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Wahoo Kickr V6 review

If it ain’t broke don’t fix it?

Our rating 
4.5 out of 5 star rating 4.5
GBP £1,099.99 RRP | USD $1,299.99 | EUR €1,299.99 | AUD $1,799.95
Wahoo Kickr V6 side view

Our review

One of the best smart trainers available, but not a value pick
Pros: Excellent ride feel and build quality; accurate data with reliable automatic calibration; quiet operation; easy setup; WiFi connectivity; 11-speed cassette included
Cons: Price rise reduces competitiveness in a crowded market
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The Wahoo Kickr V6 is the sixth generation of Wahoo’s high-end direct drive smart trainer.

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As is almost tradition, the form factor of the Wahoo Kickr V6 is nearly identical to that of the Kickr V5 and the V4 model that came before it.

In fact, very little has outwardly changed since the original Wahoo Kickr launched in 2012.

Internally, though, the Wahoo Kickr V6 accumulates all of the various refinements to the platform that have occurred over the last decade.

The headline features added to the Kickr V6 are a 2.4 GHz WiFi connection and a small but important refinement to its ERG mode operation.

The price has also risen by £100 / $100 / €100. While similar price rises are currently reflected across much of the cycling industry, increased competition in the smart trainer market has also seen an increased availability of lower-priced options.

The Kickr V6 is one of the best-performing, best-built smart trainers available, but is that enough to warrant the extra outlay compared to cheaper competitors?

For those who require or demand the best, the Wahoo Kickr V6 should be near the top of the proverbial shortlist. For everyone else, though, the answer is less clear cut.

Wahoo Kickr V6 setup

As with previous versions, the Wahoo Kickr V6 comes fully assembled and almost ready to use. This makes setup relatively simple.

A Shimano/SRAM-compatible SunRace 11-speed, 11-28 tooth cassette comes pre-installed.

Wahoo Kickr V6 cassette.
Simon von Bromley / Our Media

If you’re using a bike with a compatible drivetrain, 700C wheels and 135mm quick-release skewers, then you only need to adjust the flywheel support leg to the correct height, plug it in, and the Kickr V6 is good to go.

If not, you may need to change a few things, whether it’s the cassette, axle adaptors or freehub.

If your bike has a 10-, 11- or 12-speed Campagnolo or a 12-speed SRAM AXS drivetrain, then compatible freehubs are available to purchase separately from Wahoo, for £49.99 / $69.99 / €59.99 and £59.99 / $69.99 / €59.99 respectively.

Helpfully, the included thru-axle adaptors are labelled with sizes (such as 142mm or 148mm), so if you know what type of axles your bike uses, then selecting the right ones is easy.

Adaptors are included for bikes with 12x142mm and 12x148mm thru-axles, as well as 135mm quick-release.
Simon von Bromley / Our Media

If you don’t, you may need to look it up. In that instance, our guide to road bike axle standards could prove helpful.

As with the Kickr V5, the Kickr V6 uses Wahoo’s Axis feet. These foam feet allow the Kickr to rock gently side to side, to simulate a more natural ride feel.

Different densities of foam feet are included to optimise the feel for riders of different weights, and can be swapped in and out without tools. The medium-density Axis feet are pre-installed by default, and Wahoo says they’re suitable for riders weighing 63 to 81kg.

The Axis feet carry over from the Kickr V5, contributing a small amount of side-to-side flex to the ride feel.
Simon von Bromley / Our Media

Wahoo Kickr V6 build quality

In terms of overall build quality, the Kickr V6 is very impressive. The sturdy support legs click in and out with a satisfying clunk, and the amount of metal and high-quality plastic used gives the sense of something built to last.

The folding support legs mean the Kickr V6 can be tucked in for easier storage, which is useful if you don’t have a dedicated space to leave it set up. However, its substantial mass (21.9kg) means you’re on course for a full-body workout if you’re planning to move it around a lot.

Fortunately, a well-sized integrated handle takes the guesswork out of how best to pick it up.

The Wahoo Kickr V6 is built like a tank, but the legs fold in to make storing it a little easier.
Simon von Bromley / Our Media

Wahoo Kickr V6 performance


The Wahoo Kickr V6 is compatible with ANT+, ANT+ FE-C and Bluetooth Low Energy devices, meaning you can pair it with most bike computers, cycling watches and other smart devices.

The Kickr V6 can also transmit data to up to three separate Bluetooth devices concurrently, which is convenient if you’re looking to simultaneously record your ride data on an indoor cycling app and a bike computer.


New for this iteration is the addition of WiFi connectivity. Wahoo says this offers significantly greater data transfer speed and stability compared to Bluetooth or ANT+.

Activated via the Wahoo iOS and Android app, WiFi also enables the Kickr V6 to automatically keep its firmware up to date, negating the need to periodically check for updates.

A WiFi status light has been added to the rear of the Kickr V6, showing whether or not the unit is currently connected to your local network.
Simon von Bromley / Our Media

I’ve tested many smart trainers in the past couple of years, including the previous iteration of the Wahoo Kickr. I’ve rarely had connection issues between them and my Apple devices when using Bluetooth (ANT+ is a different matter entirely, however), and that remained the case with the Kickr V6.

Given this, the addition of WiFi didn’t feel like an immediate game changer for me.

For those who have suffered poor or inconsistent connections in the past, WiFi should help smooth any bumps in the road, provided you have a reliable 2.4GHz WiFi signal wherever in your home, garage or pain cave you intend to set up the Kickr V6.

When connected to the internet, apps such as Zwift will offer the option to connect to the Kickr V6 via your local network.

As with the Kickr V5, the Kickr V6 is also compatible with the Kickr Direct Connect dongle. This enables the use of an ethernet cable for a hard-wired connection to your local network.

As most serious gamers or esports racers will know, hard-wired internet connections typically offer the fastest, most stable performance.

Given this, it’s a shame an ethernet port wasn’t integrated into the Kickr V6, to negate the need to purchase a £79.99 dongle.

Regardless, it’s fair to say the vast majority of riders will be satisfied with one of the three available options. It wouldn’t be surprising if other smart trainer manufacturers followed Wahoo’s lead in this area.

Wahoo Kickr V6 ride feel

With a bike attached, the Kickr V6 is practically indistinguishable from the previous version, but that’s no bad thing.
Simon von Bromley / Our Media

Mechanically, the Kickr V6 remains practically identical to the Kickr V5. The ride feel is also identical.

It remains up there with the very best, although it’s fair to say you should expect that at this price point.

The Kickr V6 reacts quickly and smoothly to in-game gradient changes or ERG mode power increases.

A maximum power output of 2,200 watts and maximum simulated gradient of 20 per cent also means the Kickr V6 is capable of handling everything you or your app of choice can throw at it.

The Kickr V6 uses the same 7.3kg flywheel as on the Kickr V5.
Simon von Bromley / Our Media

Notably, Wahoo has stuck with a traditional flywheel design (weighing a hefty 7.3kg), rather than the electromagnetic, virtual flywheel as seen on the Tacx Neo 2T (£1,199.99) and Wahoo Kickr Bike (£2,999).

This means the Kickr V6 isn’t able to simulate effects such as the acceleration felt on descents or varying road conditions, like gravel and cobblestones.

Not having these features doesn’t diminish the experience much, though, with the descent acceleration being the only one that would be a noticeable improvement (in my experience, the road surface simulations found on the Tacx Neo 2T can often feel a bit gimmicky).

If you do want a more immersive indoor cycling experience, the Kickr V6 retains compatibility with the Wahoo Kickr Climb and Kickr Headwind. Although, at £529.99 and £229.99, respectively, they’re pricey additions.

Using apps such as Zwift with the Wahoo Kickr V6 is a pleasure.

ERG Easy Ramp

New for the Kickr V6 is a feature called ERG Easy Ramp.

This helps ease the transition back into an interval, should you have to stop an ERG mode workout mid-ride for whatever reason.

Smart trainers without a feature such as this typically require you get back to the intended power level almost instantly.

If this isn’t achievable, it’s easy to fall into a so-called ‘spiral of death’ and come grinding to a halt again.

With ERG Easy Ramp, you get a full 10 seconds to come up to the right power.

Fans of ERG mode workouts will welcome the ability to ease back into interrupted intervals.

This is a clear improvement to how it works, and will likely reduce the frustration involved with interrupting workouts.

Given this feature appears to be implemented entirely via software, I asked Wahoo if it would be possible to bring ERG Easy Ramp to the Kickr V5, Kickr Core and Kickr Bike V1 via a firmware update.

Happily, Wahoo said yes. It didn’t specify when this would happen, but it did say it is “working very hard to deliver this”, and that trainer owners would “be informed via updates in the Wahoo app as soon as possible.”

Wahoo Kickr V6 noise

Noise-wise, the Kickr V6 is identical to its predecessor, which (again) is no bad thing.

In use, the Kickr V6 is very quiet – the majority of the noise generated by riding comes from your bike and its drivetrain.

Putting it through my standard trainer noise test (which involves recording decibel data from a ride on an iPhone placed one metre away from the trainer, parallel to the drivetrain side of my bike), the Kickr V6 averaged around 61 decibels at 30kph, rising very slightly to just over 65 decibels at 45kph during short sprints.

In my testing, the Kickr V6 averaged around 61dB at 30kph.
Simon von Bromley / Our Media

As always, it’s worth noting your experience may differ compared to my measured figures, depending on what drivetrain and chain lube you’re using (in this instance I was using a waxed chain on 11-speed TA chainrings, which are typically noisier than Shimano options, for example).

Wahoo Kickr V6 power accuracy

The Wahoo Kickr V6 retains the V5’s +/- 1 per cent claimed power accuracy, and like the previous model I tested, measurements were essentially spot-on all of the time.

This remained the case even in challenging scenarios such as sustained climbing or high flywheel speeds (which often trip up cheaper smart trainers).

Running on the latest firmware, I saw no issues with power or cadence accuracy compared to benchmark power meters such as a Verve InfoCrank Classic and a set of Favero Assioma Duo pedals.

As with the Kickr V5, the Kickr V6 has an automatic calibration feature, which continually monitors speed, temperature and resistance while riding, to determine and account for the level of friction in the system. It will then automatically adjust the calibration values as required.

This essentially removes the need to perform in-app spin-down calibrations, and in my experience it works exactly as advertised.

This is useful because while performing a spin-down calibration isn’t onerous, the process is typically somewhat inconvenient because it means interrupting your ride 10 to 15 minutes in (spin-down calibrations are best performed once the trainer has had enough time to warm up). That’s not something you’d want to do in the middle of a workout or virtual group ride.

Wahoo Kickr V6 bottom line

The Wahoo Kickr V6 is easy to set up, delivers fantastic ride feel and low noise levels. It nails the data quality and has a spec sheet that can go toe-to-toe with practically every other high-end smart trainer on the market.

As with the previous-generation Kickr, the main issue remains the fact that it costs a lot (and a £100 price increase has slightly exacerbated that problem).

For most people, cheaper trainers, such as the Wahoo Kickr Core (£599.99), Zwift Hub (£449) or Elite Direto XR (£824.99), will offer more than enough performance to satisfy their indoor-cycling itch.

Ultimately, though, whether the Kickr V6 is worth almost twice the cost of trainers such as the Kickr Core will be a personal decision – it’s like deciding between a Dura-Ace or Ultegra groupset, or between a top or mid-tier carbon frame.

As with most things, the gains in performance diminish in size the further you go up in price, but the small improvements available at the high end will be valued by some.

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Considerations of value aside, the Wahoo Kickr V6 is easily one of the best smart trainers available.

Product Specifications


Price br_price, 5, 3, Price, AUD $1799.95EUR €1299.99GBP £1099.99USD $1299.99
Weight br_weight, 5, 6, Weight, 21.9g – With SunRace 11-28t cassette, Array, g
Year br_year, 5, 9, Year, 2022
Brand br_brand, 5, 10, Brand, Wahoo


Connectivity br_connectivity, 11, 0, Connectivity, Ant+, ant+ fe-c, ble, bluetooth and wifi
Device compatibility br_deviceCompatibility, 11, 0, Device compatibility, Android, ios, mac and windows
Flywheel weight br_flywheelWeight, 11, 0, Flywheel weight, 7.3kg, Array, kg
Folding legs br_foldingLegs, 11, 0, Folding legs, Yes
Hub compatibility br_hubCompatibility, 11, 0, Hub compatibility, 130/135mm quick release, 12x142mm and 12x148mm thru axle
Max grade (degrees) br_maxGrade, 11, 0, Max grade (degrees), 20.0000
Max power br_maxPower, 11, 0, Max power, 2,200W, Array, W
Max user weight br_maxUserWeight, 11, 0, Max user weight, 113kg, Array, kg
Mount br_mount, 11, 0, Mount, Direct drive
Noise br_noise, 11, 0, Noise, 61dB, Array, dB
Resistance type br_resistanceType, 11, 0, Resistance type, Electromagnetic
Trainer type br_trainerType, 11, 0, Trainer type, Smart trainer
Wheel size br_wheelSize, 11, 0, Wheel size, 26in, 27.5in/650b and 29in/700c