AC Power is flexible and adaptive to your needs, a high-end spin bike which can be customized to your individual needs with every use. Combine this with the Schwinn AC Power’s snug and compact design and relative ease of use and the Schwinn AC Power fits perfectly into any home and any workout schedule.

Efficient Carbon Drivetrain:

The combination of the innovative Carbon Blue drivetrain and the Smart Release magnetic resistance flywheel means that the Schwinn AC Power offers a nearly silent and utterly smooth riding experience. Smooth no-contact braking and the belt drive instead of a chain makes for an fluid ride every time. The magnetic flywheel also offers infinitely adjustable and uniquely different levels of resistance, another popular example of how the Schwinn AC Power allows its rider to customize their workout so that it can better fit their needs.

SPD Pedals and Perfect Q Factor:

The Schwinn AC Power is a testament to solid design, with sturdy Morse Taper pedals that are built to last the test of time. SPD is a huge component of spin and cycling, so having pedals that are compatible with cleats or other elements of the SPD pedaling system is a huge win. You can easily replace the pedals with the Schwinn upgrades if you’re really looking to elevate your spin game, but either way these pedals, plus the perfectly ergonomic Q-factor, are great examples of top caliber design.

Schwinn AC Power Spin Bike Cons:

Expensive Price Tag:

The price tag is the biggest and the main issue on this top-tier bike. Unfortunately, a boutique level and commercial quality bike comes with a commercial level price tag. $2,999 is no cheap price, but we think that even with the high price tag you’ll find the benefits you gain to be so worth it that the price will feel worthwhile in no time at all.

Manually Adjustable Resistance:

One thing I’ve noticed from using the Schwinn AC Power is that it comes with manually adjustable resistance, unlike some other models like the Johnny G, Tacx Neo, or Echelon EX5, which have motorized features. This means that when you’re connecting it to cool indoor cycling apps like Zwift, Peloton, or Kinomap, you won’t get that automatic intensity adjustment, and that’s a bit of a bummer. Also, the resistance adjustment is done with this older knob, which can be a bit clunky and interrupt the flow of your workout, especially when you’re used to the convenience of just pushing a button or using handlebar gear shifters on more modern bikes.

9.8Expert Score
Good quality but expensive

In wrapping up my thoughts on the Schwinn AC Power indoor spin bike, I have to say that it’s been a pretty sweet ride. While it’s true that this bike comes with a bit of a hefty price tag, the performance it offers is nothing short of impressive. The new drive belt and magnetic drive system combine to deliver a powerful spin that’ll seriously challenge you. And hey, who doesn’t love an integrated digital monitor that makes tracking your workouts a breeze?

This indoor cycling bike has quickly become a favorite in my spin routine, and it seems like it’d fit perfectly in any gym, studio, or personal workout space. What’s awesome is that it’s built to last. The frame is adjustable, and the whole thing is just super sturdy, making it a wise long-term investment. Whether you’re a newbie or a seasoned spinner, the Schwinn AC Power has a lot to offer in terms of its drive, pedals, flywheel, digital monitor, and power meter – all of which add up to a top-notch cycling experience.

So, here’s the deal: if you’re setting up a commercial facility, this bike is a no-brainer. It can handle all sorts of workouts and riders without breaking a sweat. But when it comes to personal use, I’ve got to be real with you. That initial price can hit your wallet hard. However, the value you get in return is pretty darn impressive. If indoor cycling is your thing and you’re ready to go all-in, this bike is a smart choice. But if you’re budget-conscious, there are more wallet-friendly smart options like Johnny G and Tacx Neo bike are out there.

Performance
10
Resistance
9.5
Sturdy
10
Adjustability
10
Display
9.5

Sayed
Sayed

Hi there, I'm Sayed Hamed Hosseiny, the founder and one of the authors at yourexercisebike.com (YEB). I am a former indoor cycling instructor and personal trainer with nearly 20 years of experience. With a passion for indoor cycling, I have spent years designing cycling parts, repairing, and importing exercise bikes. All the articles, tips, guides, reviews, and comparisons on YourExerciseBike.com (YEB) reflect my personal opinion and expertise in the field. I'm excited to share my knowledge with fellow exercise bike enthusiasts and help people find reliable indoor cycling information and the best exercise bike for their needs. If you have any questions or suggestion, you can contact me at sayed@yourexercisebike.com.

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