Cars and car tech
TomTom GO 740 Live
The GO 740 Live is TomTom's first foray into the realm of connected GPS devices, and, boy, does it make a good first impression, with up-to-the-minute traffic data, weather forecasts, fuel prices, and Google Local Search. If the GO has an Achilles' heel, though, it's the sometimes-complex menu structure, but the pros in this case far outweigh the single con.
Eclipse AVN726E DVD/GPS receiver
The Eclipse AVN726e will cover most users' hands-free calling, navigation, audio, and visual needs in a single installation. That, combined with its 5-volt preamp outputs and easy upgrade options, makes the AVN726e an ideal starting point for building an audiophile-quality car audio system.
The AVIC-Z110BT is about as close as you can get to an infotainment system like Ford/Microsoft's Sync without buying a new car. Not only does it offer hands-free calling, turn-by-turn navigation (upgradable to display and route-around traffic delays), and digital video and audio playback, but the Z110BT gives the driver voice control over all of these functions. Simply speak an album title, a street address, or a contact's name and you're there.
TomTom XL 340 S
The XL 340 S represents an excellent balance of advanced features--such as lane guidance, downloadable fuel prices, and user-updated maps from TomTom Map Share--and an affordable price point. Also, its large 4.3-inch WXGA touch screen is pretty easy on the eyes.
Garmin Nuvi 255W
The Garmin Nuvi 255W matches its chief rival nearly feature-for-feature and represents an equally good value. While the TomTom has a few more-advanced features, the Garmin's performance is snappier and the interface is significantly easier to understand and navigate. These small variances become huge differences when you're barreling down the highway at 70 mph.