The NordicTrack E5vi Elliptical – A Dud at $999

The 2010 model of the NordicTrack E5vi elliptical comes with the 1-Step™ SpaceSaver® Design to save you space in your home gym or family room. It has a music port, adjustable stride lengths, 16 workout programs, and more. Unfortunately, it lacks the quality to stand up to competitor models in its price class.

What You Get

The ClearView backlit console displays readout of your session as well as showing a 10" x 20" workout matrix. Among the 16 programs, you can choose between aerobic, weight-loss or performance workouts.

The features on the NordicTrack E5vi elliptical include:

NordicTrack E5vi Elliptical
  • Adjustable Stride - 13", 15" and 18"
  • Silent Magnetic Resistance
  • 12 Resistance Levels
  • 16 Pre-set Programs
  • Upper Body Workout Arms
  • EKG Grip Pulse
  • Compatible Music Port for iPod®
  • CoolAire® Workout Fan
  • 275-lb. user weight capacity
  • 1-Step™ SpaceSaver® Design

UPDATE: The E5vi has been discontinued and replaced with the all new SpaceSaver SE7i, one of our Best Buy picks.  Check out the review to learn more.

The Word on the Street

The NordicTrack E5vi elliptical trainer has 12 resistance levels and Adjustable Ergo Stride Technology which allows the user to set the trainer at different lengths, 13", 15”, and 18". This helps the user to target different muscles groups in the glutes, hips, legs, and calves to achieve better definition. Experts caution potential buyers that the NordicTrack warranty is weak and the machine’s reliability is suspect.

The NordicTrack elliptical reviews by consumers have been negative over the past couple of years, as users have been reporting major problems with these Chinese manufactured machines. The worst issue is the lack of quality control; that is, poorly matching parts, and even missing parts, as the units are shipped from the factory.

Another problem involves poor customer service. While you might get a service tech to come to your home on the 3rd or 4th try, you can expect the customer service rep on the phone to depend on you the consumer to diagnose the problem as well as fix it yourself when the part is shipped.

Our Thoughts

For $999, the NordicTrack E5vi elliptical is a dud. While the E5vi sold for as low as $599 in 2009, the 2010 model is higher priced with nothing to warrant the price increase.

There is no reason – none – to buy this machine over several other trainers, including the better quality Sole E25 ($999), a winner that has made Best Buy lists for several years running. NordicTrack actually owns an excellent elliptical line, made by Schwinn, a company they bought back in 2001. We suggest you check out these Schwinn models that have offered proven reliability since 2007: the Schwinn 431 (at $799) and the Schwinn 460 ($999).

For the same price or even less, you get smart quality, great value, and good customer service. Take some time and read some of the 400+ positive reviews on Amazon that were left by happy owners about the Schwinn 430 Elliptical Trainer.

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