The Horizon E1200 Elliptical Review — An Incline Elliptical Under $1500


We don’t get a huge amount of traffic over on the Treadmill Sensei forums but we do get some. In order to try and support that budding community, the Treadmill Sensei tries to respond on there as often as I can. In fact, I’m usually on there once or twice a week at least and if you have a question that is one of the best places to get an answer to it.

Anyway, about a month ago on the forums, I was challenged to do a review on a new Horizon Fitness elliptical, the Horizon E1200 Elliptical. A loyal reader had seen one at a local Dick’s store and asked my opinion on it. Since we do not have Dick’s stores here in Southern California, and since the unit seems to only be available from Dick’s, I grabbed my credit card back from Mrs. Sensei and ordered one online. About 2 weeks later I received my brand new Horizon E1200 at the DOJO and assigned my now short-haired son to put the thing together. He grumbled a bit because he isn’t the most mechanically inclined person in the world — which actually makes him an excellent choice to find out how easy the E1200 incline ellipticals are to assemble. I told him if he did a good job I would buy him an ice cream. To that he informed me he wasn’t 12 years old any more…but he’d still take the ice cream.

Judging by my son’s cursing, I will estimate that the standard assembly of a Horizon E1200 elliptical will take around an hour for someone with moderate mechanical abilities. I’d give it a slightly harder than average rating for assembly — figure 3 out of 5 for complexity. Which isn’t bad at all. Most ellipticals take 45 to 90 minutes to get together and ready to go. Horizon’s instruction booklet did an acceptable job in illustrating the process.

Once it was all together, Hikaru and my son were both very excited about the IPod port on the top of the Horizon E1200’s console. From what I saw you can control your IPod through the E1200’s console controls. It’s a very neat little feature but doesn’t enhance the elliptical’s performance at all. It is a nice step up from just having speakers on an elliptical.

The IPod docking station on the E1200 Elliptical.

The main exciting features on the Horizon E1200 elliptical are the Precor-style adjustable incline ramp, the incredibly comfortable 19″ stride (if all Horizon models had a 19″ stride they would be dominating the lower end market for sure) and the pivoting/adjustable foot pedals. It’s not often you see those features in an elliptical under $2500. Horizon has done an excellent job in their design and implementation with the E1200 elliptical.

The E1200’s frame is solid and sturdy, and its flywhell is large, providing a smooth elliptical motion to its workouts. Horizon has taken the standard front-wheel design of the Spirit ellipticals to a new level of comfort, stability and excellence. With a 19″ stride, 16 programs, 16 levels of resistance, a 16% maximum incline and articulating footpads, Horizon has set the bar higher than any other manufacturer in its price range.

My two quibbles with the unit come mainly in the form of its lack of heart rate control. I would have also liked to have seen a 24lb flywheel on the unit to take it to an unbeatable level. However, the addition of the adjustable foot pedals and incline ramp more than makes up for my nitpicking. The Horizon E1200 elliptical is an incredible value at just under $1500.

While I was doubtful at first, the Treadmill Sensei was impressed by the Horizon E1200 Elliptical with incline and gives it 4 out of 5 golden buddahs.

For bringing the patented Precor Ramp to home users, the Horizon Performance E1200 Ellipticals comes away with 4 gold buddahs out of 5.

horizon-e1200-elliptical**This model is no longer available, so if you’re interested in a Horizon Fitness elliptical machine you can visit the official Horizon Fitness site and get free shipping on new models or glance at some of the older models still for sale here.

Horizon Performance E1200 Elliptical Specifications
Stride: 19″
Flywheel: 17lbs
Max Incline: 16%
Programs: 16
Display: LED
Heart Rate Monitor: Pulse grip
Heart Rate Control: No
Resistance Levels: 16 levels
Articulating Footpads: Yes
Max User Weight: 300lbs
Unit Weight: Approximately 150lbs

-The Treadmill Sensei