A spin bike is an excellent way for you to stay active at home. Even when you’re doing things like watching TV or listening to music, you can burn some calories and keep the blood flowing through your muscles.
While spin bikes are known to wear down quickly over time, the AC Performance Plus by Schwinn is an exception to that rule. In this review, we’ll cover everything you need to know about the Schwinn AC Performance Plus, as well as its positives and negatives.
Schwinn: An Industry Leader
Schwinn Bikes was founded in 1898 by the German-born engineer Ignaz Schwinn. Since then, the company kept growing until it became the biggest bike manufacturer throughout the 20th century. The company originated in Chicago, but its current headquarters are in Vancouver and Washington.
Schwinn spin bikes are known for their durability. You can rely on their products for years, and you won’t be disappointed. Not to mention, their after-sales services are excellent. The company provides long-term warranty coverage on all of its bikes.
Schwinn is always seeking to use the newest technologies in their models. Their top priority is to provide customers with a great user experience and less need for maintenance.
What Is the Schwinn AC Performance Plus?
The AC Performance Plus is one of Schwinn’s midrange models that provides the user with a long lifetime and excellent performance.
The AC abbreviation stands for "Authentic Cycling" since they're intended to give cyclists an authentic, outdoor-like cycling experience. This is what the whole bike series promises to deliver, using unique parts that mimic the outdoor biking experience. The outdoor feel is made possible with the blue carbon drive system, but more on that later.
Schwinn AC Performance Plus Review
Without further ado, let’s explore the features of the Schwinn AC Performance Plus in full detail and see if it’s worth the hype that’s been going around ever since its release. Below, we’ll cover each and every feature and give you our hands-on experience using it.
Schwinn Carbon Blue Belt Drive
The Schwinn exercise bike flaunts a carbon blue belt drive system that gives you the feeling of outdoor cycling without actually having to use a chain drive.
It was designed by Gates and consists of a belt with carbon fibre reinforcements and teeth to maximize durability and give a realistic biking experience. Moreover, the drive system is designed in a way that minimizes the need for regular maintenance.
The bike is pretty quiet; you’ll hardly hear any noise coming from it. Even if someone is sleeping in the room, they won’t be disturbed during your workout sessions. You also don’t have to worry about annoying your neighbours downstairs since this bike doesn’t produce any vibrations. You can also place it over a rubber mat for extra stability.
Alternatively, you can opt for the more budget-friendly version of the bike that comes with a conventional chain drive system, but it won’t provide you with the same performance and comfort level. You’ll likely start hearing some noise after using the spin bike for a while.
If noise isn’t a deal-breaker for you, you’d be fine with a chain drive system, especially if you like to listen to some music while pedalling. On the other hand, the carbon blue belt drive system is much more sophisticated and durable. We’d recommend going for the carbon blue model as it has one of the best belt drive systems we’ve encountered in a spin bike.
The Schwinn exercise bike Performance Plus features an eye-catching design that can blend into any modern decoration. Most of the bike is white, with some red and grey accents around the pedalling system and the seat. The handlebars are coloured in black.
The bike is easy to assemble. You may take a while to figure it out, but you can go back to the instructions whenever you need to. The frame and drive system should be assembled first. After that, you just need to add the stabilizer bars, handlebars, seat post, pedals, a seat slider, handlebars post seat, and handlebars slider. Also, make sure that the screws are tightly fixed.
The bike also has a Q-factor. If you don't know what the Q-factor is, it's merely the horizontal distance between the 2 pedals. 170mm is a bit wide compared to road bikes, which might feel somewhat weird to you, but you should quickly get used to it. Finally, the frame and base provide the bike with the stability it needs to prevent rocking.
Here are the dimensions and weights of the AC Performance Plus:
Maximum Load-Bearing Capacity
The AC Performance Plus has a wide range of adjustments that allow it to accommodate people between 4’11” and 6’8”, making it suitable for everyone, including kids.
The Schwinn exercise bike gives you two degrees of adjustments: horizontal and vertical positioning. Horizontal adjustments are made using a micro-adjuster that lets you change the seat and handlebars' positioning until you place them in a suitable position.
On the other hand, the vertical positioning has some restrictions as it relies on pre-set holes and knobs. The distance between every 2 consecutive holes is anywhere from ½ " to 1". You just need to get as close as you can to the most comfortable position.
The Schwinn AC Performance Plus is equipped with a dual-density saddle that allows you to exercise for extended periods without feeling cramped. We're aware that uncomfortable saddles are a significant problem for spin bikes since nobody likes to exercise while feeling uncomfortable, but this bike's saddle is made of premium materials.
Nevertheless, some people may still find this seat a bit uncomfortable. As we’ve mentioned, most spin bikes don’t have comfortable seats. Fortunately, the AC Performance Plus seat is removable, allowing you to easily replace the default seat with another third-party one for extra comfort.
What we like about this seat is that it allows you to adjust its position. Try to change your position until you find the most comfortable posture for you. If you’re too close or far away from the handlebars or pedals, you’ll expose your body to strain and discomfort. All you have to do is turn the dials and select the suitable heights that make you more comfortable.
The AC Performance Plus doesn’t require a vast amount of space for storage –– you need an area of 51 x 21 inches to store it. It won’t likely fit in a wardrobe, but you can just keep it next to a wall. You don’t have to worry about rust since it’s made of rust-resistant materials, too.
The Schwinn indoor cycle can be moved around easily thanks to the 2 transport wheels at the front. Just try to move it on hard surfaces –– it isn't that heavy as it's mostly made of aluminium, making it even easier for you to move.
The Performance Plus handlebars have thick paddings that provide you with a solid and comfortable grip. They’re made of soft materials to minimize stress on your hands and arms but hard enough to give you the stability you need.
One of the best things about the Performance Plus handlebars is that they're fully adjustable, allowing you to get the most comfortable positioning for you. Several grips give you the option to choose the one that feels better for you.
That’s not everything; the handlebars are designed in a way that lets you place a tablet or other medium-sized gadgets between them. This allows you to watch movies and listen to music while working out. We’d have loved it if the bike came with a built-in monitor, but the handlebars make up for it.
You also get two water bottle holders. They aren’t the deep-drawn ones, but rather simple cut-outs that can fit 2 standard water bottles. We like this design since you don’t have to keep sliding the bottle in and out all the time.
The AC Performance Plus features double link pedals with SPD and toe-clip combination, giving your feet a solid grip on the pedals. The cleats' presence makes it easier for you to pedal faster, and the Schwinn Performance pedals are equipped with 2 cages for use with sports shoes.
Some bikes come with frames prone to rust, which can be problematic in the long term.
Thankfully, the AC Performance plus boasts a sturdy, rust-free aluminium frame that provides the bike with a high rigidity and comfort level. It's also worth noting that the frame is made by GIANT, a global leader in this field.
Additionally, the seat sliders and posts are also made of aluminium to prevent corrosion wear.
The frame has a maximum load-bearing capacity of 300 lbs, which is more than enough for most users. Similar models in this class also have the same load-carrying capacity.
A spin bike's flywheel isn't only an essential part of the bike's brake system but also of the bike as a whole. It's one thing that people pay a great deal of attention to when choosing an indoor spin bike.
This is mainly because heavier flywheels tend to provide a smooth feel due to the momentum generated from spinning it. As a rule of thumb, most indoor spin bikes have a flywheel that weighs anywhere from 10 to 60 lbs. The AC Performance has a 37-lb flywheel, which is quite heavy compared to other models in the same class.
There's no physical contact between the magnetic brake and the flywheel with the Virtual Contact Resistance technology. Instead, the brake system relies on the magnetic force with the effect of 6 magnetics that distributes the braking power evenly.
This can significantly enhance the durability of the brake system and eliminate the need for maintenance, making it last longer than traditional ones.
The resistance is adjustable, allowing you to include variations in your workouts. By changing the distance between the magnets and the flywheel, the braking will either decrease or increase. Moving closer to the flywheel will generate more friction with it, which makes pedalling more challenging.
As your spinning improves, you can simply increase resistance by turning the knob until you feel that you can pedal at a moderate speed. You can also set the resistance at its highest if your main focus is to build muscles in your legs.
However, the levels aren’t marked, so you won’t be able to determine how much resistance you’ve set. This may make it harder for you to set the same resistance level that you’ve set on your last workout, but most of the time, you’ll be able to select the appropriate resistance level by simply feeling how resistive the pedals are.
Overall, we’re impressed with the brake system of this bike. It’s definitely one of its strongest points that make it stand out from the crowd.
Cleaning up this Schwinn indoor cycle is pretty straightforward. You can use a slightly damp cloth to wipe the frame, handlebars, and pedals. However, some bike areas tend to accumulate dust and dirt over time, especially if you don't clean it that much. Nevertheless, you can prevent that by regularly cleaning the bike or covering it with a blanket when it's not in use.
The Schwinn AC Performance Plus warranty is specific to each part of the bike. For example, the frame is covered for 10 years, while mechanical parts are covered for 2 years. As for labour, Schwinn covers it for one year, in addition to 6 months of coverage on wear items.
Frankly speaking, the Schwinn AC Performance feels so robust that we doubt you'd even need warranty service for it. Nevertheless, you still get a warranty just for your peace of mind. Schwinn offers some of the most prolonged warranty periods than other manufacturers, and the AC Performance Plus is no exception.
If you want to monitor your progress, you can optionally go for the Schwinn Cadence Pro console since it’s compatible with the company’s AC bike series.
It gives you all the stats you need to check your progress, including RPM, heart rate, distance, training time, and calories burned. The backlit LCD display is quite large and easy to read. It also supports Wireless Ant+ technology.
Other worthy alternatives include the MPower Echelon 2 and the MPower Echelon 2 Upgrade Power Consoles.
The Schwinn AC Performance Plus has a pretty high customer satisfaction rate. Many people praised its sturdiness, flywheel, and adjustability, while other people complained about dirt accumulation in tight areas and the lack of a built-in monitor. Nevertheless, most of the customers are quite happy with it.
Rust-free aluminium frame
Excellent brake system with adjustable resistance and zero maintenance
Long warranty coverage periods
300 lbs load-bearing capacity
Double link pedals with cages
Comfortable dual-density saddle
Has 2 water bottle holders
Compatible with monitoring consoles
Easy to move and store
Doesn’t come with a built-in monitor
Prone to dust collection in tight areas
Can’t determine the resistance level
What Is the Best Spin Bike in Australia?
There are so many great spin bikes in Australia, and the Schwinn AC Performance Plus spin bike has proven to be one of them. Here are some of the other options you have in Australia:
Sole SB700 Spin Bike
SportsArt G510 Indoor Cycle
Schwinn IC3 Indoor Cycling Bike
Schwinn IC Classic Spin Bike
York Fitness C415 Exercise Bike
Octane Airdyne ADX Air Bike
Get the Schwinn AC Performance Plus
Think the Schwinn AC Performance Plus is the right spin bike for you? Check it outhere.
To wrap up our Schwinn AC Performance Plus review, we’ll give you our two cents on this bike’s performance.
This bike is definitely built to last. It ticks many of the boxes when it comes to durability, strength, and adjustability. With a strong aluminium frame, a zero-maintenance magnetic braking system, and a stable base, you'll have to try so hard if you want to break this bike.
We also love the pedals, and the saddle is quite comfortable. Overall, we were impressed with the AC Performance Plus build materials and performance, and we’d recommend it to anyone who needs a reliable indoor spin bike.
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