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Introducing Garmin's Varia: Everyone Needs Radar For Their Bike

Updated: Jan 24

Garmin's Varia Bike Radar Helps Prepare For the Unexpected






Jeffrey Clos is a participant in the Amazon Associates LLC associates program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. There are some links within this article to the described product.


The other day I was on a bike trip with my wife on local roads when I mentioned, we should probably have rear-view mirrors attached to our bikes to alert us of oncoming traffic. In this day and age of electric vehicles, approaching traffic is nearly impossible to hear until it has zipped by you. But what if there was another option?


With the development of the Garmin Varia Bike Radar line, cyclists now have access to a powerful rear-mounted radar system that can detect approaching traffic, keeping them safe on the roads. This innovative device is paving the way for a safer cycling experience. In this article, we will delve into the world of the Garmin Varia, exploring its features and benefits and how it’s changing the cycling game for good.


The Garmin Varia is a radar-based system that’s a game-changer for cyclists. It’s a rear-mounted device that detects approaching vehicles and warns the cyclist with visual and audible alerts.





The technology behind the Varia is incredible. The device uses radar technology to bounce signals off objects behind the cyclist, detecting any approaching vehicles. Once detected, the device alerts the cyclist, notifying them of the potential approaching danger.


One of the most significant advantages of the Garmin Varia is its compatibility with other devices. The Varia can pair with Garmin devices like the Edge or the Forerunner and other cycling computers like Wahoo and Bryton. With these devices, cyclists can receive real-time alerts about approaching traffic, allowing them to take action accordingly. The Varia can also be paired using Bluetooth to the Varia app on a compatible smartphone.





In addition to its safety features, the Garmin Varia has an impressive range of up to 140 meters, thanks to its powerful radar technology. This means cyclists can identify approaching vehicles much earlier, giving them enough time to react and ensure their safety. Additionally, the Varia has a battery life of up to 7 hours, making it a reliable device for longer rides.


Not only is the Garmin Varia great for regular cyclists, but it’s also beneficial for those who ride electric vehicles such as e-bikes or e-scooters. Electric vehicles move faster than regular cycles, increasing the risk of accidents on busy roads. However, electric vehicle riders can get alerts about approaching vehicles and ensure their road safety with the Varia.

Another key benefit of the Garmin Varia is its ease of use. The device is straightforward to install and set up, making it accessible for all cyclists. The Varia device can be clipped onto the seat post of any bike, and it’s easy to pair with other devices too. Once set up, the device runs seamlessly, working in the background to detect and alert cyclists of any approaching vehicles.


The Varia line consists of three central units starting with the RVR315 (Rear View Radar).





The RVR315 is a simple, rear-mounted radar device with an MSRP of roughly $149. I will likely add this device to my eBike very shortly. For those looking to add a tail light, you can opt for the RTL515.





Oncoming traffic will be able to see you and this exceptionally bright tail light up to a mile away. The MSRP on the RTL515 model is $199 and would be a welcome addition by plenty of riders. Rounding out the Varia offerings is a complete radar, rear tail light, and camera option in the RCT715.




Think of the RCT715 as a dash cam for your bike or an always-on camera to capture unexpected events.





The MSRP on the RCT715 comes in at $399.


Conclusion: In conclusion, the Garmin Varia is a game-changer for cyclists everywhere. Its radar-based technology, impressive range, compatibility with other devices, and ease of use are just a few reasons this device is a must-have for all cyclists. The Varia is an affordable investment that has the potential to save lives, making it an exceptional addition to the world of cycling technology. If you’re a cyclist, the Garmin Varia could be an optimal investment to ensure road safety.

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