Tacx updates NEO and FLUX for 2019

Improved chipset offers quieter and more realistic riding experience. Compatibility also improved

The Tacx NEO and FLUX are two products that will be familiar to any cyclist who takes their training seriously, and for 2019, the Dutch brand has updated these two classic smart turbo trainer models with improved builds, greater compatibility and wider connectivity.

Tacx NEO 2 smart trainer — an update to a classic

The NEO 2 builds on the heritage of the wildly popular original model
The NEO 2 builds on the heritage of the wildly popular original model

The original NEO launched in 2015 and — thanks to its excellent build quality, ease of use and wide connectivity — quickly became a very popular go-to option for cyclists looking for a high-quality direct drive smart trainer.

The NEO 2 Smart builds on this heritage and brings a number of real improvements and updates over the original model.

To start, as with the outgoing model of the NEO — and unlike any other trainer on the market — the resistance of the trainer is provided by a motor that is directly connected to your drivetrain. Not only does this improve ride feel, but it also means that the power, speed and cadence data provided by the trainer is among the most accurate on the market.  

The biggest changes in the NEO 2 are underneath the surface. The new NEO 2 Smart is equipped with an improved and faster chipset, enabling a smoother and more responsive control of the NEO motor. This results in a near-silent indoor cycling experience and improves ride feel.

As with the outgoing model, the trainer can be used without an external power source, with your training efforts powering the unit.

Tacx has hinted that the new hardware will allow it to reveal some new immersive features, which it is planning on announcing soon. 

This new hardware has also allowed Tacx to reduce the noise and vibrations produced by the NEO to the bare minimum — the trainer is once again among the quietest options available on the market.

The new trainer also features updated pedal stroke analysis. Not only can this be used to improve performance, but it can also help with optimising bike fit and cleat positioning. The new model features independent left/right power analysis too.

The overall look of the trainer remains the same as the original NEO, including the iconic solid supporting wings. A small amount of flex has been built into these wings on the new trainer to improve the ride feel in hard sprints.

On the subject of sprints, the trainer can now provide up to a whopping 2,200 watts of resistance or simulate climbs of up to a leg-busting 25 percent — more than enough for the most serious athletes.

As with the outgoing model, the trainer can be used without an external power source, with your training efforts powering the unit.

As is expected of any modern trainer, the NEO 2 is compatible with all modern standards, including ANT+ and Bluetooth connectivity. The NEO 2 also ships with axle adaptors so it will work with all common modern axle types — including 142x12mm and 148x12mm thru axles — straight out of the box.

Likewise, it will work with all common training apps.

Tacx NEO 2 Smart key specs

  • Up to 2,200 watts of electronic resistance
  • Up to 25% simulated gradient
  • Pedal stroke analysis
  • Independent left/right power analysis
  • Compact folding design
  • ANT+ and Bluetooth compatible
  • Compatible with Tacx Desktop App, Zwift and others
  • Compatible with both SRAM and Shimano drivetrains
  • £1,199 / €1,299 / $1,399 / AU$1,899
  • Available now in Europe. Stock expected in the USA, Canada and all other territories from mid-December

Tacx FLUX 2 smart trainer — fly on a flywheel

The FLUX has been updated with a new, heavier freewheel and an updated chassis
The FLUX has been updated with a new, heavier freewheel and an updated chassis

Those looking for a more simple and affordable, yet equally capable, turbo trainer should turn to the updated FLUX 2 Smart.

The FLUX 2 shares much of the functionality of the NEO but uses an updated heavyweight freewheel — 7.6kg vs the previous generation's 7.0kg — and a much stronger brake unit to provide resistance.

It is now the quietest freewheel turbo trainer available on the market

Clever placement of this additional weight means that the freewheel has a mass inertia effect of 32.15kg compared to the outgoing model's 22.8kg. 

These changes mean the updated trainer can now provide up to 2,000 watts of resistance or simulate a gradient of up to 16 percent.

Not only does the new unit increase the level of resistance available, but it also improves ride feel, with a more natural delivery of power. 

Like the NEO, clever engineering has brought the noise levels of the FLUX down considerably, and it is now the quietest freewheel turbo trainer available on the market.

The body of the new trainer has been redesigned to work with all common axle types. Clearances have also been improved so that long cage derailleurs will now work with the unit.

Tacx FLUX 2 Smart key specs

  • Up to 2,000 watts of electronic resistance
  • Up to 16% simulated gradient
  • ANT+ and Bluetooth compatible
  • Compatible with Tacx Desktop App, Zwift and others
  • Compatible with both SRAM and Shimano drivetrains
  • £699 / €799 / $899 / AU$TBA
  • Available in Europe by late November. Stock expected in the USA, Canada and all other territories from mid-December to January 2019
Jack Luke

Staff Writer, UK
Jack has been riding and fettling with bikes for his whole life. Always in search of the hippest new niche in cycling, Jack is a self-confessed gravel dork and thinks nothing of bivouacking on a beach after work. Also fond of cup and cone bearings, skids and tan wall tyres.
  • Discipline: Long days in the saddle by either road or mountain bike
  • Preferred Terrain: Happiest when on a rural road by the coast or crossing a remote mountain pass. Also partial to a cheeky gravel adventure or an arduous hike-a-bike.
  • Current Bikes: Custom Genesis Croix de Fer all road adventure wagon, Niner EMD 9.
  • Dream Bike: A rigid 44 Bikes Marauder, all black please.
  • Beer of Choice: Caesar Augustus
  • Location: Bristol, UK

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