Tacx Vortex Smart Trainer
The Tacx Vortex Smart Trainer was Tacx’s first interactive Smart trainer. The electric brake makes this trainer highly accessible and ideal for keeping in tip-top condition during the winter, for instance.
The Tacx Vortex represents the most affordable power-based trainer we have. It is wheel-based (meaning riders must mount the bike completely onto the drum), but again offers many of the features of it's more-endowed siblings. With a maximum simulated hill incline of 7%, max wattage capacity of 950 Watts, and a power accuracy level of +/- 5%, the Vortex represents an excellent way to gain realistic road feel and virtual training without the exorbitant price tag.
Road feel is good for the price point. It is certainly robust in feel, and in the saddle it feels almost immovable. While other wheel-based trainers might feel uneven in resistance, the Vortex is surprisingly smooth. Further, the $549 price point is an easy way get into structured training and online-based training programs like Zwift.
If you're looking for a simple, inexpensive way to beat the doldrums of Winter, the Tacx Vortex represents motivation, goal-setting, and a lack of excuses for not training in the off-season. Few options can compete with this, especially at this price point.