When it comes to GPS Running watches there are two camps – Garmin or Suunto. In my opinion Garmin were storming ahead in the ultra distance / high end GPS watch market. That is until I received an email informing me of the new Suunto Spartan GPS watch collection.
The previous top end watch from Suunto was the Ambit. A robust beast with all the right features and looks to warrant the price tag but with Garmin pushing the Fenix collection Suunto seemed to be flagging so it’s refreshing to see the Spartan collection is looking like a worthy upgrade from the Ambit or even tempting enough to encourage a switch from Garmin.
The Suunto Spartan Sport collection is a slimmer multi-sport version of the Ultra for those that don’t need a 26hr battery life but still want tons of features. With a 10hr battery on 1 sec GPS pick-up this is more than enough for the every day athlete. Prices start at a very reasonable (considering the specs) £359.
The Suunto Spartan Ultra collection adds a little more size, but packs a lot more battery (18hrs at 1sec GPS pick-up) and a tougher exterior which includes sapphire glass but this also comes at extra cost with prices starting at £509.
One of the most interesting things about this new release is that the Suunto Spartan Sport will be available with a built in wrist heart rate monitor (date TBC). This has been a hot topic recently as the technology is improving at a rapid rate but still has a long way to go – so I’m looking forward to seeing how accurate their wrist technology is.
The hype is big so let’s hope Suunto can live upto the expectation and hopefully Meraki Outdoor can get hold of one to test in a full review very soon.