The Circuit Fitness Recumbent Bike has become one of the most popular recumbent bikes on Amazon and when you stop to see what it has to offer, it’s not too surprising.
Not only is the Circuit bike very affordable, but it also comes with 32 levels of resistance, 15 built-in workout programs, and a respectable 300 lb weight capacity.
And it even has a few surprises, like a USB charging port and a retractable tablet holder.
But, like all budget-friendly bikes, it has its fair share of flaws too.
Most notably the short warranty and lightweight flywheel.
So, is the Circuit Fitness Recumbent Bike worth investing in?
Well, that’s what I’m here to help you figure out.
In this review, I’ll go over all the key specs and features this exercise bike has to offer – I’ll also compare it to some other similarly priced bikes to see how it compares.
After reading, you’ll be well-equipped to decide for yourself whether or not the Circuit Fitness Recumbent Bike is the right choice for your home.
The Circuit Fitness Recumbent Bike
I’d never heard of Circuit Fitness before doing this review and there’s not really that much info out there that I could find.
Which to be fair, isn’t that surprising for budget brands like this (they’re kinda a dime a dozen).
It looks like Circuit is owned by the larger company, Impex Fitness, which is the same company that owns Marcy Pro, a much better known brand.
Anyway, Circuit offers a little bit of everything home fitness related.
We’re talking all varieties of exercise bike, as well as rowers, home gyms, and benches.
And it’s all very affordable (they even have a $200 power cage, which seems kinda crazy to me, but to each their own).
As far as I can tell, the recumbent bike we’re here to discuss now is the only recumbent they offer and it looks like one of their nicer products.
- Affordable price
- 32 levels of magnetic resistance
- 15 built-in workout programs
- 300 lb weight limit
- USB charging port
- Tablet holder
- Water bottle holders
- Short warranty
- Light flywheel
- Simple console
I think it’s a good idea to start any review off with a look at the resistance system because this is the heart of the exercise bike.
And I say that not only because the resistance system provides the resistance you work against for each workout, but it also largely determines how smooth the pedaling motion will feel.
The Circuit Recumbent, like more recumbents, uses a magnetic resistance system.
This means the resistance is created by pairing the spinning flywheel with a series of magnets that can be used to adjust the resistance.
Moving the magnets closer to the metal flywheel increases your resistance and moving them farther away reduces it.
Magnetic systems are great because they provide a smooth feel and since there are no touching parts, they’re really maintenance free.
Having a heavier flywheel is generally preferred, even with a magnetic system, because the extra weight builds more momentum as the flywheel spins and this momentum makes for a smoother pedaling motion.
Now recumbent bikes don’t come with massive flywheels like spin bikes do, but the top models are still usually packing 20 lb or more under the hood.
Unfortunately, Circuit doesn’t disclose the weight of their flywheel on this bike, but I can tell you from experience that it’s going to be light.
Based on the weight of this bike and what other comps are packing, I’d guess the Circuit comes with a flywheel somewhere in the 10 – 13 lb range.
This is light when compared to higher-end, more expensive recumbents, but to be fair it’s what we should expect in this price range.
After all, there are reasons why some bikes cost less than others.
What’s pleasantly surprising though is the fact that the Circuit comes with 32 resistance levels, which is a lot more than most bikes in this price range.
Having a lot of resistance levels doesn’t mean more resistance, but it does mean you can make smaller adjustments to said resistance.
Which in itself is a benefit because it gives you more control over the intensity of your workouts.
Overall, like all bikes in this price range, the Circuit Recumbent likely comes with a light flywheel, but it does come with more resistance levels than most competitors.
If the resistance system is the first thing I suggest checking out, then the frame is certainly the second.
Most recumbent bikes are more or less the same size in terms of physical dimensions, but what varies greatly is how heavy-duty they are.
And when I say “heavy-duty”, I mean it literally – it’s a good idea to compare assembled weights.
The assembled weight spec tells you exactly how heavy a bike is and having a heavier bike is a good thing because it’s going to feel more stable when you use it.
Lighter weight bikes are easier to move around, but that also makes them more likely to shake or wobble when you’re using ’em.
And that’s something I don’t think any of us are looking for.
The Circuit Recumbent comes with an assembled weight of about 86 lb… but what does that mean?
The only way to know whether or not that’s good is to look at a bunch of similarly priced bikes and compare the assembled weights.
Or you could come to a helpful site like this one, which provides that service for ya 🙂
Jokes aside, 86 lb is far from heavy-weight when compared to the higher-end recumbents that weigh in the 140 – 150 lb range, but it’s actually pretty good for recumbents in this price range.
And when looking at bikes in different price ranges, it’s important to compare them to other bikes in that same price range because again, there are real reasons why some bikes cost less than others.
For the sake of comparison, the similarly priced Schwinn 230 only weighs in at about 80 lb.
There’s also ProForm’s 325 CSX, again similarly priced, that weighs in at around 117 lb.
And lastly, Sunny Health & Fitness has a bunch of affordable recumbents and many of them weigh somewhere in the 70 – 80 lb range.
So, based on assembled weight, I’d say the Circuit is pretty average for a bike in this price range – better than some, but there are heavier bikes out there.
The Circuit Recumbent also comes with a 300 lb weight limit, which is high enough to accommodate most folks, but also pretty average for this price range.
Seeing higher weight limits is another good indicator of overall frame integrity.
So, overall, I wouldn’t go as far as to call the Circuit Recumbent “heavy-duty”, but it’s not bad for this price range.
The Circuit Fitness Recumbent Bike comes with the following residential warranty:
- 2 year frame/parts
There’s not much information on the warranty info (or really anything else for that matter) for this bike, but according to Marcy, there’s a 2 year warranty on it.
But, they also say you have to register it with Marcy Pro to get that warranty.
Two years is a short warranty for the frame, but it’s not that bad for parts, especially in this price range where many max out at 1 year for everything.
So, the warranty here kinda sucks, but this is to be expected in this price range.
Although there are some brands, like Schwinn and ProForm, who offer much better warranties (10 years on frames) on their similarly priced cycles.
The Circuit Fitness Recumbent Bike comes with the following features:
LCD monitor- the console on this bike is far from advanced, but it can track and display all the basic workout metrics you’d expect. It’s also backlit, making it easier to see than many in this price range.
15 workout programs- this bike comes with a generous selection of built-in workouts to choose from, including all the standard interval/hill type workouts.
USB charging port- there’s a USB charing port in the console, allowing you to plug your tablet or phone in and keep it charged during workouts.
Heart rate monitoring- the grip heart rate monitors allow you to get an idea of what your pulse is during workouts, but these things are notorious for being really inaccurate. And the console isn’t compatible with strap heart rate monitors.
Tablet holder- there’s a retractable tablet holder, giving you a place to put your device during workouts and letting you hide it when not in use.
Water bottle holders- you can store 2 beverages during workouts, so there’s no excuse for not staying hydrated.
Ok, time to talk numbers.
I’ve eluded to this bike’s price range throughout the review, but let’s get a little more specific here.
At the time of writing this, Amazon has the Circuit Recumbent Bike on sale for $423 (which is an odd price, I have to say).
Anyway, we all know prices can change and vary throughout the year, so I apologize if this price isn’t accurate by the time you read it.
But at around $400, I think it’s fair to consider this a very budget-friendly recumbent.
Especially considering many of the top home models cost around $2k.
Based on what this bike comes with, I think $400 is a fair price, but there are a couple of other bikes that should be considered at this price point.
Most notably ProForm’s 325 CSX and Schwinn’s 230, both of which I’ve already mentioned before.
Although I should say the price on the 325 CSX can vary greatly – sometimes it’s $400, sometimes it’s $700.
But at $400, the 325 CSX has a lot to offer, like a heavier-duty frame, a more sophisticated console, and a much better warranty.
The Schwinn 230 costs a little more at around $500, but it too comes with a more sophisticated console (strap heart rate monitor compatible) and comes with a much better warranty.
Well, that’s about all I got regarding Circuit Fitness’ Recumbent Bike.
All things considered, I think it’s a pretty solid bike for this price range.
I like that it comes with plenty of resistance levels and plenty of built-in workouts and it’s not bad in terms of its frame when compared to other similarly priced bikes.
The biggest downside I see is that lackluster warranty.
Something else I didn’t mention earlier, is that really affordable bikes like this often come with pretty awful customer services – but that’s something you’d have to deal with with most brands.
And it’s also worth noting that the Circuit Recumbent is highly reviewed by most users, which is something to consider.