I always used to be against sat navs, preferring to carry my battered old road atlas with me everywhere. But the latest TomTom Rider 400 has changed my mind. My first sat nav was the predecessor of the Rider 400, simply called Rider. It was a great piece of kit, but had its slight hiccups. The new sat nav is more accurate, sleeker looking, and the overall user experience has been improved. The screen can now be tilted either horizontally or vertically, and there is a very easy one-tap option to select either a 2D or 3D view. Even the touch sensitivity of the screen seems to be better in the new device.
I really liked the ‘plan a winding route’ functionality in the old model, and the new TomTom Rider 400 has retained this, and even made it better: now you can select hilly as well as windy routes. It makes finding adventures at your doorstep easier than ever.
As before, you can link the TomTom Rider 400 sat nav to a Bluetooth-enabled headset, so you can hear the instructions. Linking the sat nav to your smart phone also enables TomTom Services, which include traffic alerts and speed camera updates — both very useful on the busy UK roads.
The only strange thing about the user interface design is that you can’t scroll through the menus from left to right in a loop. Instead you have a limited number of steps to the right and left. Not a big deal, but if you’re looking for a specific setting you soon lose patience going backwards and forwards.
As with the old sat nav, you can still record your rides and then share the route file with your mates. A nice new functionality is the parking finder, which shows you all the car parks near and far. It doesn’t specify which are motorcycle-only parking areas, but it’s a good indication of which way to go if you’re in unfamiliar territory.
The TomTom Rider 400 is a great piece of kit. It’s saved me loads of time by stopping me getting lost and even introduced me to some great new roads. You can’t really ask for more.
Price : £319.99