Which navigation device is best for trucks? This is one of the most common questions asked by professional drivers on forums and groups. A reliable navigation device is an essential tool for drivers, providing up-to-date information that helps them navigate unfamiliar routes, making their work and life on the road more comfortable and safe.
So, how do you choose the best navigation device for your truck?
Are you wondering what kind of navigation device to choose for your truck?
We’ve got you covered with our 2023 truck navigation review, where we present our top picks for the best truck navigation devices, along with their specifications and key features.
When choosing a navigation device for your truck, there are several factors to consider. Which GPS navigation models are currently considered the best? What are the most important features to look for? We’ll help you answer these questions and more in our review.
Professional navigation for trucks
When it comes to professional navigation for trucks, there are hundreds of options available on the market, ranging from affordable to high-end solutions. Unlike a navigation device for a passenger car, a truck navigation device needs to meet specific requirements and have advanced functionalities.
First and foremost, a navigation device for a truck should allow you to select the type of truck you’re driving. This includes configuring the vehicle profile, where you enter the current setup of the truck and trailer, including the maximum height, width, total length, and axle load. This will enable you to effectively choose one of the best truck routes and avoid any potential restrictions.
In addition to this, it’s crucial for a truck navigation device to provide up-to-date information about closed roads, road conditions, and detour options. This will help you navigate your route with ease and avoid any potential hazards.
Choosing the Right Navigation System for Your Truck
With hundreds of different truck navigation systems available on the market, it can be challenging to determine which one to choose. While a navigation system for a passenger car may not require advanced features, a navigation system for a truck must meet many additional requirements.
First and foremost, a navigation system for a truck must allow you to select the type of truck you are driving. By configuring the vehicle profile, you can enter the current setup of your truck and trailer into the navigation system. This will enable you to choose one of the best truck routes based on your vehicle’s maximum height, width, total length, and axle load.
It is also crucial to have up-to-date information about road closures for trucks, road conditions, and detour options. Look for a navigation system that provides this type of information, and consider how quickly and smoothly the system can navigate.
Pay attention to the detail and accuracy of the maps, as well as how often the manufacturer updates them. You should also look for additional information such as the location of nearby gas stations, truck parking lots, hotels, hostels, or restaurants.
Truck drivers often rely on devices and software that offer lifetime map updates. Check whether a particular manufacturer offers such updates and how frequently they occur. Since US maps can be several hundred megabytes (or even several gigabytes) in size, consider purchasing a navigation system with a Wi-Fi module.
While a navigation system can help you plan and navigate your route, it is always a good idea to download up-to-date maps from the manufacturer or distributor’s website before embarking on a trip. This can help you avoid unexpected surprises like steep hills, sharp curves, or traffic jams.
GPS Navigation for Trucks – TIR Navigation
When choosing a GPS navigation system for a truck, it’s important to consider several factors. Firstly, the navigation should allow you to input the type of truck you’re driving, including its size and weight. This will ensure that the navigation provides you with routes that are suitable for trucks, taking into account any height, width, length, or axle load restrictions.
Another important factor to consider is the level of detail and accuracy of the maps, as well as the frequency of updates provided by the manufacturer. Additionally, you should look for a navigation system that is fast and easy to use, and which provides clear and up-to-date information about nearby gas stations, truck parking lots, hotels, hostels, and restaurants.
Truck drivers rely on devices and software that offer lifetime map updates, and many prefer devices with Wi-Fi modules to download maps, as maps can weigh several gigabytes. A Bluetooth module for automatic pairing with your smartphone and hands-free calling capabilities can also be a helpful feature.
It’s crucial that all information is displayed in real-time, so that drivers have a complete overview of the road ahead, including any closed roads or traffic jams. With this information, drivers can effectively choose an alternative route with just a few clicks on the device, bypassing any delays or roadblocks. Before setting out on a trip, it’s always a good idea to download the most up-to-date maps from the manufacturer or distributor’s website to ensure a smooth and hassle-free journey.
Choosing the right navigation system for your truck is crucial for professional drivers
It’s important to consider factors such as up-to-date and detailed maps, speed and ease of navigation, and availability of additional information like nearby gas stations, truck parking lots, hotels, hostels, and restaurants.
Truck drivers should opt for devices and software that offer lifetime map updates and check how frequently updates occur before making a purchase. It’s also essential to choose a navigation system with a Wi-Fi module, as maps for the United States can weigh several gigabytes.
When selecting a GPS navigation system for a truck, it’s worth checking if it has a built-in Bluetooth module for automatic pairing with a smartphone, an SD memory card slot, and a hands-free kit. Real-time information is also critical for professional drivers to have an overview of what’s happening on the road and bypass traffic jams, controls, and choose alternative routes quickly.
In addition, it’s beneficial to look for non-obvious features such as an active lane guidance system. This system is great for driving on multi-lane roads with many exits or intersections, indicating where the driver needs to change lanes in advance. The device considers the current dimensions of the truck and semi-trailer, which should be set before planning the trip route. The truck navigation system can help drivers avoid stressful situations, such as driving under a heavily abandoned bridge that can endanger the cargo being carried.
What are the essential features of a good navigation device for a truck?
It’s recommended that the screen size should be at least 6-7 inches, providing enough space to comfortably read messages and notifications while sitting behind the steering wheel. However, it’s crucial to pay attention to other display parameters. The screen should provide a high-quality image at any time of the day, with clear visibility being a must-have, and a larger screen being an added convenience.
The screen resolution is another important factor to consider when choosing a device. The higher the resolution, the better the image quality you can expect. It’s optimal to select models with a minimum resolution of 800×480 pixels. For greater convenience, a truck navigation system with a touch screen and voice control is recommended. This will greatly simplify and speed up device control, making the driving experience safer and more comfortable.
Professional navigation for professional drivers
Professional-grade navigation devices for truck drivers require careful consideration of several factors. One important criterion is the screen size, which should be at least 6-7 inches for easy reading from behind the steering wheel. Additionally, the display should offer high-quality, clear images, especially in varying light conditions. Higher resolution screens are preferred for better image quality, with a minimum resolution of 800×480 pixels being optimal.
Another essential feature is the operating system on which the navigation app runs. Most devices offer either Windows CE 6.0 or Android, with the former being more commonly used in lower-priced models. However, the Android OS is generally preferred for higher-priced models due to its user-friendly interface, regular updates, and reliable performance. A great example of an Android-based navigation device is the one produced by American company GARMIN, which offers excellent performance and features.
The best GPS navigation system for trucks 2023 reviews
Various truck navigation models differ in features, display size, and technical specifications. Here are five models that are particularly popular among drivers.
Number 1 – Garmin Dezl LGV1000 MT-D
We have found the best truck navigation device that comes equipped with a 10-inch touchscreen display and an integrated antenna for HD Radio, as well as FM announcements. This device determines the route based on the weight and dimensions of the truck and the slope of the terrain, making it easier for the driver to navigate without having to worry about complicated maneuvers.
The truck navigation system works in tandem with the Truck & Trailer Services and Truck Parking Europe applications, providing you with up-to-date data that can help you find parking lots, motels, or gas stations quickly. It can also search for popular routes, which is especially helpful when traveling in unfamiliar terrain and you want to ensure that you are on a road commonly used by other truckers.
The manufacturer has equipped this truck navigation device with a driver alert system, which promotes safe driving by signaling sharp turns, speed limits, and railroad crossings, among other things. With DAB digital traffic announcements, you can receive up-to-date traffic information quickly.
This model offers several mounting options, including a magnetic mount, ball mount, and screw-on mount. It is the most advanced and reliable truck navigation device on the market, and it is highly recommended for professional truck drivers. The cost of this device is approximately $1,000.
Number 2 – TomTom 6250 Professional
The TomTom 6250 navigation system is a professional solution designed for truck, bus, and RV drivers. Equipped with a 6-inch touchscreen, the device comes with free, lifetime updates for the map of Europe. The GPS allows for precise route planning to locations such as parking lots and gas stations, and adjusts the road to be optimal for vehicles of a specific size. These features make your trip safer, smoother, and more efficient. The TomTom 6250 also works with Google Now and Siri, two of the most powerful personal assistants.
TomTom continuously updates information on services such as DKV, ParkYourBus, and Les Routiers to expand the list of available destinations. Real-time information on road conditions and weather is also provided through TomTom Traffic. This model also offers hands-free calling, like other car navigation systems.
Number 3 – Garmin DezlCam 785 LMT-D
The Garmin DezlCam 785 LMT-D is a GPS device specifically designed for truck drivers, equipped with a camera that monitors traffic situations. It automatically detects traffic incidents and records HD video, which can be useful in case of an accident. The navigation has a 7” touchscreen display and a magnetic mount that allows for charging while driving. The device receives real-time information about traffic changes, jams, weather, and accidents, ensuring you have the most up-to-date information. The maps and software can be updated using Wi-Fi access, making it easy to keep the device current.
An additional benefit is that the device can connect to your phone or tablet via Bluetooth, allowing you to access notifications, SMS, and alerts from various applications directly on the large display. The software also includes algorithms to ensure the regular servicing of individual modules and to regulate planned outages. The Garmin DezlCam 785 LMT-D is a reliable and efficient navigation tool that can help make your trips safer and more efficient.
Number 4 – Garmin Dezl LGV800
This truck navigation system is equipped with either a radio communication system (MT-D version) or smartphone communication (MT-S version). Both models have an 8” touchscreen with high sensitivity. The device calculates the distance to be traveled for drivers, taking into account the vehicle’s dimensions and weight. The system generates warnings in case of approaching sloping terrain or sharp turns and provides a full view of the map while driving.
Long trips are made easier with the Truck Parking USA and Truck&Trailer Services apps, which allow you to quickly locate parking lots, motels, vehicle repair stations, or gas stations using an extensive list of points. With Wi-Fi access, the system also collects up-to-date information on traffic, fuel prices, and weather, ensuring that you always have the latest data.
The device features hands-free calling and notifications from your phone, allowing you to stay in touch with other drivers. It also has a feature that programs your route with popular routes in mind.
Number 5 – Garmin dezl LGV700
The Garmin Dezl LGV700 navigation device for truck drivers functions similarly to the LGV800, with the difference being that the manufacturer used a slightly smaller 7” display here. Depending on the chosen model, it can provide radio announcements or smartphone app communication. A significant advantage of this navigation device is the support for Polish voiceover and lifetime updates for the map of Europe.
All functions related to route planning with vehicle parameters, access to information services, or collection of weather and traffic obstruction data work similarly to the larger model. However, the version with the smaller display is slightly less expensive.
The Garmin dezl LGV700 is a navigation device specifically designed for long truck routes. It features an easy-to-read 7-inch screen that maps truck routes based on the size and weight of the vehicle, providing professional drivers with a clear view of the road ahead. The large display is bright and clear, making it easy to use and operate in the cab.
To determine the best truck routes, simply enter your truck’s profile, including height, weight, length, width, and hazardous materials carried. You can also use data from Truck Parking Europe to easily find parking lots along your route, filtering by amenities such as Wi-Fi, showers, and security level. With the Garmin Drive mobile app, you can check for available spaces and reduce the risk of arriving at a crowded parking lot.
To increase situational awareness, the device offers driver alerts for upcoming sharp turns, speed limits, railroad crossings, and other potential hazards. Industry-leading ramp parking navigation tips highlight potential loading zones or storage spaces when you arrive at your destination.
You can also use the factory-loaded roadside assistance directory, “Truck & Trailer Services,” to find preferred truck stops based on brand or amenity. The included cable with DAB traffic announcement receiver provides up-to-date and accurate information on road conditions, helping you avoid accidents, road works, and other obstacles.
Overall, the Garmin dezl LGV700 offers all the features truckers need for efficient and safe navigation on long routes, with lifetime map updates and support for Polish voiceovers. The version with the slightly smaller 7-inch display is also slightly cheaper.