CITYROW GO Review (Max & Classic Models Compared)

By now, most of us already have an idea of how important cardio machines are. However, elliptical machines, treadmills, and bikes aren’t for everybody. The rowing machine is an excellent alternative: it’s easy on the joints, doesn’t require as much balance and coordination as a stand-up machine, and is usually more compact.  

However, not every rowing machine is made the same. The CITYROW GO models are exploding in popularity due to their ease of use, entertainment options, comfort, and much more. If you’re looking for the most comprehensive CITYROW GO review to make sure you choose the right one for you, keep on reading!  

Any good rowing machine should be convenient. That means that it’s user-friendly, easy to store, comfortable, can track performance stats, is durable, and much more.  

Exceptionally Well-Built

Both the CITYROW GO Classic and Max are built with high-quality, sustainable American Ashwood. This is incredibly durable and can support up to 375 pounds. The base is very stable, even when rowing hard and fast! Not only that, but it comes with black powder-coated aluminum, which is lightweight, strong, and resistant to scratches. 


Smooth water resistance is quiet and offers a genuine on-the-water feel compared to air rowers. The footrests are placed just wide enough to allow for the most efficient row while keeping you comfortable. 

We also felt the tapered handle offered a more natural, ergonomic feel to minimize slipping and hand cramps. The seat is well-padded and ergonomically designed, though it may be a bit on the small side for larger users. 



The CITYROW GO Classic and Max can simply be stood up on one end and stored in the corner of a room, closet, behind a door, etc. All you have to do is grab the seat rail, lift up, and store it on its front support. This makes it an excellent folding rowing machine.

The Classic's assembled dimensions are: 85" x 22.25" x 20" while the Max's are 85" x 22.25" x 45.25".  

cityrow go classic stand and store

Real-Time Performance Data

cityrow go max

The Cityrow Go app is required in order to use their stat-tracking and workouts.

There are free trials available, but we felt it was worth the small monthly fee with hundreds of workout programs and real-time tracking of strokes, distance, heart rate, and more.

You'll always be able to find a rowing workout routine to suit your needs and fitness level.


The CITYROW GO Max is a breeze, as it comes with free assembly. All you have to do after it arrives on your doorstep is to add water to the tank! The CITYROW GO Classic does require assembly, but it's pretty easy. Plan on it taking around 45 minutes to fully assemble.  

CITYROW GO Review (Max & Classic Models Compared)  

The Max and Classic models offer quite a few similarities, with some notable differences. Let’s break each category down so you can quickly compare and contrast so you can figure out which is best for your needs.  

Assembly & Maintenance 

The Classic does require assembly, though it is very simple and straightforward. If you have someone to help you out, that’s even better! Just grab the 5mm Allen key included in the shipment and follow the instructions included. Make sure to set aside 30 to 45 minutes and make room for the machine beforehand. The Max only requires you to fill the water tank, which is also incredibly easy to do.  

The Classic does require assembly, though it is very simple and straightforward.

If you have someone to help you out, that’s even better! Just grab the 5mm Allen key included in the shipment and follow the instructions included. 

Make sure to set aside 30 to 45 minutes and make room for the machine beforehand. The Max only requires you to fill the water tank, which is also incredibly easy to do.  

city row easy storage

The machines look very sleek and high-quality. However, to maintain the appearance and integrity, you must regularly clean it. Make sure you don't let dust build up in and on the machine. Dust is best removed using a vacuum cleaner or canned air.

For the monitor and rail, simply wipe them with a damp cloth. Remember the frame is made of wood, so to keep the finish in tip-top shape, try reapplying a coat of Danish Oil once or twice a year.  

Design & Features

The appearance and design are essentially the same, besides the console. On the Max, you have a large touchscreen display, and with the Classic you have a mount to place your smartphone or tablet. On both, the frames are made of solid, sturdy wood and a black powder-coated aluminum.

CITYROW Classic Rower - Portable Rowing Machine for Home

This offers a sophisticated, high-quality appearance that almost looks like a piece of art. Even the clear water tank is cool to look at, with the water sloshing around inside. 

Using The Console & App

The console on the Max is very intuitive and user-friendly from the first time you use it. Both models use the same CITYROW GO App, which functions as your own trainer and will track your workout stats. The latter is essential if you want to know how you’re performing and improving. With workout classes updated weekly, you’ll never plateau or get bored of the older ones.  

CITYROW Max Rower console

At $29/month or $243 for the entire year, it makes working out at home better than a gym membership, and you get to work out from the comfort of your own home! Not to mention, the trainers really give that push you need to meet your goals – even if you’re feeling lazy or unmotivated!  

The touchscreen on the Max is mounted at eye-level and large it makes you feel like you're actually in the studio. The hi-fi speakers only add to that immersive feeling! If you'd like, you can rotate it when you're working out off of the rowing machine.  

The Classic requires you to download the app on your device and place in the adjustable monitor arm. Moreover, it comes with a more basic monitor near the footrests to sync stats with the app on your device.  

Price & Warranty

The models range from around $1000 to $2500, which is around upper-mid-range to high-end. However, they’re ideal for people who really want an investment piece that’s going to last them a long time while also offering a full workout program and entertainment.

Each one comes with a 5-year warranty on the frame and a 3-year component warranty. This is actually quite a good warranty, and you can tell it’s made to last based on this. 




Assembled Dimensions 

85” x 22.25” x 20” 

85” x 22.25” x 45.25”

Folded Dimensions 

20” x 22.25” x 85”  

24” x 22.25” x 85”

Machine Weight 

61 pounds 

75 pounds

Maximum Weight Capacity 

375 pounds 

375 pounds

Resistance Levels  




5 years frame, 3 years components

5 years frame, 3 years components

Check Price 

Pros & Cons Of The CITYROW GO Rowers

We know that there’s not a rowing machine for literally every type of person, though the CITYROW GO is perfect for quite a few! While it does come with a premium price, you get what you pay for here. Fun, effective workouts for all levels on a rotating touchscreen display, a compact design, realistic water resistance, and much more!

The Good 

  • Comfortable design 
  • Easy and fast to fold up for storage 
  • Works for wide variety of user weights and heights 
  • Quiet and smooth motion 
  • Very entertaining 

The Bad 

  • Isn’t the cheapest machine 
  • Buffers with slow internet 
  • App is subscription-based

Comparisons with Similar Rowing Machine Brands  

CITYROW GO vs Ergatta

The Ergatta is very similar to the CITYROW GO Max, which makes sense, considering both are made by WaterRower Club. They both have the same warranty, and both boast wood frames. However, Ergatta rowers are made with artisanal handcrafted frames, while the Max uses aluminum.  

Both come with big display screens to partake in workouts, though the Max's screen is a bit larger. Prices, comfort, and the smooth water motion are all essentially the same, too. The big difference between the two is the type of workout offered. Max uses trainer-led workouts in a studio setting, while Ergatta uses gaming-inspired activities and races.  

CITYROW GO Vs Hydrow  

Hydrow Connected Rowing Machine, Subscription...
  • AN IMMERSIVE WORKOUT: The Hydrow features a...

Once again, these are two very similar machines. One of the most significant differences between them is that the CITYROW GO uses classroom or studio settings in their classes, and Hydrow’s instructors are usually on the water, rowing in real-time. Sights and sounds of birds, "feeling" the waves – it's very realistic.  

Their prices are very similar, with the Hydrow costing approximately $50 more than the CITYROW GO, typically. We really appreciated the enormous catalog of on-demand studio workouts on both. The latter has a wood frame, however, with the Hydrow made of metal and plastic.  

Common CITYROW GO Rower FAQs

Can you use a CITYROW GO without a subscription?  

Yes, you can. Just select the "Just Row" feature, and you're ready to row without using the app! 

How much does the CITYROW GO app cost?

The CITYROW GO app is either $29 per month or $243 for your first year. You can also take advantage of the CITYROW GO free trial beforehand to get an idea of the value it offers.  

Where is the CITYROW GO rowing machine made?  

They’re made in the US, so you can rest easy knowing that everything is made with quality and craftsmanship in mind.  

Can you use the CITYROW GO rowing machine without the internet?  

If you're using the "Just Row" feature, yes. However, if you plan on using the app, you do need an internet connection.  


So, are the CITYROW GO Classic and CITYROW GO Max worth the money? Absolutely! That is, if you’re looking for an effective, comfortable, user-friendly machine that will actually push you to work out harder and smarter! 

Combine all that with the fact that it will last you many years to come, and this machine is one of the best investments you can make in your health! Thanks for tuning in, and we’ll see you again soon! 

Paul J

Last Updated on July 8, 2022