XTERRA Fitness FS3.0 Elliptical Trainer

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300 lbsNoEddy
20 levels
1 manual,
12 preset,
1 custom,
1 watt,
4 HR,

Although the XTERRA FS3.0 elliptical has been around for quite a few years, it still hasn’t been discontinued. It is a mid-range, rear-rear drive cross trainer made for home use. It shares many similarities with the XTERRA FS2.5 but offers a few extra levels of resistance and a slightly longer stride.

Key Features and Specifications

  • Assembled dimensions: 54.1L x 24W x 65.2H inches (137L x 61W x 165H cm)
  • Assembled weight: 103.6 lbs (47 kg)
  • Supported weight: 300 lbs (136 kg)
  • Flywheel weight: 22 lbs (10 kg)
  • Stride: 16 inches (41 cm)
  • Incline: No
  • Resistance: Digital magnetic, 20 levels
  • Console: 12 preset programs, 4 HR programs, 1 custom program, 1 watt program, BMI, recovery
  • Extras: Tablet holder, accessory holder, sound system
  • Warranty: Frame 5 years / Parts 1 year

Frame construction and parts

The XTERRA Fitness FS3.0 elliptical cross trainer combines steel and ABS plastic parts in its construction. Needless to say, its frame, pedal bars, and handlebars are made of durable steel tubing. However, the covers of the drive and resistance elements, the console casing, the pedal trays, and several other small covers are ABS-made. All the steel frame parts feature a durable paint finish, highly resistant to corrosion and abrasion. The color used is black, this being the only color available for this model. The covers of the main unit are black / white to match the rest of the machine.

The fully assembled trainer is pretty compact, in comparison to other elliptical trainers, such as the SOLE E25, for example. It is approx. 54″ (137 cm) long, and 24″ (61 cm) wide, while its highest point is marked by the top of the moving arms which reach 65″ (165 cm) above floor level. Although the unit doesn’t take too much space, it still is recommended to allow at least 24″ (61 cm) of clearance all around it, for ease of access.

Even though it’s a fairly compact trainer, it still weighs over 103 lbs (47 kg). This weight, as well as its low center of gravity, considerably improves the machine’s stability. Plus, its rear base bar features adjustable levelers, while the front base bar integrates a set of wheels for easy relocation.

The machine features two sets of handlebars, one fixed and one mobile. The fixed handlebars attach to the front mast of the unit via two screws each, so they’re non-adjustable. They integrate metallic pulse sensors and the console has a pulse reading function. The mobile handlebars feature two long straight grips. They attach both to the front upright bar of the machine and to the pedal bars. Therefore, they cannot be locked; they move for as long as you pedal. As opposed to the fixed handgrips, the mobile handlebars don’t have pulse sensors. Both sets of handlebars have a rubber layer on their grips for extra comfort.

The pedals on the XTERRA FS3.0 are large enough to accommodate athletic shoes of any size. They don’t have any cushioning, articulations, or extra shock absorption elements. But nonetheless, just like any other elliptical trainer, this XTERRA model does deliver a low impact cardio workout. Also, the pedals are attached to metallic bars and they’re designed to support users up to 300 lbs (136 kg).

Elliptical path, stride, and step-up height

Similar to many other rear-drive elliptical trainers, the XTERRA Fitness FS3.0 features a slightly inclined forward elliptical path. In other words, the pedaling sensation resembles a descension on a soft ramp. Therefore, the workouts put a little more focus on your glutes and thighs.

This XTERRA elliptical trainer does not have an incline system. This being said, the position of its elliptical path and the length of its stride are non-adjustable. It offers a mid-range stride of 16″ (41 cm). Therefore, it should accommodate comfortably users up to 6’2″ (188 cm).

The pedal step-up height of the XTERRA FS3.0 elliptical is approx. 6″ (15 cm). Conversely, at their highest point, the pedals reach approx. 16″ (41 cm) above floor level. Therefore, it is recommended to use the machine in a room with a ceiling of at least 20″ (51 cm) higher than your own height.

Drive and resistance

Like most other elliptical trainers and upright bikes, the XTERRA Fitness FS3.0 machine has an internal flywheel which is perimeter-weighted for improved stability and a bit of extra inertia. Although it’s not as heavy as for an indoor cycling bike, the unit’s flywheel still weighs 22 lbs (10 kg), so it also adds to the overall pedaling resistance.

The flywheel allows reverse pedaling. Therefore, you can diversify your workouts alternating reverse pedaling sessions with forward pedaling sessions in order to focus different muscle groups.

This elliptical trainer is equipped with an eddy current resistance system. This means you have to connect it to a power source. It comes with a 9V / 1,000 mA adapter with a standard US plug. It also means that the console can adjust the resistance automatically.

The unit’s resistance system consists of an internal servo motor and a magnetic brake system. As you adjust the resistance from the console, or when a program is in use and the console adjusts the resistance automatically, the motor changes the magnets’ pull in order to increase or decrease the pedaling load.

The machine makes available 20 resistance levels. The first few levels deliver little pedal tension, great for low-intensity cardio workouts or rehab training. The top 18-20 levels, on the other hand, provide considerably more resistance, great for anyone who wants a consistent workout and extra fat burning possibilities.

Last but not least, the XTERRA FS3.0 elliptical is equipped with a belt drive system. It uses a durable poly-v belt designed to provide superior traction. A belt drive system comes with several advantages. For example, it does not require lubrication, it delivers a very smooth pedaling motion as it generates less vibration than a chain, and the usage of the machine is almost completely silent.


This XTERRA elliptical trainer comes with a mid-range console. It does not have online connectivity, nor it is compatible with any online fitness apps, but it does offer a fairly decent range of programs and features to keep you motivated. First of all, it features a multi-window LCD display so you can view all the workout metrics at once. It has LED backlight for superior readability. It indicates time, distance, speed, calories, watts, pulse, and the program profiles. For speed and distance, you can select either English or Metric units. Also, for the pulse reading function, you can either use the integrated sensors, or a wireless HR chest strap (not included).

In terms of programs, the first one to mention is the Manual Mode. This gives you the possibility to pedal freely and adjust the resistance as you like from the Up/Down arrow controls. When using the Manual mode, you can also select a workout goal for time, distance, calories, and pulse. When a goal is selected for time, distance, and calories, the console will show the remaining value until you reach the selected goal. For a HR goal, the console will beep when you reach the target, prompting you to slow down.

Next, the console makes available 12 preset programs (from P1 to P12). Each one has a specific layout aiming to provide a certain type of workout. Each one of the programs has its segment profile diagram shown on the console.

Four heart rate programs are also available. Three of them are preset for a heart rate percentage of 55%, 75%, and 90%, while the fourth one allows you to select a custom heart rate.

Finally, the console also has a Watt program and a Custom program, a BMI program, and a Pulse Recovery function. The Watt program allows you to select a watt value between 10 and 350 watts. The Custom program gives you the possibility to design your own custom program. The BMI function calculates your body fat percentage based on your input data (age, weight, height, gender). The Recovery function measures the amount of time taken by your pulse to return to normal at the end of the workout, and based on the result, it will give you a fitness rating between F1 (Best) and F6 (Worst).

Among other console features, we can also mention the sound system, the tablet holder, and the accessory tray. The sound system consists of two speakers and an AUX port. Therefore, you can connect your smartphone, tablet or MP3 player to the console and play your music through the integrated speakers. The tablet holder consists of a small shelf between the controls and the unit’s display. And finally, the accessory tray consists of a small compartment at the bottom of the console unit which can serve a place for various small accessories.

Assembly and Maintenace

The base body of the XTERRA FS3.0 elliptical comes pre-assembled. In other words, all the drive and resistance elements are already in their place, concealed by the ABS covers. However, you still have to attach the machine’s base bars, the pedals, the front mast, the moving arms, the fixed handgrips, and the console. This may take more than one hour. The task isn’t too difficult, though. The manual provides step-by-step assembly instructions with attached schematics. A basic toolkit is also included.

As we’ve mentioned above, this elliptical trainer has a belt drive system and does not require transmission lubrication as a chain drive machine normally does. Therefore, you only have to keep the unit clean, and periodically check for loose parts.

The Pros

  • Sturdy construction – can support users up to 300 lbs (136 kg);
  • Transport wheels on the front base;
  • Adjustable stabilizers on the rear base;
  • Fixed and mobile handlebars;
  • Medium-weight flywheel (22 lbs) for a more consistent pedaling motion;
  • Large, non-slip pedals;
  • Eddy current, automatic resistance (20 levels);
  • Multi-window LCD display with LED backlight;
  • The console tracks all the important workout metrics, including time, distance, total distance, speed, RPM, watts, calories, and pulse;
  • Pulse sensors and pulse reading function;
  • Telemetric receiver built-in the console for wireless HR chest straps;
  • Multiple programs available, including 12 preset, 4 HR, 1 Custom, 1 Watt, and 1 Manual;
  • Goal settings for time, distance, calories, and pulse;
  • BMI function;
  • Recovery function;
  • Accessory holder included;
  • Sound system included;
  • Tablet holder included;
  • Quiet operation;
  • Easy to assemble;
  • Little maintenance required.

The Cons

  • An HR chest strap is not included;
  • No bottle holder;
  • No online connectivity.


The XTERRA Fitness FS3.0 is a mid-range elliptical trainer made for home use. It offers 20 levels of eddy current resistance, a stride length of 16″, and a console with multiple workout programs. It’s also sturdy enough to support users up to 300 lbs (136 kg). It’s a great cross trainer for light to medium-intensity cardio workouts, muscle toning, weight loss, intervals, stamina development, and recovery training.

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