NordicTrack X22i vs Elite Treadmill – everything you need to know!

NordicTrack makes some of the best connected fitness treadmills available, including their two most premium treadmills, the NordicTrack Elite and the NordicTrack X22i or X32i. I have spent a good amount of time running and reviewing both versions, and while they are similar in a lot of ways, they are also quite a bit different.

If you are trying to decide between getting the NordicTrack Elite or X22i/X32i treadmills, here’s a list of everything you should know.

Technically, the NordicTrack Elite was originally known as the upgraded 2022 version of the X22i. Because they have decided to keep both the updated and earlier versions available for sale, NordicTrack went ahead and changed the newer, more expensive version to the ‘Elite.’

Many features are similar for both, like the huge 40% incline, but there are also a lot of differences. Many of which would be hard to know without having tried them.

NordicTrack X22i vs. Elite treadmill video

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1. Shock absorption

Sometimes important features on connected fitness products cannot be evaluated simply by looking at pictures, or even video. And on treadmills, one of those things is how the shock absorption feels.

Some people prefer to have a lot of shock absorption, as it feels better on their knees, hips, and ankles, while others prefer a little less, so that it feels more like actually running off of a treadmill.

If you like a lot of shock absorption, the NordicTrack X22i does have a bit more than the newer Elite treadmill. This has the NordicTrack Elite feeling significantly less bouncy, and as a side effect, is quieter to run on.

The NordicTrack Elite has a less bouncy feel while running

2. Screen placement

A very noticeable difference between these two treadmills is the screen placement. The screen is placed a little higher on the NordicTrack Elite.

Personally, I like to look straight ahead when I run, and so the higher screen on the Elite is a better fit for me. The NordicTrack X22i was more designed to have the runner look slightly down.

3. Screen adjustment

An improvement you get with the NordicTrack Elite treadmill is the screen’s ability to tilt up and down, and rotate left and right.

This makes it easier to adjust for your specific viewing preferences while running and to take classes off the treadmill, like strength, yoga, or bootcamps.

NordicTrack Elite Rotating Screen

4. Size

The NordicTrack Elite treadmill is larger and heavier than the NordicTrack X22i.

The Elite weighs 505 pounds and is 81″ long, compared to the X22i at 417 pounds and 70″ long.

The NordicTrack Elite is a big boy!

5. Accessibility

Despite the NordicTrack Elite treadmill being larger than the X22i, it actually has a nicer, easier to access design.

The Elite has a lower profile (closer to the ground), making it easier to jump on and off.

6. Longer usable running area

The NordicTrack Elite treadmill has more available running space than the X22i. This is one of my favorite improvements seen on the Elite.

Both treadmills have the exact same size running belt, at 22” wide and 60” long, but the NordicTrack X22i has this strange design where the platform that holds the display is moved so far into the treadmill, it cuts off almost an entire foot of usable running space.

The NordicTrack Elite treadmill moves the screen, and platform holding it, to the end of the treadmill, allowing you to have the entire five foot space to spread your legs. 

NordicTrack X22i design cuts off part of the usable running space

7. Incline

Now while both of these treadmills are capable of an unbelievably impressive 40% incline, which is ideal if you like hiking, the NordicTrack X22i has a slightly bigger available decline.

The X22i is able to go down to -6%, compared to the Elite’s -5%. This is likely due to the NordicTrack Elite treadmill’s lower profile, not allowing it to have enough space for more decline.

40% incline is great for immersive hiking workouts

8. Bottle holder

The bottle holder on the NordicTrack Elite is in a much better, much easier-to-reach spot than on the NordicTrack X22i treadmill.

One of the things I dislike the most about the NordicTrack X22i is that bottle holder placement. It’s placed super awkwardly behind the screen and can be difficult to reach, especially in the middle of a run.

9. Speakers

The speakers are improved on the NordicTrack Elite treadmill. The difference isn’t night and day, but it is noticeable, both in terms of volume and clarity.

NordicTrack Elite with a much better designed front

Which would I choose, NordicTrack Elite or NordicTrack X22i/X32i?

The choice is a tough one, given the $800 price difference between them.

I like the shock absorption of the NordicTrack X22i better, but all the other differences on the Elite (longer running area, better looking design, rotating screen) all add up just enough for me to prefer the NordicTrack Elite.

Buy NordicTrack Elite here
Buy NordicTrack X22i here

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