Horizon Fitness Elliptical Trainers
Horizon Fitness is fully owned by Johnson Health Tech, a Chinese manufacturer that has been in business for over 25 years. This is the same company that owns the majority of Vision Fitness, Matrix Fitness and AFG. Horizon Fitness products are made in Johnson's factory in China, the same factory as the Vision elliptical trainers. Therefore, they compete head-to-head with the lower-priced Vision fitness products and Icon elliptical trainers.
Horizon makes nine different front drive ellipticals that are all virtually the same design. These are amongst the low end of the industry and generally use cheap particle brake drive systems which are disguised by Horizon referring to them as ECB.
Horizon elliptical trainers are sold at a variety of sporting goods and discount stores such as Dick’s, Sears, Sports Authority, etc. Generally you will find that their designs have cheap rollers which roll on tracks along the ground. This design is a dust collector and will become bumpy and even dysfunctional if not cleaned on a regular basis.
Pros: The self-leveling pedals provide added comfort and most models have built-in fans. Some units now have iPod docking stations as well.
Cons: Just like the low-end Vision ellipticals, the mechanical braking system can pose problems. It requires maintenance and the components are cheap. In addition, Johnson has been cheapening the components on the Horizon series now that they are chasing low price points in discount stores.
Overview: Horizon was once a popular choice on the low end of the market. But now that prices have been coming down from some of the big players, it looks like Horizon will have to go back to the drawing board. The bottom line is that if you are looking to spend $1000 on an elliptical, you should plan to spend a few bucks more and step up to a Smooth, Diamondback or Kettler.
Manufacturer's web site: www.horizonfitness.com