The Garmin Nuvi 265WT satnav is in essence a 4.3-inch widescreen version of the older Garmin Nuvi 265T.

It shares an otherwise identical feature set with its 3.5-inch-screen sibling. Although included in Garmin's 200 series of Nuvis aimed at entry-level buyers, the Garmin Nuvi 265WT includes features often found only in midlevel or premium-priced devices.

When it first shipped, Garmin broke ground by offering a built-in traffic receiver with subscription-free, advertising-supported lifetime traffic alerts. While driving, you'll occasionally get a pop-up alert for one of the advertisers, but it doesn't happen too frequently, and the ads are fairly easy to ignore. The Garmin Nuvi 265WT will evaluate a traffic alert and offer to reroute you around it for your current route. Alternatively, it will alert you to traffic on your current road if you aren't currently using the device for turn-by-turn directions. You don't need to be guided around too many traffic jams to really appreciate the value of this feature.

Like the 265T, the Garmin Nuvi 265WT includes Navteq maps for the UK and mainland Europe. Map upgrades aren't included with the product, but are available by separate purchase. As with all Garmin Nuvis, the user interface on the 265WT features Garmin's "Where to" and "View Map" main menu, so the UI makes navigating easy.

The Garmin Nuvi 265WT also includes a Bluetooth speaker phone interface. In my tests, it connected properly with my phone, but unlike the Bluetooth interface found on Garmin's premium products, the 265WT does not have the ability to read the contact list out of your phone. Still, countires such as the UK that require you to use a hands-free device while driving, the Bluetooth interface can be very handy.

The Eco-route feature uses the mileage performance that you input for your car and the current fuel price to estimate the cost of your trip. There's even a "Less fuel" routing option in addition to the traditional shortest-route and fastest-time routing profiles. You can also take the "eco challenge" and let the Garmin Nuvi 265WT evaluate your driving habits. As you might suspect, rapid starts and stops, as well as speeding, hurts your score.

Compared to the competition's current crop of 4.3-inch GPS devices, the Garmin Nuvi 265WT does lack a couple of features. For example, it doesn’t have highway lane guide, a feature that shows you the correct lane for a highway maneuver. Newer competitors not only show you the correct lane, but also include the "green" highway road signs you'll see. The 265WT also does not include multisegment routing that lets you specify multiple destinations within a single trip.

NEXT: our expert verdict >>

Garmin Nuvi 265WT: Specs

  • GPS receiver
  • TMC (Traffic Message Channel)
  • Voice: Navigation instructions, street name announcement
  • Aerial Built-in
  • Hands-free calling via Bluetooth, built-in speaker, calculator, clock, 2D/3D map perspective, Garmin Lock, photo viewer, custom POIs, automatic routing, currency converter, Garmin Garage
  • Supported Memory Cards: SD Memory Card
  • 4.3in TFT 480x272 - widescreen
  • Touch screen, anti-glare
  • USB
  • Lithium Ion battery
  • Car power adapter, USB cable, vehicle mount, TMC reciever
  • 122x20x74mm
  • 173g
  • GPS receiver
  • TMC (Traffic Message Channel)
  • Voice: Navigation instructions, street name announcement
  • Aerial Built-in
  • Hands-free calling via Bluetooth, built-in speaker, calculator, clock, 2D/3D map perspective, Garmin Lock, photo viewer, custom POIs, automatic routing, currency converter, Garmin Garage
  • Supported Memory Cards: SD Memory Card
  • 4.3in TFT 480x272 - widescreen
  • Touch screen, anti-glare
  • USB
  • Lithium Ion battery
  • Car power adapter, USB cable, vehicle mount, TMC reciever
  • 122x20x74mm
  • 173g

OUR VERDICT

If you want an affordable 4.3-inch GPS device with the friendly Garmin navigation experience, it's hard to miss with the Garmin Nuvi 265WT. It doesn't bring much new to the genre, but it remains one of our favourites.

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