February 21, 2024


There are now many e-bikes equipped with radar systems that can warn riders of vehicles approaching from behind. If your bike isn’t one of them, you can now change it by installing Garmin’s Varia eRTL615 radar/tail light module.

The unit mounts to the seatpost or rear rack and faces rearward like a normal taillight. It’s hooked into the electric bike’s electrical system, so battery charging won’t be an issue.

When a rider pedals along the road, the eRTL615 sends out a radar pulse that echoes to all cars within a distance of 150 yards (137 meters) behind the bike. The module receives these echoes and analyzes them to determine how far away each car is and how fast it is approaching.

Users are alerted to these vehicles via visual and audible alerts on a wirelessly connected Garmin smartwatch or Edge bike computer, or (more likely) via the Varia iOS/Android app on a paired smartphone. The screen shows how many cars are behind and the distance of each car.

The taillight section of the unit itself isn’t boring, as it can be set to four different output modes and has a maximum output of 65 lumens. It also starts flashing faster as drivers approach, letting them realize they’re close to the bike.

As far as other specs go, the whole thing weighs 1.8 ounces (51 grams), it communicates via ANT+ or Bluetooth Low Energy wireless protocols, and it’s IPX7 water-resistant — meaning it can withstand submersion to 1 meter (3.3 ft.) deep for up to 30 minutes.

The Varia eRTL615 is available now through Garmin’s website for $299.99 — as shown in the video below. Riders of non-electric bikes should note that Garmin also offers a battery-powered version of the device.

(embed) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hRaoZSzo6n8 (/embed)

Garmin | Variant eRTL615 | Rear View Radar and Tail Light for Electric Bikes

source: Garmin