Monday, May 22, 2006

Garmin® StreetPilot® c-Series™ Gets New Features, Functions

Garmin International Inc. has announced that it has expanded its best-selling line of StreetPilot c-series automotive navigators with offerings that include exciting new features. The StreetPilot c500 series was formally unveiled at CeBIT, Europe’s premier electronics trade show, which was held in Hannover, Germany, between 9 and 15 March 2006.

Based on Garmin’s phenomenally popular c300 series, the StreetPilot c500 series is destined to become the new benchmark in easy-to-use, affordable, attractive, and functional navigation. With enhancements like Bluetooth® Wireless Technology with a hands-free calling interface for over 200 applicable mobile phones (c550 only), a bright TFT display, and a high-sensitivity GPS receiver, the c500 series solidifies Garmin as the world’s leading innovator of location technology.

John Gallacher, CEO of Avnic Trading, exclusive distributors of the Garmin brand in South Africa, says: “South Africa is an expanding GPS market, as more and more people are starting to take advantage of the technology to get around. The new features of the c500 series are designed to make GPS navigation even more functional and easy-to-use.”

He adds: “The new capabilities demonstrate Garmin’s worldwide commitment to providing customers with integrated navigation devices that exceed anything else available today.”

All versions of the StreetPilot c500 series are equipped with a new high-sensitivity GPS receiver, which acquires a GPS signal quickly and is capable of maintaining a signal in heavy foliage or “urban canyons” created by city skyscrapers. The c500 series also features a brighter, sunlight readable touch-screen display and a slimmer, more refined shape and suction cup mounting bracket, compared to previous versions.

Map data for all units is provided by Garmap™ – the world leader in premium-quality mapping for Africa. All StreetPilot c500 series units also feature configurable vehicle icons, which allow the user to select a fun, customized car-shaped icon – instead of a simple wedge shaped graphic.

For added security, Garmin has developed a theft prevention system for the c500 series. The Garmin Lock™ disables the unit from performing any functions until the user types in a specific 4-digit PIN or takes the unit to a predetermined secure location code. If the user does not know the PIN or secure location, the StreetPilot will be inoperative.

Specific features of the new StreetPilot c550 include Bluetooth® capability with an integrated microphone and dual speakers (with external microphone and stereo output jack) that allow users to place hands-free mobile phone calls when connected to a compatible Bluetooth phone.

Customers can retrieve and dial numbers from their personalised phone book or from the phone’s call history log. A user can also make a call from the StreetPilot c550’s huge points of interest database – which includes hotels, restaurants, stores, and much more.

The StreetPilot c550 comes with pre-loaded maps of Europe, along with the ability to audibly announce the name of upcoming streets and points of interest – letting drivers keep their eyes on the road while navigating through busy traffic and convoluted roadways. The unit also features an MP3 player, as well as the optional Garmin Travel Guide™ functionality – giving users helpful and thorough reviews and recommendations for restaurants, hotels, shopping, nightlife, sporting events, and tourist attractions.

All models are sold with a carrying case, suction cup mount, adhesive dash mount, 12-volt adapter, PC/USB cable, and quick reference guide. The c500 series is expected to be available in South Africa towards the end of May 2006, with the c550 retailing at around R7040 excluding VAT and the c510 for R5460 excluding VAT. Visit for more information.

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