Best Cycling GPS Units [Review] in 2021
written by Cycle expert Alex Bristol
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GPS is the short form of the Global Positioning System. Satellites are used in GPS cycling computers to keep tracking your position. Along with the location, these are also good at accurately calculating speed, time, and distance without magnets or wires. They collect data from your heart rate and other sources and record your route. These GPS cycling computers allow you to measure your log rides on apps as well as your performance.
If you are looking to buy the best cycling GPS units in 2020, the following cycling GPS units are the best choices to be chosen from. These are picked based on real-world use by different expert teams.
We’ve spent the time so you don’t have to:
Our Top Choices Of The Best Cycling GPS Units
Garmin Edge 520 Bike GPS
The device comes with Strava live segment challenges. You can benefit from more signal options no matter where your ride takes you because it is compatible with GPS and GLONASS satellites. It has an amazing variety of metrics and support for various sensors that include HR, cadence, power meter, etc. The display resolution of the Garmin Edge 530 bike GPS is 200 x 265 pixels. The device can be paired with compatible ANT and indoor trainers for data display and control.
- Android: 4.4 iOS or later
- Bluetooth: 4.0 or later
- Apple Requirements: iOS 10.0 or later
- Automatic uploads
- Live to track
- Smart notifications
- Send or receive courses
- Social media sharing
- Long battery life
- Bluetooth connectivity
- Easy to use
- The gradient metric seems to lag
Latest deal: Garmin Edge 520 Bike GPS
To notify you about the sharp turns that are coming to this device, it has turn-by-turn navigation and navigation alerts. It also guides you to get back to your route in case you lose or deviate from your path. By using this, rider-to-rider messaging can be done. By connecting LiveTrack and Group Track, smart notifications, rider to rider messaging and built-in Incident Detection, you can stay connected to your compatible smartphone.
To compete second by second with your previous best or another rider’s PR, this device provides real-time results right on your screen. You can also find new routes by using this device.
- Advanced Navigation with Garmin Cycle Map
- Messages From Rider to Rider
- Advanced Performance Monitoring
- Strava Live Segments
- Doesn’t Work With Strava Live Segments
Latest deal: Garmin Edge 520 Plus
The bike GPS unit has a computer with comprehensive navigation, performance, and cycling Awareness Features. The device shows the data on and off the road and provides you with a map that shows turn-by-turn directions. Upcoming sharp turns notified you with navigation alerts.
If you deviate from your route or forget the way then this can guide you. Routes to your destination are generated by the round trip routing. You can also stay connected with another cyclist in the group because it offers a rider to rider messaging. You can text with prewritten messages to respond to missed phone calls or texts.
- Easy user interface
- Messages From Rider to Rider
- Strava Live Segments
- Smart Connectivity
- Won’t work with Garmin cadence sensor, Garmin support won’t help.
Latest deal: Garmin Edge 1030
To improve readability in sunlight, this device has an increased resolution of 240 x 320 pixels. It has a display size of 1.4 x 1.7 inches. By using this GPS your exact location can be located because it has high-sensitivity, WAAS-enabled GPS receiver, HotFix satellite prediction and GLONASS support. Key information, including location, terrain, difficulty, hints, and descriptions is stored and displayed in this device.
A variety of maps can be downloaded because it has expanded the internal memory. The geocaches and details are downloaded straight on the unit. It shows the upcoming sharp turns and guides you throughout the path if you deviate from your path.
- High screen resolution
- Display size
- Expanded internal memory
- Low map quality
Latest deal: Garmin eTrex 30x
Looking for the best bike computer instead?
We’ve put an in-depth guide together for that.
We have looked over 41 of the best bike computers to make sure you’re getting the best for your money. We looked at display, battery life, quality, and functionality to make sure we’ve found the greatest products available to buy – you can see the full guide here which will be more relevant than the one you’re reading now.
Best Cycling GPS Units Buyers Guide
A GPS unit installed on your cycle opens up a huge range of possibilities. This unit can calculate your speed without looking at the speed of your wheels. It can also measure the distance you’ve traveled to as well as record different location points so that you can always review your route on a map after the ride, which pairs fantastically with a bike camera on your helmet. You can also review your route in real-time if the unit has a map display.
Early GPS recipients were slow in getting a positional fix. If there were things like tree cover or buildings on the way, they also struggled to pick up the signals from satellites. With advancements in technology and electronics, amazing improvements are made and today’s GPS units can do amazing stuff. Modern units can get a fix indoors and also some of those improve accuracy and speed by using Russian or American satellites.
As we said earlier, choosing the best cycling GPS unit is a process full of confusion. However, it is quite easy for you to check out our recommended GPS units to get the job done professionally. Garmin Edge 520 Bike GPS is a device that has live segment challenges. It is compatible with GPS as well as GLONASS satellites so you always get more signal options. Its ability to be paired with indoor trainers for display as well as control makes it even more successful.
Garmin Edge 520 Plus is another great GPS unit. If you lose your path, this can enable you to find the correct path. Rider-to-rider messaging is another advantage of this unit. You can stay connected with smartphones. You also get real-time results on this unit to compete second by second with your previous best. Additionally, you can find new routes by using this device.
One of the benefits of having a cycle computer is that it stores vital information about you while riding. For example, your heart rate, top speed, power, distances, your times, and calories burned. In this way, such systems eventually provide you with your performance statistics. So, it is great to have such cycling GPS units to enjoy your riding as well as the modern technology features of such GPS units.
How to pick the best Cycling GPS units
Visibility – If the screen is not visible, the GPS unit might not be very useful to you. Therefore, the screen should be bright enough and visible even during the hot sunny days. The screen should also be big enough and should be easy to read.
Mounting options– Another important thing you need to be keen about is how you will attach the device to the bike. Most of the GPS units work well when attached to the stem or the bike’s handlebar. There are others that are worn as a wristwatch although these ones are not easy to view when cycling. Before you buy, you need to explore the available mounting options to ensure that it will work perfectly with your bike.
Connectivity– The other thing you need to be concerned about is whether the device is compatible with your phone. The best GPS units should have Bluetooth capabilities and it should also have texts and incoming call alerts.
Battery indicator– You also need a device that shows you the status of the battery. The good thing about most cycling GPS units is that they have a long-lasting battery. You should also ensure that the battery is fully charged before you hit the road.
Details– The best cycling GPS units should support navigable maps and should also show important details such as your heart rate, burned calories, cadence, heart rate and they should also have an inbuilt barometric altimeter for displaying altitude details.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why do you need to buy a cycling GPS unit?
One of the major benefits of GPS units is that they have a long battery. Once the battery is fully charge, it can last for up to 72 hours. They also have a strong build quality and are resistant to impacts and falls. The other benefit is that they allow you to record save and share tracks.
Which is the best cycling GPS unit?
If you are searching for the best bike GPS unit, Garmin Edge 520 Bike GPS will be a suitable choice. Unlike others, it has a long battery life and it is also easy to use. Again, it allows Bluetooth connectivity.
Content Manager at Pedallers
Alex is a cycling expert at and focuses on reviewing bikes, accessories, and general cycling. He searches for the most up to date products that match the needs of cyclists across the world. Whether it's recent news or the best bike set-ups, Alex is a trusted source for anything around cycling.