Nautilus E618 Elliptical Machine

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Nautilus E618

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350 lbs22"Motorized,
29 programs,

The first version of the Nautilus E618 elliptical trainer was released at the end of 2016. This was the Nautilus part number 100495. At the beginning of 2018, a new version was released – the Nautilus E618 100656. This newer version has pretty much the same specs as the older one. However, it features a black paint finish and is compatible with the Nautilus Trainer 2 app. The older version is still available, though, and you may find it at a nice discount, HERE.

In this post, we’re going to address the E618 100656 model. This trainer shares many similarities with the older Nautilus E616 model, but it is a heavier, sturdier machine, and comes with quite a few pluses. Although it features a commercial grade construction, it’s not labeled as a commercial model. It offers an impressive array of features, including Bluetooth connectivity, motorized incline, and basically anything that you would expect from a top-quality elliptical trainer.

Technical Details and Specifications

  • Assembled dimensions: 73L x 27W x 67H inches (186L x 67W x 170H cm)
  • Assembled weight: 210 lbs (95.2 kg)
  • Flywheel weight: 30 lbs (13.6 kg)
  • Supported weight: 350 lbs (158.7 kg)
  • Stride: 22 inches (56 cm)
  • Incline: Motorized, 0°-10°
  • Pedals: With adjustable cushioning
  • Handlebars: Both mobile and fixed (with pulse sensors)
  • Resistance: Motorized magnetic, 25 levels
  • Console: 29 programs, 4 user profiles, Bluetooth enabled, USB port
  • Amenities: Cooling fan, sound system, media tray, accessory tray
  • Warranty: Frame 15 years, Parts 5 years, Electronics 5 years, Labor 2 years

Frame construction

The Nautilus E618 elliptical trainer features a frame built like a tank, extremely sturdy, being able to support users up to 350 lbs (158.7 kg). It also has a heavy construction, with a total assembled weight of 210 lbs (95.2 kg). This weight provides a lot of stability for it, but on top of that, all its three base bars feature large, adjustable stabilizers, with rubber caps. Therefore, even if your weight is close to its maximum capacity, you can be sure that it won’t wobble or rock when you engage in a more intense workout. You can perfectly stabilize it on any type of flooring, the rubber coating on the stabilizers delivering an excellent “grip” onto the floor.

The machine’s weight shouldn’t be an issue for its transport, as its front base integrates a set of wheels which facilitate its relocation. The rear base also has a lifting handle, to provide a better grip. Thus, when moving changing its location, you will basically handle less than half of its weight. If you’re able to lift 45 lbs, you should be able to transport and handle this elliptical.

This Nautilus elliptical trainer doesn’t have a folding design, though. It also takes quite a bit of space, being 73″ long (186 cm) and 27″ wide (67 cm). On top of that, it requires at least two feet of clearance on each side and at the rear, for safe operation. Therefore, is usage and storage space are an issue, this may not be the best choice for a cardio training machine. In this case, you may want to consider an indoor cycling trainer such as the Sunny SF-B1509C or the L NOW LD-501.

With the exception of the flywheel covers and several other covers, the elliptical is mostly made of steel. All tubes feature a non-corrosive and abrasion-resistant powder coating. However, each one of the four rail bars is covered by a stainless steel plate with chrome finish.

Incline, stride & elevation

This Nautilus elliptical machine is equipped with a motorized incline system. The rear double-rail assembly is attached to a small lever, which connects to the machine’s lift. Evidently, since it’s a motorized incline system, its adjustment can only be done from the console, or from the controls integrated into the top grip of the right mobile arm of the machine. Also, the machine must be connected to a power source, in order for the incline to become operational.

This trainer offers an impressive incline span between 0° and 10°, a feature that can put a lot of diversity in your workouts, allowing you to focus different groups of muscles. You can adjust the incline as you pedal, or, in case you will use one of the onboard programs that include incline adjustment, the ramp will adjust automatically.

The Nautilus E618 offers a fixed stride of 22″. This means it can accommodate comfortably users between 5’2″ and 6’5″ (157 – 196 cm).

One last aspect to mention here regards the elevation that the pedals will give you when on the elliptical, aspect that you may not overlook if the elliptical will be in use in a room with a low ceiling. At the lowest position, the surface of a pedal stands at approx. 13″ (33 cm) above floor level, while at the highest position, with the incline all the way up, it will be at approx. 20″ (51 cm) above floor level. Therefore, to avoid any issues, make sure that the ceiling height in the room where the machine will be in use is at least 30″ (76 cm) higher than your own height.

Drive system

The Nautilus E618 is equipped with a belt drive system, powered by a heavy-duty belt. It integrates a fairly heavy flywheel for an elliptical trainer, with a total weight of 30 lbs (13.6 kg). It’s also perimeter-weighted, so these being said, the flywheel delivers a smooth and steady motion, with a consistent momentum.

This Nautilus elliptical is equipped large pedals, featuring a non-slip surface. The pedals integrate Suspension Adjust™ Performance Cushion System which not only adjusts their impact resistance, it also offers a slight adjustment of their angle. The rear of each pedal has a small lever which can set the angle and firmness of the action according to the weight of the user: 0 is the lowest cushion setting (flat); 1 for under 150 lbs. (68 kg); 2 for 150-225 lbs. (68-102 kg); 3 for over 225 lbs. (102 kg). Therefore, just by adjusting the pedals, you can put more focus on different muscle groups.

The “legs” of the elliptical integrate dual wheels, each set of wheels gliding on a pair of rails. This results in much more stability for each foot during pedaling. Both the wheels and the joints between the legs and mobile arms incorporate heavy duty, sealed stainless steel ball bearings, for a long lifespan and a smooth motion.

Needless to say, pedaling in reverse is possible. Thus, you can put a lot of diversity into your workouts. And when pedaling in reverse, the console will continue to keep track of your workout metrics.

Last but not least, the machine’s mobile arms are finished with versatile, ergonomic grips. These grips integrate controls for resistance and incline adjustment. The incline controls are in the right grip, while the resistance ones are in the left grip. Conversely, the fixed handlebar features stainless steel pulse sensors. However, the console can also track your pulse via a wireless chest strap.

Resistance system

The Nautilus E618 elliptical trainer features a motorized magnetic resistance system. This being said, it requires being connected to a 120V circuit. A 120V AC, 60 Hz input, 2 Amp adapter is included with the machine. The jack for the adapter is situated near the front base.

Since it’s a motorized machine, its resistance can only be adjusted from the machine’s console or keys in the handlebars. The system consists of a magnetic brake assembly and a small servo motor. As you select a certain level of resistance, the servo will change the position of the magnetic element in relation to the flywheel, reducing or increasing drag.

The resistance can be adjusted as you pedal, from the keys on the console. Or, if you choose to exercise by using one of the onboard programs, resistance will be adjusted automatically, depending on the current segment of the workout.

There is no contact between the resistance elements. Thus, not only that the pedaling motion is extremely quiet, almost silent, the wear-and-tear of the resistance elements is minimal.

This fitness machine offers 25 levels of resistance, 5 more than the Schwinn 430 MY16. The lowest resistance levels promote light workouts, perfect for warmups or recovery training, while the 23-25 resistance settings offer the possibility to undertake workouts for strength development, or high-intensity cardio workouts.

Control unit

The console supplied with the new Nautilus E618 is similar to the one of the older model, but it has received a bit of a “face-lift”. First of all, it has two LCD displays, with blue LED backlight and large digits for easy reading. The top larger display shows the workout program profiles, the selected goal and your progress towards it, the name of the current workout program, the levels of incline and resistance, and the heart rate interval.

The lower display shows time, speed, distance, RPM, resistance level, calories burned and heart rate. Distance can be tracked in both miles and km, while speed can be calculated in MPH and km/h. Heart rate can be monitored via the sensors in the fixed handlebars of the machine, but the console is also telemetry enabled; this means it’s compatible with wireless chest strap HR transmitters, and one HR chest strap is included with the elliptical.

The console has 12 pre-set workout programs, including Rolling Hills, Ride in the Park, Easy Tour, Stream Crossing, Pike’s Peak, Mount Hood, Pyramids, Summit Pass, Uphill Finish, Cross-Training, Intervals, and Stairs. It gives you the possibility to set up goals for time, distance, and calories. There’s also a Fitness Program, a Recovery Program, and an HR control program with 4 levels of difficulty.

The console unit lets you store and use 4 User Profiles, each profile recording the workout results in order to be reviewed later. Each user profile stores data regarding age, weight, height, gender, name and preferred workout values. It’s a great function to have if multiple persons use the machine. Also, since you can input data regarding age, gender, weight, and height, the unit can determine your calorie burning percentage much accurately.

Bluetooth connectivity is also one of the features included with this fitness console. This function offers the possibility to sync it with your smartphone or tablet, in order to track your workout data via the “Nautilus Trainer 2” app or to directly transfer your workout data to Nautilus Connect, or MyFitnessPal. For this purpose, the console also has a USB port, so in case you don’t use the Bluetooth connection, you can still import/export your data to Nautilus Connect, or MyFitnessPal. Plus, the USB port provides battery recharging for your tablet or smartphone.

In terms of amenities, the console integrates a media tray, a sound system, and a cooling fan. The media tray is placed right under the large LCD display. The sound system is compatible with most MP3 players, smartphones, and tablets, consisting in two speakers at the lowest corners of the console. The workout fan, although not too large, it does provide some cooling for your workout, and you can actually change its angle by tilting the console.

Assembly and Maintenance

Due to its considerable weight, the Nautilus E618 elliptical requires two people for assembly. The assembly process is straightforward, but due to the many parts that require assembly, it may take up to two hours. The body of the machine, with the pulleys, magnetic brake, motors, belt etc, comes already assembled. So, for assembly, you will have to connect the rear part of the frame with the rails, to the front part. Then attach the console mast, the pedal arms, the mobile handlebars, the pedals, and the console.

A small bottle of silicone lubricant is provided; therefore it’s recommended to lubricate the joints a little bit before assembly. This way, you won’t have to re-lube the machine for a long time.

For maintenance, the most important aspect is keeping the rails free of any debris as this can lead to damage either to the rails or to the gliding wheels. Other than this, just make sure you don’t spill any liquids on the console and the flywheel case.

The Pros

  • Sturdy construction, similar to commercial machines;
  • High weight limit – the unit can support users up to 350 lbs;
  • Adjustable levelers;
  • Adjustable pedals, with three position angles and three pressure levels;
  • Heavy flywheel, being also perimeter-weighted for a consistent momentum and smooth pedaling;
  • Multi-grip handlebars, with incline/resistance controls, and pulse sensors;
  • Motorized incline, with a range between 0° and 10°;
  • Quiet operation, ideal for apartment use;
  • 25 levels of eddy current resistance;
  • 29 workout programs;
  • Bluetooth connectivity;
  • Compatible with the “Nautilus Fitness 2” app, Nautilus Connect and MyFitnessPal;
  • Goal tracking functions for time, distance and calories;
  • 4 user profiles; 
  • DualTrack monitor system that allows you to see your workout data even if you have a tablet on top of the console;
  • LED backlight for each monitor, for better readability
  • Cooling fan included;
  • Sound system included;
  • USB port for workout data transfer to Nautilus Connect and MyFitness Pal, which also doubles as a charging port for your device;
  • Media tray included;
  • Bottle/accessory holders included;
  • Little maintenance required;
  • Excellent warranty plan.

The Cons

  • A tablet placed on the media tray will cover the top display of the console;
  • The cooling fan is not too powerful.


The Nautilus E618 is a solid elliptical trainer, with a construction similar to the commercial models, motorized resistance and incline, and a multi-functional console. It offers an impressive array of features, including adjustable pedals, 29 workouts, 25 levels of resistance, Bluetooth connectivity, wireless pulse tracking etc. It’s definitely a machine made for all types of workouts, from light cardio to intense interval training. On top of that, it costs less than $1,000 (at least for the moment), while most commercial models cost more than twice. In all, it’s a fitness machine with an outstanding price/quality/value ratio.

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2 thoughts on “Nautilus E618 Elliptical Machine”

  1. David Leifert

    Hi, you say that “at the highest position, with the incline all the way up, it will be at approx. 20″ (51 cm) above floor level. Therefore, to avoid any issues, make sure that the ceiling height in the room where the machine will be in use is at least 30″ (76 cm) higher than your own height.” Why do you need 10″ beyond the 20″ for a total of 30″?

    1. Depends on the running technique. If, for example, you want to push harder and jump higher after each footstrike, you may need a little extra room above your head. Also, a taller friend or family member may visit and want to use the treadmill, so they may need a little extra headroom.

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