First off, one of the most important components in your machine's lifespan will be the environment that it is kept it. So, don't treat it like that poor dog locked in the car on a hot day at the grocery store. If you would break the window for the poor dog, then make some space inside for the machine you paid for. Taking simple steps like this will help to ensure the longevity of your investment.
With that said, the NordicTrack C 990 is below average for its new higher price bracket. If you are going to spend $1,600 dollars, maybe shoot for a better-quality treadmill. But if you do choose the C 990, then you can expect a good amount of years out of this treadmill if you are a light to moderate exerciser.
With the C 990, NordicTrack has struck a respectable balance between the both substance and style. We like that NordicTrack has included 32 on-board workouts, a strong build, 7” Smart HD Touchscreen, and a decent warranty. With that said, NordicTrack has not made any real improvements to the C 990 but, instead, took away some warranty years and added about $600 dollars* to the price tag. These new adjustments to the C 990 make this treadmill an overpriced, mediocre machine from a company with a poorly run customer service department.
On the outset, we want to start with the features that may seem valuable but are really average features that commonly make up mid-priced treadmills like the C 990 treadmill. Take the OneTouch Controls, for example. NordicTrack has taken it upon themselves to rename a button so that it seems more appealing. In the end, the OneTouch Controls simply indicate that the C 990’s console has buttons that control its speed and incline. You may also see the phrase Dual CardioGrip which is a decorative way of saying the C900 treadmill has two metal plates on each handle that detect your heart rate. NordicTrack has equipped the C 990 with their usual SpaceSaver Design that is now accompanied with an EasyLift Assist. Once again, both the SpaceSaver Design and EasyLift Assist are NordicTrack’s elaborate way of saying that the C 990 treadmill folds. The only difference with this model is that the C 990 introduces a hydraulic mechanism that brings the walking deck out of folded position without your guidance. While this seems valuable, we do not typically like to dwell on treadmills’ folding features. Often times, the treadmills that have a solid frame (i.e. the non-folding treadmills) are better built and longer lasting. Thus, we do not usually value the folding features, but you may find this EasyLift Assist addition helpful. Lastly, you may also see the FlexSelect Cushioning. This is another NordicTrack embellishment that denotes the presence of shock absorbers. Thus, like most other treadmills in this price range, the NordicTrack C 990 has shock absorbers that reduce the feeling of impact.
NordicTrack has continued to slightly adjust the amount of technology in their products year in and year out. We are glad to see such an effort when the features are matched with quality. The C 990, first off, has 32 on-board workouts. Matched with a 7” Smart HD Touchscreen and you have some pretty valuable technology. Now, we do want to add that the “Smart HD” is a phrase that has more marketing value than actual monetary value. The C 990’s screen is not going to be any nicer than, say, your Galaxy or iPhone screen. With that said, it is still pretty remarkable to basically have a tablet built into your C 990. Though it is not web-capable (barring the iFit membership) the C 990’s console is an additional value.
The C 990 also has a respectable build that is built with better-quality components. When we see that a treadmill has a 3.0 drive motor capacity and a 300-lb user weight capacity, then we know that the components are a little stronger and more durable. But, you must also take into account the treadmill’s weight. If Proform’s C 990 only weighed 190-lbs then you would know that they are full of crap saying that the C 990 can support a 300-lb user at a 3mph capacity. But the C 990 weighs about 222-lbs. This tells us that the components are a little heavier which typically indicates better quality. Taking all of this into consideration, the C 990 is likely to have a relatively durable build.
Despite the price increase, NordicTrack has decreased the value of the C 990’s warranty. Instead of a five-year parts warranty, the C 990 now has a ten-year frame, two-year parts, and one-year labor warranty. The warranty decrease has made the C 990 less valuable especially since it is now in a higher price bracket.
While the increase in technology is a nice addition, we do have a bit of a caution. The C 990 comes with iFit Coach compatibility and includes a one-year free membership. After the first year is up, it will be your choice to pay at least $30 dollars a month. Some exercisers who need a little motivation require loud muscle heads who run around the Eiffel Tower to keep their mind off the sweat dripping into their eyes. If you are one of these users, then you may want to consider the additional costs required to fully utilize this machine. If you are not and have gotten used to the stinging eyes, then maybe you will enjoy a free year and simply use the machine quietly after that. We do not like, however, how NordicTrack is seemingly forcing people to join in on the iFit bandwagon as you almost have to purchase a membership in order to get your money's worth out of this treadmill. *Please keep in mind prices may vary from time of year and marketplaces.
|Number of Programs||32|
|Heart Rate Sensor and Type||Dual CardioGrip heart rate monitor sensors & Chest Strap Compatible|
|Speed Range||0 - 12|
|Incline/Decline Range||0 - 12|
|Weight Capacity||300 Lbs|
|Belt Size||20 x 60|
|Footprint||78.3 x 35.75 x 56.4|
|Weight of Unit||222|
|Warranty||10 Yr Frame, 2 Yr Parts, 1 Yr Labor|
Over the years, NordicTrack has slowly made improvements to their quality standards while also adding valuable technology for reasonable prices. As for the C 990, this treadmill has proved relatively consistent with its value and quality for the price. Last year, we did express some concern for the C 990’s iFit programming. But we still found the C 990 to be a good machine for light to moderate users and awarded it our First Place Winner Award for the 2019 Best Buy list in the $700 to $999 dollar category. But with the price changes this year, the C 990 is not likely to be rewarded any time soon.
NordicTrack has created a balance between style and substance in their C 990. They have included a good amount of programming while also paying attention to the build and quality that they built into this machine. While we are a bit wary of the iFit membership marketing, we do find this to be a good machine for light to moderate users. With that said, we do not find the C 990 to be the best treadmill in its new, $1,600 dollar price range. For this price, you should be able to find a much beefier treadmill that will last longer.