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Garmin Steps Up Zumo 395LM, Zumo 595LM Motorcycle Nav Systems

Garmin wants motorcycle riders to enjoy the ride and be safe.

Two new motorcycle navigation systems due in April add new safety and entertainment features compared to their predecessors. The glove-friendly portable navigation devices (PNDs) are the $599-suggested 4.3-inch zumo 395LM and $899 5-inch zumo 595LM.

To make the ride safer, the PNDs notify riders of upcoming sharp curves, nearby red-light and speed cameras, animal crossings and the like. Riders will also be alerted to state helmet laws when crossing state borders or the Canadian border.

To make the ride more enjoyable, both models deliver Bluetooth control of an iPhone/iPod music library, whereas only one of the predecessor models did so. The higher priced model steps up to control of Pandora and Spotify apps on iPhones and Android phones, whereas its predecessor controlled only Pandora apps.

Also to make the ride more enjoyable, both new models feature Garmin Adventurous Routing, which lets users select the level of twists and hills they want on their route.

Like before, the step-up model works with Garmin’s smartphone Link app to display texts, app notifications and, via subscription, live weather radar and traffic reports. A new LiveTrack feature lets riders be tracked by friends.

Also like their predecessors, both models feature Bluetooth hands-free calling and spoken directions that can be heard through a compatible headset or helmet; control of Garmin’s Virb action cameras; and ability to monitor tire pressure when used with Garmin’s tire-pressure sensors.

Both devices include lifetime map updates for North America; motorcycle-specific points of interest (POIs) such as repair services; Garmin Real Directions to guide riders by recognizable landmarks and traffic lights; and preloaded Foursquare data.