Compared with the popular Horizon T202, the T203 treadmill costs about $200 more. The models are very similar but the Horizon T203 has a higher capacity and a longer warranty.
What We Like:
- Price: This highly-rated budget treadmill has an MSRP of $1199 and costs even less online.
- Excellent warranty: The two-year parts warranty is exceptional for a cheap treadmill. You’ll also get lifetime coverage on the frame and motor.
- Motor: The quiet 2.75 HP motor is powerful enough for walks, jogs and runs. Its lifetime warranty is rare in the sub-$1000 category.
- Long track: The 60” track is long enough for all but the tallest runners. Additionally, it’s two-ply for extra comfort and durability.
- Cushioning: ComfortSELECT advanced cushioning lets each treadmill user set a preferred support level.
- Audio: The Surround Sound speaker system and iPod dock help make workouts fly by.
- Exercise programs: The 14 built-in programs can all be adjusted mid-workout if desired. Choose from three target workouts (time, distance, and calorie), four terrain workouts (manual, intervals, hills, and weight loss), and store two custom programs. You’ll also get an Advanced Goal Center from Nike and iPod. This lets you track exercise data in 31-day increments to better pursue long-term fitness goals. The exercise data can easily be transferred to your iPod.
- Incline: To help make workouts more efficient, the T203’s track inclines up to 12% in increments of .5%. Compared with running on a flat surface, incline training stimulates more muscle fibers for a more efficient workout.
- Heart rate monitoring: You can easily monitor your pulse with the dual grip monitoring system. This helps you exercise within a target heart rate zone to make the most of each workout.
- Console: The attractive console displays three data sets with soft blue LED lighting. The intuitive keypad makes it easy to select a program and make changes on the fly. You also get a built-in cooling fan to support endurance.
- Portability: This treadmill has retractable wheels and can be folded for easy storage and transport.
- Stability: The T203 weighs about 200 pounds and is recommended for users weighing up to 350 pounds. Plenty of budget treadmills have much lower weight capacities.
What We Don’t Like:
- Lower quality: Despite all the accolades above, this is still a budget treadmill. Don’t expect it to run as smoothly as equipment from your health club, especially if you’re close to the 350-pound weight capacity. Cheap treadmills also require more maintenance. For example, you’ll probably need to lubricate the belt every so often, and after a few years you might start dealing with broken parts. More expensive treadmills are maintenance-free.
- Tough competition: If you need a 60” track, then the T203 is likely your best choice on a budget. If you can use a 55” track instead, you’ll find a lot of healthy competition in this price category.
The Horizon T203 is among the better budget treadmills. Its above-average warranty is a good sign that it’s pretty well-made. You’ll get a 2.75 HP motor with a lifetime warranty, customized cushioning, and the distraction of your favorite tunes.
This is the best budget treadmill in Horizon’Y collection. It costs about $200 more than the middle model, the T202. Which treadmill would be best for you? The main advantages of the more expensive T203 are its advanced cushioning and powerful motor, which will be most noticeable to runners, and a higher weight capacity. It also has a longer parts warranty.