By Paul Norman
Elite’s new Sterzo Smart adds another level of realism to your indoor rides, letting you steer as you ride, to take your own lines through corners, and ride around rather than through competitors. And Zwift is the first app to add steering support to its indoor training environment.
The Sterzo Smart has a pivoting section to its front wheel support and sensors that track the angle of your wheel down to 0.1 degrees. That info is transmitted wirelessly to Zwift via Bluetooth or ANT+, Zwift taking the data and using it to input steering to its simulation.
That means that you can practice moving through a bunch and drafting other riders, saving energy to then steer round them and get ahead.
Activation is simple: you just put your front wheel on the plate and turn your bars to wake the Sterzo Smart. LEDs on the device show its status. Elite says that the Sterzo Smart will take tyres up to 56mm wide, so you can ride your gravel bike or MTB, not just a road bike.
Meanwhile, Zwift’s set-up screen adds the Sterzo Smart to its list of accessories to pair up before you start to ride.
Elite says that the Sterzo Smart has been designed for stability, with a large plate and anti-slip rubber feet, letting you rotate your bars by up to 34 degrees left or right. It’s powered by three AAA batteries, which it says will last for around 500 hours.
Popping a Sterzo Smart under your front wheel is surprisingly inexpensive too. It retails at £74.99 - a bit of a bargain compared with the £450 price tag of Wahoo’s Kickr Climb.
Although steering only currently works with the Sterzo Smart, Zwift says that it plans to add compatibility with other steering hardware in future. And it’s currently just available on Zwift’s Repack Ridge singletrack route, although it says that it’s working on expanding steering to all the roads in its Watopia training environment.
Elite also makes a non-smart Sterzo. You can still rotate your bars, but without data collection, although a smartphone on the bars would potentially allow you to send the same data to Zwift too.
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