3G Cardio Elite RB Recumbent Bike Review
The 3G Cardio Elite RB Recumbent Bike meets all the expectations that people keep from a recumbent bike. This is a heavy-duty machine being a light commercial recumbent bike.
It has an innovative design with its flywheel and jack for the power cord located on the rear, unlike similar bikes that have these parts normally at their front side. Its console may not feature online connectivity, but that doesn’t make a big difference because the bike is full of programs that are enough to bring great diversity to one’s workout routine and thus, keep them motivated.
A recumbent bike is known to offer exercise while making one’s body sit comfortably and avoid any unnecessary stress on joints and muscles and thus favoring prolonged workouts. With an innovative design and especially a unique seat assembly, the 3G Cardio Elite goes the extra mile in this aspect and is certainly worth considering when one is looking for a versatile exercise machine.
Published: September 5, 2020.
3G Cardio Elite RB Recumbent Bike Specifications
- Dimensions when assembled: 49 x 27 x 43 inches (124 x 69 x 109 cm) (L x W x H)
- Weight when assembled: 115 lbs. (52 kg)
- Maximum user weight capacity: 350 lbs. (159 kg)
- Resistance: Magnetic, motorized, 16 levels
- In-home: Lifetime on frame, 7 years on parts, 1 year on in-home labor
- Light commercial: 3 years on parts, 1 year on labor
Features of 3G Cardio Elite RB Recumbent Bike
Assembly of the 3G Cardio Elite RB is very easy, since the core of the bike comes pre-assembled. Users just have to attach the main base tubes, console mast, console, front handlebars, seat assembly and its handlebars, and pedals. This should not take more than an hour.
The user’s manual provides very clear assembly instructions and all the necessary tools are included.
As mentioned earlier, the 3G Cardio Elite RB has a unique design with its flywheel and jack of power cord located on the rear.
The frame is made of heavy-duty steel so as to be true to its status of a light commercial exercise bike and to easily support users of weight 350 lbs. (159 kg). There is a corrosion-resistant powder coating on all the steel parts of the frame.
The base part is in dark gray and the upper parts are in light gray. There are many PVC parts in the frame too, such as the shroud of the pulley which is light gray in color and the shroud on the flywheel and drive system on the backside which is black. The adjustment rail of the seat is in silver color, whereas the grips of the seat adjustment levers have grooved surfaces for an easy grip and are in an attractive saffron color.
Since the flywheel is positioned on the backside, the design of the bike is not step-thru. However, being low-frame the bike is not at all difficult to mount and dismount.
The 3G Cardio Elite RB is very compact with a small footprint and measures only 49″ (124 cm) in length and 27″ (69 cm) in width when fully assembled. Thus, it’s ideal for those with shortage of space.
There are rollers on the front of the base of the bike and large handles on the rear due to which the bike can be easily relocated.
The 3G Cardio Elite RB is not particularly a heavy bike and weighs around 115 lbs. (52 kg) which is more than twice the weight of an average road bike. However, this weight has a great role in the overall stability of the bike. Thus, the bike won’t wobble, tip or slide even though the user gets into an intense workout. Moreover, the rear base bar comes with rotating polygonal caps that can work as stabilizers.
The console of the 3G Cardio Elite RB is pretty advanced. It features an LCD display with blue backlight. Its digits are big enough to read well. All the stats are displayed together and so, users don’t have to use a SCAN function to alternate them and find the metric they want to check. The metrics displayed are time, distance, speed, watts, RPM, calories, and pulse. Speed and distance can be seen in both metric and imperial units.
Although it’s advanced, the console is pretty easy to operate. By turning the knob on the console one can adjust resistance, as well as give values to their goals. By using the Start/Stop button, one can pause and resume their workout without interrupting the programs.
This is especially useful if one wishes to alternate the bike workouts with other types of workouts. The Reset key, as the name suggests, clears all the values making them zero if required. Finally, the recovery function has its own button.
The console also has user data input settings such as age, gender, height, and weight. Hence it can calculate users’ burned calories and energy output with greater accuracy than other exercise meters.
The console offers a goal-setting function, 4 user profiles, and a recovery function. The goal-setting function lets users select a countdown target for time, distance, watt, and calories, and users can continue the exercise till they reach the selected goal.
The 4 user profiles allow 4 different individuals to create and save their personal data and custom programs and use them whenever they wish without having to change the settings of previous users. Or only one user can create 4 different custom programs and bring diversity to their workout.
The recovery function measures one’s heart rate and the end of their workout and provides a recovery status from F1 (best) to F6 (worst), which primarily gives one an idea about their fitness level.
Heart Rate Monitoring
Through the EKG sensors fitted into the seat handlebars, the unit can measure users’ heart rate. Plus the console is telemetric i.e. it can measure users’ heart rate also via a wireless HR chest strap which is included.
The 3G Cardio Elite RB offers 16 preset workout programs along with a manual mode which allows users to adjust the resistance as per their wish. The programs contain 12 preset programs that focus on peak performance, weight loss, intervals, etc., 3 heart rate programs (very useful for exercising in one’s target heart rate zone), and 1 watts program.
Seat and Backrest
The seat of the 3G Cardio Elite RB is one of its real selling points. It’s fully adjustable and extremely comfortable. It’s around 16″ (40.6 cm) wide and has a thick cushion and a contoured surface. The backrest too is equally comfortable with an Infinite Airflow Mesh Flex construction that provides superior breathability and keeps users’ back cool and sweat-free. It’s flexible and is built on a durable frame.
Firstly the entire seat assembly slides on an oblique adjustment rail so as to allow users to lock it near or farther from the pedals in as many as 25 positions. Users can do this using the lever under the seat. Next, it offers 5 tilt positions again for the entire seat assembly which can be adjusted with the lever on the left side.
Finally, the lever on the right-hand side allows users to adjust the angle of the backrest as per their comfort. Thus the seat assembly takes the pride of being an ideal recumbent bike seat i.e. it provides optimum comfort to the users. No wonder, it can accommodate users in a wide range of heights, i.e. between 5’0″ (153 cm) and 6’4″ (193 cm). Moreover, the seat is sturdy enough to support the maximum user weight i.e. 350 lbs. (159 kg).
This recumbent bike comes with two sets of handlebars – one attached to the console mast and the other to the seat assembly. The ones on the seat assembly have metallic EKG pulse sensors as well as controls for resistance integrated in them. Since they are attached to the seat frame, their angle is adjusted whenever users tilt the seat.
The front handlebars are non-adjustable. Both these front and rear handlebars have rubberized grips for added comfort.
As mentioned earlier, the drive system of the 3G Cardio Elite RB is positioned differently than other similar bikes. While the pulley and crankset are positioned on the front side, the flywheel and magnetic brake are located on the backside under the seat.
A long transmission belt connects the flywheel and pulley. Since it’s a belt transmission and not a chain drive, the bike makes almost no noise, and also the belt doesn’t need to be lubricated. The weight of the flywheel is somewhere between 16 and 20 lbs. (7 and 9 kg). Because it’s a perimeter weighted flywheel, it offers a very consistent momentum and smooth pedaling motion.
The 3G Cardio Elite RB is equipped with a motorized magnetic resistance system that comprises of a magnetic brake and a small servo motor. Users can adjust the resistance from the console or the controls integrated in the seat handlebars. Of course, to activate the resistance, the bike should first be connected to a power supply.
There are 16 levels of resistance on the bike. By turning the knob on the console or the +/- controls on the handlebars, the magnetic brake can be moved closer or farther from the flywheel, and more or less resistance can be created. This is indeed a useful feature because it offers resistance control literally at users’ fingertips and they don’t have to reach out to the console to change the resistance in the middle of their workout. Resistance levels 1 to 3 offer only a light resistance, perfect for recovery training for elderly, diseased, injured or disabled users, or for warm up for regular users. The final resistance levels 15-16 on the other hand simulate a steep climb and thus offer adequate resistance for intense cardio training.
The resistance levels may also be automatically selected when users choose one of the on-board programs, depending on the resistance needed for that particular program.
The bike requires a voltage of 100V – 240V – 50/60Hz. A power cord is included the port for which is located above the rear base stabilizer.
Crank Set and Pedals
Since the 3G Cardio Elite RB has a very narrow Q-factor (spacing between the pedals), users won’t feel any lateral stress on the knees and ankles while pedaling. The crank arms are made from solid steel and have a chrome finish. Even the pedals have a metallic core and a strong nylon coating. They are self-leveling which means that they have a small weight at the bottom which makes them always turn face-up when users remove feet from them. They also have adjustable straps and standard threads, so, users can easily replace them if they want.
Placed just under the display, there is a small tablet tray. Plus, there is a small compartment under the keypad of the console where users can store their accessories. Also, the console mast is fitted with a bottle holder.
Since the 3G Cardio Elite RB is belt-driven with a magnetic resistance system, there is almost no need for internal maintenance. Unless the user finds any internal part damaged and needs to be replaced, they don’t have to remove the flywheel or pulley shrouds.
The unit needs only a minimal external resistance though, which consists of cleaning the bike regularly, regularly checking for any loose bolts and parts and retightening them if required, and protecting the console from spilling liquids.
Pros of 3G Cardio Elite RB Recumbent Bike
- Heavy-duty, commercial-grade construction
- Innovative design which looks stylish and makes it easy for users to get on and off the bike
- 350 lbs. of maximum user weight capacity
- Great stability due to weight and adjustable stabilizers
- Easily portable due to transport wheels on the front and transport handle on the rear
- Fully adjustable, thickly cushioned, contoured, wide and comfortable seat
- Breathable, durable, and flexible backrest equipped with Infinite Airflow Mesh Flex
- 25 forward-backward adjustment positions for the seat assembly
- 5 tilt positions for the seat assembly
- The backrest angle can also be adjusted for optimum comfort
- EKG pulse rate sensors integrated in the seat handlebars
- Telemetric console and HR chest strap included
- Large LCD backlit display
- 12 preset programs, 3 heart rate programs, 1 watts program, and 1 manual program
- 4 user profiles
- Goal settings for time, distance, watts, and calories
- 16 levels of magnetic, motorized resistance system
- Resistance controls on console as well as on seat handlebars
- Smooth and almost quiet belt drive
- Balanced, perimeter-weighted mid-range flywheel that offers a consistent momentum
- Weighted pedals with adjustable straps
- Accessories like bottle holder, tablet holder, and accessory compartment included
- Easy assembly
- Easy maintenance
- Excellent warranty
Cons of 3G Cardio Elite RB Recumbent Bike
- No step-thru design but one can get on and off the bike easily due to the low frame
- No online connectivity
- No add-ons like cooling fan or sound system
The 3G Cardio Elite RB Recumbent Bike may not have a lot of fantastic features but it certainly offers exactly what a recumbent bike should offer – comfort, function, performance and sturdiness. This is a heavy-duty exercise bike for home use as well as for light commercial use.
Its seat assembly is its unique selling point being fully adjustable and extremely comfortable, a feature that recumbent bikes must have. The seat is wide and cushioned to an optimum extent, has 5 tilt positions and 25 front-back adjustment positions and the backrest is breathable and can be separately adjusted to the most comfortable angle.
In addition, the bike offers users almost everything they may need during their workout such as 16 levels of resistance, 16 workout programs, and an easy to operate large, backlit console. Being a recumbent bike with such an excellent seat assembly and low-frame design, this unit is perfect for physical therapy and recovery training for the elderly and disabled, and those who are recovering from illness or injury. Plus, it doesn’t lag behind other exercise machines in any way in offering intense cardio training, muscle building and toning, calorie-burning, and intervals.
As mentioned earlier, it doesn’t have over-indulgent features like online connectivity, but it counterbalances what it lacks with plenty of other features and although it may feel like being an expensive bike, it doesn’t cost a hand and leg, and will make the user happy in the long run for making the right investment.
For more reviews and recommendations, feel free to check 3G Cardio Elite RB Recumbent Exercise Bike Amazon link (link opens in the new window).