You’re probably familiar with the Peloton brand for their eponymous spin bike, the Peloton. The bike shook up the fitness industry with its world-leading interactive training and has developed a near-cultish following across the globe. The brand also makes a single treadmill, simply named the Tread.
Recently, the mighty Peloton bike has begun facing a fair bit of strong competition from brands such Echelon and NordicTrack. Such brands are producing much more affordable alternatives that don’t sacrifice on quality. This is also the case with the Tread. There are plenty of other treadmills on the market that are not only much more affordable, but can easily compete with the Tread in terms of quality and features.
Released in January 2019, the Tread has some stellar highlights on top of its unlimited library of world-renowned Peloton classes (subscription required). These include a 32” HD touchscreen and an extra-long running surface. All of this is packed into a modern, minimalist design that would look good in any apartment or home gym.
But one thing that isn’t minimalist about the Tread is the price. The Peloton Tread will set you back $4,295, and that’s without even taking into consideration the $39 per month membership for their interactive training.
Check out the pros and cons of the Tread, and dig into the details of this premium machine in our detailed review below.
There’s no denying that Peloton offers some of the world’s best interactive fitness classes. With their bike or Tread along with their $39/month membership, you get access to world-class training in your living room. From the high-energy instructors to the pumping music, Peloton certainly knows how to keep its riders and runners motivated. This is one of the key benefits of this machine, or buying Peloton in general. Along with its 32” HD touchscreen which brings these immersive experiences to life, it also features an extra-long running belt which is comfortable even for tall runners. All of this is packed into an uber-chic design which delivers a premium fitness experience.
But are these features really worth forking out over $4K? Stepping over the $4K mark for a machine that only has a 2 HP AC motor, and reaches a pretty standard top speed and incline of 12.5 mph and 15% respectively, is steep to say the least. We love the rolling, adjustable knobs that you can use to change your speed and incline with ease. We love the interactive training opportunities. We love the edgy design. But overall, these features may not justify the price.
In fact, Horizon recently included the rolling control knob feature on their new treadmill, the 7.8 AT. On Horizon’s model, the knobs are actually in a much more convenient position than the Tread, and the treadmill sells for roughly half the price. This is one of our favorite features of the Tread, but the fact that you can now find it elsewhere for a much smaller price has us leaning towards the 7.8 AT.
Explore the pros and cons of the Tread, and learn more about the workout programs and features below.
Pros & Cons
- Comfortable, Extra-Long Belt: The Tread’s extra-long running surface (67” by 20”) makes for a super comfortable run, even for the tallest trainees.
- Incline: The 15% incline can add challenge and diversity to your workouts.
- HD Screen: The 32” 1080p HD touchscreen makes your interactive workouts particularly immersive. It also has a 5 megapixel front‑facing camera for you to virtually join the classes.
- Interactive Training: Peloton offers world-class training, and when used in combination with one of their fitness machines, it’s an elite fitness experience. The live class schedule is really impressive. Keep in mind that you have to pay $39/month for the membership.
- Bluetooth: It features Bluetooth connectivity for heart-rate monitoring and Bluetooth audio for external devices.
- Speakers: There’s a 20 W built-in soundbar for all your interactive training needs. There’s also a 3.5 mm jack for wired headphones.
- Rolling knobs for incline: It’s easy to change your speed and incline the using the adjustable knobs on the frame without disrupting the flow of your workout.
- User Friendly: It’s really easy to use the Tread. From the adjustable knobs to the one-touch buttons, you can navigate the machine with ease.
- Free Mode: Users will have access to an unpowered ‘free mode’ in which they drive the slat belt.
- Safety: The Tread comes with a removable safety key.
- Sturdy Frame: The solid carbon steel platform can hold steady even in your most intense workouts.
- USB Charging: Keep your devices such as wireless headphones charged from your machine.
- Customer Service: Peloton customer service has raving reviews. It’s known to be fast, consistent and helpful. Customer service agents are uber-speedy to respond on their website chat feature.
- Not Portable: The Tread doesn’t fold and weighs 455 lb overall, so it’s not easy to move around.
- Weak Motor: For a machine costing over $4K, a 2 HP motor is disappointing.
- Apps: Looking at the reviews, a few customers have voiced their disappointment that the screen can only display the training classes or virtual running paths. It doesn’t allow you to watch Netflix, read the news, or use any other apps. Although many touchscreens on the market can’t do this either, the problem in the reviews seems to be that because you are paying $4K, and the screen can’t be moved so you can watch TV, you want a machine that can multitask.
- Subscription Cost: Paying $39/month on top of the initial cost is an ongoing investment. Although it has to be noted that other fitness apps can cost just as much, customer reviews have voiced their concerns that you can get the same classes with Peloton’s Digital membership for $12.99/month on your tablet, but have to pay a lot more to get it on your Tread screen. There are technically some differences, but they may not be worth over double the monthly subscription fee.
- Cushioning: Although the Tread has 59 shock-absorbing slats that are supposed to allow for a low-impact workout, there are better cushioning options out there if this is a top priority for you.
- Warranty: The Tread comes with a 5-year frame warranty, and one year of coverage for the touchscreen, components and labor. This isn’t impressive for the price point.
- Live Schedule: Although the live schedule is impressive, there have been some complaints in the customer reviews that say it’s not as friendly to the West Coast.
- Static Screen: There have been a few customer complaints about the Tread’s immovable screen. It only has a 0-30 degrees vertical tilt. This means you can’t swivel the screen for off-machine workouts like yoga. You also can’t move the screen if it’s in the way of your TV.
- No Fans: The Tread doesn’t have built-in cooling fans.
- Price: All this considered, forking out $4K just for the Basics Tread package (without the $39/month membership) is steep.
January 2019 saw the release of the Tread, Peloton’s only treadmill. A 32” HD touchscreen, an extra-long running surface and a sleek design are just some of the features which make the Tread an elite fitness machine.
That said, high subscription fees, a surprisingly low-HP motor, and an unimpressive warranty raise some red flags. Although it’s a very good-looking machine, there are a lot of sacrifices you have to make for the minimalist design.
Much like the Peloton bike, the Peloton Tread faces stiff competition from brands such as NordicTrack. The NordicTrack 2950 for example, is a close competitor. It features a huge 22″ HD touchscreen, more motor performance and more built in programming for at least $1K less. Although this is 10 inches less screen size than the Tread, the Tread’s 32″ screen is so big that it’s not actually ideal to view from that close up. In fact, Mark Henniger, editor of Avsforum.com notes that “for any screen, the ideal size is related to resolution and viewing distance. With a treadmill, the screen is so close to you, a 32-inch display is like watching an 85-inch TV from six or seven feet away”. Take a deeper look at our comparison of the Tread and the 2950 to see how else it stacks up.
Read more about the Tread’s workout programs and features below.
The Tread’s older sibling—the Peloton bike—has built an almost cultish following across the world. The Peloton Tread also places the focus on interactive training. Peloton offers an impressive daily live class schedule as well as hundreds of on-demand classes for you to choose from. These include scenic trails and off-machine workouts like yoga or strength training. That said, if you’re on the West Coast, keep in mind that some of the customer reviews say the live schedule does not cater to you as much as the East Coast.
But all of this world-class training comes at a price. You’ll get the bill for the $39/month Peloton membership as soon as you activate your Tread. Keep in mind that this is an ongoing monthly cost. Although this is the same as some other interactive fitness subscription apps on the market, some customers have raised concerns that the Peloton Digital Membership is less than half the price of this at just $12.99/month. It’s a single-user membership and Peloton says it doesn’t offer ‘the fully integrated experience’ of their hardware products such as ‘real-time metrics’. These include ‘resistance, distance, output and more’ to compare your performance to other riders and track your progress. But is this worth over double the monthly cost? We’re not so sure.
The Tread doesn’t have any preset workouts built into the machine aside from 3 brief sample classes. A membership is required to access a full class. Having built-in workouts might not seem like that much of a big deal, but pretty much every other treadmill with interactive training programming still has some built-in programming. Such programs are really useful if your WiFi goes down, or you want to pause/cancel your paid interactive training subscription for a while.
Key features of the Tread include a 2 HP AC motor that can reach speeds of up to 12.5 mph and an incline of 15%. You can also run in an unpowered “free mode” on the Tread in which you drive the slat belt.
The Tread’s 32” HD touchscreen with camera is impressive, allowing you to work out alongside friends or other runners. You can adjust the screen vertically by 30 degrees, but this does pose a problem for off-machine workouts like yoga, or if you planned to move the screen to watch your TV in front. As the Tread doesn’t allow you to use other apps such as Netflix on its screen, this may be an issue for you.
The 20 W built-in soundbar (Bluetooth ready) offers impressive sound quality for you to follow the immersive workouts and music.
Overall, it’s a really cool design that would look good in any apartment or home gym. One of the design highlights has to be the rolling, adjustable knobs which change your speed and incline. It’s a user-friendly design that makes it easy to ramp up the challenge of your workout without having to break your stride. But as mentioned, the Horizon 7.8 AT treadmill also offers this design feature for less than half the price.
On the Tread, you’ll have your water within easy reach in one of the dual water bottle holders on the integrated tray up front.
The Tread is 72.5” long by 36.5” wide and 72” tall. It has been built and tested for users between 4’11” and 6’4” in height, and between 105 and 300 lbs. in weight. It has a 67” by 20” shock-absorbing slat belt. The belt has 59 aluminum slats (with rubber overmold) on a ball-bearing rail system. This belt is similar to those found on other high-end machines such as Woodway treadmills, with shock-absorbing slats that allow for low-impact workouts. The design also contributes to the belt’s overall durability. That said, if cushioning is your top priority, there are other treadmills on the market that offer better cushioning for your joints.
The Peloton Tread weighs in at 455 lb. including the screen. It isn’t foldable, so it is a hard machine to move around.
Warranty & Guarantee
The Peloton Tread warranty includes:
– Frame: 5 years
– HD touchscreen: 1 year
– Tread components: 1 year
– Labor: 1 year
Additionally, you can request a return within 30 days after the delivery of your Tread.
There’s no denying that the Peloton Tread is a beautiful machine. The design is chic, intuitive and user friendly. It delivers an elite fitness experience, much like being in a swanky boutique fitness studio. But for us, this doesn’t justify the $4,295 price tag.
It remains enticing for its world-class interactive training that you can view on an impressive 32” HD touchscreen. But even these pros are outweighed by the fact you can now get the Peloton experience through their Digital Membership for less than half the price of their full membership. So if you don’t want to settle for anything less than Peloton training, you can now get this on a treadmill like the Horizon 7.8 AT, or any other model that supports the Peloton app. It won’t offer the ‘fully integrated’ experience as Peloton notes it would on their own equipment, but for less than half the price of the machine and the ongoing membership, it’s quite a difficult offer to pass up. And with the same rolling knobs feature, the 7.8 AT offers you the sleek, user-friendly design of the Tread at a much smaller cost.
The NordicTrack 2950 is another close competitor. Although you’re using iFit and not the Peloton software on the 2950, this still provides an amazing interactive training experience and the machine easily outperforms the Tread in other specs.
Other cons of the Tread such as the low HP motor, heavy design, and less-than-average warranty raise more red flags. Perhaps these things wouldn’t matter as much if the price wasn’t so high: it’s just hard to justify a sticker price over $4K with these kind of disadvantages.
If you’re interested in comparing the Tread to other models on the market, check out our top 5 alternatives. These take into consideration the overall value, quality, durability and features of each machine compared to the Tread. When it comes to crucial points like motor power, incline range, and warranty, all our alternatives either match or go above and beyond the Tread.