In an industry first satellite navigation producer Garmin has launched a range of products that comes with free lifetime map upgrades, meaning you’ll always have the most up-to-date maps available so long as you can download them.

With most sat navs having  a life span of five years or more, and Australian roads in constant flux, you could literally drive out of the shopping centre with your new sat nav already being obsolete. Not anymore if Garmin has anything to do with it. Purchase any of its new 2012 nüvi 2000 / 3000 range and you will get free map upgrades when they are made available. For most of the range you will also get free lifetime traffic updates.

When Garmin says free updates there is a catch, although it’s fairly easy to understand and not too much of a deal breaker. In full it reads, “FREE lifetime map updates entitle you to receive up to four map data updates per year, when and as such updates are made available on the Garmin website, for this specific Garmin product only until this product’s useful life expires or Garmin no longer receives map data from its third party supplier, whichever is shorter. The updates you receive will be updates to the same geographic map data originally included with your Garmin product when originally purchased. Garmin may terminate your lifetime map updates at any time if you violate any of the terms of the End User License Agreement accompanying your nüvi product.”

There are some interesting features in the new sat navs from Garmin. Purchase a 3000 series and it will be able to predict your destination without you having to do anything aside from switch it on. There’s also the photoReal junction view that shows you a bird’s eye view of the junction including which lane you should be in.

The new models will be out soon with the prices below.

Web: Garmin

Model Availability RRP
nüvi 2455LM March 2012 $249
nüvi 2455LMT March 2012 $299
nüvi 2495LMT March 2012 $349
nüvi 2595LMT March 2012 $399
nüvi 3450LMT Late February 2012 $449
nüvi 3490LMT Late February 2012 $499
nüvi 3590LMT Late February 2012 $549