The Life Fitness C3 Lifecycle is an enhanced version of the C1 with better features and an overall sturdier build. It's a great option for those that can afford it, offering a smooth and natural workout with less impact.
The company remains a leader in the commercial cardio equipment niche, with a nice lineup of bikes for every fitness level.
The C3 is all black with silver accents, and you have your choice of two consoles: the basic Go and the more advanced Track Connect. The LCD display provides all of the important workout specs such as distance, time, program, level and more, so you can keep track of your progress as you train.
Let's take a look at the most important specs...
The upright exercise bike features:
The Life Fitness C3 upright is a top notch exercise bike and has received great reviews since it was first introduced some years back. It is a nice upgrade from the C1 model, with a few enhancements that make it even more comfortable to use.
There are 20 different resistance levels to choose from, so you can make your ride as challenging as you'd like. The pedals are well-cushioned for comfort, as is the seat. You get the racing style handlebars that many riders prefer.
One of the most appealing features is the choice of two consoles, one basic and one advanced. The Go Console features a bright blue LCD screen, 12 workouts, 2 custom workouts and 2 user profiles.
The advanced Track Connect console (previously called Track +) connects to your smart phone or tablet via Bluetooth, giving you access to various fitness apps through LF Connect. You get 16 workouts plus 12 custom workouts, as well as 4 user profiles.
You don't need the step-up console, but if you are someone who likes to track and share your workout results and set goals for yourself, it's nice to have.
Some other nice features on the Life Fitness C3 include 2 cup holders, integrated accessories tray, front wheels for easy transport, pedal straps and a max user weight of 400, up from 350 on the C1 model.
The ride is smooth and natural, one of the hallmarks of Life Fitness...they are known for their ergonomic design that puts you in the ideal position on all of their cardio equipment.
The Life Fitness exercise bikes have more features and capabilities as you move up in the lineup. That's not to take anything away from the entry level C1...it's an awesome bike. But they just add things to the more expensive bikes that are not found on the base model.
Let's take a look at all of the uprights just to give you an idea of how they differ...
Life Fitness C1
The base model is the most affordable and lightest upright in the lineup, offering standard pedals, cushioning and upholstery, 20 levels of resistance, 14 seat adjustments, two console options and a 300 lb. max weight capacity.
Life Fitness C3
The step-up model adds enhanced cushioned pedals, deluxe seat, an additional cupholder and a 400 lb. max weight capacity, so it's more commercial grade than the base C1.
Life Fitness Club Series +
Replacing the previous Club Series upright, the new Plus model features a touch screen console, something not found on any other models, 25 resistance levels as well as a sleek, modern look that differentiates it from the rest of the Life Fitness exercise bikes.
Life Fitness Platinum Club Series
The Platinum Club is the most advanced upright in the series, with 4 frame color choices, three console options, fingertip resistance control and commercial-grade touches, along with additional resistance levels to choose from.
So the Life Fitness Lifecycle C3 is an upgraded version of the C1, which gives you a more health club like feel and can accommodate heavier users. Otherwise it's relatively the same.
It bridges the gap between the more residential and the true commercial-grade models.
You really can't go wrong with any of the Life Fitness exercise bikes, whether it's an upright, recumbent or one of their newer indoor cycling bikes.
That said, it really comes down to your budget most of the time. The C1 will be your most affordable choice, at around $1,399 with the basic Go Console. The recumbent version, the R1, is similarly priced.
The Life Fitness C3 starts at around $500 more, so you have to decide if it's worth the additional cost for a the more advanced touches and higher max weight. If there's multiple users in your household it might be a good choice. It can certainly stand up to heavier usage.
Our favorite upright bike in the lineup is the new Club Series +, but at around $3,200 it might be above your budget. That would be our choice if money was not a concern. It has the new touch screen, a sleek modern look and tons of built in workouts.
The Platinum Club is overkill in our opinion, as you don't necessarily need all of that for your home gym. The other models, especially the Club Series +, give you everything you need and more.
So we would narrow down the choices to the Life Fitness C3 and the Club Series +. If you can swing the additional expenditure, go with the Club Series +...if not, the C3 is awesome as well.
We love the LifeCycles from Life Fitness, and the C3 is no exception. If you like the idea of having a gym quality bike right in your own home gym, this is definitely a great choice.
It's definitely well priced for what you are getting, but if you want to save a little money take a look at the C1 as well, which is around $500 or so less. For home use it will suit you just fine, and it also has the console choices.
The C3 is well-built, beautifully designed and very comfortable to ride. There are plenty of resistance levels as well as diversified workouts to choose from.
If you want something even more advanced, take a look at the up-level Club Series +, the newest addition to the lineup.
UPDATE: End of Summer Exercise Bike Sales are going strong!
Best Bikes For 2020
Find the right bike at the best price!
How to make the time spent exercising fun!
Rave or rant about the exercise bike you purchased online or used at the gym.