Expert Fitting Service

Road Pilot GPS Speedtrap Location System.


Updated August 2004

Road Pilot have added a laser detector to the package to bring it up to speed with other systems. The LaserPilot, as they call it, can be mounted inside or outside the vehicle and if you have an old system you can add the LaserPilot through an upgrade. The cost of the LaserPilot is £49.95. You can use multiple LaserPilot's if wanted for front and rear coverage.

We have tested it on a readers system and as expected it works just fine. The real question is will it give you enough warning? Its 50/50 in our eyes as you can expect with any laser detector though.. Check out the new FAQ on Laser detectors, here
Aug 2004

Updated April 2003

Road Pilot GPS
Above: Roadpilot on the screen

Road Pilot GPS
Above: Side View showing the swan neck, speakers and sucker

The New Roadpilot is the latest product to come out of the Road Pilot stables.

Using a high resolution touch screen the Roadpilot currently offers more features than any other system currently on the market. The Roadpilot will not only inform you that you are approaching a fixed speedtrap but also offers other features that have never been seen in a GPS speedtrap warning system so far. Features such as. Digital and Analogue Speedo Page, Mileage Manager page, Track back page, GPS status page and some others. It is also a modular system, plans are in the pipeline to add a Radar detection module, Bel 975 and 966 heads, and some other additions not fully announced yet. Since the system is software driven all that will happen is the software will be updated to allow for the new module.

So for £499.95 what do you get. In a rather smart tin box there is the Roadpilot unit, adjustable mounting arm incorporating a power cable with cigarette lighter plug and speaker, GPS Antenna with magnetised base, Self adhesive dash mount adapter plate, Desktop RoadPilot - PC USB interface unit and quick reference card.

The antenna and power cable are more than long enough for most cars, but don't expect to get the antenna to reach to the rear of the car the as lead is only 2m long. Placing the antenna outside gives the best signal and the least drop outs.

Both cables are hard wired into the mount, this could make for a problem when it comes installing the unit if you intend to hide the wires. However after opening the bracket I noticed that both cables are fitted with connectors. Be VERY careful if you do this however the contacts are very easy to break, but it will allow you to disconnect both the power and antenna so you could run the cables through the dash for a neater fitting.

The kit looks and feels solid in its very smart satin aluminium look case. Mounting options are very good and its easy to get the screen in a position you want. It comes in two main parts, the screen and the support bracket. The support bracket contains the two speakers for the voice and beeps, antenna lead and power lead and swan neck with sucker. You can remove the swan neck by loosening the screw in the mount and then just use the mount for more concealed positions. The swan neck is long enough without being to long as to cause excess vibration.

When you remove the screen you leave the support bracket in its place and the screen slips in your pocket, its so small you don't even know its there. Buy the optional leather case for the screen, its well worth it and looks the business.

The Road pilot can be fitted on the windscreen with the suction cup, or fixed to any part of you dash with self adhesive dash mount adapter plate. The windscreen transmits less vibration through the mount to the Roadpilot. The remote GPS antenna will make life much easier allowing you to place the antenna in a prime position to allow for a good view of the sky or away from a heated screen.

The first time RoadPilot is powered up, it may take up to 45 minutes to initialise and to come online. Mine took about 5 minutes.

Fig. 1

The Roadpilot has no buttons, not even a power on button. All the controls are done via the touch screen and your finger, this works quite well. The display is backlit in a pale blue, there is no adjustment to the brightness, could be a nuisance in some cases but Road Pilot do seem to have the setting about right.

The RoadPilot display is divided into three sections - the multifunction display area (Fig 1, 1), the proximity indicator (Fig 1, 2) and the information display (Fig 1, 3).

Proximity Indicator - (Fig 1.2) The range adjustable proximity indicator is a series of bars along the top of the display which show how close your vehicle is to a speed camera.
Information Display - (Fig 1, 3) Current compass bearing. Range to nearest camera or way point. Audio mute icon. Speed limit. The current GPS time.
Multifunction Display - (Fig 1, 1) Incorporating.
Satellite status page
- Shows the reception status of the system.

Above: GPS page

Speedo page -
Digital or Analogue Speedo and mileage. The speed of the vehicle, odometer (Mileometer), re-settable trip meter.
Tracking page
- This screen shows a breadcrumb trail of where you have been. This can be downloaded to Map Point if wanted.
GPS page - The GPS page is a summary page which shows the following information, the vehicle’s current position as Latitude and Longitude, the current heading, the vehicle’s speed, the altitude, the position fix mode, the accuracy of the fix in ft/meters, the date and time
Camera page, The RoadPilot also automatically selects this page when the vehicle is approaching a camera location. The camera page visually shows the location of any cameras relative to the vehicle’s position including way points.
Setup page - This only works when stationary and allows you to customise the settings such as Volume, Contrast, Units (MPH / KM/H), Speedo type, Set time, Daylight Saving Time, Language, Country, Information Page. Other functions will be added here for Radar and Laser Systems. Demo Mode.
Exit to previous page - As its says
Store new camera location - As its says
Store way point - As its says
Delete camera/way point - As its says
Mileage Summary - Mileage Summary page showing the mileage's recorded, categorised as Business, Private, Commuting and Total Mileage

There are lots of options and I would suggest that you have a look at the instruction manual on the Road Pilot site, I could be here all day explaining them, after all I am here to tell you if the Roadpilot is any good. Function wise they have added some good features as I have described above. In practice the unit works very well.

In use I have the Roadpilot set on the Digital Speedo Page, its a nice big display of the speed you are going and its shows just how bad some car speedo's are, the Roadpilot displays 60mph and the car displays 64mph.

Above: Digital Speed page.

I have my Roadpilot set for a 1 mile warning. Auto ranging is on so this varies the alert distance depending on my speed, slow = shorter warning range, fast = longer warning range.
I also have the digital speedo page showing, this constantly gives me my vehicle speed, trip distance and total distance. The info display remains down the side. The range to the nearest speedtrap zone, compass and time are shown there. When I am within range of a speedtrap, the digital speedo page is replaced by a camera proximity page, this shows the relationship of my vehicle to the pending speedtrap and the trap moves in closer on the screen to my vehicle, shown below by a square, as I get closer in real life to the camera.

Above: Camera proximity page, the car is the solid square at the
bottom next to 35mph. The camera in the circle is the one you are being
warned about, the one with the line through it is on the other side of the road

The warnings you get are clear and very concise. When the warning is activated the Roadpilot confirms the speed limit of the road you are on in the side bar and by voice. The Roadpilot also warns you by voice (SLOW DOWN) or by a warning beep to slow down if you are over the speed limit.

Adding speedtrap's is easy. Press the screen once and you then get another option, Add Speedtrap, Delete Speedtrap/way point or Add Way point. Press the box wanted on the screen and the job is done. The way point option is for your own use to log points of interest, mine is for mobile laser sites. Road Pilot have plans to add other databases to the system i.e.. Schools, garages, fast food etc. and you will be able to decide what you want on or off with the interface software.

Updating is done by a USB connection. Serial cable and modem to follow soon. You remove the screen and place it on the USB interface, click on the software (PC only), request a database update and then it does the rest including changing the firmware if there is a new release. Firmware is updated if any new features have been added.

You also receive some software, that will allow you make changes to the Roadpilot. Such as, changing the databases, downloading your mileage to Microsoft Excel. You can even take the information on the Track back screen and download it onto Microsoft Map point. The Track back screen allows you to retrace your trip if you get lost, not easy to use as a track back feature as no map is shown, but great to download to Map point and show you route taken.

Above Left: Mileage manager page. Above Right: Tracking Page

Road Pilot have thought about this product and done a very good job of making a touch screen and software driven system, they however could have made some additions to the system such as a over speed warning page. i.e. you set it for 80mph and whenever you go over 80mph it gives you a simple alert to remind you.

Variable traps on the M25 give a warning of 20mph even when the variable speed limit is at 70mph, this is annoying as every gantry is logged on the variable section of the M25 even if its not fitted with cameras, I found myself muting the system on the entire stretch because it was constantly telling me to slow down.

Overall the Road Pilot has a lot to offer. In the first few weeks Road Pilot changed the software quite a few times and the Road Pilot just got better and better. The system is totally software driven and this allows Road Pilot to add new features. So in theory the unit should never become out of date.

London's congestion charging cameras have been added to the database, you now get a warning if you approach the area allowing you to take avoiding action if you wish.

Above: The Road Pilot Kit

What do we like. What don't we like.
  • Easy to use.
  • Way point database.
  • Track back page.
  • Large funky speedo page.
  • Clear easy to read display.
  • Voice alerts.
  • Build Quality, looks great.
  • Size.
  • Software upgrading.
  • Good choice of mounts.
  • Modular System,
  • Camera Removed Button.
  • Not suitable for motorbikes.
  • No warning LED to catch your eye if your stereo is up high.
  • Sound is clear but volume could be better.
  • No Mac Support.
  • Some warnings for roadside devices that are not speedtrap's. The database needs looking at.

Can we recommend it, YES and No


Please also note, because the Road Pilot is a software driven system, this review was accurate at the time of publishing
its is well worth looking at the Road Pilot site and reading the latest user guide to see what has changed.

24th December 2002
Updated April 2003
Updated Sept 2004


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