The Horizon E70 Elliptical Review – A new downgrade unit

After a day away from the DOJO on Monday, the Treadmill Sensei has returned, relaxed and re-energized, ready to share his fitness wisdom with the internet masses. Yesterday we had a walk in customer here at the DOJO (well, they called before they walked in), which is a bit unusual. Normally we don’t really work with the general public because our calls will come in from vendors, gyms or manufacturers about setting up services calls for myself or one of the younger Senseis to go out and perform. Even more out of the ordinary, the customer brought in a unit that I had never seen before…a fact which Hikaru had a lot of fun teasing me about. I told him that I leave knowing EVERYTHING to God….I just know ALMOST everything.

The unit the customer brought in was the Horizon E70 Elliptical which he bought at a Dick’s Sporting Goods locally a month or so before. Upon putting the E70 Elliptical together once he got home, the customer quickly realized the rails were bent and his monitor wasn’t working. As a service tech for more than 20 years I am very familiar with Horizon, so I was eager to get a chance to check out the Horizon E70.

**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.

Taking the Horizon E70 off of the truck, I quickly realize this tiny unit was probably the new version of Horizon’s old E51 Elliptical from 2004/2005. This excited me because the Horizon e50 series was a great line of very good feeling, budget ellipticals. Luckily, we had an old E51 machine left in the warehouse and never picked up by a former client. With the help of our new “intern,” Johnny, I put the machines together for some side by side comparisons…and this is what we found:

The Horizon E70 elliptical appears to be a downgraded or downsized version of the already low-end Horizon E51. The E70 is about 30 pounds lighter than its predecessor and has a very short stride of 14 inches (as compared to the 16 inch stride of the E51). It only has 10 levels of magnetic resistance versus 15 on the Horizon E51 (a note about resistance: the resistance range was the same on the two units, the E51 just had a higher incremental range than the Horizon E70 elliptical).

Both the Horizon E70 and the E51 both had pulse grip heart rate monitoring, LCD monitors, 1 year parts/labor warranties and articulating pedals (which assist in your circulation and comfort while working out). Neither one has programs, work out fans or very many extras at all.
The plus side is, in spite of the shorter stride, the Horizon E70 was still very smooth. So, if you’re a shorter person you’d be very please with the natural motion of this machine.

All in all, the Horizon E70 elliptical was a very decent machine for the price (around $499). I was disappointed that it wasn’t as robust as the machine it replaced and lost the longer stride length. If you’re on a very strict budget and want to get an elliptical then the Horizon E70 might be a good choice. I would recommend the even better Horizon EX22 if you can. The longer stride and heavier unit will feel even better. The EX22 can be found for between $499 and $599 with free shipping if you shop around online.

My final word on the Horizon E70 Elliptical is that I am torn. I love that Horizon has released another budget level treadmill to the mass mark. I’m disappointed that it has lost some of the better features of the E51 and that seems to only be available at brick and mortar stores, which makes it harder to get a good deal (and get out of paying sales tax) by going online. The Treadmill Sensei gives the Horizon E70 a very solid 3 our of 5 Golden Buddahs.

The word of the Sensei is: 3 out of 5 for the Horizon E70.

Horizon E70 Elliptical Specifications
Front-drive design
Heavy-duty flywheel
Magnetic resistance
250-pound capacity
Pivoting pedals
14″ stride
5 LCD windows
10 resistance levels
Contact HR