User reviews of the Schwinn 460 Variable Stride elliptical trainer range from lukewarm to enthusiastic. The variable stride -- which changes to suit your motion, no mechanical or electronic adjustments needed -- is a feature that you usually find on more expensive elliptical trainers; however, users report that it's less-than-perfectly implemented here. The most common complaints are that the longer your stride, the louder the machine gets and "the more rumble one feels through the feet." We also found occasional complaints of malfunctions and durability concerns; in a few cases, components quickly stopped working or arrived broken. That said, users for the most part are happy with this machine's smooth, quiet operation. One expert reviewer expresses initial reservations about the Schwinn 460's variable stride feature, but decides that it is, in fact, a plus.
Schwinn's parent company, Nautilus, recalled about 10,000 units of the Schwinn 460 Variable Stride in December 2011, due to faulty foot pedals that can detach or break during use; the fix includes a free repair kit and extended warranty. If you're looking for a good-value elliptical trainer in the $1,000 and under price range, reviewers point to the NordicTrack AudioStrider 990 Pro (*Est. $900) as the best value. If you're willing to spend a bit more, the Sole E35 (*Est. $1,170) is the overall best-recommended elliptical trainer.
We found only one credible expert review of the Schwinn 460, along with a news release from the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission documenting the model's recall. User reviews from Amazon.com, Elliptical Trainer Superstore and SportsAuthority.com round out the picture.
1. Consumer Product Safety Commission
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission issued a news release detailing Nautilus' recall of the Schwinn 460 Variable Stride; they warn that "the foot plates can detach from the machine during use, posing a fall hazard."
Review: Nautilus Recalls Schwinn Elliptical Exercise Equipment Due to Fall Hazard, No author, Dec. 6, 2011
Former fitness-industry executive Fred Waters is initially skeptical about the Schwinn 460's variable stride feature. He eventually decides that it's a plus, especially in light of strong positive feedback from users. Given the recent recall, he recommends the NordicTrack AudioStrider Pro 990 as a suitable alternative.
Review: Schwinn 460 Elliptical Trainer Review, Fred Waters
About 100 reviewers give the Schwinn 460 an overall 4-star rating on Amazon.com. Most say they are very happy with the elliptical, but we found a significant number of complaints about broken components or the occasional jerky performance.
Review: Schwinn 460 Variable Stride Elliptical Trainer, Contributors to Amazon.com
4. Elliptical Trainer Superstore
More than three dozen reviewers award the Schwinn 460 an average overall rating of 4.5 stars. Owners cite the unit's thorough, clear assembly directions, and they are quite pleased with the flexible stride length.
Review: Schwinn 460 Variable Stride, Contributors to Elliptical Trainer Superstore
5. Sports Authority
About 14 reviewers give this elliptical trainer a 4-star average overall rating. Most say they are very happy with its smooth, quiet, sturdy operation, as well as how easy it is to use. One user points out, "My toes don't go numb after 45 minutes like other ellipticals." However, one user complains about a jolting, noisy ride, and another received a unit without a power cord.
Review: Schwinn 460 Variable Stride Elliptical, Contributors to SportsAuthority.com