Like a lot of people, I always thought NordicTrack was all about the tech and their app iFit. You kind of got the feeling they didn’t pay much attention to the build of their machines, and it was partly true for a while; you could see the evidence of this in their reviews.

But over the past 10 years, ever since I’ve been reviewing their gear, my opinion of them has changed. Yes, the app is still at the forefront of their marketing, but the quality of their equipment has got better, a lot better.

Heavy Duty Builds and The Best Tech.

The Best NordicTrack Elliptical is no longer all about the app. I can happily say the build quality is right up there with companies like Sole Fitness. NordicTrack are now releasing 200lb mid-level front-drive ellipticals, an impressive weight considering the price tags. Boasting adjustable strides, 32lb flywheels, and excellent power inclines, the essentials are all there. So even without the fancy tech and iFit, the NordicTrack front drive ellipticals still tower above most in this price bracket. Those lovely HD touchscreens are now just a welcome bonus.

And it’s their front drive ellipticals I want to focus most on today as it’s here I feel NordicTrack shine their brightest.

Still, I don’t want to forget their rear-drive elliptical, the SE7i, which was a real diamond in the rough for these guys, the only problem is it’s been around a while, and Nordictrack has decided to sunset that model. However, it will stay available on amazon for a few more years, so I want to feature the SE7i in this guide while there’s still time to get hold of it. (it’s an impressive machine)

For those in a rush, you can check out the comparison table below for our top choices, and if you have more time, please read the review summaries for each elliptical and the buyer’s guide at the end.

Best NordicTrack Elliptical – Comparison Table

Commercial 9.9
  • side view commercial 9.9 elliptical nordictrack
  • Stride Length – 19″ adjustable
  • Resistance Levels –  22
  • Flywheel weight – 25lb
  • iFIT – 30 days included
  • Incline – Power Adjust 0-20%
  • 7″ Full-Color HD Touchscreen


Man viewing ifit on NordicTrack commercial 14.9 elliptical

1. NordicTrack Commercial 14.9 Elliptical

My favorite NordicTrack Elliptical has to be their front drive 14.9. NordicTrack does front drives best, they’ve always done well with their front-drive machines, and this is where their expertise lies when it comes to ellipticals.

And the 14.9 is one of the most impressive front drives you’ll find for under $1500. What I love most about this machine is the flywheel weight. It’s the heaviest flywheel in this price range. And a heavy flywheel is essential because its the main factor that contributes to a smooth elliptical motion.

You dont want a stuttering elliptical; they’re a headache, and to make sure you avoid one, you need a heavy flywheel, the heavier, the better, that extra weight will ensure the motion is smooth and consistent.

Also, you have a frictionless resistance system with the 14.9, which is another feature that helps keep everything smooth.

As I already mentioned, the build quality has gotten higher over the years, and we see evidence of that with the commercial 14.9 weighting close to 200lb. That extra weight tells me this machine is made from high-quality materials, and that weight will make sure this machine stays planted to the floor and feels sturdy. It won’t feel cheap and unstable.

An incline feature is something else thats essential because front drive ellipticals only really work the anterior muscles of the legs like the quads, and that is because you’re pushing the flywheel to get it spinning, which means standing on the front of the feet working the quads.

So to get the most out of your workouts, you need to work the much larger posterior muscles like your glutes and hamstrings, and for that on a front drive machine you need an incline. And the 14.9 has one of the best in its class.

The 0-20%, 20-level incline of the commercial 14.9 can be adjusted from the quick buttons of the monitor, or you can allow the iFIt trainers to adjust it for you.

14″ Touchscreen and 1000s of trainer-led workouts with iFit

This brings me to the monitor. As you’d expect from NordicTrack, this is the best monitor you’ll find for under $1500 on any elliptical.

The monitor includes advanced features like auto trainer control, where the iFit trainers can adjust resistance and incline for you depending on the route you are running or studio class you are taking, the quick touch buttons, and of course, that impressive 14″ HD color touchscreen that even tilts to suit your height.

The monitor also comes with 30 days of iFit.

iFit features way too much to mention here (check our iFit Review for more detail), but it’s an excellent app, and if you’re going to subscribe, I recommend you subscribe for a single person as it works out at half the price.

Overall this is an elliptical that has everything, the build – it’s sturdy, the elliptical motion is smooth, and resistance is strong thanks to that heavy flywheel. Plus, the monitor is better than anything else you’ll find.

My only gripes? The warranty is slightly disappointing. I would have expected 3 or 4 years on parts, not 2 years. And I expected a 20″ stride, not a 19″. Still, 19″ is okay and can accommodate users up to 6’2″, but at this price, it should be 20″.

The Good

Sturdy build can handle 350lb

Crisp 14″ HD touchscreen – looks great

Impressive 20% power adjustable incline – work your glutes and hamstrings

Power adjustable stride 

Auto adjust technology for resistance and incline – can be used with global routes, trainer-led classes and Google maps

1 month free of iFit

32lb flywheel keeps things nice and smooth

Wireless heart rate capabilities

26 levels of magnetic resistance and its strong in the upper levels because of that heavy flywheel

Built-in transport wheels, cooling fans, BlueTooth, speakers, and tablet holder

The Bad

Needs more built-in workout programs for people who dont want to subscribe to iFit

Warranty is a bit dissapointing

I wanted to see a 20″ stride at this price point


Nordictrack Commercial-9.9-Elliptical machine

2. NordicTrack Commerical 9.9 Elliptical

The first thing you’ll notice about the 9.9 front drive elliptical is that the touchscreen is much smaller. It’s half the size of the 14.9, but we need to remember the 9.9 costs $300 less, so they have to cut back somewhere, and the screen is where it’s most noticeable.

What’s great tho is the 9.9 shares the same heavy-duty frame as the 14.9, so you’ll get that sturdy feel we all look for from a home elliptical, the 9.9 weighs just a few pounds less, weighing 190lb assembled; it’s still a heavy well made mid-level elliptical, and this is what’s most important.

The 9.9 is basically a stripped a down version of the 14.9, with fewer resistance levels, a smaller screen, and a lighter flywheel.

But the flywheel isn’t light by any means, it weighs 25lb which is still very impressive for the price point, and there is easily enough weight there to keep things smooth.

The only time you might notice the difference in flywheel weight would be in the upper resistance levels, they won’t feel quite as strong.

Other than the flywheel weight and the HD screen, these two machines are pretty much identical, the 9.9 boasts the same impressive 20 level 20% power incline, and the montitor includes one-touch buttons, iFit, and all the cool features like Global routes, Google maps and auto trainer control.

Theres a lot of bang for your buck here its just that screen might feel a tad on the small side. But if you’re okay with a smaller screen and lighter flywheel, (25lb is still one of heaviest you’ll find for a mid-level elliptical), save yourself $300 and go for the 9.9. It’s not an elliptical thats going to leave you wanting.

The Good

Sturdy 220lb elliptical – heavy-duty build

25lb flywheel keeps everything feeling smooth

Impressive 0-20 degree power adjustable incline 

Decent warranty that includes 2 years on all parts and 1-year labor

Wireless heart rate monitoring

7″ HD touchscreen with one month free iFit

One touch buttons – save time

Automatic trainer control for resistance and incline (works with global routes, google maps and trainer led classes)

adjustable stride and pedals

Built-in transport wheels, speakers, BlueTooth, cooling fans, and floor levellers to keep the elliptical stable on uneven surfaces

The Bad

Stride length is shorter than most compeditors not my much but it does limit the max height to around 6’2″

Not many built in workout programs if you choose not to use iFit

If you want to take advantage of the wireless heart rate monitoring, you’ll need to purchase the HR chest/wrist strap separately about $30 for a good one


woman pedaling se7i elliptical

3. NordicTrack SE7i Elliptical

It’s tough to try and find a decent rear drive elliptical for under $3k, there just aren’t many around, so when Nordictrack released the SE7i quite a few years back, it was a breath of fresh air in a market flooded with mid-level front-drive ellipticals.

For under $1500, you could finally get a well-made rear drive elliptical without breaking the bank.

And the reason a rear drive is so appealing is that these machines keep your body in an upright standing position, which is what you want.

The problem with front-drive ellipticals is that you have to push the flywheel to get it spinning, so you tend to lean forward, standing on the front of your feet, which means having to correct your posture all the time.

With rear drives, the flywheel is behind you, so instead of using your anterior muscles like your quads to push, you are using your posterior chain muscle to pull the flywheel to get it spinning; thus, the pulling motion keeps the body naturally in an upright standing position.

Also, because you use the much larger posterior muscles like the glutes and hamstrings, you’ll burn more calories as these muscles have a much higher caloric output demand. So for the correct posture and a higher calorie burn, rear drives are the best choice.

And the SE7i is surprisingly good for the price; like the two NordicTrack front drive ellipticals, this thing is heavy at 210lb an impressive weight for a mid-level rear drive, especially one that folds. It’s a solid machine for the price point.

And just months before NordicTrack US sunsetted this elliptical, it had an update, so it now includes a 10″ touchscreen before it just had a 7″ LCD. This makes it seem even crazier that NordicTrack decided to stop production of this model in the US – (still available for NordicTrack UK) and

If this elliptical is still available on Amazon at the time of reading this review, it’s worth checking out. It’s a serious bit of kit and more than worth the money, especially if you can find the updated 10″ screen version.

The Good

Suprisingly sturdy build for a foldable elliptical that can handle 325lb

Rear drive machine – naturally keeps the torso upright

Impressive 10″ smart HD touchscreen

Includes one free month of iFit with 1000’s of workouts

Auto adjust trainer control

Smooth elliptical motion

Very quiet machine thanks to being a rear drive and using a frictionless resistance system

22 levels fo resistance can be quickly adjusted from the one touch buttons of the monitor

adjustable stride length

Folds for storage

Built in transport wheels, BlueTooth, speakers, and cooling fan

The Bad

Would have liked to of seen a 20″ stride

Some people may be disappointed there’s no longer a incline feature

HR chest strap isnt included and theres no pulse sensors


NordicTrack fs10i elliptical

4. NordicTrack FS10i Elliptical

Ellipticals like the FS10i like to boast their compact size, and yes, maybe they are when you’re not using them, but at full stride, this type of elliptical takes up just as much space as a large front or rear drive machine.

And I’ve tried using one of these center drives in the gym, and they dont feel great. They feel awkward, maybe that is just me being so used to rear and from drives that made it feel so strange. I think they will take some getting used to, to appreciate. Still probably best not to let my experience put you off. 

Let’s talk about the positives and start with how solid this machine feels, which is pretty solid. This thing weighs 260lb assembled, so it’s a bit of a beast, and I love that about it.

Also, you have a 32″ auto-adjustable stride, which means you can adjust the stride to suit your size this also means you can use it as a stepper as well as an elliptical, which is cool. Still, I have no idea quite why you’d need a 32″ stride, but heck, it’s nothing to complain about.

You get a 10 degree 10 level incline, the reason it’s less on this elliptical is that you can adjust that stride and use it as a steeper, so you won’t need such a steep incline to work the glutes, etc

And with a 20lb flywheel and 20 resistance levels, resistance is going to feel strong, nothing gym level, but strong enough for beginners and intermediates.

And lastly, you cant spend this much on a NordicTrack without getting a touchscreen and with the FS10i you get the 10″ HD touchscreen with one month of iFit included.

It’s really down to you guys if you like this type of elliptical, if you’ve used one in your local gym and loved it, then the FS10i is one of the best choices out there.  The reason I recommended the 10i over the 14i is that the screen size is the only big difference, so its better to save yourself $500 and choose the 10″ screen as it’s large enough.

The Good

Large 32″ adjustable stride suits any body size

Solid build

Can be used as an elliptical or stepper

10″ HD touchscreen with iFit

Quiet machine thanks to the frictionless magnetic resistance system

Smooth motion

Built in cooling fans, speakers, bottle holder and transport wheels

The Bad

Takes up a lot of space at full stride

No stationary handles, which makes getting on the machine tricky

20lb flywheel is a bit disappointing


Elliptical Buying Tips

woman performing incline workout on proform carbon el elliptical
While there are many design varieties out there, ellipticals can be divided into three categories. All three of these categories are defined by the placement of the flywheel (drive system). The drive system is the main component that facilitates the elliptical motion.When you first take a look at an elliptical, the first thing you will notice is where the drive wheel is situated. Some are placed at the front of the machine; you’ll also see there are ellipticals with flywheels placed in the center of the machine. And finally rear-drive ellipticals.The placement of the flywheel can be particularly important as it can affect the smoothness of the elliptical motion, the length of the machine and the level of noise while the elliptical is in motion.Front Drive – Front-drive machines are the most popular mainly because their price is slightly lower than a rear or mid-drive; they also tend to have smaller footprints, so they are best suited for home use.A basic yet durable design, front-drive machines are typically a little noisier than their front and rear drive counterparts but nothing too noticeable or offputting.Centre Drive – Centre drive ellipticals are a recent addition to the elliptical market, having only been around for a few years. Designed to be similar to a treadmill, except the pedals are where the track would usually be. Centre drive designs allow for a gentle workout.Centre drive, just like the front-drive, tends to be compact in design. However, you need to be careful when choosing a center drive machine as the compact design can lead to short stride lengths!Rear Drive Ellipticals – Most rear-drive ellipticals have a smaller wheel housing that is located behind the pedals making these the longest in design. Many manufacturers claim the rear-drive machines allow for a smoother, more circular pedal motion.The pedals can also be on a track, which allows for an incline. Rear drives systems are usually reserved for high-end ellipticals. Some of the widest stride lengths can be found on rear-drive ellipticals.
rear drive housing unit of youngfit elliptical

Other Key Components To Look Out For

Resistance Type – There’s a couple of resistance types available for elliptical machines; one is magnetic; the other is air. Which is best? For home use, I’d always recommend you go with magnetic.

Magnetic resistance is much quieter in use than air resistance. You’ll be able to exercise without disturbing yourself or others around you. A near-silent machine is great for people who live in an apartment or do not have a dedicated room to house a machine.

Magnetic resistance has another useful advantage over air resistance. Because magnetic resistance is constant i.e the resistance strength only changes when you manually select a higher or lower level. You can exercise at a slow pace on a high resistance level, something that is impossible with air resistance as air resistance is dynamic; it only gets stronger when you walk/run faster.

Resistance Strength 

Budget ellipticals $400 and under typically provide eight levels of resistance. While this isn’t a ton of resistance levels, it will provide enough resistance for medium to light cardio workouts.

That’s not to say you won’t burn any calories on a cheaper machine; it all depends on your fitness levels. Still, in general, a machine with eight resistance levels is usually best suited for beginners, walkers, seniors, or anyone looking for lighter workouts.

When you spend a few more bucks $600+, we start to see 16-24 resistance levels here; you can expect reasonably strong resistance in the upper levels. the machines are, in general, of higher quality and will provide the user with much more of a challenge and will allow for years of growth.

$1k+ ellipticals will, of course, come with the most resistance levels and heavier flywheels – Great if you can afford one but sometimes overkill for a home gym

Stride Length

The most important feature you need to look out for when buying an elliptical is the stride length, the last thing you want is to set up the machine only to find the stride length is too short for you to run or walk freely.If you don’t know how the stride length is measured? It’s the measurement from the toe of the front pedal to the heel of the rear pedal while the pedals are at their widest stride.For many who only plan on walking or running slowly will find they can get away with a shorter stride length, but for taller users or anyone wishing to use an elliptical for fast-paced walking or running, you will need a stride length of at least 18″.If you have exercised on an elliptical in your local gym – nearly all have a stride length of between 20-22″ So if you’ll able to run freely using a machine at your local gym you should have no issues with the NordicTrack ellipticals.Over 6’2″? You may need to find an elliptical with a stride length of 22″+ especially if you plan on intense workouts which require longer strides

Workout Space

Even compact ellipticals are large machines; most people are surprised how big elliptical machines are once they are delivered to their doors. So be don’t be caught out, take a look at measurements of the elliptical you are interested in and make sure your home has the space needed to house one comfortably.

Most ellipticals are between 5 and 7 feet long, and remember, you’ll need to leave room for the pedals of the machine while they are in motion.

If you are going to opt for a rear-drive, another important thing to remember is the pedals can extend a foot behind the mainframe. Also, allow for 20″ either side of the machine.

And let’s not forget the height. This is particularly important for those of you who might be thinking’ of keeping the elliptical in the basement. Check the elliptical max pedal height plus your hight-the the combined height of both will be the maximum height of the chosen elliptical. The last thing you want is to be banging your head!

Above are the most important features you should consider when first buying an elliptical. Of course, there are bonus features such as wifi, fun workouts app, workout programs, HD screens, wireless heart rate monitoring, etc. just remember the more bonus features you choose, the higher the price of the elliptical.

 To Sum Up

If you have $1500 to spend, then it goes without saying the best elliptical NordicTrack offer is the Commercial 14.9. I like this front-drive elliptical because it offers you everything you need. You have a heavy flywheel, so you can be sure resistance is strong and the elliptical motion smooth. And an incline feature that rivals any of its competitors.

The build quality of the 14.9 is still a long way off commercial grade, as you’d expect for a mid-level machine, but for a home gym elliptical, it’s good enough.

So on the essentials, the 14.9 gets everything right. And the crisp 14″ tilt touchscreen and iFit are just the cherries on top of an already impressive elliptical.

Best NordicTrack Ellipticals FAQs

Are NordicTrack Any Good?

NordicTrack makes some of the best ellipticals on the market. They specialize in mid-level machines, so while they dont really make anything commercial grade, their mid-level ellipticals are the perfect choice for beginners and intermediates.

Is NordicTrack Worth It?

NordicTrack is the best choice for people who love fitness apps, as most of their fitness gear is equipped with impressive HD touchscreens that all offer iFit. To most out of NordicTrack equipment, it is best used with iFit; then, you will have access to advanced features like auto trainer control, Google Maps, and seventeen thousand workouts.

Can Use NordicTrack Ellipticals Without iFit?

Yes, you can. All you need to do is hold down the iFit button for 30 seconds to disable iFit.