Battery life has been the heart and soul of fitness watches and gps smartwatches. Yes, tracking features, storage space, and processing power have evolved rapidly, but battery life has remained fairly constant. But Garmin Enduro has come to change that. The Enduro is definitely one of the higher end garmin gps watches.
Ask anyone who is into fitness watches about the Garmin Enduro smartwatch, and they will tell you how phenomenal its battery life is. With Enduro, it is not about hours or days of battery life – we are talking weeks.
It doesn’t matter whether you are tracking your activity using GPS with music on or the watch is on always-on mode with its pulse oximeter sensor on, Enduro will still last you for weeks.
If you are a marathoner who likes to train until your kneecaps get ground into a finer powder, Garmin Enduro will be your perfect companion smartwatch. Needless to say if you’re into ultra endurance events then this watch will suit you even more.
Keep in mind that there are two Garmin Enduro versions: The standard Enduro with steel bezel and premium Titanium version. Read on our Garmin Enduro review to learn more.
Garmin Enduro Overview
- Designed for Ultra endurance athletes
- Activity Tracking Features: Calories burned, intensity minutes, distance traveled, steps counter, auto goal, elevation, mountain biking dynamics, heat and altitude acclimation and much more.
- VO2 Max estimates to gauge your training improvements which adjusts depending on trail conditions.
- Sensors: Accelerometer, pulse oximeter, barometric altimeter, gyroscope, thermometer, GPS, Galileo, GLONASS, Garmin Elevate Wrist Heart Rate Monitor.
- Physical Size: 51 x 51 x 14.9 mm
- Case material: Fiber-reinforced polymer
- Design: Circular
- Display Size: 1.4 inches (35.56mm) diameter, transflective memory-in-pixel MIP display
- Resolution: 280 X 280 pixels
- Battery Life: Up to 50 days in Smartwatch mode, up to 130 days in battery saver mode, 70 hours in GPS mode, and up to 200 hours in Max battery GPS mode
- Water Rating: 10ATM
- Weight: 71 grams for steel and 61g for Titanium
- Memory/History: 64 MB
Garmin Enduro Design and Interface
Thanks to the tested steel casing, the Garmin Enduro resembles the Garmin Fenix 6 in terms of design. The metal bezel makes the watch feel indestructible.
Despite having a monster battery, it’s pretty comfortable, thanks to the 26-millimeter UltraFit nylon strap that claps together with Velcro away from the skin. The part of the strap facing the skin has no metal clasps or holes and only has a single piece of material. This means you can comfortably adjust the strap so it fits on your list perfectly.
In terms of display, it has a colored transflective LCD with a resolution of 280 x 280. The display is designed to get brighter in sunlight.
Overall, the Garmin Enduro is more functional than stylish, with the visible screw heads on its bezel as well as its button labels, making it clear that the watch is meant for rugged sports. The Enduro can take extreme cold, heat, and submission in water up to 100 meters, thanks to its 10ATM rating.
The user interface of this watch is similar to the Fenix 6 – lacks a touchscreen and has five-button navigation, and widgets. If you have used a Garmin watch recently, you will find it easy to use the Enduro as well.
Here’s an example of the buttons, and as you can see it is similar to the Forerunner’s structure:
Running with the Garmin Enduro
Garmin has done a commendable job in taking care of runners with this watch. You will find treadmill, running, indoor track running, ultra-running, virtual running, and trail running profiles.
Also, navigation and connectivity features such as access to multiple global navigation satellite systems (GPS, Galileo, and GLONASS) as well as an altimeter for elevation data, 3-axis electronic compass, and barometer to help you monitor the weather are included.
The Enduro picks up GPS signal quickly, and we didn’t experience any glitches on route view on our outdoor runs. The heart rate sensor is the latest Garmin’s Elevate OHR and can be termed the gold standard in tracking heart rate activities as Garmin updates its watches’ software often.
There are newer trail features targeting trail roads, including the VO2 Max estimate, which is projected in part based on your running performance on trail roads and adjusted to the environment through altitude acclimation and heat. It is worth mentioning that the trail-based VO2 Max works with ultra-run mode, and thus you can have rest times and adjusted VO2 Max by selecting ultra-mode.
Also, you can create a course to race using the Garmin Connect app and quickly sync it to your watch. The app allows you to see the climb profile of your course and how popular the trail segment is. What else? There is a pacing feature where you can use to create pace targets based on how challenging the terrain is.
In addition, there is a ClimbPro Trail Enhancement feature, which allows you to get information such as distance, gradient, and elevation time on the current and upcoming elevations. This is a handy tool for motivating yourself during a race. The auto climb feature flips the watch face to display your current climb stats.
You also get the Rest Timer, where you log the time spend resting to aid in calculating your VO2 Max in Ultra-run mode.
The training effect, training status, and training mode are also present, along with a post-run recovery advisor to tell you how long your body will take before it fully recovers.
In terms of safety features, Garmin Enduro offers safety features such as Incident Detection to alert preset contacts to get notifications in case of mishaps. Also, there is a Live Track feature to allow predefined contacts to watch your runs.
Just to mention, Enduro lacks maps, but it makes up for this by giving you the ability to create and load routes. Therefore, if there is a popular route, you can load it into the watch to help with your runs.
The Gamin Enduro has the same smartwatch features present in newer Garmin models, such as Garmin Pay to support contactless payment and the ability to receive smartphone notifications whereby Android users can respond to text messages and reject calls.
In addition, you can sync the watch with Garmin Connect IQ to download apps, although the watch apps you can download are limited mostly to fitness, music, and wellness apps.
In terms of music storage, the Garmin Enduro can only control music playing from your smartphone. It lacks native music storage and cannot play music. Overall, the Garmin Enduro cannot rank in the list of best smartwatches (but it isn’t designed for the smartwatch niche anyway). It’s for a very specific niche of people that tackle endurance events.
According to Garmin, the Enduro has a battery that can last for up to 50 days in smartphone mode, with solar charging boosting it to 65 days. The watch can last up to 70 hours in GPS mode or 80 hours with solar charging.
There are few battery-saving options, including Max Battery GPS mode and Expedition GPS mode. You can also enable Jacket Mode if you are wearing the watch over clothing to disable the heart rate monitor and extend the battery life.
What We Liked
- Phenomenal battery life: The Garmin Enduro offers over 70 hours of battery in GPS mode and up to 200 hours in max battery mode. If you are ultra-distance cyclist, who want to be tracking long-day rides without worrying about the battery charge, this smartwatch is for you. Or of course, an ultra runner/hiker.
- Great visibility: It is very easy to read your stats in this watch thanks to its 1.4-inch transflective colored LCD screen.
- User-friendly interface: Enduro has a simple interface that utilizes five buttons.
- Tracks virtually everything: This smartwatch can track many things, including floors climbed, the number of steps, heart rate, respiration rate, and sleep quality. And the good thing is that it’s pretty accurate.
- Outstanding training tools: Garmin Enduro is pretty loaded in this department with training tools that include VO2 Max, Stress, Body Battery, ClimbPro, Training Status, and much more.
What We Didn’t Like
- No Maps: Garmin didn’t include maps for this smartwatch, which is quite unfortunate. If maps are a must-have feature for you, then you better look elsewhere
- It is quite heavy: At 71 grams, the machine is pretty heavy, but this is expected due to its battery capacity
- No music storage or inbuilt music player: Enduro cannot store or play music, which means you cannot listen to music on your rides if you didn’t carry your phone with you.
Garmin Enduro Comparisons
Garmin Fenix 6 Pro
Despite the Enduro and Fenix 6 Pro sharing a lot in common, there are key differences expanding beyond the battery life argument.
Garmin Enduro is designed for endurance trail runners, and it offers features tailored for them, including Trail Run VO2 max, which measures running performance on trail conditions, ClimbPro Trail Enhancement to give you real-time data on upcoming elevations including gradient and distance, and Rest Timer to log the time you spend resting. All these are unavailable in Fenix 6.
So, what features does the Garmin Fenix 6 offers that Enduro doesn’t? The Fenix 6 Pro has offline TOPO maps and a navigation feature. Also, it has onboard music storage of 32GB and supports a Wi-Fi connection. In addition, it has ski-resort, hiking, and golfing maps, something Enduro lacks.
Both have Body Battery energy management, Pulse Ox blood-oxygen sensor, sleep tracking, smart notifications, weather widgets, ABC sensors, etc.
Of course, the Enduro beats the Fenix 6 Pro hands down when it comes to battery life, with the former offering up to 50 days in smartwatch mode compared to the 14 days that the Fenix 6 offers.
Therefore, if you are looking for a smartwatch that makes it easier to check your performance statistics, is easy to navigate, and shows detailed performance stats in graphs and charts, the Garmin Fenix 6 is probably the right model for you.
However, if you are looking for a watch that will elevate your outdoor fitness level and one that provides solid battery charges, the Garmin Enduro is a worthy investment.
Overall, the Fenix 6 is a more complete watch suiting multi-sport athletes. On the other side, Enduro is an excellent watch for long-distance runners.
Although pricey and not suited for the smartwatch audience, the Enduro is a smart choice for runners, thanks to its rugged design that resists outdoor elements. It also offers reliable GPS, an impressive suite of training tools, an accurate heart rate monitor, recovery and health tracking features, and impressive battery life.
If you are a long-distance runner or you often cycle for long distances, the Garmin Enduro can be a perfect regular training partner. Yes, lack of maps and onboard music storage are frustrating omissions, but that’s a small price to pay for its outstanding battery life and impressive range of features that it offers, which includes:
- Training programs, which includes interval training
- Multiple physiological measurements that include training load, training status, training effect, stress test, VO2max, recovery time, and more
- Daily training suggestions, a new feature added to cycling mode
- ClimbPro to show real-time elevation information for running, trail use, and cycling
- PacePro to allow athletes to manage their run based on the terrain and better manage their pace
- Adjustment of VO2 Max according to heat and altitude
- Body Battery to evaluate your energy based on your recovery during sleep and daily activities
- Garmin Pay for contactless payments
- Connectivity functions such as smartphone notifications, weather access, and more
- Turn-by-turn navigation guidance based on loaded routes
- And many other features
The Garmin Enduro is a very impressive gps watch if you are an endurance athlete.
Marko Rakic is a trail runner and fitness enthusiast from Sydney, Australia. He is the lead writer for The Ultimate Primate and believes the best way to live a happy life is to take a holistic approach to fitness and health.