If there’s one advantage that driving a car has over riding a motorcycle, it’s the ability to easily use and take advantage of GPS devices. For motorcyclists, options are few and far between as not only do you need to be able to operate the GPS with gloves on, but it also needs to have a brighter than average screen and be able to withstand the rain and vibrations. Enter Garmin’s new devices specifically for motorcycle riders – the Zumo 395LM and 595LM.
In addition to those features necessary for use by riders, the two new devices come with a few safety benefits. Riders can be notified of upcoming sharp curves, nearby red light and speed cameras, animal crossings and many other useful alerts. In addition, riders will be prompted with relevant state helmet law notifications (US/CAN) when crossing state borders.
The software installed – called Garmin Adventurous Routing will search out roads that motorcyclists might prefer and not necessarily the shortest or fastest way from A to B. Also, both models allow riders to control music and media from a compatible smartphone or MP3 player. The 595 model lets riders stream popular music services such as Spotify and Pandora right into their headset or helmet (sold separately), offering easy control options using the glove-friendly Zumo screen display.
“What’s exciting about the new Zumo models is that they are designed to find those adventurous winding roads that riders typically crave,” said Dan Bartel, Garmin vice president of worldwide sales. “The ability to stream Spotify music will also enhance the thrill of every ride.”
It all sounds good until you see the price.The Zumo 395LM has a suggested retail price of $599.99 and the Zumo 595LM is $899.99 (that’s Uncle Sam’s dollars, too). We’re not sure of the likelihood of people snapping these up when they cost as much as what most people would spend on their gear.