"With more power and information than any other portable handheld on today's market, the GPSMAP 496 is an essential piece of equipment for any pilot," said Gary Kelley, Garmin's vice president of marketing. "The information on this mini-MFD helps increase safety and situational awareness during all phases of flight -- from taxiing to navigating around terrain and weather. And thanks to the pre-loaded street maps, it also gives pilots the ability to navigate unfamiliar roadways with the same ease that they navigate the airways."
The Garmin SafeTaxi airport diagrams help pilots navigate unfamiliar airports with confidence. Over 650 U.S. airport diagrams come pre-loaded on the unit. The charts identify runways, taxiways, and hangars, as well as the aircraft's exact location on the field. Garmin anticipates offering SafeTaxi updates regularly. International airport diagrams will also be available in the future.
When in the air, Garmin's new Smart Airspace feature makes it easier than ever to identify what airspace lies ahead. Smart Airspace automatically highlights airspace close to the pilot's current altitude and de-emphasizes airspace away from the current altitude, which gives pilots increased situational awareness.
The Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA) Airport Directory data are also available in electronic format on the GPSMAP 496. Recognized throughout the industry as one of the most comprehensive sources of airport information, the AOPA's Airport Directory includes information for over 5,300 public-use airports and more than 7,000 FBOs, such as pilot services, ground transportation, lodging, restaurants, and local attractions. In addition, Garmin's version of the AOPA's Airport Directory highlights airports where pilots can save on fuel by using self-service fueling locations.
In addition, the GPSMAP 496 has an enhanced, higher resolution terrain database that has over ten times as much data as the GPSMAP 396's terrain database. The new database lets pilots see vivid depictions of proximity hazards that require their attention. Pilots can customize their own minimum clearance limits to receive terrain cautions, which pop up as digital thumbnail images.
Pilots will also appreciate the unit's increased GPS update rate, which is five times faster than any other handheld on today's market. This impressive new attribute results in near-real-time updates of the aircraft's analog indicators, such as the HSI and turn rate indicator. Viewing the GPSMAP 496's display in any light is easy, thanks to the device's 256-color, high-resolution (480x320-pixels) TFT display. The unit also features a USB interface and rechargeable lithium-ion battery pack.
As with the GPSMAP 396, the GPSMAP 496 will continue to offer optional XM WX Satellite Weather(TM) (U.S. only) that features Next Generation Radar (NEXRAD), Aviation Routine Weather Reports (METARs), Terminal Aerodrome Forecasts (TAFs), Temporary Flight Restrictions (TFRs), Lightning and Winds Aloft, and several other important weather products to help pilots make informed navigational decisions. The weather data may be laid directly over the unit's Jeppesen(R) and topographic map databases. Weather information is delivered to the unit through Garmin's new GXM(TM) 30A smart antenna, which is included with the GPSMAP 496.
On the road, the 496 serves as a premium in-car navigation system with automatic route calculation to any destination and turn-by-turn voice-prompted directions along the way. The GPSMAP 496 is Garmin's first aviation handheld to include pre-loaded City Navigator(R) NT maps of North America or Europe. These detailed street maps include a huge points of interest database -- including hotels, restaurants, gas stations, ATMs, and attractions. Map data are provided by NAVTEQ(TM) -- a world leader in premium-quality mapping.
When traveling by water, the GPSMAP 496 is compatible with Garmin's new BlueChart(R) g2 technology. These optional data cards turn the GPSMAP 496 into a color chartplotter that displays integrated marine maps with shaded depth contours, port plans, inter-tidal zones, spot soundings, wrecks, navaids, restricted areas, cable areas, and anchorages.
The GPSMAP 496 will be available for purchase at EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh, Wis. To help celebrate the launch of the product and EAA AirVenture, Garmin will be giving away one GPSMAP 496. Please visit http://www.garmin.blogs.com to find complete details, rules and entry form. All entries must be received from July 20 through August 4, 2006.
The GPSMAP 496 is expected to be available in late July at an expected street price of $2,795. The unit includes a GXM(TM) 30A XM smart antenna, yoke mount, cigarette-lighter adapter, AC adapter cable, USB-to-PC interface cable, low-profile remote GPS antenna, carrying case, free Jeppesen update certificate, City Navigator(TM) North America street maps, owner's manual and quick-reference guide.
For customers in Europe, Garmin also offers a GPSMAP 496 Atlantic version that will be available shortly after the GPSMAP 496 North America model is available. The GPSMAP 496 Atlantic will include pre-loaded City Navigator Europe street maps, as well as VFR Reporting Points (VRPs), private airports, and obstacles. The GPSMAP 496 Atlantic does not include XM support, AOPA's Airport Directory, or SafeTaxi diagrams.
XM WX Satellite Weather data and audio are provided by XM Satellite Radio. Please see http://www.xmradio.com/weather/aviation.html for pricing and other details.
Garmin International Inc. is a member of the Garmin Ltd. (NASDAQ: GRMN) group of companies, which designs and manufactures navigation, communication and information devices - most of which are enabled by GPS technology. Garmin is a leader in the general aviation and consumer GPS markets and its products serve aviation, marine, outdoor recreation, automotive, wireless and OEM applications. Garmin Ltd. is incorporated in the Cayman Islands, and its principal subsidiaries are located in the United States, Taiwan and the United Kingdom. For more information, visit Garmin's virtual pressroom at http://www.garmin.com/pressroom or contact the Media Relations department at 913-397-8200. Garmin, GPSMAP, City Navigator and BlueChart are registered trademarks, and GXM, Smart Airspace, and SafeTaxi are trademarks, of Garmin Ltd. or its subsidiaries. Anticipated product availability dates are based on management's current expectations and are not guaranteed.
All other brands, product names, company names, trademarks and service marks are the properties of their respective owners. All rights reserved.
Notice on forward-looking statements:
This release includes forward-looking statements regarding Garmin Ltd. and its business. All statements regarding the company's future product introductions and expected product availability dates are forward-looking statements. Such statements are based on management's current expectations. The forward-looking events and circumstances discussed in this release may not occur and actual results could differ materially as a result of known and unknown risk factors and uncertainties affecting Garmin, including, but not limited to, the risk factors listed in the Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2005 filed by Garmin with the Securities and Exchange Commission (Commission file number 0-31983). A copy of Garmin's Form 10-K can be downloaded at http://www.garmin.com/aboutGarmin/invRelations/finReports.html . No forward-looking statement can be guaranteed. Forward-looking statements speak only as of the date on which they are made and Garmin undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise.