By Symon Lewis
Spanish brand BKool has been in the turbo game for a while now, although the company's bread and butter is actually in software. The BKool Smart Air is its first direct-drive turbo and hasn't had the easiest of transitions in the market with the landing date of the product on the continuous push back.
However, its new direct-drive Smart Air turbo has landed and has some big claims.
The first thing to notice is the unit's unique stance, which is said to be designed to look like the bike is complete with a rear wheel attached. Out of all the turbo's I've seen it is one of the better looking models, with the bike seemingly hanging from the cassette.
This means though that the new turbo from BKool is a bit of a lump and is claimed to weight 24kg. The supporting legs don't fold away either, meaning you'll need a dedicated space to house the Smart Air, although that is the case with most smart trainers today.
In terms of performance though the "game changing" aspect of the unit comes in ride quality and ride stats.
The unit itself allows for six degrees of side-to-side movement to aid real road feel and claims to be one of the quietest turbos on the market, although at the time of seeing the unit we didn't test for sound and BKool couldn't provide any claim data on this.
Impressively, BKool claims the Smart Air can achieve simulated speed up to 70kph and up to a 25 per cent slope. The unit can also measure up to 3000 watts, which has always been a bit of a game of one-upmanship between turbo brands, but this certainly trumps the contest by near 800 watts.
This is all based around a 10kg flywheel, which is there or there abouts with other brands on the market. Wahoo being around 7kg.
The BKool Smart Air is compatible with third party apps like Zwift and comes with everything you need use either rim or disc brake bikes using different axle standards. No cassette is supplied.
These are all massive stats and for a trainer priced at £1099.
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