Currently available for £429.00 from John Lewis
Kettler Cycle M Exercise Bike Review
With an impressive history of producing some of the best selling bikes of yesteryear such as the iconic Golf P, Kettler has traditionally been a revered name in the world of home fitness. The company has been in transition for a while but has come back to the table with a new range of offerings so we were keen to take a look at what’s available and how it stacks up against the competition. We picked the new Kettler Cycle M, a mid-range model, to take a closer look. Here’s what we found…
As always the first thing to do is unbox and assemble the bike. The assembly process here follows what’s very much a standard pattern across most upright models in this price bracket, so is overall quite easy. That being said, the assembly instructions in the manual are entirely picture based which makes it easy to follow, right up until a little way in where you have to connect the resistance mechanism, at which point previous experience with building an upright bike comes in very handy! Also, the way that the steps are ordered means that putting this bike together is definitely a two-person job. Once assembled though, the Cycle M looks good and gives the impression of a well made bike.
Having built the bike the next thing is to get it set up to suit the rider. The Cycle M allows for the seat to be adjusted both horizontally and vertically and the handlebars are also adjustable by tilting towards or away from the rider. This is plenty of adjustment and means that more or less anyone that gets on this bike will be able to find a comfortable riding position.
The section of the manual dealing with the setup instructions also helpfully has an exercise chart so you can plan your workouts for the first 4 weeks. A useful thing if you’re just starting out exercising to get back into shape, less useful if you’re already a regular rider but something that many people are likely to find useful.
Being a manual magnetic bike the resistance levels are changed by turning a dial on the front post of the bike. There are 8 levels of resistance to choose from and due to the fact that as you turn the dial a cable attached to the magnets moves them close or further away from the flywheel, the resistance changes are almost instant. The downside is that because the computer doesn’t control the resistance, the workouts are limited in nature and you need to manually increase the resistance as you progress through your workout.
The display is a battery-powered single colour LCD that provides workout data including time, distance, theoretical calories burnt and heart rate. The characters aren’t the largest, neither is the display itself so if you need glasses to read, you’ll likely need them to read the display as you’re working out. There’s a built-in wireless heart rate receiver in addition to the hand pulse sensors (the strap is sold separately) and you can set a target heart rate which is useful. Exceeding the target rate will provide a visual alarm so you can keep things safe and sensible without overdoing things. There’s also a recovery pulse fitness test.
In terms of rider experience, the 6kg flywheel does a fair job of keeping things smooth, and although it is a bit light for a bike in this price bracket which is disappointing, it does deliver a smooth ride, albeit not one on a par with other models in the bracket. All this makes for an acceptable if not particularly inspiring riding experience.
The Kettler Cycle M also features sweat-resistant keys, has transport wheels to make it easier to move around and comes with an excellent 3-year warranty.
The Kettler Cycle M is a simple, easy-to-use, upright exercise bike. True to Kettler's traditions it's been put together with some thought and features generally good build quality. The real issue here however is what you get for your money, which is not a great deal and the build quality here on its own isn't anywhere near good enough to justify such a high price on a manually controlled bike. In truth, the price makes this bike very hard to recommend. If this is in your budget we'd suggest taking a look at the DKN AM-3i instead which is our bike of the month in this category and comes loaded with features.
Kettler Cycle M Specifications
- 6kg (13.2lbs) flywheel
- 8 levels of manual magnetic resistance
- LCD display
- Feedback: time, distance, calories burnt and HR
- Hear rate measurement via hand pulse sensors and wireless receiver (chest strap optional)
- Vertical seat adjustments
- Transportation wheels
- Dimensions (L x W x H): 140cm (55.1″) x 60cm (23.6″) x 60cm (23.6″)
- Max. User Weight: 110kg (242.5lbs)
- Product Weight: 29kg (63.9lbs)
- Power: self-generated
- Warranty: 3 years parts and labour
Kettler Cycle M Exercise Bike - Console / Display Unit
Currently available for £429.00 from John Lewis
Also see our Exercise Bike Comparison Table
Whilst every effort is made to give you accurate information we cannot guarantee the technical specification. Models change on a regular basis and may differ slightly from the above review. We recommend you contact the retailer if you have a question regarding technical data. Please read our Legal Disclaimer