In a Nutshell
- High-quality, durable products at affordable prices
- Impressive digital integration
- Daily live classes available to members
- Most products unusable without Echelon United membership
- Limited warranty, 12 months parts and labor only
Echelon offers 3 types of fitness machines: treadmills, stationary bikes, and rowing machines. All Echelon products feature impressive digital integration, durable build quality, and quiet operation.
Echelon’s machines are intended to be used in tandem with an Echelon United membership. This membership provides access to an impressive array of exercise programs, including free ride courses, daily live classes with experienced instructors, and a vast library of pre-recorded content. Echelon’s fitness program has seen an enormous jump in popularity since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic, and rivals established names such as Peloton in quality. All Echelon machines integrate directly with Echelon United, and many are essentially unusable without it.
Echelon Treadmills Review
Indoor treadmills enable you to consistently work on your cardio in a trackable, weather-independent manner. Many treadmills feature accompanying video classes, letting you get the benefit of a guided workout experience in the comfort of your own home. Let’s take a look at two treadmills provided by Echelon to see if they are right for you.
Echelon Stride review
The Stride auto-fold treadmill is priced in the upper midrange at $1299.99. Like most Echelon products, it features impressive digital integration for its price point. Users can connect their tablet or phone to the Stride’s built-in adjustable device holder and take advantage of Echelon’s high-quality fitness classes through the Echelon Fit app.
The Stride is compact, with a small 20” x 55” running surface and a little 1.75HP motor. Its biggest standout feature is the patented auto-fold system, which automatically folds down the treadmill to a height of just 10” for easy storage in a closet or under a bed. For $1299.99 we would have liked to see a little more in terms of size and performance, but these trade-offs are understandable since this treadmill prioritizes a compact profile over performance for easy storage. Overall, the Echelon Stride is a great treadmill if you have limited space to work with and prioritize a small profile for your exercise equipment.
Echelon Stride S5 review
The Stride S5 Smart Treadmill comes with a built-in 24” LCD touchscreen, intended for use with Echelon’s robust digital offering. It also features a heart rate monitor, a large cooling fan, and a durable design.
Mechanically, the S5 is a powerful machine with a large 22” x 60” running surface. It features a powerful 3HP motor and 16 levels of incline to a maximum of 15°. At $2499.99, the S5 is an expensive investment, but worth it for a high-performance treadmill with access to Echelon’s impressive digital content library. The Stride S5 is a premium treadmill designed to provide its user with the best quality workout possible and is also priced accordingly.
Echelon Stationary Bikes Review
Stationary bikes combine cardio and resistance training, enabling the rider to effectively build cardio and muscle strength in a controlled environment. A good stationary bike will feature robust digital integration as well, enabling instructor-led fitness classes and free-riding experiences through exotic virtual locales. Consider these two stationary bikes from Echelon to see if they will help you reach your fitness goals.
Echelon Connect Bike EX-5 review
The Echelon Connect Bike EX-5 is a midrange exercise bike available for $999.99. It boasts a durable design, 32 levels of magnetic resistance, and an adjustable device holder that can flip around 180° for off-bike work. Magnetic resistance is a good design choice since magnets exert force on the bike’s flywheel without any physical contact, which reduces overall wear and tear while providing the benefit of the near-silent operation.
As with all of Echelon’s machines, the EX-5 can be integrated with the Echelon Fit app to operate in tandem with its instructor-led classes. It is worth noting that without an Echelon United subscription and a connected app, the EX-5 has no display at all, rendering it almost unusable as the rider will have no access to even basic information like heart rate or their current resistance level. If you are planning to purchase this robust, digitally integrated bike, be sure to factor an Echelon United subscription into your buying decision.
Echelon Connect Bike EX-5s
The EX-5s is Echelon’s top-of-the-line smart bike. At $1499.99 it is an expensive investment, comparable in price to other top-tier products like the iconic Peloton Bike. Unlike the EX-5, the EX-5s comes with a built-in 21.5” LCD touchscreen. This screen provides basic readouts such as resistance and revolutions per minute and connects to Echelon Fit for live classes, leaderboards, and on-demand workouts.
The bike features a durable design, 32 levels of magnetic resistance, and a built-in heart monitor. As far as top-tier exercise bikes go, the EX-5s is robust enough to deliver an impressive workout for beginners and advanced users alike. It is slightly less expensive than some other big-name exercise bikes.
Echelon Rowers Review
Rowing machines are efficient indoor exercise machines that work the user’s entire body, providing upper and lower body resistance training and a cardio workout. Let’s take a deep dive into Echelon’s 2 rowing machine products.
Echelon Row review
The Echelon Row is a simple, durably constructed midrange rowing machine. Like most midrange Echelon products, it features digital connectivity with Echelon Fit but requires the user to place their own tablet in the built-in adjustable device holder. Without a tablet and a Connect subscription, the machine lacks any kind of readout or display, making it nearly impossible for the user to gauge their progress.
As with all Echelon machines, the Row uses magnetic resistance with 32 available levels, ensuring near silent running and a reduction in overall wear and tear on the unit. Priced at $999.99, the Row is an affordable midrange exercise machine with impressive digital connectivity capabilities for its price level.
Echelon Row-s review
The Row-s is a premium rowing machine with a built-in 22” touchscreen. Heart rate, performance, and resistance level can all be tracked directly from the screen, which also links directly to Echelon United’s digital library if the user is an Echelon member. The Row-s is constructed from durable materials and features 32 magnetic resistance levels.
At $1599.99, this is a very expensive rowing machine, especially considering its fairly basic feature set. The value comes from Echelon United, which provides an array of exciting water-based virtual environments specifically for its Rowers. If you are interested in a simple but durable machine with a robust digital offering, the Row-s might well be the rowing machine for you.
Echelon Training App
Echelon’s entire product lineup is designed to work with its Echelon United membership and the Echelon Fit app, available for download from the App Store and Google Play Store. While the app itself is technically free, it is useless without an Echelon membership, which costs $34.99 monthly. Users can also purchase a yearly subscription for $399.99 ($33.33 monthly) or a 2-year subscription for $699.99 ($29.16 monthly—best value).
Membership is necessary to get the most from your Echelon machine. Echelon members gain access to daily live instructor-led classes, virtual free training environments including watercourses rowing and cycling courses for stationary bikes, and thousands of recorded fitness classes.
Moreover, most of the midrange Echelon machines are practically unusable without a membership and a tablet with the Echelon fit app installed, as they lack any kind of digital readouts of their own to measure progress or display the current resistance level.
Echelon Fit is more of a necessity than an option when it comes to using Echelon products, but its content is high quality and adds genuine value to your workout routine.
Pricing & Special Offers
Echelon’s products can be purchased online or in-store from most major retailers. Walmart, Best Buy, and Echelon’s website all offer Echelon’s products online, and their availability in-store varies by geographic location.
Echelon’s website sometimes offers deals to consumers who order directly, such as free shipping on select products with a 1-year membership. Its products are currently available in the United States, Canada, Mexico, the UK, and France. Echelon’s products are priced competitively, especially if the customer is intending to make significant use of their digital connectivity with Echelon Fit.
Echelon Payment Options
Echelon’s products can be purchased upfront or on a payment plan with 0% APR. We were impressed with the robust range of payment plans: users can pay off their machine over 12, 24, 36, or 48 months, making these expensive purchases accessible to many consumers.
All Echelon products come with a 12-month limited warranty for parts and labor. This is quite limited compared to other products on the market, with no lifetime coverage for frame and motor and no options to extend the manufacturer’s warranty beyond 12 months.
Echelon does offer a return policy with an unlimited duration. However, the refund amount, if any, is entirely at Echelon's discretion. Products must be returned to Eschelon in their original packaging with tags intact, and with the user manual and charger included as well. Returns incur a $100 restocking fee, deducted from any refund, and an additional $100 return fee if the product is returned more than 30 days after the initial delivery date to the customer.
Service and Support
Echelon features customer support via live chat, as well as email tickets. There is also a comprehensive knowledge base available for self-serve support. Echelon does not provide a timeframe for responses, simply attempting to handle support tickets as soon as possible on a first-come-first-served basis.
The Bottom Line
Echelon offers premium-quality fitness equipment at a slightly lower price level than that of other high-end brands. Its membership, Echelon United, is well worth the money, with a huge library of courses by professionals as well as enjoyable free-ride content for its exercise bikes and rowing machines.
Users should only consider purchasing an Echelon machine if they are interested in Echelon’s membership since without it the machines have no digital readout, making them difficult or impossible to use.
Considering the high quality and broad range of machines available, as well as the impressive content library provided through Echelon United, users looking for an affordable alternative to brands like Peloton or NordicTrack will be well suited with an Echelon product.
Is Echelon as good as Peloton?
Echelon is comparable to Peloton in terms of the build quality and durability of its products, while coming in slightly cheaper. However, Peloton’s course library is different, and unlike Echelon, its products can be used without a subscription—they come loaded with pre-recorded courses and digital readouts for basic information like resistance level and heart rate.
Is the Echelon bike any good?
Echelon offers 4 stationary bike products for at-home use, and all come with magnetic resistance for near-silent operation, robust build quality, and impressive digital integration for their price level. It is worth noting, however, that the Echelon bikes are essentially unusable without an Echelon subscription, so be sure to factor that into your buying decision.
Can I use Echelon without a subscription?
Effectively no. While Echelon’s machines will physically function without a subscription, most of them will not provide you with any meaningful feedback. Most Echelon machines will not even provide basic information like heart rate and resistance without a connected tablet logged into Echelon United through the Echelon Fit app. Notably, Echelon’s Stride Auto-fold treadmill is an exception, as it does provide basic readouts regardless of membership. However, using the Stride this way is not economical, as cheaper non-digitally integrated treadmills of similar build quality are available on the market.