- Using precision positioning, the Garmin Catalyst track recorder and race coach can share audio track tips in real-time to help the driver get better lap times.
- Lap data is immediately available to drivers after a session directly on the touchscreen device.
- The system breaks down each turn and gives tips for a quicker time with an optimized line to drive that can be added to the race coach.
Nothing blows out the cobwebs like a day at the track. But when you’ve hit a wall on your progress as a driver, it’s usually time to call in an instructor to help you figure out what’s working and what’s not. That’s a pricey endeavor if done on a regular basis in an already expensive hobby. Plus, there’s the whole social distancing aspect that has made driving alone an ideal activity. For those who want to get better, but would rather do so alone, Garmin now offers an in-car coaching tool.
The Garmin Catalyst takes driving data, merges it with information it knows about a track, and uses it all to give drivers audible real-time tips while they’re driving to increase their speed around the track. Off the track, the device presents section-by-section information about the laps, available directly on the touchscreen device. The Catalyst includes a camera so that the data can be synced to driving video.
“It gathers several data metrics and identifies where laps can be seamlessly joined together to create the fastest racing line. This shows users their fastest achievable time based on lines actually driven and gives them an optimal lap they can truly achieve,” Adam Spence, Garmin product manager, explained in a statement.
In order to determine exactly where a vehicle is on a track, Garmin is introducing what it calls True Track Positioning technology. It uses image processing from the camera, built-in accelerometers, and the higher-resolution tracking of 10 Hz multi-GNSS positioning. All of this data gathering gives the device the position of the vehicle on the track plus its acceleration and braking.
The Catalyst, like all racing-related items, isn’t cheap. The $999 system comes with the touchscreen device, a mount, and an HD camera. For audio tips, it supports Bluetooth and has a minijack port.
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