Black Friday: Our guide to the best indoor bikes on the market - Keiser M3i and M3i Lite

23.11.2020

Keiser

Overview

Legendary series of bikes made by the Keiser corporation, based in Fresno California. The bikes are actually manufactured by the engineers that design them, hence the legendary design is backed up by legendary build quality.

The range includes the M3i/M3i Lite and the standard M3, with the major difference being the bluetooth connectivity of the i model. For this review we are concentrating only on bluetooth models so the standard M3 will make an appearance in our non-connected bike reviews coming soon.

Positives

As a home bike they are the very good choice due to their size and footprint. They are one of the smallest and lightest indoor cycles on the marketplace, even though they can support a body weight of up to 150 kilos. This makes them ideal for moving around the house and occupying small areas of bedrooms and hallways when a lot of us struggle to find space.

The M3i Lite has the smaller M3-style TT fixed handlebars, as opposed to the much larger adjustable bars on the M3i. This makes the Lite version ideal for households with slightly limited space as the bike as a whole is far smaller and easier to move around.  On the entire M-series range, the ride is super quiet and super comfortable due to a fully-adjustable geometric frame and drive train driven by a flat poly-V belt, not a chain or toothed belt.

The resistance method on the Keiser M3 bike is also outstanding, being based on a handlebar-sited gear lever operating 24 gears that are displayed on the handlebar monitor along with RPM, calories, power, distance and also heart rate if you are wearing a compatible heart rate transmitter.

In 2006, Keiser was the first manufacturer to add a power meter to their bikes, allowing riders to gauge the amount of power they were using at certain combinations of cadence and resistance. This allowed for more specific training and profiling while riding your indoor cycle, in line with cycle technology being used on the roads.

In 2014, the top-of-the-range M-series bike - the M3i - was launched with its groundbreaking BLE bluetooth 4.0, which allows for data from the bike to be transmitted to applications and media to enhance your training and rides.

Negatives

The negatives on the M series bikes are few and far between, however it seems that the competition has followed in the footsteps of Keiser and, in some areas, overtaken them.

The lack of ANT+ connectivity and the inability to to link directly to peloton or zwift - the two most popular media platforms - is a major drawback for some. However, with applications such as CicloZone connecting seamlessly to the M3i bike, alternatives are coming along to solve that issue.

Verdict

In our opinion you will never be disappointed with your Keiser M series bike purchase. It fully justifies its title as the most successful indoor cycle ever. Perfect for the general indoor cyclist, this bike will satisfy everyone but the most ardent cycle trainer.

Simply due to the handlebar configuration and cheaper price, the M3i Lite is the stand-out model from the range and gets our Star Bike award for 2020. However, from youngsters to OAPs, any M series bike is a great choice.

M3i 8/10

M3i Lite 10/10

You may also like

The performance enhancing indoor cycling app

Get the most out of your home cycling workout with CicloZone - the personalised indoor bike training app that makes sure every minute counts

start today