The VARIA RTL515 is a tail light AND rear-view radar which means you are visible from up to a mile away and alerted to traffic approaching. (*Full Spec at the end of this blog)

How it works
Its quick and easy to set up. A rear light/unit is attached to your seat post and then linked to any compatible Garmin device or your phone. I use the Garmin Edge 530.

1. Cars are detected within 140m

2. It bleeps and shows up on the screen as a dot (for up to 8 vehicles)

3. The dot changes colour based on the level of threat and moves as the car gets closer

4. The rear light has solid, peloton, night flash, day flash modes and can be seen from up to a mile away!

Summary
Since using this brilliant bit of kit I’ve felt a lot safer on the road because I am more aware of what’s happening around me. I also feel more confident going into junctions and islands as I’m aware of any cars near-by.

As we all know, it can be difficult to hear traffic in the wind, if you riding in a group or I’ve found even because of the sound of deep sectioned wheels. All of these can disguise the sound of approaching traffic. Hearing a beep alerts me and prompts me to glance back or wave to let the driver know I’ve seen them.

There aren’t any downsides to having this, I would 100% recommend. It’s definitely changed my feelings around being on the road and I can’t imagine riding without it anymore.

Get yours here  Garmin Varia  RTL515

I will also be running a competition in the next few weeks to win one so make sure you follow @duathlongirluk on Instagram to be with a chance of winning.

Physical Specifications*

  • Dimensions: 98.6 x 19.7 x 39.6 mm
  • Weight: 71.0 g
  • Modes: solid, peloton, night flash, day flash
  • Lumens: 20 solid, 8 peloton, 29 night flash, 65 day flash
  • Battery life: 6 hours solid, 8 hours peloton, 6 hours night flash, 16 hours day flash
  • ANT+®: Yes
  • BLE: Yes
  • Water rating: IPX7
  • Viewing angle: 220 degrees
  • The radar detects approaching vehicle speed from 10 to 160 km/h (from 6 to 99 mph).
  • NOTE: The radar does not detect vehicles traveling at the same speed as your bike.
  • The radar beam width is 40 degrees. It provides radar coverage for typical bends in the road.
  • The radar can detect up to eight approaching vehicles.