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As of May 2021, Peloton announced a voluntary recall of the Peloton Tread and Tread+ treadmills due to safety concerns. While the company has since released an updated version of the Tread, Peloton recommends customers who already own a recalled model stop using it and contact Peloton for a full refund.
Over the past several years, home exercise equipment has surged in popularity, offering a convenient and cost-effective alternative to gyms and boutique fitness studios.
Peloton and Echelon, two brands of exercise bikes, have quickly become favorites among fitness enthusiasts.
Both brands offer live and on-demand cycling classes, but many distinct features set them apart.
This article looks at some of the key similarities and differences between the Peloton bikes and Echelon Connect bikes to help you determine which one may be right for you.
|Price||• Bike: $1,495|
• Bike+: $2,495
|• GT+: $1,299.99|
• EX-5: $1,499.00
• EX-5s: $1,999
• EX-8s: $2,299
|Warranty||12-month limited parts and labor||12-month limited parts and labor|
|Return policy||30 days||30 days|
|Size||• Bike: 23 × 59 inches (58 × 150 cm)|
• Bike+: 22 × 59 inches (65 × 150 cm)
|• GT+: 24 × 54 inches (61 × 137 cm)|
• EX-5: 20 × 54 inches (51 × 137 cm)
• EX-5s: 20 × 54 inches (51 × 137 cm)
• EX-8s: 23 × 59 inches (58 × 150 cm)
|Weight||• Bike: 135 pounds (61 kg)|
• Bike+: 140 pounds (64 kg)
|• GT+: 88 pounds (40 kg)|
• EX-5: 112 pounds (51 kg)
• EX-5s: 112 pounds (51 kg)
• EX-8s: 124 pounds (56 kg)
|Pedals||Delta-compatible aluminum pedals||SPD-compatible pedals with adjustable toe cages|
|Seat||sport series saddle with ergonomic channel||competition seat with lever adjustment|
|User height and weight capacity||• Minimum: 4 feet 11 inches (150 cm)|
• Maximum: 6 feet 4 inches (193 cm) or 297 pounds (135 kg)
|• Minimum: 4 feet 11 inches (150 cm)|
• Maximum: 6 feet 4 inches (193 cm) or 300 pounds (136 kg)
• Users ranging in height from 4 feet 5 inches (134 cm) to 6 feet 8 inches (203 cm) report using Echelon bikes.
|Display||• Bike: 21.5-inch (54.6-cm) tilting touch screen with rear-facing speakers|
• Bike+: 24-inch (61-cm) rotating touch screen with front- and rear-facing speakers
• Bluetooth 5.0 connectivity
|• EX-5s: 21.5-inch (54.5-cm) built-in touch screen with front-facing speakers|
• EX-8s: 24-inch (61-cm) curved tilting touch screen with front-facing speakers
• All other models: console or mount for smart devices
|Training options||• live and on-demand cycling classes|
• performance tracking
• unlimited users per account
|• live and on-demand cycling classes|
• performance tracking
• up to 5 users per account
• “Extra Miles” classes available for additional fee
Peloton is an exercise equipment company known for its smart stationary bicycles, the Peloton Bike and Bike+.
The company launched in 2012 with the goal of bringing the community aspect of boutique group fitness classes into people’s homes.
Using the Peloton app, users can compete with others using the live leaderboard, see their performance metrics on-screen, and track their performance over time. The app also offers non-cycling workouts, including yoga, Pilates, and high intensity interval training (HIIT).
While there are differences between the Peloton Bike and Bike+, both feature a fully adjustable seat and handlebars, allowing riders of various sizes to exercise safely and comfortably.
A more expensive option, the Bike+ stands out from the traditional Peloton Bike with its rotating touch screen, better sound system, and auto-resistance option, which matches your resistance to your trainer’s during class.
Echelon is an exercise equipment company known for its stationary Connect Bikes — the GT+, EX-5, EX-5s, and EX-8s.
Frequently discounted to less than $1,000, the Echelon GT+ offers an affordable alternative for people who enjoy indoor cycling and don’t want to spend extra for an integrated touch screen or state-of-the-art sound system.
The EX-5 is similar to the GT+ in that it offers Bluetooth connectivity and a tablet holder. In fact, the major difference is that the EX-5’s handlebars and seat are more adjustable.
The Echelon EX-5s and EX-8s are the most similar to Peloton bikes, as they include built-in touch screens.
While they vary in price, size, and features, all the bikes offer integration with the Echelon Fit app, providing you access to hundreds of live and on-demand workouts.
Peloton offers two bikes, with the Bike+ being more expensive. Here are the current prices:
- Bike: $1,495
- Bike+: $2,495
Both bikes include free delivery and assembly. They also require an All-Access Peloton app membership that costs $39 per month.
Keep in mind that the Peloton bikes also require Delta-compatible cleats, which can be purchased for $125 on the company’s website.
Additionally, Peloton offers several packages that include accessories such as shoes, headphones, hand weights, and a heart rate monitor.
Meanwhile, Echelon offers four bike models at the following prices:
- GT+: $1,299.99
- EX-5: $1,499.99
- EX-5s: $1,999.99
- EX-8s: $2,299.99
Live and on-demand classes are available through Echelon Fit, an app that costs $39 per month. Echelon bikes also come with free delivery.
Plus, because they’re equipped with SPD-compatible pedals with adjustable toe cages, you have the option to save money by using shoes you already own.
Peloton and Echelon bikes come with a 1-year limited parts and labor warranty, as well as a 30-day return policy.
Echelon comes out on top as far as pricing goes. The brand offers a larger selection of bikes to choose from, making it suitable for a wider range of budgets, and it doesn’t require the purchase of specific shoes.
The Peloton Bike measures 23 × 59 inches (58 × 150 cm) and weighs 135 pounds (61 kg).
The Bike+ is similar in size, measuring 22 × 59 inches (65 × 150 cm) and weighing 140 pounds (64 kg).
The Echelon Connect bikes vary in size by model:
- EX-5: 20 x 54 inches (51 x 137 cm) and 112 pounds (51 kg)
- EX-5s: 20 x 54 inches (51 x 137 cm) and 124 pounds (56 kg)
- GT+: 24 x 54 inches (61 x 137 cm) and 88 pounds (40 kg)
- EX-8s: 23 x 59 inches (58 x 150 cm) and 124 pounds (56 kg)
The winner of this one depends on your needs.
If you’re short on space, the Echelon EX-5 and EX-5s come out on top.
However, the Peloton bikes are heavier and more robust, making them the winners if you’re looking for a heavy-duty indoor cycling bike.
Peloton bikes are equipped with Look Delta pedals.
This means that in order to use the Peloton Bike+, you need Delta-compatible cleats, which can be attached to any pair of three-bolt bike shoes.
Echelon bikes are more versatile, offering toe cages on one side and SPD-compatible cleats on the other.
Again, the winner of this category depends on your needs. While the Peloton pedals promote a smoother, more efficient stride, the Echelon bike pedals are more versatile, making them a good option if you don’t want to invest in cycling shoes.
The Peloton Bike+ features a sports series saddle with an ergonomic center channel that allows you to move it up, down, forward, and backward.
Meanwhile, Echelon’s bikes have a competition seat with a lever adjustment for a smooth and comfortable ride.
Both Peloton and Echelon bike seats can be switched out for other standard cycling seats.
Both Peloton and Echelon give users great seating options, as well as the ability to switch out seats. All Echelon bikes come with adjustable seat levers.
Peloton’s bikes have a recommended user height of 4 feet 11 inches (150 cm) to 6 feet 4 inches (193 cm) and a max weight capacity of 297 pounds (135 kg).
Echelon has similar guidelines, recommending that riders be at least 4 feet 11 inches (150 cm) and no more than 6 feet 4 inches (193 cm) tall and weigh no more than 300 pounds (136 kg).
However, Echelon reports that it has riders ranging in height from 4 feet 5 inches (134 cm) to 6 feet 8 inches (203 cm).
Peloton and Echelon bikes have similar height and weight capacities, so there’s no clear winner here.
The Peloton and Echelon bikes are similar in that you adjust the resistance level by turning the centrally located resistance knob.
The Echelon EX-8s also includes a Bluetooth Resistance Controller that allows you to change the resistance from the handlebars.
However, the biggest difference is that the Peloton bikes allow you to dial in your resistance level from 0–100, whereas the Echelon Connect bikes offer only up to 32 levels of magnetic resistance.
The Peloton Bike+ also offers optional auto-resistance, which matches your resistance level to your trainer’s during class.
Both the Peloton Bike and Bike+ offer HD touch screens.
However, while the Peloton Bike’s 21.5-inch (54.6-cm) display tilts to accommodate different rider heights, the Bike+ stands out for its 24-inch (61-cm) rotating touch-screen display with 360 degrees of movement, which makes it easy to stream classes on and off the bike.
The Echelon Connect EX-5s and EX-8s feature a 21.5-inch (54.5-cm) or 24-inch (61-cm) touch screen, respectively. The EX-8s’s screen tilts 180 degrees and is curved for a more immersive experience.
The Echelon Connect GT+ and EX-5 don’t have a built-in display and instead feature an adjustable tablet holder, allowing you to stream workouts from your personal device.
The Peloton Bike+ offers the most robust sound system, with 26-watt front-facing stereo speakers and rear-facing woofers, whereas the Peloton Bike is equipped with two 16-watt rear-facing stereo speakers.
In contrast, the Echelon Connect EX-5s and EX-8s include two 5-watt front-facing speakers.
The Peloton bikes offer Wi-Fi, ANT+, and either Bluetooth 4.0 or 5.0 connectivity, making it easy to connect your wireless headphones, smartwatch, or heart rate monitor.
All the Echelon Connect bikes include Bluetooth connectivity for streaming classes on your tablet or the built-in display.
Ease of use
Peloton users praise the bikes’ touch-screen displays for being easy to use and navigate, though reviewers occasionally experience issues with connectivity.
Similarly, the Echelon Connect EX-5s and EX-8s feature intuitive touch-screen displays that users find easy to set up and use.
While both companies offer bikes with easy-to-use touch-screen displays, the Peloton Bike+ offers the most bells and whistles, with a large rotating screen, Bluetooth 5.0 connectivity, and a more impressive sound system.
Peloton requires riders to purchase a Peloton All-Access membership to use its bike. The app provides unlimited access to streaming and on-demand cycling classes, including virtual scenic rides.
A number of cycling classes are available, including low impact, climb rides, and intervals.
It likewise offers live performance tracking, which can be integrated to connect with Apple Health. This means that during each cycling class, you can view the leaderboard and send other riders a virtual high five for encouragement.
An All-Access membership costs $39 per month and allows up to 20 users per account, so each person in your household can have their own rider profile.
Echelon requires users to purchase a FitPass membership to access most of its content, which includes a variety of live, on-demand, and scenic cycling classes. You can filter classes by length, music, instructor, and type of workout.
You can easily view your performance and statistics while cycling, along with a leaderboard to see how you compare with others in your class.
Up to 5 riders in a household can share a membership, which costs $39 per month.
Both Peloton and Echelon require memberships to access classes, and both charge the same price for their memberships. However, Peloton allows up to 20 people to create accounts on a single device, which puts them ahead of Echelon on this feature.
Peloton is perhaps best known for its music-driven classes led by motivating instructors. In fact, you can even save your favorite songs from your Peloton workout to a Spotify playlist.
Included in the All-Access membership is access to more than a thousand on-demand classes, ranging in length from 5–90 minutes. The app also offers daily live classes and scenic rides.
During cycling classes, you’ll be able to view the instructor, the live leaderboard, and your performance stats, including your cadence, resistance level, and power output.
In addition to cycling, the Peloton app includes the following class types:
- strength training
- outdoor exercise
- boot camp
There are also treadmill classes, which are designed for the Peloton Tread.
All Peloton classes include separate music and instructor volume controls, so you don’t have to worry about the music drowning out the instructor’s voice.
Cycling classes on Echelon Fit are very similar to Peloton’s: The instructors are energetic, you can select classes based on the music genre, and you can view your performance stats and the leaderboard while you ride.
Another similarity is that Echelon Fit offers live, on-demand, and scenic rides. Plus, there are plenty of off-bike workouts to try, including:
- strength training
Echelon also offers integrated rowing and running classes for people who own an Echelon rower or treadmill.
While both apps provide a studio-like cycling experience, Peloton narrowly wins out because it offers slightly more variety in classes and music and gives you the option to control the volume of the trainer and the music separately.
Peloton and Echelon are two of the most popular indoor exercise bike brands on the market.
Both offer bikes with a number of similar features, especially in terms of size, warranty, and available training options.
Which bike to choose ultimately comes down to price and desired features. While it’s the most expensive, the Peloton Bike+ is hard to beat, thanks to its comfortable design, impressive sound system, intuitive interface, and optional auto-resistance.
It’s also the only bike equipped with a 360-degree rotating touch screen, making it the best option if you also enjoy off-bike workouts. Plus, Peloton’s classes offer a bit more excitement in terms of music variety and class types.
However, if you’re looking to save money and don’t need a swiveling touch screen, you may be deciding between the Peloton Bike and the Echelon EX-5s.
Of these two bikes, the Peloton Bike is still our choice, thanks to the app experience and slightly better sound system.
However, because the Echelon Fit app offers classes for the company’s other smart equipment, the Echelon EX-5s is a better choice if you plan on also purchasing an Echelon rower, treadmill, or workout mirror.