Garmin recently announced the Tread XL – Baja Race and Tread XL – Baja Chase Editions of high-performance, off-road navigators, purpose-built for high-speed race vehicles and support trucks. The large, 10-inch navigators have glove-friendly, high-visibility touchscreens with options for push-button control.
Ruggedly constructed to withstand hot desert temperatures, challenging terrain, and with an IP67 rating to resist dust and water, the newest additions to the Tread lineup help Baja teams navigate unforgiving terrain. Built-in inReach technology provides team tracking with global satellite coverage, allowing race vehicles and chase trucks to message and track each other with live position updates.
“We’re excited to be the first to offer live team tracking, which has the potential to transform the sport of Baja racing as we know it today,” said Dan Bartel, Garmin vice president of global consumer sales. “The ability for race vehicles and chase trucks to message each other with global satellite coverage is something that has not been available to teams previously. Drivers can now easily send and receive messages to coordinate repairs and other important information.”
Both the Baja Race and Baja Chase Edition navigators offer pre-running tools to create custom pacenotes for each course, such as “sharp turn,” “stepdown” or “danger,” to help drivers anticipate terrain and navigate the most efficient route through all virtual checkpoints. Never settle for anything but the best with the track recorder feature, which uses a splits/lap timer to record performance and help improve racing times. And when in “chase” mode, support trucks can track a race vehicle with live updates on the map.
“The Garmin Tread XL Baja is an amazing device for racing,” said Casey Currie, Dakar and two-time Baja Race champion. “The ease of adding pacenotes, seeing the race course and even seeing terrain for prerunning all help with racing. The satellite tracking with the entire team makes it so nice to be able to know where everyone is at all times and to be able to send messages when needed.”
Team members can easily import GPX files to view a course’s start and finish, racetrack line, virtual checkpoints, pit locations, race mile markers and even add their own custom pacenotes to the course file. With downloadable, high-resolution Birdseye Satellite Imagery, drivers can also see high-resolution aerial views of their surroundings, helping them get a clear lay of the land.
The Baja Race Edition includes the Tread XL Baja Dock for easy push-button interaction and comes standard with the ability to panel mount the device directly to the dashboard or use the bail mount to secure. Alternatively, the portable Baja Chase Edition comes with a heavy-duty suction cup mount, vehicle power cable and robust mounting hardware to easily move from one support truck to another.
External inReach and GPS antennas are included for enhanced performance with the Baja Race Edition and sold separately for the Baja Chase Edition. Both navigators pair seamlessly with other Garmin products to further enhance the navigation experience, including:
- Garmin PowerSwitch digital switch box (sold separately) to control the vehicle’s 12-volt accessories, such as rock lights, fans and air pumps.
- The rugged BC 50 wireless camera (sold separately) to maximize visibility around the vehicle. The BC 50 is also available with night vision for exceptional illumination in the dark.
Team tracking requires an active inReach Flex Team subscription, which are designed specifically for high-performance, off-road racing teams. These plans are flexible so users can activate and deactivate a subscription based on their racing schedule. Monthly plans include unlimited team tracking, unlimited SOS, unlimited custom text messages and preset messages. The plans offer team tracking refresh rates of up to 30 seconds.
Available now, the Tread XL – Baja Race Edition navigator has a suggested retail price of $2,499.99, while the Tread XL – Baja Chase Edition has a suggested retail price of $1,799.99. For more information on the Tread XL or other Garmin products, be sure to visit their website.