General Information: Octane was started in 2001 by two former Lifefitness guys who knew that the front drive system of the original Lifefitness elliptical had promise but also knew that Lifefitness had butchered the feel on the original machines. Although the guys cleaned up the motion and feel quite a bit, the front drive system still hasn't reached the original potential.
Manufacturing Philosophy: Overall, the quality is pretty good. Overall, the guys that started Octane saw that the elliptical category was one of the places left in the fitness business where the margins are still high so it makes sense that they would try to exploit this segment. Component quality is decent but the feel of the machines could use some work and the markup sure would put a smile on your face if you owned the company.
Company Outlook: Octane has built a rather good dealer network in the specialty fitness channel. If you haven't heard of Octane before you walked into a specialty store, there is good reason. Most specialty brands that lack a strong club business aren't known outside the industry. They have been in business since 2001 so it looks like they have staying power but if they continue to have a strong showing, we would expect that they will either have to expand their product offering or get bought by a larger company in order to remain a viable business long-term.