Wahoo has permanently dropped the retail price of the Kickr Core smart trainer by £150 / $300 recently in a reduction which sees the trainer decrease in price from £699 to £549. The trainer has also seen a similar drop in the USA, dropping from $899 to its new price of $599, and a €200 drop in Europe from €799 to €599.
Despite being the cheapest direct drive trainer in the Wahoo lineup and about half the price of the top-flight Kickr V6, our tech team really rates the product. Our reviewer Josh Ross gave it a 4.5 star review back in 2021 in his Kickr Core review, saying he thought it was as good as anything else on the market and it does the important and key things really well.
We also still recommend it as one of the best smart trainers and Wahoo does a great job of supporting older products with software updates, so you won’t get left out in the cold should you choose to invest in it now.
But why the price change? Well aside from the trainer being on the market for several years (it launched in 2018) it could be a sign that some new equipment is on the way from Wahoo.
What’s more, this section of the smart trainer market has become crowded in recent times, and the well publicised legal case between Wahoo and Zwift has finally, somewhat mysteriously, been settled with both sides asking the court to dismiss the case.
Could the new price be an effort to stay competitive as much as anything?
Competition and legal cases
The smart trainer world is full of choice and there are a wide range of options for consumers to choose from at all pricepoints. Like the virtual competition that takes place using the trainers themselves, there seems to be a fair bit of competition between rival manufacturers.
When Zwift launched its own smart trainer, the Zwift Hub, back in October last year, it was aimed to sit firmly in the same performance bracket as the Kickr Core, but it significantly undercut the Wahoo price. It retailed for £449 / $499 / €499. We reviewed the trainer and thought it was pretty excellent, our Associate Editor Josh even wondered whether it was about to transform the smart trainer market with its excellent performance alongside a very competitive price tag. With today’s price change, that prediction could well have been right.
Shortly after the release, Wahoo was quick to file multiple copyright infringement claims against Zwift. Specifically, three patents related to trainers. There was also a similar lawsuit being aimed at…