Garmin MARQ is a high-end watch, but will it sell

Garmin has released a new set of watches, the Garmin MARQ series with five variants. The Series includes the MARQ Aviator, MARQ Driver, MARQ Captain, MARQ Expedition and the MARQ Athlete.

Just a glance at the MARQ series, these are not the ordinary Garmin watches you will pick up at your fitness shop.. Where the Fenix 5 plus is a reliable, durable, attractive workout device, it pales compared to the MARQ Athlete with its bold colours and distinctive strap.

MARQ Series similar features

Each shares the same features, with smart notifications, built-in music storage, Garmin Pay, daily and activity tracking. And an upgraded wrist-based heart rate and pulse ox sensor delivered via an always-on, sunlight-readable display.

Garmin has made the MARQ display of ultra-hard sapphire crystal, encased in a titanium case. The bezel inlay is ceramic.

Garmin promises 12 days of battery life in smartwatch mode, 28 hours when using GPS and 48 hours in a more battery-saving UltraTrac GPS mode.

The New MARQ series also features a new charging cable, Garmin! A new charging standard? Garmin has switched to Sony GPS chipsets, and they have bumped the storage from 8-16GB found on other Garmin devices to 32GB, which means more space for music and other data.

Garmin MARQ Series breakdown

Below is a lowdown of the five watches. If you want a detailed analysis, then check out DCR detailed look at the MARQ series.


MARQ Aviator aligns with the D2 and has aviation maps, plus “Nexrad Weather Radar, airport information and Garmin cockpit integration.”Garmin MARQ aviator

MARQ Driver does not align with an existing Garmin range. Garmin Driver sports a titanium body and silicone band come loaded with maps for 250 great race tracks. It has auto lap splits, live delta time and a track timer. They treat the casing with a carbon grey DLC (Diamond Like Carbon) coating to stand up to daily abuse.Garmin MARQ driver

MARQ Captain aligns with the Quatix. It is a nautical watch, has a regatta timer bezel, shows wind speed, tide and temperature. It also comes with a port conditions watch face, can show coastal charts and can aid in tack assist.Garmin MARQ Captain

MARQ Expedition connects with Garmin’s sold satellite communicator, InReach Mini, plus “TOPO mapping, a built-in altimeter, barometer and compass, plus ClimbPro, which provides real-time information on current and upcoming climbs such as gradient, distance and elevation gain.” Garmin has crafted the strap from vegetable tanned, debossed Italian vacchetta leather. The stitching is wax sealed to protect the thread from moisture and to prevent fraying.Garmin MARQ Expedition

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MARQ Athlete is the closest to Garmin’s Fenix 5 Plus Series, with VO2 Max readouts and recovery on the watch face, “running dynamics,” and pulse oximetry readings. The hybrid titanium and silicone strap will make for a lightweight, durable, and comfortable everyday wear.Garmin MARQ athlete

Garmin MARQ Pricing and availability

Garmin has priced the MARQ Series range

  • MARQ Driver – $2,500
  • MARQ Aviator – $1,950
  • MARQ Captain – $1,850
  • MARQ Expedition – $1,750
  • MARQ Athlete – $1,500

The MARQ series will be available between now and the end of April. You can find out more on the Garmin website.

Garmin MARQ first impressions

Did there need to be five in the series? How do you choose which luxury MARQ smartwatch to get? The answer right now is not sure as I have not seen them yet. But my first reaction is these won’t do well.

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Cast your mind back to when Apple tried it with the gold Apple Watch watch edition and then the ceramic. Apple ditched both versions after the first year of release.

DCR over at his website states that tech is moving on so fast and people drop 1k on the phone, but most do that over a contract and not an upfront investment. I can’t see people dropping this kind of money on a fitness watch, when you can get similar features in a Fenix 5 Plus for a hell of a lot less.

I also like you don’t think Garmin get the high-end watch Market. People pay for a Breitling (as I did) for the design and craftsmanship. A high-end watch like a Tag or Breitling will also hold its value or sometimes increase. But I can’t see the Garmin MARQ holding value post-purchase.

Then we look at the screen 240×240 pixels in a watch range of this price, come on Garmin what were you thinking? Garmin needed to balance battery life screen quality, but 240×240 is a total joke.

Is this the Garmin Fenix 6?

The MARQ is not the Garmin Fenix 6; this will probably land in 2020 at CES

Don’t forget to subscribe to receive the latest on new Garmin MARQ Series. If you have a question or comment, then leave it below.

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Jon Ratcliffe
I have a huge passion for technology having worked in the sector for over 18 years in a variety of roles. I cover Wearables, tech and smart home. My reviews and information will talk about how the product works in reality and not just what the marketing departments want you to think.

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