What is the Best GPS for Truck Drivers?

November 17, 2022


Planning out and attempting to optimize a trip can be far from straightforward, yet, navigating a truck through crowded, unfamiliar areas attaches another level of difficulty to the trip. On the one hand, some truck drivers employ typical GPS for cars and smartphones, and while these devices do work, they could be more effective for trucking operations.

In cases like this, truckers should opt for truck GPS, specifically designed to optimize trucking operations. With these devices, trucking routes are effectively prioritized, making it easier for drivers to plan long-haul trips. A truck GPS also features some valuable resources that might be missing in typical cars and smartphone systems, such as weigh stations and truck stops.

Best GPS For Truck Drivers

As a truck driver, having the right truck GPS can significantly affect how well a long-haul trip is planned and optimized. As such, we have searched for and reviewed the best truck GPS to help plan your next trip and make it much smoother.

Rand McNally TND 750

A lot makes the Rand McNally TND 750 our number-one pick for the best truck GPS in the market. Featuring a large 7.0-inch screen, this GPS does it all, from providing live traffic alerts to rerouting services and real-time alerts for changes in traffic patterns. This GPS also features other features prevalent to the Rand McNally brand, including 3D building and monument tracking, a 750’s dynamic weather overlay, and an inbuilt service for calculating mileage and fuel consumption.

While these features employ the latest technology, the GPS’s modern interface makes it easy for drivers to learn how to use these extensive features. The 750’s dynamic weather overlay is also designed from advanced and durable hardware, making it perfect for the daily rigors of truck driving. If you require a positional system that offers a modern interface, dependable navigation, and accurate data tracking, then the Rand McNally TND 750 is ideal.

Garmin OTR710

  • 7” touchscreen truck navigator offers a bright, crisp high-resolution display. The integrated camera continually records 1080p HD video with a 140-degree field of view and automatically saves video of incidents. GPS data shows when and where events occurred, and the pre-installed memory card means this navigator is ready to use.
  • CUSTOM TRUCK ROUTING: Just enter your truck profile (customizable by height, weight, length, width and hazardous materials) to find truck-preferred routes1 best suited for your rig and load.

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Garmin is a household name when it comes to GPS for all types of automobiles, and their new dezl model, the OTR710, offers some of the best features present in today’s market for a modest price. Garmin’s dezl OTR710 brings the best durability, quality hardware, and sophisticated components into one system. The most impressive feature is the BirdsEye satellite imaging which provides drivers with a detailed and precise aerial view of different locations, including loading docks, security gates, and truck entrances.

The dezl OTR710 incorporates Garmin’s mapping feature for creating routes based on the truck’s weight and size. Truckers are also alerted to upcoming bridge heights, steep grades, sharp turns, and weight limits, among many other route factors and conditions relevant to the truck’s operation. Debates over the best GPS software will always remain; however, Garmin’s line of GPS remains the best when it comes to hardware and build quality. Needless to say, the Garmin dezl OTR710 is not the cheapest truck GPS in the market; however, compared to other options with similar features, it does provide good value for money.

TomTom Trucker 620

  • 6“ touchscreen plus mount: Secured by a specialized click-and-drive mount view instructions clearly on the high brightness and sunlight-readable screen of your TomTom Trucker GPS.
  • Regular updated USA and Canada Maps for large vehicles: Drive on the right roads for your truck with specialized routing for hazardous cargo, vehicle size, weight, and max. speed.

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Like the Garmin brand, Tom Tom is another popular name in automobile GPS. A large selection of Tom Tom’s GPS units work for the regular sedan and SUV drivers; however, the Trucker 620 unit was designed to target truckers’ need for compatibility. As such, the system offers different functionalities that drivers can manage conveniently from a handheld device.

Firstly,  the TomTom MyDrive feature allows truckers to pre-plan optimized routes on their smartphones, laptop, or tablets and synchronize them to their GPS device. The unit is also compatible with Google and Siri and offers customized trucking routing considering the truck’s size, weight, and length. The TomTom Trucker 620 has a 6-inch screen that allows truckers to see directions, lifetime truck maps, and real-time traffic updates. Unsurprisingly, it takes a lot of extra setups to get the best out of this unit; yet we highly recommend it for truckers looking to have their smart devices and GPS unit interconnected.

OHREX GPS

  • Pre-installed with the 2022 latest North America Map, include USA Canada Mexico Maps, which has 2D / 3D map display. If you need to update the latest Map, please contact us to download. (Downloadable but not pre-installed maps: Europe, UK, Ireland, Australia and so on)
  • OHREX 7 inch GPS Navigation with detailed maps and turn-by-turn directions that speak street names loud and clear through the speaker. With OHREX GPS navigation system, you will never miss a turn or have to make sudden lane crossings. Support: (1)Postcodes, Address, Coordinates & POI (2) Driver Alerts, Active Lane Guidance assist, Active Speed Camera Detection (3) Street name Broadcasting, Turn-By-Turn Real Voice Broadcast.

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The OHREX GPS is our top pick based on versatility as it can switch between different modes of transportation, making it as practical as a car and truck GPS. In truth, an OHREX GPS supports routing in rucks, cars, ambulances, buses, and even taxis. Aside from its multi-platform compatibility, this unit’s design features an in-built Bluetooth connectivity that improves safe driving through hands-free calls. Truckers can also explore the voice-over direction functions and intelligent alerts for road conditions.

Other valuable features of the OHREX GPS unit include free lifetime updates, advanced lane guidance, active voice speed camera alerts, over a thousand specific truck points of interest, and intelligent routing planning. For truckers needing a basic truck GPS that can easily switch between personal cars and trucks, then the OHREX GPS is the perfect option.

Truck Drivers GPS Buying Guide

A navigation system is vital for determining a truck’s real-time location, speed, and direction and creating a route based on different factors. As a result, purchasing a quality GPS navigation device is essential, and this guide assists you in identifying the best one.

How To Choose The Best Truck GPS

There are certain features to consider in identifying a quality truck GPS. Here is a list of some.

Screen Display

In truth, a GPS unit is mostly screen; hence, it’s only natural the screen size would be the most noticeable feature of a GPS unit. Every element, from the navigation route to an aerial view and alert notifications, is usually displayed on the screen; thus, it’s best to settle for a unit with at least a 5-inch screen. Anyone using a GPS unit with a smaller screen will need help reading the map.

The screen should also offer different functionalities, such as adaptable brightness. With a feature like this, the unit would automatically adapt to the light intensity around it. A significant number of GPS units today offer touchscreen capabilities, so GPS units with this feature should be the bare minimum.

Mapping Information

A GPS unit is only as good as its mapping, and you should always pay attention to its reliability. Modern units provide a 3D point of view for drivers to assess different routes and roadways before driving through. Alternatively, GPS units can come with lifetime map updates that notify truckers in case of any changes in the intended path.

To recognize a sound mapping system, you should check if it includes street names, speed limits, and directions. With these features, you can be sure the GPS will alert you if you miss a turn. Additional mapping features include nearby truck centers, gas stations, restaurants, and other relevant points of interest along a particular route.

Fleet Management

While a truck GPS’s primary purpose is navigation, most modern systems have other useful features designed to optimize and effectively manage trucking operations. Regarding trucking management, truckers can opt for GPS systems to communicate with individual units at the base station. This feature is called fleet management.

GPS systems with fleet management features allow you to see the present location of each truck you manage in real-time. With this information, a lot of data can be deduced, including estimated arrival time. The fleet management feature is essential when managing a trucking business.

Live Traffic And Weather Alerts

Connectivity to the internet is essential for GPS systems as it fosters access to real-time traffic and weather reports. Traffic reports go beyond route congestions; the GPS should also be able to notify truckers of other scenarios, such as narrow roads, sharp turns, and slopes. Regarding weather alerts, truckers should receive current forecasts, weather patterns, and weather emergency alerts.

Driver Assist

Modern GPS units come designed with voice assistants capable of giving voice-over instructions. With this feature, truckers need not constantly look at the screen for alerts and directions. Some units also have a voice command feature that allows you to interact with the system.

Conclusion

There are numerous truck GPS brands in the market today, and while our picks for the best units are of top quality, the list is incomplete. You can look beyond our choices based on specific personalized requirements such as budget. Whatever the case may be, our guide will give you adequate knowledge to identify quality units. Additionally, as an electronic device, GPS units can ultimately contribute to distractions on the road. As such, truckers should be well aware of this drawback and employ their navigation systems wisely.

About the author

I’m Luis Uribe, author of this website. I am the owner and head publisher for Trucker Daily and a freight brokerage Total Connection Logistics. I have been in and around the trucking industry for over 15 years. It is my mission with Trucker daily to equip truck drivers, with the latest in industry updates, news, and helpful tips to help further your trucking career and life. Whether you are a truck driving veteran, or beginner, you will find information on this site to save you a lot of time in your driving journey.

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