08 July, 2011
A Product Review of NordicTrack Exercise Bikes
Once known for the ski exerciser of the same name, NordicTrack now produces a full line of home exercise equipment focused primarily on treadmills and elliptical trainers. The product line of only NordicTrack exercise bikes might seem like an afterthought for the company, but these exercise machines still offer many of the features you'd expect from NordicTrack equipment, including iFit compatibility on some models.
Design and Resistance
The NordicTrack exercise bike lineup consists of four models. The recumbent, so-called "Commercial" VR bike, the recumbent GX4.0 and the upright C2 SI all offer push-button adjustable resistance. You can either control resistance levels manually, or use preprogrammed workouts that adjust the resistance for you. The GX2 uses a chain-driven, felt-brake direct tension system; you adjust resistance with a manual twist knob, which means no preprogrammed workouts or automatic adjustments.
NordicTrack is notorious for packing its cardio machines full of features. But as a direct-tension exercise bike, the GX2 is devoid of the electronic features you'd usually expect. Instead it comes with adjustable non-slip handlebars, a padded seat that adjusts up, down, forward and back, and two-sided pedals so you can quickly choose to go with or without toe cages. The other NordicTrack bikes come with a more familiar range of features including in-console cooling fans, fitness games, handgrip heart rate monitors and iFit compatibility. You can insert an iFit memory card in either of the Commercial VR or C2 SI consoles, which effectively expands the bike's repertoire of preprogrammed workouts.
The most petite of the NordicTrack bike models, the C2 SI, measures 39.25 inches long by 15 inches wide by 25.5 inches high. The longest and overall largest of the four, the Commercial VR, measures 59 inches long by 18 inches wide by 28 inches high. Maximum user weight capacities are as follows: Commercial VR, 350 lbs.; C2 SI, 250 lbs.; GX4.0, 300 lbs.; GX2, 250 lbs.
Price and Warranty
As of January 2011, NordicTrack exercise bike prices range as follows: Commercial VR, $799; C2 SI, $299; GX4.0, $399; and GX2, $349. The Commercial VR and GX4.0 both comes with a lifetime frame warranty and one year of parts and labor coverage. The C2 SI and GX2 both come with a five-year frame warranty and 90 days of parts and in-home service coverage.