Produced in the Netherlands, the Tacx Vortex Smart bike trainer offers a smart cycling experience with its wide range of compatible software and app options. In addition to working with Tacx training apps and software for phones, tablets and computers, the Vortex Smart works with ANT+ FE-C language apps such as Zwift, Trainer Road, Kinomap and Bkool, which you can use to adjust resistance, check your speed and view your cadence.
It is also one of the quieter trainers on the market. It measures 7.5 x 19.9 x 23.6 inches and weighs 24.86 pounds, making it one of the lighter and smaller options. This cycling trainer also folds down and requires little storage room. In fact, in its folded state, it’s one of the most compact models available.
Be aware that this indoor bike stand needs to be plugged in to an outlet in order to access the smart trainer capabilities. This can be difficult if you have limited outlets or are wanting to use this model outside before a race. Although it isn't meant to be used while unplugged, the Tacx Vortex Smart trainer can function as a regular fluid bike trainer without the smart capabilities when it isn't connected to an outlet.
Since it runs electronically, it has a max resistance of 950 watts and uses an electric motor brake. As you ride the, Tacx program increases resistance up to 7 percent in order to simulate riding up hills, but it does not offer a downhill drive.
If your ride is a mountain bike, this indoor bike trainer works with thru axles as well as quick-release skewers. Tacx suggests you purchase a dedicated trainer tire, and it offers four separate sizes to choose from. The trainer accommodates 26-inch, 27-inch, 28-inch, 29-inch and 700c wheel sizes on its cylinder.
Warranties are only available through the distributor you purchase your Vortex from, not through Tacx itself, so warranty offers will vary. If you are tech savvy or you just want to have more accessories for your bike, Tacx offers several additional attachments. Plus, as an added perk, a front wheel riser comes included in the box.
With its additional smart abilities and lightweight frame, the Tacx Vortex Smart is one of the most tech savvy trainers on the market. However, if you plan on using your trainer outside, this might not be the best option for you since it requires an outlet to access its smart capabilities.