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Horizon GR3 Indoor cycle vs Nordictrack T6.5 treadmill

Posted by Pascal Landshoeft

Apr 29, 2021 9:00:00 AM

Horizon GR3 Indoor cycle vs Nordictrack T6.5 treadmill

This is a comparison of the Horizon fitness GR3 Indoor cycle and the Nordictrack T6.5 treadmill including pros, cons, and alternatives. Follow the links for more details.

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Overview and review NordicTrack T6.5 Treadmill $999 - $1299

This is a review of the NordicTrack 6.5S treadmill which was originally published in "Which Treadmill to get from Nordictrack". Follow the links for more details.

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Overview NordicTrack T6.5 Treadmill $999 - $1299

The Nordictrack 6.5 treadmill is the most compact and cheapest version from Nordictrack. This is the right treadmill to get to save space and money. You can put this treadmill into your back shed or in a cramped apartment. Commercial buyers can optimize small rooms for group training or peak times or just put a large fleet in a big space. This comes at the price of the weakest motor in the Nordictrack line up. The full specs are:
  • 10” Smart HD Touchscreen
  • Includes 1-Year NordicTrack iFit® membership**
  • Auxiliary Music Port
  • Dual 2” Digitally Amplified Speakers
  • FlexSelect™ Cushioning
  • 20” x 55” Commercial Tread Belt
  • 0-10% Incline
  • 0-10 MPH Speed
  • One Touch® Controls
  • 2.6 CHP DurX™ Commercial Plus Motor◊
  • 1.9” Precision and Balanced Non-Flex Rollers
  • 300 Lb. User Capacity
  • EKG Grip Pulse
  • SpaceSaver® Design with EasyLift™ Assist
  • 20 On-Board Workout Programs
  • 54" H x 36" W x 73.5" H Footprint
  • 10-Year Frame Warranty
  • 2-Year Parts Warranty
  • 1-Year Labor Warranty
This is the lower end of the range you get what you pay for. Expect more breakdowns in commercial settings compared to other models out of the Nordictrack range.

Pros of the Nordictrack T 6.5 treadmill

The pros of the Nordictrack T 6.5 are:
  • Compact size
  • Low price
This is the option to save money and space. Simple enough.

Cons of the Nordictrack T 6.5 treadmill

The cons of the T 6.5 treadmill are:
  • Small belt
  • Weak motor
The T 6.5 model is not the right choice if you have a long stride or if you will press a lot of miles on this machine. The 2.6 CHP motor is more likely to break when used heavily than in the other Nordictrack models which usually range from 3.0 up to 4.2 CHP. 

Alternatives to the T 6.5 treadmill

A good alternative to the T 6.5 would be the Rogue Echo bike. It is slightly cheaper, burns more calories per second and takes up less floor space. Of course, strictly speaking, it is not a treadmill. That depends on your goals.

Overview and review of the Horizon GR3 Indoor cycle

This is an overview of the Horizon fitness GR3 Indoor cycle including pros, cons, and alternatives. This article was first published in Which Horizon fitness bike to get?

For the most up to date information and asking direct questions you can follow me on Instagram.

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Overview of the Horizon GR3 Indoor cycle $499

The GR3 is the cheapest option to join the Horizon Fitness family. This is a no non-sense spinning bike that provides resistance via a flywheel and mechanical brake system. If you ever have attended a spinning class in your local gym, then this is exactly what you can expect with the GR3. The full specifications are:
Frame Type: Indoor Cycle
Adjustable Pedal straps: Yes
Pedal Type: Pedal Cage with toe strap
Seat Type: Road-Style Saddle
Seat adjustment: Horizontal, Vertical
Resistance System: Friction Brake
Resistance levels: Control knob
Heart Rate: Polar wireless Receiver
Extras: Transport Wheels, Water Bottle Holder
Max User Weight: 286
Weight: 97 lbs.
Assembled dimensions: 49 x 19 x46
Home Warranty Frame: 10 years
Home Warranty Parts: 1 year
Home Warranty Labor: 1 year

Pros of the Horizon GR3 Indoor cycle

The pros of the Horizon GR3 Indoor cycle are:
  • Compact
  • Price
  • Quality
This is a compact and light bike for indoor cycling if you want to keep it professional and not put the bike you already own on a stand. It is easy to move around and is not as bulky as other cardio options you might have for the home.
The price is great for professional home equipment or pragmatic commercial equipment. In a commercial setting, $500 is not a big loss on the books even if you have troubles with the warranty. In a home gym scenario you get a robust too you are unlikely to break. This is a very low price bar to step over to take your home training seriously.
This is a good quality bike compared to just getting the cheapest option of Amazon or eBay. Go ahead with this bike if you do not need any fancy digital dials and just want to go after it.

Cons of the Horizon GR3 Indoor cycle

The cons of the Horizon GR3 indoor cycle are:
  • Limited online functions
  • Not suitable for big athletes
  • Resistance setup
Compared to more modern bikes like the Peloton series, this bike has no fancy internet access and group functions to keep you motivated. So you have to bring that on your own and for a simple spinning bike, you might think it is overpriced. Still stripping things to essentials is often a good thing.
This bike operates at the lower end of the maximum weight of the user as the frame is rather small compared to other machines. If you weigh more than 100kg and go hard at your equipment you might want to choose something with a heavier frame. It will work, but it won’t be fun.
The resistance setup on this machine is completely mechanical which means it is more likely to break. Be prepared that if you use this hard that you will have to swap the flywheel and break at least once in its lifetime. These are not the most expensive items to replace and especially in a commercial setting you just can have a spare bike, but at home, you will have to wait with training until the repair is done.

Alternatives to the Horizon GR3 Indoor cycle

Here are some alternatives to the GR3 indoor cycle:
The Horizon IC 7.9 indoor cycle follows a very similar design to the GR3. The big differences are the more convenient resistance lever, the sturdier frame, and the professional pedals with a clip-in mechanism. If you want a spinning bike that feels a little more like a professional racer or if you weigh more than 100kg, then the Horizon IC 7.9 is the better choice.
The Nordictrack VU19 is the entry-level bike from this brand. If you are looking for something a bit smoother and less wild, this is a good alternative. It also might be an option if stock is running low for Horizon Fitness and you need something fast.
The Rogue echo bike is a great alternative to the GR3 Indoor cycle if you want to step your game up a little. It has a sturdier frame and the resistance is regulated by the big fan and the air that circulates through, rather than a brake pedal. This makes it better for interval training and heavier athletes. For me, the Rogue echo bike is the best cardio machine you can get for a home gym in terms of value for money. The only downsides are that you will have to invest more than for the GR3 and that it is considerably heavier.
The TITAN fan bike is a copycat of the Rogue echo bike with bigger wheels for transport at a smaller price tag. It will do the job, but the overall design and finish are not as on point as with the Rogue echo bike. However, you will save some money that you can put against more equipment.
The concept 2 skierg is one of the most compact cardio machines you can find out there. If you have very limited space, but still do not want to take your cardio outside, the concept 2 skierg is a great option that is also ready ably priced.

Conclusion for the Horizon GR3 Indoor cycle

I personally like a simple design that focuses on the essentials. That is why I own a Rogue echo bike as I weigh more than 100kg. If I would weigh 80kg, the GR3 would be a serious contender to make it into my garage gym.

Topics: Cardio, Horizon, BIke