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Schwinn 270 Review

Quick Summary

The new Schwinn 270 (MY17) is a home-use recumbent bike priced at $549. It’s the more advanced of two Schwinn Fitness recumbent bikes promoted since 2017. Key performance qualities are a reclined seat and a 17-pound magnetic resistance system with 25 settings. The console computer supports four user profiles, holds 29 workout programs and fitness tests, has Bluetooth for data sharing, and is compatible with RideSocial “mixed reality” exercise videos. Read on for a detailed Schwinn 270 exercise bike review.

Specifications

FitRated
Model Schwinn 270
Rating

Our custom rating considers all of the bike's features, specs, warranties, and 100's of user & expert reviews, to save you time!

84.5%
List Price

Suggested retail price, typically higher than the price you'll pay with our recommended retailers.

$549
Best Price

Since prices change daily, this link goes to our preferred retailer for the current best price. Note: MSRP stands for Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price.

$549
Resistance

The flywheel in an exercise bike is what creates resistance. You can choose the level of resistance to increase your workout intensity.

25 levels
Resistance Type

The type of resistance shows what kind of flywheel is being used (if any), and its weight if the manufacturer provides it.

Eddy Current Brake
Type

Type refers to the style of the ride: Recumbent bikes allow you to lay back, while Upright bikes are more like road bikes (lean forward).

Recumbent
Drive System

The bike's drive system is how your pedaling interacts with the rest of the bike (flywheel) to give you a good workout.

High inertia perimeter
weighted flywheel
Frame

It's important to choose an exercise bike that will last, and the material of the frame determines how durable the bike is.

Walk-through frame
Seat

The most important part for comfortability during your workout, the seat should be adjustable and have ample cushioning.

Ventilated & contoured seat
Pedals

Pedals are the driving force for an exercise bike, and should be comfortable, adjustable, and easy to control without slipping.

Straps
Programs

Bike Programs allow you to complete a workout with changing speeds and inclines, without changing anything manually.

29
Heart Rate

Heart Rate programs allow you to track how many times your heart is beating per minute (bpm), and some control the workout for you.

Integrated contact heart rate sensors
Display

Display refers to the screen you'll look at to monitor workouts. LED and LCD displays are similar to TV screens.

DualTrack™ 2 LCD screen system
Max. Weight

Max. User Weight is the amount of weight, in pounds (lbs), that the bike can safely support, which can represent durability.

300 lbs
Dimensions

Dimensions are included to help you figure out if this treadmill will fit properly (Length x Width x Height and Height x Depth).

13"x 67"x 27"
Accessory Tray

Some bikes include an accessory tray for holding items such as water bottles, wallets, keys, or MP3 players like iPods.

Speakers

Cooling Fans

Portable?

Some exercise bikes can fold up and/or have wheels that make it easy to roll them around for convenience and to save space.

Warranty

The warranty is a very important part of your investment. The longer the warranty, the longer you can get free/discounted repairs by the manufacturer.

Frame: 10 years
Mechanical: 2 years
Electronics: 1 year
Labor: 90 days

Rating: 84.5%

Our Rating

Rating: 84.5/100. The Schwinn 270 is Schwinn’s finest recumbent exercise bike promoted in 2018. Even so, at just $549 it costs hundreds less than bikes of comparable quality. It’s a top recommendation for the shopper who’s only budgeted around $500 but wants a low-impact cardio trainer that feels modern and will deliver its money’s worth in exercise sessions.

Besides comfortable recumbent seating, highlights of the new 270 include a wireless heart rate receiver; 29 on-board workout programs; Bluetooth data export; and RideSocial compatibility. Owners also like how the Schwinn 270 supports up to four user profiles.

Schwinn Fitness last updated this bike model in 2017 by adding Bluetooth for data logging. By pairing your exercise bike with an Android or iOS mobile device, you can automatically send your workout statistics to the Schwinn Trainer App. Main benefits of using the free app are goal setting and long-term goal tracking. The Schwinn mobile app is also compatible with MyFitnessPal and Apple Health, making it easy to add your bike workout data to a full fitness profile.

Workout programming on the new Schwinn 270 includes 29 preset routines plus the option to use RideSocial. The preset routines are diverse: You can choose from heart rate controlled workouts, distance training programs, interval workouts and more. These are wonderfully useful for your body, but their displays aren’t much to look at… so you might want to dock a tablet computer for entertainment as you ride. RideSocial workouts, on the other hand, are visually captivating and also allow for real-time interaction with other home bike riders. Details are below in the “Workout Programs” section of this review.

Any complaints about the Schwinn 270? Sizing is a problem for riders who are especially short or tall. You can adjust the bike seat’s distance from the pedals, but most people under 5’2” still can’t reach comfortably. People taller than 6’ might knock their knees into the frame. Another downside is the labor warranty. It’s only valid for 90 days, so if troubles arise after three months the Schwinn 270 could ultimately cost you more than just $499.

Next are lists of pros and cons to consider about this bike deal.

Pros:

  • Low sale price
  • Compact machine size
  • Transport wheels
  • Smooth pedaling
  • Digitally controlled magnetic resistance
  • 25 resistance levels
  • Ventilated seat back
  • Cushioned seat bottom
  • Adjustable seat position
  • Easy-to-use workout computer
  • 29 preset workout programs and fitness tests
  • Four user profiles
  • Wireless heart rate receiver
  • Bluetooth data export
  • RideSocial compatibility
  • Mobile device shelf and USB charging port
  • MP3 player port and sound system
  • Three-speed cooling fan
  • Water bottle holder
  • Accessory tray

Cons:

  • Short labor warranty
  • Too small for riders approximately 6 feet and taller, and too large for those under 5’2”
  • Control panel doesn’t have adjustable height, so you can’t watch a home TV with a straight-on view as you ride
  • Calorie burn estimate seems inaccurate to many riders
  • Grip pulse reader is unreliable; bike is best when paired with a wireless heart rate transmitter (sold separately)

Introduction

The Schwinn 270 Recumbent Bike is remarkably durable for a recumbent bike around $500. It’s equipped with an appealing suite of electronics, yet unlike other cheap exercise bikes it’s not just about flash. The vast majority of customer reviews of the Schwinn 270 are positive. Details about its workout programming, parts and warranty are below.

Workout Programs

Workout programming is a main strength of the new Schwinn 270. First, the console computer arrives with dozens of workout routines and fitness tests. It lets each user create and save four bike routines too. Second, this exercise bike is compatible with RideSocial as described below.

Preset workout routines and fitness tests are shown on an LCD. The screen shows lots of fitness data at once, and it has an especially prominent “Goal” data field. This field shows progress in terms of distance, time or another primary workout objective.

Altogether you can have 29 preset bike workouts. Choices include:

  • Quick-start (manual mode)
  • Three fitness tests (beginner, advanced and recovery)
  • Four user-defined programs
  • Nine heart rate control programs (four beginner, five advanced)
  • 12 profile programs

RideSocial is a mobile app for Android and Apple devices. It can turn the Schwinn 270 into a sort of magic carpet, letting you virtually tour the world as you ride! The app lets you preview and optionally pay to download “mixed reality” bike exercise videos. These high-definition videos can play on your mobile device or home entertainment system, letting you ride with street-level views in HD. Three of our favorite choices are rides through Tibet, along Venice Beach and past Ireland’s Blair Castle. Some routes are filmed with VR 360 technology, so you can virtually “look around” as you ride.

This bike app is “social” because avatars for other RideSocial users show along your route. You can also coordinate bike ride times with real-life friends.

Schwinn 270 Features

The Schwinn 270 Recumbent Bike frame is designed well. A “walk through” style and low seating make getting on/off the bike easy, even for people with limited motion. Customers vouch that as advertised, the sturdy frame helps make the bike suitable for users up to 300 pounds.

Recumbent exercise bike seats have high backs to give lumbar support. On the Schwinn 270 the seat back is ventilated to help you keep cool. Meanwhile the seat bottom is cushioned, unlike that of the cheaper Schwinn 230.

You can adjust the seat’s distance from the pedals by sliding it along an aluminum rail. Judging from customer reviews these bikes are comfortable matches for people about 5’3” to 6’0” tall.

A 17-lb magnetic flywheel system provides resistance. With digital controls you can alternate among 25 settings. Ideally a recumbent bike’s resistance system would be more robust, but this setup is respectable for the price. We do like how the increments are relatively small; this helps each rider find an appropriate match, and it also helps you “level up” more quickly.

Heart rate can be measured with a chest strap (not included) or with contact sensors built into the bike. The contact sensors get complaints for inaccuracy, and wireless readings are the better option.

A ledge is provided for your mobile device or a magazine. Stereo speakers and an MP3 player jack are built into the console. A USB port is provided to keep a device powered.

Also included are a three-speed fan, a bottle holder and an accessory tray.

Warranty & Guarantee

The new Schwinn 270 exercise bike warranty includes this coverage:

– Frame: 10 years

– Mechanical: 2 years

– Electronics: 1 year

– Labor: 90 days

Conclusion

A pleasant surprise, the Schwinn 270 is a $500 fitness machine that tends to provide good value. In contrast lots of low budget exercise bikes are more prone to breaking down within a year. This 2017 model supports smooth pedaling and has many resistance levels. It also supports a diverse range of bike workout programs, including choices with wireless heart rate control and virtual reality environments. Unless a rider is particularly tall or short, or needs advanced resistance, the Schwinn 270 is one of the best low-impact fitness machines under $500.