RV GPS navigator

Garmin’s RV 1090 GPS navigator is customized for big vehicles.

CASA GRANDE — While there may be a few fans of folded paper maps still out there, for many who enjoy road warrioring in a recreational vehicle, a GPS navigation system is a must-have tool.

GPS navigation systems for RVs are different than those meant for exploring in a car as they tend to take a recreational vehicle’s limitations into account. Routes created for recreational vehicles tend to avoid steep and narrow roadways, low bridges and areas that a heavy vehicle might have trouble navigating into and out of.

Garmin International, a unit of Garmin Ltd., this month announced its newest addition to its RV-specific GPS navigator series, the RV 1090, which features a 10-inch high-resolution touchscreen display.

“The RV 1090 allows travelers to see the most important information along their route more clearly than ever before,” a press release from Garmin said. “With both portrait and landscape-view options, the bright screen of the RV 1090 can accommodate an RV or towable trailer.”

The extra-large displays aim to make it easier for drivers to see details.

“Whether you’re headed through your favorite national park with family or embarking on a cross-country adventure, drivers will now have a sharp, responsive display tailored for RV vacations,” Dan Bartel, Garmin vice president of global consumer sales, said in the press release.

The RV 1090 includes RV-related navigation features such as custom RV routing that takes into account the size and weight of the camper or trailer to find an appropriate route option, as well as road warnings that allow users to foresee upcoming hazards including sharp curves and steep grades.

It also includes a preloaded directory of RV parks and services and Tripadvisor traveler ratings.

More information about the device is available online at www.garmin.com/rv.

The new Garmin unit joins a lineup of other RV-specific navigational units on the market. Some other popular GPS units made by other manufacturers specifically tailored for recreational vehicles are:

Rand McNally OverDryve 7 RV — an award-winning unit with a high-resolution display, built-in dash cam and the ability to create RV-specific routes based on a vehicle’s class, height and weight. The unit is also Wi-Fi enabled and has several driver-friendly features including hands-free calling and texting, voice commands and web browsing. More information about the unit is available online at randmcnally.com.

  • Magellan RoadMate RV — the popular unit that features a high-sensitivity touch panel, bright and clear screen and Wi-Fi connectivity. The device allows for the real-time display of weather and fuel prices. Users may create customizable RV routes based on vehicle type, dimensions and driving preferences. More information is available online at
  • TomTom GO 520 — the popular touchscreen device offers real-time traffic data, customizable RV routes, information about camping sites and facilities. Users may switch between using the unit with a recreational vehicle and a car. The device includes a hands-free navigation option. More information is available online at
  • For smartphone users, the CoPilot GPS is a downloadable phone app that costs significantly less than a traditional GPS unit. The app features RV-specific routing based on vehicle class and size, offline navigation, distraction free guidance and safety and other features. More information is available online at www.copilotgps.com.