The Garmin Enduro 2 addresses many of the shortcomings of its predecessor, making it the top ultra-marathon watch around. Its stellar design and premium feel justify the price tag, although that's not to say it won't cost you. All hail the new king of outdoor watches!
Epic battery life
New route guidance functionality
Heavier and bigger than most smartwatches
The price might be hard to justify for more casual users
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Not content with revamping its massively successful Forerunner line, Garmin also brought out the Enduro 2, designed to usurp the original Enduro (and the Fenix line) as one of the best Garmin watches, especially for ultrarunners and other high-performing endurance athletes.
It’s a brute of a watch, with an upgrade to the original’s already-impressive battery life being the headline, along with the addition of a touchscreen. Topographical maps have also been added – an essential feature for a serious adventure watch – alongside a host of other features, some exclusive to the Enduro 2, for the time being anyway.
There’s even memory space for internal music, the lack of which was one of the original’s most significant drawbacks. In addition to having a stonking performance watch, you’ll no longer have to either bring your phone with you or have to otherwise amuse yourself on long trips.
Considering the similarities between the Enduro 2 and the Fenix 7 line, it's easy to see what Garmin's plans are with the former: to replace the latter at the top of the adventure watch food chain. Given its size, the Enduro 2 will not attract many casual users, but for those who need an accurate, rugged and premium Garmin watch, the Enduro 2 is the obvious choice going forward.
Garmin Enduro 2: Price and availability
The Garmin Enduro 2 is available now from Garmin, priced at $1,099.99/£929.99/AU$1,749.00. Unlike the Garmin Fenix series, the Enduro 2 comes in only one version, featuring a Power Sapphire lens, titanium bezel, and fibre-reinforced polymer case with a titanium rear cover. You can also take the time to check out the latest Garmin promo codes before making a purchase.
Garmin Enduro 2: Design
- Titanium bezel/rear cover and Power Sapphire lens
- Extremely chunky and rugged
- Familiar Garmin OS and Connect app structure
The Garmin Enduro 2 shares a lot of its design ethos with its older sibling, the original Garmin Enduro. The watch case and bezel are built of tough titanium, with a Power Sapphire glass lens offering battery-lengthening solar charging capabilities, just as the last one did.
That said, the new Power Sapphire glass lens is the updated variety, meaning it harvests solar energy more efficiently than the one found on its predecessor. Plus, the Enduro featured 'only' the Power Glass, whereas the Enduro 2 has Power Sapphire, integrating the scratch-resistant Sapphire material with the solar-harvesting ring around the watch face.
The classic five-button Garmin structure is here, with the start/stop, back/lap, up, down and light buttons joined by the addition of a touchscreen. Like the Forerunner 955 Solar, you have the option of using either the touchscreen or buttons to navigate around the watch. Adding touch controls to the Enduro 2 was a great idea, not just because any decent smartwatch should have this in 2022, but it comes in especially handy when operating the newly-added topo maps.
The Enduro 2 comes with two options for straps: the velcro Ultrafit strap, designed specifically for endurance exercise, and the thicker silicone strap for everyday wear. They’re easy to swap over, but the huge 1.4-inch face and thick body of the watch, combined with the meaty silicone strap, look borderline ludicrous in social environments.
This is a utilitarian tool, and you won't be able to move seamlessly from runs to restaurants without attracting a few odd looks. Unless you're really into Gorpcore, in which case the Enduro 2 will blend in seamlessly with the rest of your attire.
Fittingly, the Enduro 2 feels satisfyingly hefty in the hand, with its premium construction and engineering evident in handling. This is a tank, not a high-performance supercar of a watch: instead of Michael Keaton’s dainty and somewhat aerodynamic Batmobile, think of Christian Bale’s monster truck version of a car.
The robust body of the watch is unlikely to put the target market off from buying the Enduro 2; ultrarunners, distance cyclists and other high-performing endurance athletes are happy to sacrifice sleekness to access more features, longer battery life and improved accuracy. If you were interested in having an all-purpose watch for everyday use, you’d get something slimmer, sleeker and probably cheaper – like an Apple Watch.
The design of the watch's OS and Garmin Connect app will be familiar to most existing Garmin users: if you've ever used one of the brand's other performance watches in the last couple of years, there's been no reinventing the wheel here. Holding the 'down' button to access the widget menu from your watch face brings up the usual customizable menu, with quick access to everything from your previous activities to your Body Battery score to your built-in compass and barometer.
Design score: 5/5
Garmin Enduro 2: Features
- Topographical maps added
- Health Snapshot feature bundles metrics into an easy-to-read package
- Multi-LED flashlight
- Built-in music capacity
This monstrous watch is stuffed to the brim with almost everything a die-hard endurance race addict or adventurer could want. New to the Enduro 2 is topographical maps, courtesy of Garmin’s TopoActive community-based maps, which offer turn-by-turn directions.
Two standout features of the Enduro 2 are NextFork and Grade-adjusted Pace, the former closely connected to the also newly added maps. NextFork is automatically activated in some of the sports modes (e.g. outdoor running, trail running) and shows you the name and the distance to upcoming 'forks' a.k.a. intersections on your route.
Grade-adjusted pace is also automatically activated in some sports modes, and it shows you how your pace on a gradient translates to if you were to run on a flat surface. This is a handy feature for trail runners and even road runners who live in hilly areas, as it can be hard to guess how to adjust your pace to the gradient yourself.
The Garmin Enduro 2 inherited a number of performance features from the latest cohort of Garmin watches, including Visual Race Predictor, which looks at your training history and estimates a pace you’ll be able to complete on the day.
Combined with Garmin’s already impressive elevation tools and TracBack features, you’ll never get lost again. Ski maps, too, form part of this, making Garmin’s toughest watch yet an ideal companion on the slopes as well as the trails.
Garmin has also added the Health Snapshot feature on the Enduro 2, something we've seen in many Garmin watches before. In essence, it’s a new way of packaging metrics it already collects, such as Body Battery, Pulse ox (blood oxygen level), heart rate, and stress levels, and sending them to you in a single push notification, as the new Morning Report functionality did on the 955.
In terms of hardware, the Enduro 2 is well-equipped for late-finish adventures. As well as the detailed multi-band GPS guidance we've come to expect from Garmin, the Fenix 7X’s multi-LED flashlight is here but twice as bright. The flashlight is also dimmable, so you can find your campsite on a lower setting or signal for help in the dark on its highest. Running in the dark? A red light safety mode allows the user to see and be seen. Another safety feature is automatic incident detection, which can alert a designated contact with your live location.
As for the usual smart functionalities, such as notifications, Garmin Pay and music controls, they’re all here as expected. But built-in music space is also present, so you can finally listen to your favorite tunes on the Enduro 2; no need to carry your phone around as well.
The Garmin Enduro 2 might be great on the slopes, on weekend hikes and for paying for your groceries with your wrist, but it looks set to really shine on race day. An automatic rest timer can detect how much time you spend at aid stations, while Garmin says, “the [Adventure-Racing World Series]-approved adventure racing activity profile tracks heart rate, elevation, segment times and other metrics when the race is on and saves the data for post-race viewing in accordance with adventure race rules.”
Although it does everything and more now, this is a watch for those who’ve read Born To Run cover-to-cover more times than they can count.
Features score: 5/5
Garmin Enduro 2: Battery Life
- 46 days in smartwatch mode
- 150 hours in GPS mode
The Enduro series has always been famous for its mind-blowing battery life, and, thankfully, the Enduro 2 doesn't disappoint in the battery department. With up to 46 days in smartwatch mode and a massive 150 hours in GPS mode (that's over six days of continuous GPS tracking), you could run for a whole weekend and never need to turn this thing off
The battery is supported by the updated Power Sapphire glass (i.e. improved solar charging) and SatIQ, a new feature that automatically detects what kind of GPS mode is best for conserving battery life without losing your navigation. So, in an urban environment, the Enduro 2 might use the 'Max Accuracy' GPS setting, while out in an open field, it might switch back to a single band to conserve battery life, but without sacrificing accuracy. And does it all automatically, with zero input from you.
Battery life is, in fact, out of this world on the Enduro 2, overshadowing battery powerhouse watches such as the Garmin Fenix 7X. Even if you use the watch for GPS tracking for an hour every day, it's unlikely you'll need to charge it more than once a month, especially if you happen to expose it to direct sunlight, which helps conserve battery life.
Don't expect the Power Sapphire tech to charge your Enduro 2, though; you can't just leave the watch out on the balcony for a day and expect it to be fully charged by the end of the day, a common misconception among Garmin users. The Power Sapphire lens can help slow down the battery drain, but it's likely you'll be using the watch for HR tracking when you're out and about, which drains the battery.
Battery life score: 5/5
Garmin Enduro 2: Verdict
The more time we spent with the Garmin Enduro 2, the more we appreciated its features and capabilities. The watch is not for everyone; the hefty price tag will surely put many people off from impulse buying the Enduro 2. But those who need the best battery life, the latest sensors and access to the Garmin ecosystem can't get around not buying the Enduro 2.
That said, there are many alternatives to the Enduro 2, even within the ever-increasing roster of Garmin watches. If you're after a more lifestyle-oriented yet rugged smartwatch, you might want to pick the Garmin Epix Gen 2, which also has an AMOLED screen, which is easier to read in broad daylight.
For those with smaller wrists, we'd recommend the Garmin Fenix 7S – that multisport watch has a rugged build but is also more stylish and, most importantly, fit on smaller wrists better. For running and triathlons, you're better off using the Forerunner 955 Solar or the Forerunner 255S, the smallest of triathlon watches out there.
Once you have tried the Enduro 2, though, it'll be hard to go back to either of the watches mentioned above, especially since it has most of the features of those wearables, plus insanely-long battery life and premium titanium construction. Not to mention the super-bright flashlight, everyone's favourite feature.
Buy the Garmin Enduro 2 if...
If you don't like charging your smartwatch too often
Even with GPS turned on, the Enduro 2 will go for nearly a week without charging. Battery life is absolutely insane – so much so that it's unlikely you'll have to charge the watch more than once a month.
If you're a lover of the Great Outdoors and like to get lost in the woods for days
The Enduro 2 has long battery life, topo maps and bunch of other trail-specific features that make the watch the perfect choice for longer bouts of outdoor activities, whether it's hiking or running the UTMB.
Want the latest and great tech and features Garmin has to offer
It might have a steep price, but the Enduro 2 represents the best features and the latest sensors Garmin has, with more features added constantly via free software updates.
Don't buy the Garmin Enduro 2 if...
Have a small wrist
The Enduro 2 is a big watch, which might be an issue if your wrist circumference is smaller. It only in come in one size, too, so if you need a rugged Garmin watch with maps, you're better off getting the Fenix 7S. Don't care about maps? Go for the Instinct 2 Solar.
Need a jack-of-all-trades smartwatch
The Enduro 2 has many health and fitness features, but it's not a watch you can wear on suit-and-tie occasions. It's big and bold and heavy; will look slightly out of place on a dinner night.
On a tight budget
The Enduro 2 is one of the most expensive Garmin watches on the market – only the MARQ series sells for more. As such, it's not the best option for people who need to think twice (thrice, four times) before they depart any money. The original Enduro is much cheaper, not to mention Fenix 5 and 6 series watches.
Matt is TechRadar's expert on all things fitness, wellness and wearable tech. A former staffer at Men's Health, he holds a Master's Degree in journalism from Cardiff and has written for brands like Runner's World, Women's Health, Men's Fitness, LiveScience and Fit&Well on everything fitness tech, exercise, nutrition and mental wellbeing.
Matt's a keen runner, ex-kickboxer, not averse to the odd yoga flow, and insists everyone should stretch every morning. When he’s not training or writing about health and fitness, he can be found reading doorstop-thick fantasy books with lots of fictional maps in them.