Proform 6.0 ZT Treadmill Review
Treadmill Doctor Note:
A budget unit that can work if you take very good care of it. Just keep in mind that it will eventually break down.
Overall Rating: 4.45
Be realistic about this machine. It is a cheaply built machine intended for very light use. If you keep this in mind, you won't be disappointed when (not if) it breaks.
The Proform 6.0 ZT is a treadmill that sells for $499. It was made for light use, it won't last for a long time, and it will require maintenance. If you understand this going in, you may still find this machine to be worth it. This model may not be very good, but the price is right.
The walking area is pretty small. The belt measures in at 18" x 50". This is a good bit shorter and more narrow than the standard 20" x 60" belt. If you have a wide stance or long stride, you may feel less comfortable on this treadmill that ones that offer a more accommodating running surface.
This machine has a pretty weak motor, but it holds up well in its price range. You're usually not going to find a model that has good power producing capabilities for under $1,000. This one at least competes with treadmills that cost a few hundred dollars more than it does. You can reach speeds of up to 10 mph with this machine, but you'll wear out the structure and drive system very quickly if you try to run on it.
The cushioning system is price appropriate. ProTech Cushioning is used to reduce the impact that walking has on your joints and back. Proform claims it provides a 15% impact reduction when compared to pavement. In the overall scheme, this isn't a very forgiving running surface, but it's the best you can hope for when paying $499.
If you're expecting it to last for a long time, you're setting yourself up for disappointment. The projected reliability of this machine is very poor. Not many treadmills have a shorter life expectancy than this model. The quality of parts is lacking, so plan for maintenance to be needed and parts to wear out.
The warranty on the Proform 6.0 ZT is very bad. Parts and labor are covered for 90 days, while the motor is covered for 5 years. As you can see by the manufacturer's lack of willingness to provide decent coverage, we aren't the only ones who project this treadmill will break down rather quickly.
These products are produced by Icon Health and Fitness. They are the largest retail fitness company. This is one of the original Icon brands and can be found in most mass merchants. They typically range between $500 and $1,500 and have short warranties for the most part, although we have seen a shift in regard to that on mainly motors in some units. The higher end units have much longer warranties. The gee-whiz factor is high on these machines because they are packed with features, but some of these features can be glitch prone. Except for the higher priced units with a selling price of $1000 or more, we wouldn't recommend these for serious runners, but the quality of the machine is so much better than those produced just a few years ago. Most people who are walkers or occasional joggers will be satisfied with the new Proforms.
Quality / Philosophy
Proform is produced by Icon, a company with thousands of employees and large resources. Put simply, their machines have the best design in the business. Icon has a long, storied history that provides an example of how the big keep getting bigger. Icon used to be the mass-market darling because of their cheap prices, but they had the quality to match. These days they put quality into the machines and pack them with features. On the low end, expect low quality, but that is more of a function of price rather than engineering. Proform is still saddled with many problematic models from their past, but the quality has rapidly improved, especially with their machines in the $900 and up range.
Icon is the largest fitness equipment producer in the world with over $1 billion in sales. If the fitness industry were a solar system, Icon is so powerful that they would be the Sun. In terms of stability they are the best, but overall their customer service isn't up to the standards of any of the lower volume producers. They have promised an improvement on this and have new management in the service department, so we hope this helps. Although you get a value price for the product, you also get value service, so keep this in mind when buying their machines. Due to the sheer number of units they produce, we pick up support in many cases where this factory leaves off.
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