Expert Garmin Drive 50LMT Review 2019

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Garmin Drive 50LMT

rating: 4.4
  • Driver awareness features
  • Lifetime traffic avoidance
  • Landmark guidance

Garmin Drive 50LMT Car GPS

BEST CAR GPS
By Editorial Team | 13th June 2019

The Garmin Drive 50LMT offers affordability in a GPS for cars. It has many of the same features as higher-end options in Garmin GPS reviews but comes with a budget-friendly price tag. The 5-inch display has dual-orientation functionality. When you buy the Drive 50LMT, it comes with detailed maps of either the U.S. and Canada or the lower 49 states. It also includes lifetime traffic avoidance.

This particular GPS stands out from the crowd with its range of driver awareness features, such as fatigue warnings, school zone alerts, speed changes, and dangerous curve alerts. There is also the unique option to get directions that use traffic lights and landmarks via Garmin Real Directions. The system also includes millions of points of interest via FourSquare. This automotive GPS navigation system was designed to be intuitive to use, via Direct Access and the simple search field.

Features of the Garmin Drive 50LMT

The Garmin Drive 50LMT offers drivers the basic features they need from an automotive GPS navigation system with minimal thrills. The 5-inch-diagonal display measures 4.4 inches wide and 2.5 inches wide, giving drivers 480 x 272 pixels. The battery life is on the low side of average, lasting an hour when not plugged in. There is no powered magnetic mount, something to keep in mind.

It comes preloaded with street maps and map updates are included in the purchase. Because this is not a high-end navigation system, this auto GPS review cautions owners that you will need to plug the device into a computer to update the maps. It is compatible with Mac OS and Windows so you should have no problem achieving this.

As you use the Drive 50LMT, you can take advantage of the traffic information to avoid detours, accidents, and areas with heavy traffic. The traffic avoidance information is included in the Drive 50LMT for the device’s entire lifetime. This feature can also let you know if you are taking the quickest route.

Despite being highly budget-friendly, Garmin GPS reviews will praise this device for its lane assist functionality that includes junction view, showing you the signs of upcoming junctions. There is also a speed limit indicator as the Garmin GPS shows the speed limit on most major roads in the United States or Europe.

To help guide your journey, this is the best GPS navigation system for a car that includes a trip planner as well as a trip log. As you compare GPS systems, you will find that this is one of the few, especially at its price range, offering landmark guidance via Garmin Real Directions. This is a very convenient feature for those who have difficulty judging distances as when activated, directions include both distances and landmarks. This best car GPS also has points of interest preloaded via FourSquare. Inputting destinations is a breeze as you can enter categories, proper names, or full addresses.

The Direct Access feature is also unique among automotive GPS navigation system options, giving you details on tricky destinations, like malls or airports. This feature on the Garmin Drive 50LMT can help you find the specific entrance you need, including guiding you through the parking lot and letting you know the closest store to your spot in the mall.

In terms of safety, this Garmin device helps protect the driver, passenger, and others on the road via alerts for things such as fatigue, school zones, dangerous curves, and changes in speed. This particular feature makes it the best GPS for daily commutes as well as road trips in unfamiliar areas. There are even notifications for speed cameras and red-light cameras plus alerts if you are driving incorrectly on a one-way road. To help you see instructions at a glance, Up Ahead shows milestones and future places without having to go out of the map view. This eliminates the need to click around on the screen while driving.

Compared to other GPS reviews 2019, the Garmin Drive 50LMT is highly affordable, costing around $170. This includes all the basic navigation features you need and then some. For this price, the lack of Wi-Fi and Bluetooth is unsurprising. Realistically, most modern cars offer Bluetooth anyway, so few drivers will bemoan this lack. Although you cannot connect a smartphone to this GPS, you can pair it with the BC 30 wireless backup camera or BabyCam, both from Garmin. Customer support from Garmin is also well-rated with support via email or phone plus information on the brand’s website.

Conclusion

Those in search of a more basic or budget-friendly choice for an automotive GPS navigation system will find the Garmin Drive 50LMT to have everything they need. It handles navigation with ease, just like any other unit you find in Garmin GPS reviews. It also has some of the unique features Garmin devices are known for, such as the ability to get spoken instructions that utilize landmarks and lifetime traffic updates.

The device further stands out with its Direct Access feature for help in complex parking lots and with tricky destinations. The range of driver alerts and aids also add value to this GPS, by reducing the risk of unsafe driving or tickets from things like running red lights, speeding, or speeding in a school zone. The fact that this 5-inch GPS has a high-definition capacitive touch screen and voice-activated navigation despite its price point also helps differentiate it from other GPS car navigation reviews.

If you want Bluetooth connectivity in your GPS system or want Wi-Fi functionality to easily get map updates, you may want to compare GPS systems some more. If, however, you can use your car’s Bluetooth and do not mind occasionally spending a few minutes to manually update the maps via your computer, the Garmin Drive 50LMT offers an excellent value, whether you have long road trips planned or just want some guidance on your daily commute.


Pros

  • Driver awareness features.
  • Lifetime traffic avoidance.
  • Landmark guidance.
  • Resistive touch screen.


Cons

  • No Bluetooth.
  • Cannot be used outside of a vehicle.


Reviewed by
Editorial Team
Our Editorial Team is constantly watching for new and exciting services to report on. They aim to bring balanced, honest reviews to the site to give you the best comparisons and ensure you have the knowledge to choose the product right for you. Read more.
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