With Sunny Health, you can’t expect gym quality, but what these guys do have is more experience than anyone else at building low-cost fitness gear. I’ve reviewed their equipment for years and have always been impressed with what’s on offer for the price point. And the Sunny Health & Fitness Recumbent bike is no exception.

Sturdy Low Profile Design

The SF-RB4850 is a surprisingly sturdy recumbent bike for the price point, it has a low profile design which is something that always aids stability, and it’s fairly heavy too, which means it’s well built; the parts aren’t cheap, and that extra weight keeps it planted to the floor. You also get a ton of workout programs, a comfy adjustable seat, and most importantly, resistance is strong enough for beginners and intermediates.

It’s certainly a recumbent bike I feel is worth taking seriously, and in today’s review, we’ll look at everything it offers, including any drawbacks.

I’ve reviewed a few other impressive bikes in this price bracket, so at the end of the review, I’ll compare the Sunny to one of my other favorites with a similar price tag, the Xterra SB2.5r as it will be interesting to see how they match up.

First, a quick look at the Sunny Health & Fitness Recumbent bike product specs!

Product Specifications


Product dimensions – ‎59 x 26 x 47.5 inches


Weight – 87lb


Resistance Type – Magnetic


Resistance levels – 16


Pre-programmed workouts – 12


Folds for storage – No


Flywheel weight – 10lb


Weight capacity – 300lb


Adjustable seat – Yes


Transport wheels

Why Do We Like The Sunny Health & Fitness Recumbent Bike?

What I first noticed about this recumbent bike is the walk-thru frame; not all are designed with a walk-thru frame which is a shame as it’s an important feature, especially for people with arthritis or anyone who has problems with their knees.

The walk-thru frame removes that awkward horizontal bar that you have to step over on regular upright bikes, the walk-thru design makes the recumbent bike easy to assess, and even people with bad shouldn’t have any trouble getting on and off of the bike.

Also, you have quite long handlebars with this recumbent bike, so you can grab hold of these for stability as you lower yourself to sit on the bike.

Sunny Health has well over two decades of experience building recumbent bikes, so these guys know what they’re doing, and its shows with the design.

Comfy Wide Padded Seat

You’d be surprised that a few recumbent bikes in this price bracket don’t even have padded seats, which is crazy, considering the main purpose of a recumbent bike is to provide comfort while exercising. Even one of the Schwhinn recumbent bikes, which is twice the price of the Sunny, doesn’t include a padded seat.

The seat of the Sunny recumbent boasts three-inch padding. It’s not the high-density foam padding you find on commercial bikes, but it’s still impressive to find such a well-padded seat on a bike in this price bracket. Users have praised how comfy the seat of this bike is.

The seat is also contoured for stability, which is what I like to see. You don’t want to slip around on the seat, it needs to be contoured. So a thumbs up to Sunny for the seat.

The seat has eight adjustment positions, which gives you a height range of 5ft to 6’1″. Still, that’s a rough estimate. You can also decide the height range by the leg inseam; for this bike, the inseam range is  23.6 inches to 33.1 inches. 

Backrest Isn’t Adjustable

Something else I should mention about the seat is that the backrest isn’t adjustable, which shouldn’t be a problem for most people, but it can be a problem for people with back issues.

However, unless you spend well over $1k, finding a recumbent with an adjustable backrest is impossible. I’m afraid it’s a privilege you have to pay quite a bit more for. 

Build Quality and Stability

As I mentioned in the intro, this isn’t a lightweight, cheap bike, yes, it’s a long way off commercial grade, and you’d expect it to be in this price range, but it’s not one of those cheaply made bikes that weigh 50-60lb.

With the Sunny bike, you have an 87lb build which is impressive for the price point. The 87lb weight tells me the quality of the parts is high. It’s a well-built, sturdy machine for the price point which is what I’ve come to expect from the guys at Sunny Health.

Many people have mentioned how sturdy this bike feels and that party because of the weight as the bike’s weight will help keep it planted to the floor, but it’s also the low centre of gravity and those wide front and rear stabilizer bars which help.

Lastly, a feature I love to see are the adjustable levelers built into the rear stabilizer bar. A really useful feature as you can independently adjust the levelers to keep the bike stable on uneven floors.

sunny health & fitness recumbent bike monitor

Decent Monitor With Workout Programs

You can’t expect to find high-end features on monitors in this price bracket, you won’t find HD color touchscreens or anything advanced, but for a recumbent bike that costs under $400, this is a decent monitor. You have 24 built-in workout programs, which is great as workout programs will keep you challenged and coming back for more. Workout programs are a feature that will hopefully prevent the bike from turning into a clothes rack.

Also, you get 16 levels of resistance, and what I like about the resistance is that you can change resistance strength from the monitor. You don’t have to adjust manually by turning a dial which is what you’ll find on many cheap recumbent bikes.

Also, this bike monitor tracks all the essential workout stats like distance, time, speed, and pulse, which you can view easily on the screen while you exercise.

The only disappointing thing for me about the monitor is that it doesn’t have wireless heart rate monitoring which is a much more accurate way to monitor your heart rate than the built-in handlebar pulse sensors.

And lastly, you have a tablet holder to watch your favorite shows while you pedal.

side view sunny recumbent bike

16 Levels of Frictionless Resistance

The best resistance system for a recumbent bike is magnetic resistance. Magnetic resistance is so appealing for a bike because it’s frictionless, which means it’s smooth, and best of all because the magnets never make contact with the flywheel, it’s quiet. So quiet you can watch TV or listen to music without being disturbed by the sound of the machine.

The Sunny SF-RB4850 includes 16 levels of resistance, which is suitable for beginners and intermediates.

Resistance in the upper levels won’t be super strong, after all, this is a low-cost recumbent bike. Still, there’s enough strength to last most people at least a few years without outgrowing the machine. Some may never outgrow.

Only a 10lb Flyhweel

The reason the resistance strength isn’t commercial strong is that you have a fairly light flywheel with this machine, it weighs just 10lb, which will affect resistance strength. So if you’re someone who’s really serious about their fitness, you’ll want to spend a little more and choose a recumbent bike with a heavier flywheel.

Is The Pedaling Motion Smooth?

How smooth the pedaling motion of the bike feels is something else many people ask when buying a recumbent bike. The smoothness of the pedaling motion is affected by a lot of factors; the resistance system is one; which drive system does it use, belt or chain? And the weight of the flywheel is another factor.

With the Sunny recumbent bike, you have a magnetic resistance system and a belt drive system, this is the smoothest and quietest combination for any recumbent bike, but you don’t have a heavy flywheel.

So while this machine will feel pretty smooth, it won’t feel like a gym quality machine. You’ll need a premier weighted heavy flywheel wheel for that.

2-3 Hour Assembly

Most of the heavy lifting of the Sunny Recumbent bike assembly has been done for you. The base frame of the bike all comes in one piece, and the drive and resistance systems come pre-assembled, so that’s most of the complicated stuff out of the way. What you’ll need to do is attach the base bars, the seat, the console mast, the front handlebars, the console, and the pedals.

Most people assemble this bike in around 2 hours; however, it’s always best to set aside an afternoon to assemble any large piece of fitness equipment. This way, you can take it slow and ensure you get it right the first time. 

All the tools for the job and a fully illustrated manual are provided. 

The Good

Sturdy well built recumbent bike for price point

Walk thru frame for easy access

Whisper quiet resistance system, you won’t disturb others around you with the sound of the bike

Well padded comfy contoured seat

16 resistance levels suitable for beginners and intermediates

A good monitor for a low cost bike with 24 built-in workout programs

Adjustable seat with a height range of 5ft to 6’1″

Built-in transport wheels, adjustable levelers, tablet holder and water bottle holder

The Bad

Flywheel is quiet light at 10lb

No online connectivity

Backrest isn’t adjustable



xterra SB2.5r recumbent bike side view

Xterra Fitness SB2.5r Recumbent Bike

Xterra Fitness are another company that specializes in low-cost fitness equipment. Like Sunny Health, they have been around for a few decades, so they have much experience. Xterra is one of the only companies in this price bracket that I feel delivers a high-quality product at a low price.

The Xterra SB2.5r is another well-built machine. This thing weighs 108lb which is very heavy for a bike that costs only $400. It’s a study machine, and that weight tells us it’s not a cheaply made recumbent bike. This machine is well built.

Just like the Sunny bike, the Xterra Fitness bike uses both a magnetic resistance system and a belt drive system, so it’s whisper-quiet in use, and everything feels smooth.

The monitor is impressive as it includes 24 resistance levels and 24 workout programs, all of which can be chosen from the monitor using the one-touch buttons.

The seat and backrest is padded, and the seat is wide and countered, so it’s comfy and provides stability. With a height range of 5ft to 6’1″.

But perhaps the best feature of this recumbent bike is its flywheel. It weighs 22lb which is almost commercial heavy. This means the pedaling motion on Xterra recumbent bike is particularly smooth for a bike in this price bracket, and the resistance strength in the upper levels is strong. You won’t outgrow this bike anytime soon.


To Sum Up

I think Sunny Health has done well with their recumbent bike. It’s a bike that has got all the essentials right; the design is great, and it’s easy to use. It includes the walk-thru frame and the comfy wide adjustable seat, which are the vital features we look for from a recumbent bike. And the build quality is there too. The SF-RB4850 is a sturdy machine well-made machine. And for under $400, it’s well-priced, and you shouldn’t be disappointed.

There’s nothing that really lets the Sunny bike down, yes, it hasn’t got an adjustable backrest, but you cant expect to find one in this price bracket, and yes, the monitor is fairly basic, but that’s also to be expected when paying this sort of money. What’s most important is that the machine is easy to get on and off of, well made, and runs smoothly, which the Sunny recumbent bike does. It’s certainly in the top 3 recumbents under $400.