Viavito Onyx Folding Exercise Bike review TL;DR: a bargain cardio machine for those who want to work out at home but are short on space.
If you want to get fit at home but don’t have enough room to swing a cat, buying one of the best folding exercise bikes could be the answer to your prayers.
Aside from being compact and collapsible so they can be hidden away after a workout, folding exercise bikes tend to be hundreds (if not thousands) cheaper than many of the best exercise bikes around. For those same reasons, they’re also perfect for beginners and casual fitness fans wanting to work up a sweat in the comfort of their homes - small space or not - without breaking the bank.
If a folding exercise bike sounds like your perfect fit, you’d do well to continue reading this review of the Viavito Onyx Folding Exercise Bike, which offers a comfy, stable ride and eight levels of resistance for an effective workout at a bargain price!
However, if you’re not quite sure what kind of home exercise bike is right for you, check out our handy guide that explains the differences between folding and non-folding exercise bikes. And if you prefer running to cycling, don’t forget to look at our round-up of the best folding treadmills.
Viavito Onyx Folding Exercise Bike Review: Price and availability
US/AU availability TBC.
Viavito Onyx Folding Exercise Bike Review: Setup
Designed to hold people weighing up to 100kg (heavier people should read the ‘also consider’ section at the bottom of this review), the Viavito Onyx feels surprisingly sturdy, secure, and stable in use – a view that was confirmed by my 6’4” brother who weighs 15 stone (210 Lb).
A thick metal ‘locking key’ pin pulls out from the centre of the x-frame when you want to open the bike out for cycling or fold it back up and slots easily back into place to secure the frame in its folded or unfolded position. Most importantly, the pin stays in place and doesn’t move around whether you’re peddling away or moving the bike from one location to another. In short, you always feel safe while using it.
Weighing a very lightweight 14kg when assembled, the bike has a folded footprint of just 33cm x 41cm and stands at a height of 136cm, so it’s very easy to store in a cupboard, under the bed, behind the sofa or in a corner out of the way.
When fully unfolded, the Viavito Onyx has a compact footprint of 81cm x 41cm (approx. 81 x 16 in.). And as someone who has invested in a big flashy exercise bike before, but lives in a busy household that is short on space, I really liked the way this bike didn’t take up too much room and could be hidden away afterwards - no more stubbing my toes on the base or scraping my leg against a peddle in the middle of the night (there’s a reason why my fancy bike got relegated to the garage months ago).
In truth, the folding frame and compact size of the bike is the stand-out feature, because the Viavito Onyx is pretty basic in terms of electronics and programming. The battery-operated LCD console displays time, speed, distance, calories burned, and heart rate, and you get eight levels of resistance from the 1.2kg flywheel. But this is more than enough for fitness newbies and casual exercisers.
Viavito Onyx Folding Exercise Bike Review: Workout performance
There’s only so much you can do with this machine, but what it lacks in variety, it makes up for with its ease of use and accessibility. This bike doesn’t offer any kind of pre-programmed workouts or access to live and on-demand classes; you just get on and peddle, so it’s up to you to bring the motivation.
If I’m honest, I think this is the kind of exercise bike you get on and mindlessly ride for 30-minutes while watching your favourite TV show, and that’s absolutely fine for the average exerciser who will also appreciate the near accurate heart rate readings courtesy of the hand pulse sensors on the fixed handlebars. But those who have high fitness levels and even higher expectations of their cardio equipment may find it lacking.
It's also worth noting that older users might struggle to get onto the bike, as you need a fair bit of mobility to raise a foot almost two feet off the ground and step it over the centre of the x-frame. Equally, those who stand 5 feet and under might not find it so easy to climb aboard or reach the self-levelling, adjustable peddles because the adjustable seat height ranges between 80.5cm to 91cm (I’m 5’ 6”, and I was most comfortable on the second lowest setting).
In action, this bike offers an almost silent ride (great for watching those soaps, eh?), and it’s very quick and easy to manually increase or decrease the eight levels of ‘friction-free’ magnetic resistance at the turn of the dial located just below the handlebars.
The ride is smooth until you get to the seventh and eighth levels, where pedalling gets tougher but also a little jerkier, and I admit I missed the continuous, smooth motion of a pricier bike. But the range of resistance is definitely good enough for people with low to average fitness levels looking to get fitter and raise their heart rate without putting any impact through the body.
The very wide, generously padded seat is comfy enough for long rides, and I certainly didn’t experience a numb bum at any point. This is a plus point, as you should never try to ride ‘out of the saddle’ when you’re on a folding bike, simply because they won’t provide you with the same amount of stability as a pricier Peloton Bike+ or Echelon EX-3 Bike, for example, with their solid, one-piece frames.
Viavito Onyx Folding Exercise Bike Review: Verdict
The Viavito Onyx Folding Exercise Bike provides a convenient, practical, and affordable solution for those who want to get fit at home but are short on space.
The star of the show is the lightweight, compact, and collapsible x-frame, which folds away simply and easily when you want to reclaim your space, but is also safe, sturdy, and reliable when you want to work up a sweat.
The eight levels of resistance alongside the basic metrics displayed on the LCD monitor – including accurate heart rate readings - make it a great choice for new and casual exercisers wanting to understand the effects of exercise on their body. But those wanting a more strenuous workout or greater scope for progression should look elsewhere.
Viavito Onyx Folding Exercise Bike Review: Also consider
The Exerpeutic Folding Magnetic Upright Bike (retailer link) has a high maximum weight capacity of 300 pounds (137 kg) and a wider seat, making it ideal for heavy people to exercise. It also folds down to half its original size, while the LCD screen provides data for you to track. Sadly, it costs almost 50% more than the Viavito Onyx.
The Domyos Folding Connected Exercise Bike has a max user weight of 110kg and reduces in size by 50% when folded for easy storage. Aside from the 6kg flywheel and 15 levels of resistance, it connects with external apps, including Econnected and Kinomap, so you can keep track of your training and progress and cycle virtual real-world routes.