Garmin Enduro GPS Smartwatch Review


Garmin Enduro Review

Garmin is a company that takes into account all areas of fitness, both indoor and outdoor. But running and jogging at high altitudes, or engaging in rugged outdoor fitness activities, requires a smartwatch that can keep up with increased performance and altitudes with stellar battery capabilities. The new Garmin Enduro is a smartwatch that seeks to provide all of those needed accessories. But are the added features in the Garmin Enduro worth the steep investment?

Garmin Enduro is a great watch in terms of solar-charging battery performance, and performance tracking features covering virtually any outdoor activity in the wilderness. This model responds to fitness activity in areas of high altitude, which is useful for users who engage in outdoor sports.

This sports and fitness watch scores high marks in all the important key points for rating a fitness watch. This article will explore everything that needs to be known about this feature-packed watch, including its pros and cons as well as if the watch is worth buying for your fitness needs when compared to the similar Garmin Fenix 6 Pro. Read on to find out more.

Garmin Enduro Review: The Lovechild of the Forerunner 945 and Fenix 6 with Ultra-Long Battery Life

Pros:

  • A power glass solar charging lens harvests the sun’s energy, giving you more power and time between charges
  • The innovative power manager and battery saver modes allow you to toggle sensors on and off to extend battery life on the run
  • The rugged, lightweight design features an always-on 1.4-inch display and steel or DLC-coated titanium bezel, buttons, and rear case
  • Trail run VO2 max tracks your cardiovascular fitness level and adjusts based on trail conditions
  • Ultrarun activity with a rest timer allows you to log your time spent at aid stations
  • The useful ClimbPro trail enhancements give you information for descents and flats for additional safety and awareness
  • Use run/walk detection to review after training sessions or races where on course you walked, such as steep climbs

Cons:

  • Expensive
  • The band is designed with comfort in mind but may not hold up well
  • GPS enhanced features like ClimbPro are designed to work flawlessly in rugged terrain, but GPS limitations are still a concern
  • Weak mapping features

Garmin Enduro Review Key Features

The Garmin Enduro truly lives up to the title ‘over the top,’ and that is easy to see based on the innovation and overwhelming amount of features that are packed into this watch. I will attempt to cover the highlights of each key feature for a comprehensive roundup of what makes this watch stand out.

First up in the line of key features are the customizable power management modes and a Power Glass solar charging lens that harvests the power of the sun to extend battery life up to one year; this in itself is a major selling point when compared to the previous solar charging Garmin watches. 

Real-time information on terrain

For performance, you can now prepare for even the longest races with advanced training features, including a trail run VO2 max, ultra-run rest timer, and the ClimbPro feature, which provides real-time information on your current and upcoming climbs, descents, and flats. For conditioning and wellness, this model comes with an enhanced recovery timer and workout recommendations based on your sleep and wellness data. 

80 hours of battery life

Enhanced GPS upgrades now allow you to navigate the most challenging environments with multi-GNSS support and a barometric altimeter and compass. The trail run V02 max estimates the cardiovascular fitness level of trail runners by adjusting based on the varying trail and terrain conditions that can affect run performance.

In terms of battery, you can now get up to 80 hours of battery life in GPS mode, up to 300 hours in max battery mode, and up to 65 days in smartwatch mode with solar charging. 

Optical wrist heart rate

For added battery convenience, you can now view how various settings and sensors impact your watch’s battery life, so you can make battery-extending changes based on what you will be doing with the watch.

The optical heart rate technology is also an upgrade and estimates activity intensity as well as heart rate variability to calculate your stress level. It also tracks underwater without a heart rate strap. 

ClimbPro ascent planner

Climbing is also given a top priority with this model, and you can use the precise ClimbPro ascent planner to see real-time information on your current and upcoming climbs, including gradient, distance, and elevation gain. ClimbPro trail enhancements also give you information for descents and flats for additional awareness.

Furthermore, you can track the details of every ride with mountain biking metrics plus specialized grit and flow measurements that rate trail difficulty and how smoothly you descend, giving you a score to beat next time.

Advanced training metrics

One feature that really stood out to me was the metrics and sensors that can prepare you for any environment. You can now see how your body is holding up in different environments with heat and altitude acclimation. View advanced estimated training metrics that include running dynamics, heat- and altitude-adjusted VO2 max, recovery advisor, and more.

These metrics and readings allow you the opportunity to give your body time to recover between training sessions which is essential for intense outdoor fitness routines, particularly in rugged and challenging environments. 

After each workout, there is a built-in recovery advisor that will let you know how long to rest before another big effort. You can navigate your next trail with ABC sensors, including an altimeter for elevation data, a barometer to monitor the weather, and a 3-axis electronic compass. 

The features of the Garmin Enduro are vast and innovative, which is reflected in the high price tag assuring maximum performance variabilities and dynamics with virtually every outdoor terrain accounted for. 

Why Should You Buy the Garmin Enduro?

The first caveat that sticks out here is the price tag; let’s just be perfectly honest about that. This watch is expensive; one of the most expensive fitness watches ever made, but the features and capabilities of this watch are mind-boggling. 

Each and every feature I covered above is worthy of your purchase, but if you are not a big trail runner or do not spend much time in the wilderness, this watch is overkill. If you only remember one key feature of this watch, the battery life and capabilities should be the feature that sticks out the most. The battery will last for days on end, and when you add in the lens solar charging, you will be amazed at just how long this watch can hold a charge. 

There are a few downsides to this watch, the lack of proper maps being the main thing that sticks out. For a watch that is designed for the wilderness, not having comprehensive and high-resolution maps is a bit backward, but something had to be sacrificed for the inclusion of so many dynamic features. 

There is no music, and many of the familiar smart features that fill so many previous Garmin watches are also fairly weak. You may not like the velcro band, but this does add a layer of wrist comfort. 

All in all, the Garmin Enduro is the quintessential watch for outdoor multisport activities.

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Garmin Enduro vs. Garmin Fenix 6 Pro: Which Should You Buy?

If you put the Garmin Enduro side-by-side with the Garmin Fenix 6 Pro, you will start to notice many similarities between the two watches, with the much smaller price tag of the Fenix 6 Pro sticking out the most. Since both watches are similar, let’s take a look at what makes them different from one another and which you should consider buying. 

Both watches have solar charging capabilities, but the Garmin Enduro is a vast improvement over the solar charging lens in the Fenix 6 Pro. The Garmin Fenix 6 Pro contains a power glass lens material that covers the display screen of the watch. This was new and singular at the time of its release because the panel increased the ability of the lens to absorb UV and transfer this power to the battery pack.

With the Garmin Enduro, you can now have a full solar charge to the battery that limits charging time to practically nothing since a charge can last literally for weeks at a time.

The Garmin Enduro is all about dynamic variety across many features; variety in fitness selections and variety when it comes to what you need to be tracked and monitored and how. But this feature is fairly universal across the entire Fenix series, and nearly the same amount of variety, with the addition of solar power technology that can be found in a reduced capacity in the Fenix 6 Pro.

One of its biggest advantages is the inclusion of the enhanced ultratrac mode, which is very similar in many ways to the Fenix 6 Pro but with better GPS functionality. This feature is superb in its capabilities of tracking so many different types of activities, yet this is also a bit similar to what the Fenix 6 Pro Solar has with the Pace Pro feature.

When it comes down to it, the Garmin Enduro is the superior watch of the two. The resolution is so clear and innovative, which combined with the solar capabilities of the watch, make it one of the longest-lasting and useful watches in the Garmin line.

The Fenix 6 Pro runs very close, but the ClimbPro feature in the Garmin Enduro manages to make the ability to achieve more types of activity in the wilderness that the Fenix 6 Pro was only able to record altitude variations with when it came to hiking. If you like the sound of the ultratrac mode with this watch and the near similar features of the Garmin Enduro, this smartwatch is also a great choice to consider.

The Fenix 6 Pro is also not going to break the bank if you decide to go with this stellar watch. With that said, there is a huge rise in price if you decide on the Garmin Enduro, as this watch is incredibly expensive.

If you are looking for a smartwatch that makes the process of checking your performance statistics easy to navigate with enhanced performance features and project charts, then the Garmin Fenix 6 Pro is certainly a model worth considering and is a nice medium-priced watch.

But if you are looking for a watch that will take outdoor fitness to the next level and provide one of the longest battery charges ever seen in a fitness watch, then Garmin Enduro is an investment that will hold up and provide superb use for years to come. The ultra-fit nylon strap is also comfortable and convenient when outdoors if you are looking for wrist comfort.

Garmin Enduro FAQs

Is the Garmin Enduro GPS accurate?

The GPS accuracy on the Garmin Enduro is recalibrated and improved upon earlier Garmin models to sync accordingly to a range of new performance and wellness tracking features as well as increased terrain coverage. The navigation and GPS reader can accurately record positions for upward of 3-10 meters. A strong satellite signal is essential.

Is the Garmin Enduro watch too big?

The Garmin Enduro is a fairly large watch. The lens is, in fact, larger, but this is essential to incorporate solar technology for the battery. Many users report that the size of this model strikes a nice, mid-range balance between small and large, but for regular fitness use, the watch may prove to be too large.

Does the Garmin Enduro play music?

Unlike other Garmin models in the advanced range, playing music is not a feature that comes with the Garmin Enduro. You will need to bring a separate device for music when using this watch.

Final Thoughts

If you are looking for a smartwatch that makes the process of checking your performance statistics easy to navigate with enhanced performance features and project charts, then the Garmin Enduro is certainly a model worth considering. There are very few downsides to this watch, and the sheer enhancements of this model in terms of battery life and outdoor performance features are hard to resist.

Rather you enjoy running and jogging or, swimming, bicycling, or triathlons, even mountain climbing, the Garmin Enduro is a stellar watch and worthy successor to the best features in the Garmin Fenix lines, made all the better by the new and improved addition of advanced solar technology for ultra-battery performance.

Ben Jones

As a running enthusiast, I found it frustrating that there were limited review sites available willing to give me an honest opinion on the latest technology to aid my hobby. I am certainly not trendy (my kids will testify to that), however I am an early adopter and just love getting my hands on the most up-to-date gadgets.

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