NordicTrack EXP 14i, 10i, & 7i Treadmill Comparison

By Jeff
Published on

According to a survey in the LA Times, walking is the most popular form of exercise for 70% of people, with running being a close second choice. A treadmill is the perfect training equipment if you want to add walking or running to your exercise regimen, but aren’t able to walk outdoors or in a gym.

NordicTrack is one of the top exercise brands on the market with many different products. They manufacture exercise bikes, ellipticals, and of course, treadmills. The EXP treadmills from NordicTrack are robust, feature-rich treadmills. NordicTrack designed these treadmills to provide aspiring athletes with great at-home workouts.

In this article, we’ll take a look at NordicTrack’s EXP treadmill product line, including:

There are a few critical factors you need to consider when buying a treadmill. This article will highlight how these three treadmills compare in those areas. We will also discuss what type of user will benefit the most from each NordicTrack EXP treadmill. We’re here to help you get the right exercise equipment for your lifestyle.

Let’s dive in!

Quick Look Comparison

NordicTrack EXP 7i
NordicTrack EXP 10i
NordicTrack EXP 14i
7″ HD Smart Touchscreen10″ HD Smart Touchscreen14″ HD Smart TouchScreen
30-Day iFIT Trial Included30-Day iFIT Trial Included30-Day iFIT Trial Included
Automatic Trainer ControlAutomatic Trainer ControlAutomatic Trainer Control
3.0 CHP Plus Motor3.5 CHP Plus Motor3.5 CHP Plus Motor
20″ x 60″ Tread Belt20″ x 60″ Tread Belt20″ x 60″ Commercial Tread Belt
0% to 12% Incline-3% Decline to 12% Incline-3% Decline to 12% Incline
0 – 12 MPH Speed0 – 12 MPH Speed0 – 12 MPH Speed

Motor Size

The size of the motor on a treadmill is one of the most important factors to research when buying the perfect treadmill to suit your needs. Generally, the faster and more frequently you walk or run on your home treadmill, the more horsepower (hp) you will need.

If you walk between 1-3 times per week, a 1.5hp motor will suffice. If you want to walk more frequently, consider a 2hp motor. If you want to jog instead of walk, a motor between 2hp-2.5hp is the best size. As a bigger guy with the grace of an elephant, the extra horsepower prevents the belt from slipping when I run. Most treadmills will have a motor of this caliber at least, and the EXP treadmills are no different. 

For users interested in running 1-3 times per week, use a treadmill with a 2.5hp motor. Or if you want to run four or more times weekly, a motor that offers 3hp or more is the best option.

All the EXP series treadmills use Continuous Horsepower (CHP) motors. The NordicTrack 7i treadmill features a 3.0 CHP motor. The NordicTrack 10i and 14i treadmills feature an upgraded 3.5 CHP motor.

All three EXP treadmills have a SMART-Response Drive System that delivers either 3.0 or 3.5 hp. With its SMART-Response motor, NordicTrack’s drive system automatically responds to the intensity you bring to your workouts. This design means that any of these treadmills will work for walking, jogging, or running workout plans.

If you are an experienced runner, plan to run frequently, or have a high body weight, you may benefit more from the larger 3.5 CHP motor in the 10i and 14i treadmills. Conversely, if you weigh less or only plan to ever walk or jog, the 7i treadmill will be more than enough to give you the power you need.

Incline and Decline Options

Courtesy of NordicTrack

Many treadmills, including the NordicTrack EXP treadmills, allow you to adjust the angle of the belt. Usually, this variance is between 0-20% on the incline and between -3 and -6% on the decline.

Adjusting the angle of the belt is beneficial for introducing new stimuli into your workouts. Changing the angle can add an extra challenge. The challenge can help you burn more calories and improve your conditioning. A change in angle also adds a bit of fun to a form of exercise that can sometimes feel monotonous.

The NordicTrack 7i offers an incline range of 0-12%. This EXP model doesn’t have any decline option, unlike the other two models. If you particularly enjoy exercising on the decline, you may want to look into the 10i or 14i instead.

The NordicTrack 10i and 14i offer a 0-12% incline range. These two treadmills also let you set a decline angle of 0 to -3%. The ability to create a decline to mimic a downhill slope. This feature sets the 10i and 14i treadmills apart from the smaller 7i treadmill.

If you are a casual runner or first-time treadmill user, the lack of a decline option on the 7i treadmill should not be a dealbreaker. The 0-12% incline range provides plenty of variation to keep your cardio workouts fresh.

For committed running enthusiasts or athletes who aspire to compete in running competitions, the 10i or 14i treadmills will be the EXP treadmills to consider. This is thanks to the 0 to 3% decline option that is missing on the 7i treadmill.

Speed Options

Manufacturers make treadmills with different top speeds. The differences in speeds are usually related to the intended use of the treadmill. Walking treadmills use slower speeds and running treadmills use faster speeds.

According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the average walking speed is between 2.5-4 mph. Most walking treadmills have a top speed of around 10 mph. Running treadmills might go as fast as 12-15 mph or higher.

Thankfully, the choice is easy when comparing the NordicTrack EXP treadmills. The 7i, 10i, and 14i all offer the same speed range. All three treadmills allow you to set the speed between 0-12 mph. NordicTrack also designed the EXP treadmills with Automatic Speed Controls. You can preset them to track your run and change the speed at specific intervals.

Since all three treadmills offer the same speed range, any of them would be a good choice for speed-focused cardio training. All three EXP treadmills will work for walking, jogging, or running workouts. This gives you more options for variation.

Belt Size

The belt is the portion of the treadmill on which you run. The belt size is the length and width of the surface area available for making contact with your feet.

Most treadmills have a belt between 45-60” long and 16-22” wide. A longer, wider belt is better for tall athletes with a longer stride or those who want to run fast. If you are walking or jogging, you can use a shorter or skinnier belt and still get a fantastic workout.

The thickness and shock-absorbing qualities of a treadmill’s belt and deck are also important to consider. A thicker belt is more durable and helps reduce the strain of your foot impacting the deck.

All three NordicTrack EXP treadmills use the same belt size, a 20” x 60” tread belt. This belt is wide and long enough to work equally well for tall and short users. The belt will also work for walking, jogging, and running. This is fantastic if you like to vary your workouts.

There is one crucial distinction for the NordicTrack EXP 14i in terms of its belt. The NordicTrack 10i treadmill and the NordicTrack 7i treadmill use a standard tread belt. The EXP 14i uses a commercial tread belt. This commercial belt is more durable and thicker than the belts on the lower models.

NordicTrack also built the EXP treadmills with FlexSelect deck cushioning. The cushioning system uses a series of dampeners to reduce strain on your joints. FlexSelect cushioning also helps simulate a more authentic road-running experience.

If you want the thickest, most durable belt that will withstand the heaviest usage for years, consider picking up the NordicTrack 14i with its commercial tread belt. If the commercial belt sounds like overkill, the 7i and 10i treadmills still provide a long, wide belt that is perfect for walking or running.

Service & Warranty

Like anything else you buy, your treadmill will have a limited lifespan. Keeping up with regular maintenance is a critical step for keeping your treadmill in good working order. However, you will need to repair or replace even the best treadmills eventually.

Many manufacturers that build low-quality treadmills will offer short-term warranties. They know their machines are more likely to break down and want you to purchase additional equipment. Premium brands such as NordicTrack usually provide much better warranty and service plans. They build their equipment to last.

The NordicTrack 14i treadmill, 10i treadmill, and 7i treadmill all come with the company’s impressive set of warranties. These include a 10-year frame warranty, a 2-year parts warranty, and a 1-year labor warranty.

This set of warranties is one of the best packages of any treadmill manufacturer. However, a few scenarios can void the contracts. These include transporting the treadmill out of the USA, using the treadmill for commercial purposes, and improperly using the equipment. For full details, you can review NordicTrack’s warranty agreement here.

Screen Size

Courtesy of NordicTrack

The touchscreen on a modern treadmill lets an athlete interact with the equipment. You can use the NordicTrack treadmill screens to adjust speeds and inclines, load pre-programmed workouts, monitor your vital fitness data, and more.

All three EXP treadmills have a touchscreen, but each one is a different size. The NordicTrack EXP7i treadmill has a 7” HD Smart Touchscreen. The NordicTrack EXP 10i has a 10” HD Smart Touchscreen. And, as you might guess, the NordicTrack EXP 14i treadmill features the largest touchscreen at 14”.

All three EXP treadmills benefit from the fantastic HD screen. This screen allows you to follow along with pre-programmed workouts. Elite iFit personal trainers guide each workout. They filmed many of the workouts in unique locations, taking full advantage of the touchscreens’ sharp resolution.

Additionally, you can view plenty of different stats on the touchscreen. These include heart rate, elevation, workout duration, distance, calories burned, program progression, and more.

The extra large size of the 14” touchscreen on the 14i treadmill is the easiest to read. The 10” and 7” touchscreens are still clear and bright. You should have no trouble if you choose either the 7i or 10i treadmill.

Pre-Programmed Workouts

Many treadmills come with pre-programmed workouts. These workouts are easy to load up and can add an extra layer of fun and challenge to your daily run. All the NordicTrack EXP treadmills are compatible with iFit interactive training. You can use Google Maps to give you over 17,000 workouts so you never get bored.

The EXP treadmills also come with AutoAdjust technology. This tracks your run and changes the speed and incline of the treadmill’s belt. These features simulate a real-world environment to keep your run fun and unique.

All you need to do is select a guided training session led by an iFit trainer. Many of these runs occur in fun locations such as Thailand and Machu Picchu. As you follow along with the trainer, your NordicTrack EXP treadmill will track your progress and automatically adjust the belt.

There are also studio-based workouts that include more than just running programs. Using the iFit workout library, you can select from a series of cross-training programs. In these programs, expert personal trainers guide you through activities like yoga, strength training, stretching, and more.

Many of the iFit programs also function as a progressive series. iFit’s trainers have intelligently designed them to help you get fitter and faster as you train. You can create multiple training profiles for different users. You can also record workout progressions directly through the treadmill’s HD Smart Touchscreen.

One important note: iFit is a subscription service. You automatically get an iFit 30-day trial when you buy any of the NordicTrack EXP treadmills. After that, however, you will need to enroll in a paid monthly subscription plan.

All of the EXP treadmills are compatible with the same pre-programmed workouts. You can choose the 7I, 10i, or 14i treadmill to get the same excellent training.

Additional Features

Special features vary significantly between brands and specific treadmill models. Depending on what you want to do with your treadmill, certain special features might be more or less valuable to you. Each of the NordicTrack EXP treadmills offers a ton of fantastic features that set them apart from other training equipment.

Google Maps Workout Technology

All three NordicTrack EXP treadmills utilize Google Maps Workout Technology from iFit. This software lets you simulate real-world locations. The treadmill automatically adjusts the incline and speed of the treadmill based on your set location.

ActivePulse Cardio Cruise Control

NordicTrack offers ActivePulse™ Cardio Cruise Control technology. This feature auto-adjusts the speed of the treadmill to keep you in your desired heart rate range.

Both the NordicTrack EXP 10i treadmill and 14i treadmill come with the feature, but the 7i doesn’t. Also, this feature does require a SmartBeat Forearm Heart Rate Monitor. You must purchase this piece of equipment separately.

AutoBreeze Workout Fan

All three EXP treadmills have an AutoBreeze fan. This workout fan automatically adjusts its speed based on how hard you are running to keep you cool and comfortable as you work out.

Bluetooth and Audio

The entire EXP treadmill series features Bluetooth capability for using headphones while running. If ambient sounds aren’t an issue for you, you can also enjoy crystal-clear sound through the two 2” speakers with digital amplification technology.

OneTouch Controls

NordicTrack has automated many of the features and functions of the EXP treadmills. However, you may still want to adjust the controls manually from time to time.

Thankfully, NordicTrack anticipated this. They built all three EXP treadmills with easy-to-use OneTouch Controls. This feature allows you to adjust your speed, incline, and more with a single touch of a button. You can do it even while you’re in the middle of a workout.

SpaceSaver Design with EasyLift Assist

All EXP treadmills have an intelligent SpaceSaver design that includes EasyLift Assist. This feature gives you the option to lift the EXP treadmill’s deck and fold it against the console. The space-saving design is a fantastic bonus feature if you need to store your treadmill.


Pricing is one of the most significant deciding factors when you buy a treadmill. There are plenty of cheap, low-quality treadmills on the market. There are also tons of top-tier, premium treadmills that cost thousands of dollars.

The Nordic EXP treadmills vary in price but are within the mid-range of treadmill prices. NordicTrack has priced all three of the EXP treadmills fairly given the differences in size and features.

The NordicTrack EXP 7i treadmill is the most affordable EXP treadmill model. This reasoning is not surprising given that the 7i has the smallest touchscreen, a slightly smaller motor, and doesn’t offer any decline adjustments.

The NordicTrack EXP 10i treadmill sits right in the middle of the EXP treadmill lineup. It’s slightly more expensive than the 7i but is still more affordable than the 14i.

The 10i offers a better motor, a bigger screen, and more decline adjustments than the 7i. Compared to the 14i, the 10i has the same motor and decline/incline range, but its screen is 4” smaller.

The NordicTrack EXP 14i treadmill is the premium option in the EXP lineup but is also the most expensive. Compared to the other EXP treadmills, the 14i offers the most prominent touchscreen (14”). It is also the only EXP treadmill with a commercial-grade belt.

Which One Is the Best for You: NordicTrack EXP 7i, 10i, or 14i Treadmill

Here is a short breakdown of which model best suits different types of users.

NordicTrack EXP 7i Is Best For: Budget Buyers

The NordicTrack EXP 7i treadmill is the most affordable EXP treadmill. This makes it the perfect option for budget-conscious athletes. A few trade-offs come with the lower price tag. Some of the disadvantages include a smaller screen, a slightly less powerful motor, and no ability to set the belt on a decline angle.

However, the 7i still comes with a 3.0 CHP motor suitable for walking, jogging, or running. It also allows you to set up to a 12% incline and adjust the speed between 0-12 MPH. If you are a new runner, only want to run occasionally, or need the most affordable option, check out the NordicTrack EXP 7i treadmill.

NordicTrack EXP 10i Is Best For: Running Enthusiasts

The NordicTrack EXP 10i treadmill is the middle road between its smaller and bigger siblings. If you are a committed runner and will use your treadmill multiple times per week, the NordicTrack EXP 10i might be the best option.

Compared to the 7i, the 10i offers a larger touchscreen, more powerful 3.5CHP moto, ActivePulse Cardio Cruise Control, and has an option for up to -3% decline. The 10i features a slightly smaller screen compared to the 14i. The 10i also lacks the more durable commercial-grade belt of the 14i.

NordicTrack EXP 14i Best Is For: Aspiring Athletes

The NordicTrack EXP 14i treadmill is the premier model in the EXP lineup. It’s the most expensive option, but if you aspire to compete in any pursuit that involves running, the 14i is the treadmill we recommend.

It features an extra large 14” touchscreen and has a 3.5CHP motor that adjusts its incline from -3% to 12%. It also has a thick commercial-grade belt. The belt will handle more frequent and intense cardio training than the 10i or 7i models.

If you plan to run four or more times a week, change speeds and elevations, or value the ability to scan all your necessary data, the NordicTrack EXP 14i treadmill is a fantastic option.

Our Thoughts

Which NordicTrack EXP treadmill is the best? The answer depends on what you are looking for in a treadmill.

If you need a high-quality, budget option, and you’re willing to sacrifice a few extra features, check out the NordicTrack 7i treadmill.

Are you a serious runner looking for a mid-level piece of equipment with a potent blend of advanced features and a reasonable price tag? If so, the NordicTrack 10i treadmill might be the option for you.

Are you a serious runner who needs a machine that can handle dozens of miles weekly and offers some of the best extras of any treadmill on the market? The NordicTrack 14i treadmill may be a perfect, premium fit.

Use this article as a helpful guide regardless of the model you choose. You’ll be sure to find a robust machine that will give you a challenging cardio workout without having to go outside and face winter head-on.

Photo of author