The line between real bikes and virtual cycling gets even blurrier with the Zwift Hub One, released today,
The Hub One is an updated version of the original Zwift Hub Smart Trainer. This new model is designed to work with almost any bicycle and gives riders access to the virtual shifting that previously worked only with “smart” bikes.
The bike must have drop handlebars, and owners of the previous Zwift Hub will have options to upgrade.
No Cassette, No Compatibility Issues
The main feature of the Hub One compared to its predecessor is the Zwift Cog. It replaces the standard cassette, facilitating compatibility with nearly any 8-12-speed bike.
Supporting virtual shifting enables cyclists to shift without lag or chain skips, even while shifting under load. It also diminishes the noise usually made by a bike’s physical drivetrain. That makes in-home cycling quieter than ever, the company said in a press release.
The wireless Zwift Click, included with the Hub One, controls the virtual shifts. It offers riders up to 24 gears suitable for any Zwift terrain.
Moreover, the new indoor trainer has a “real gear ratio calibration” feature, which detects the gears on your physical bike and sets the virtual gear ratios accordingly. This will ensure consistent virtual cycling experiences, according to Zwift.
“In addition to delivering benefits to those with multiple bikes, real gear ratio calibration offers new benefits to riders using smaller chainrings, like those found on gravel and mountain bikes, preventing those riders from spinning out on flat or downhill terrain in Zwift,” the company said in a press release.
Zwift Hub One: Pricing & Availability
To use the Virtual Shifting feature, users must ensure that their Zwift firmware version is updated to 1.50, set for release between Oct. 11-13.
The Hub One is now available for purchase at $600 and includes a year’s Zwift membership. The company said the original Hub has been renamed the Hub Classic and is similarly priced.
For those who own the Zwift Hub, upgrade the Firmware version 5.2 or newer. Users with Zwift Play can activate Virtual Shifting from their settings. The Play Controllers, which cater to drop handlebars, are available for a separate purchase of $100 on Zwift’s website.
Additionally, Zwift offers an upgrade package for existing Hub users: the Zwift Cog + Zwift Click package, “temporarily” priced at $60 from its original price of $80.
Zwift Play and Click can function simultaneously with Zwift, offering riders the flexibility to shift from various handlebar positions.