- 1 The 3 best car GPS trackers in review
- 1.1 Car GPS Tracker Test Review
- 1.2 We tested according to these criteria:
- 1.3 Test category 1: Length of battery life of the car GPS tracker
- 1.4 Test category 2: How well can you hide the car GPS tracker?
- 1.5 Test category 3: Accuracy of the position determination of the GPS trackers
- 1.6 Test category 4: Easy handling and usability of the Car GPS Tracker
- 1.7 Test category 5: Tracking platform and app for the GPS trackers
- 1.8 Test category 6: Installation and mounting of the Car GPS Tracker
- 1.9 Test category 7: Range of functions and included accessories of the GPS Tracker for cars
- 1.10 Test category 8: Special functions of the car GPS tracker
- 1.11 Test category 9: Processing and weather resistance of the Car GPS Tracker
- 1.12 Test category 10: Costs SIM card for the GPS tracker
The 3 best car GPS trackers in review
Place 1: GPS Tracker Pro©
The only long-term tracker that sticks to any metal surface – without falling off! Very strong magnet, 4G antenna technology, etc. Very long battery life of over 6 months and very good GPS reception thanks to signal reflection, places it at a clear distance as the test winner.BUY NOW
Place 2: GPS Tracker Mini©
Only 3 on 4cm size, the long battery life of up to 3 months, the large accessories included, as well as the direct connection to the power supply of the vehicle, makes this tracker a real all-rounder! For every field of application: vehicles, persons, dog/cat, and much more. Without signal reflection – therefore only the second place.BUY NOW
Place 3: GPS Tracker Mico
The GPS-Tracker Micro is an extremely small and portable GPS tracker with a size of only 2 by 3 centimeters and an outstanding price-performance ratio. The low price also has its disadvantages: short battery life and inaccurate positioning due to the limited antenna technology.
Car GPS Tracker Test Review
Since car thieves now also easily crack the most modern vehicles with keyless or keyless-go systems and steal cars, more and more people are installing car GPS trackers in their vehicles. With it you can always track where your car is at the moment. Modern software systems also allow an alarm to be triggered if the vehicle moves out of certain zones.
We tested according to these criteria:
- Long battery life (battery life standby mode and continuous use?)
- Hide (How easy is it to find the tracker?)
- accuracy of position determination and transmission
- simple operation and usability
- tracking platform and app
- installation and assembly
- Features and accessories included
- special functions like: motion, speed, battery alarm, GEO fence, vibration sensor, etc.
- processing and weather resistance
- SIM cards costs
All these points are important when buying a car GPS tracker. What good is a device that the potential thief can see and remove immediately? What use is a device that doesn’t work the first time it rains? What use is a device that doesn’t work after a few minutes or hours because the battery is empty?
3 devices in the car GPS tracker review with no monthly fee
We have compared the following three devices and tested them extensively to give you a comparison possibility. Comparing different GPS trackers will show you the differences and may make it easier for you to decide whether to buy a particular tracker or not. . The three trackers listed here were the best in the test and will therefore be examined here.
Here are the individual test categories and how each GPS tracker performed:
Test category 1: Length of battery life of the car GPS tracker
Some GPS trackers in the test were already tired after a few hours without power supply and did not send a position anymore. If you have to change batteries on your GPS tracker all the time, you will find this annoying very quickly. This is even more so if you have installed the tracker in a hidden place and therefore have to remove it first to install a new battery. Therefore it is important that a battery runs as long as possible or that the tracker is constantly recharged automatically.
- GPS Tracker Pro© in the battery test: The test winner in the test convinced by the fact that the tracker transmitted the current position of the vehicle in the test with a battery charge
- for 3-4 months. So you have a quarter rest, – even if the vehicle is moved. After that the charging of the battery is easy, because the tracker is simply attached by magnet e.g. to the underbody and can be removed there – if you know where it is – without the need to disassemble any parts. Even if the vehicle is moved, the tracker will last for a long time, which makes it the test winner. If the vehicle is only stationary, the tracker can even remain in standby mode for 6 months. All with one battery charge. The most powerful device in the test.
- GPS Tracker Mini© in the battery test: The second best device in the test is only 3×4 cm in size, but it still lasted up to 3 months in the test with a battery charge. Therewith, the device was only insignificantly worse in terms of the battery performance than the device that is on place 1 in the pro-equipment, a thing that sent up to one month more. But for the compactness of the device, 3 months of battery life are enormous compared to other devices that are available on the market. This is achieved by high-tech components, which are particularly power-saving and miniaturized. A plus of the GPS Tracker Mini© is that it can also be permanently connected to the vehicle’s power supply. On the one hand, this is possible via the cigarette lighter, but it can also be concealed, e.g. behind the dashboard. Once connected to the power supply, the tracker no longer needs access. This also makes it possible to mount the device once e.g. behind the glove box or behind the radio and then leave it there. The device can then remain there – virtually invisible – and reliably delivers the position data. Without the car user noticing, because the device is not openly visible.
GPS data was not transmitted anymore. So it is only suitable for those who want to monitor a vehicle only for a short time and attach importance to the mini-size of the device, which of course can be easily hidden in the vehicle. In practice, due to the short battery life, there are probably phases in which the vehicle is not monitored because the battery is empty and has forgotten to recharge it. Therefore in the test only 3rd place among the car GPS trackers.
In practice, car GPS trackers should often be placed in the vehicle in such a way that the driver does not notice the device. E.g. because you want to monitor employees or, in case of a possible theft of the vehicle, you want to prevent the thief from removing the tracker before you have located the vehicle. Therefore, the hiding places of the car GPS tracker are often of crucial importance. Here are the characteristics of the three test winners in the tracker test:
- GPS Tracker Pro© – hiding places: This car GPS tracker has a very strong magnet on the bottom of the device, which makes it easy to attach the device to any metal part of the vehicle. Usually, it is quickly attached to the bottom of the vehicle with a click.
The device is then not visible from above. No one will look under the vehicle before departure. Theoretically, it could also be mounted at any other metallic place, even concealed under covers etc. However, the transmission characteristics are probably best on the underside of the vehicle. For us, therefore, a clear place 1 criterion for this tracker: attached to the underside of the vehicle within seconds, it is well hidden there.
- GPS Tracker Mini© – Hiding places: This tracker is very good to hide because it is so small. With its size of 3×4 cm, it is very small and therefore easy to hide at many places in the vehicle. Connected via the cigarette lighter, the power supply is guaranteed, but the cable and this connection option could quickly alert a car thief to the device. It’s a good thing that there is also the possibility to connect it to the power supply , e.g. behind the radio or behind the dashboard/glove compartment. There it is not noticeable because of its small dimensions and hidden design. Because this is a bit more complex than just clicking on a magnet (see GPS Tracker Pro), there is only 2nd place for this, but with only a small distance to the first place.
- GPS Tracker Micro – hiding places: The smallest device on the front seats with only 2×3 cm dimensions. This is actually the best way to hide it. However, this is bought with significantly lower battery power and the lack of a simple and unobtrusive power supply. A strong magnet is also not to be found here. The device must also be installed rain-protected, which limits the installation to the interior area. For us, therefore, place 3 in the test of the Car GPS Tracker.
It is of no use if a car GPS tracker only gives you an approximate location via software that points to an area of several square kilometers. The more accurate and detailed the analysis, the better your car can be found in case of theft. Of course, it is already helpful if you know in which city your car is at the moment, but it would be even better if an App would then also display in which street and block it is located. We tested the GPS trackers for this function, here the 3 test winners and how accurate the positioning was in each case:
- GPS Tracker Pro© – Accuracy Positioning: With 4G antenna technology the device convinces with very good GPS reception. Thanks to signal reflection technology, the device under the vehicle receive signals reflected from the ground. In the test, this enabled the most accurate positioning results to be obtained. Often accurate down to the house number in a street. Once the IMEI number of the device and the password were entered in the Trackig app, a very detailed position determination was possible. Every 10 seconds the location was updated. The geofence function also worked perfectly. In the test, we programmed a radius of 1km around our location and wanted to be alerted when leaving the radius. Already at 50 meters above this limit, we received an alarm signal on a connected mobile phone. This is extremely practical and qualified the GPS Tracker Pro© for 1st place in the test.
- GPS Tracker Mini© – Accuracy Positioning: Also this device delivered exact position data, although due to the positioning inside the vehicle the bodywork makes the signal transmission somewhat more difficult. However, the data were only slightly coarser than those of the first-placed “Pro” device, so here we reach position 2.
- GPS Tracker Micro – Accuracy Positioning: The Mini model seems to have a limited antenna technology, which sometimes only allowed an inaccurate position determination. This is probably due to the compact design. In the test, it was enough for place 3 of the three best devices.
A device that is easy to use and does not require the study of thick instruction books would be the dream of every user. Intuitive apps for the smartphone make it easy to use, but how does it look in practice with the tested car GPS trackers? Here is our test result:
- GPS Tracker Pro© – Usability: You can’t make it much easier than this: The device can be docked onto the vehicle floor with a single hand movement and the super magnet on the underside of the vehicle. This is done in 5 to 10 seconds. An easy-to-understand tracking app is available, in which you only need to enter the IMEI number and a password and you can see conveniently on a map where the vehicle is currently located, historical routes, and the geofencing function are also available. If the vehicle leaves a certain radius with the Pro GPS Tracker, which is defined by you, an alarm is triggered, e.g. by email or message on a smartphone. All programmed simply and understandably. Quick to learn, easy to operate. Quick installation of the device plus good software gives a clear 1st place in the test for this device.
- GPS Tracker Mini© – usability/usability: The usability of the software is identical to the GPS Tracker Pro© and therefore as comfortable and functional. The geofencing function is also available here. In less than 30 seconds, the device can be connected to the vehicle’s power supply via the cigarette lighter socket. For those who want to install it in a hidden location, the necessary cables are also included in the delivery, so that, for example, a connection behind the radio or behind a trunk cover to the vehicle power supply is easily possible. Here, approx. 15 to 30 minutes should be sufficient. The installation can also be done by laymen. For us place 2 in the test.
- GPS Tracker Micro – usability/functionality: This device can also be tracked via a tracking app However, installation and mounting seem somewhat more complicated, which in the test was enough for 3rd place. When using the software, more inaccurate location information left a lot to be desired.
Some of the devices we tested were rejected because they only had a manual in Chinese or a difficult to understand software in (poor) English, which was not intuitive to use. Some tracking software is expensive to pay every month. How is it with the three test winners:
+ GPS Tracker Pro© – Tracking Platform / APP: For the devices and therefore also for this Pro device a comfortable Tracking App is available, which can be downloaded for Android as well as for iOS devices (Apple). After entering the IMEI and password, a comprehensive function tool is available, which impresses with its Englisg menu navigation:
+ exact position determination
+ Geofencing programming (you define a radius, which when leaving it triggers an alarm)
+ Push messages to your mobile phone possible
+ Historical data: When was your vehicle where and how long
+ Vibration alarm possible
+ no monthly free
The app doesn’t take up too much memory and is quickly downloaded, making every smartphone a tracking tool. The software for the GPS Tracker Pro© makes a comfortable and well-thought-out impression. Therefore 1st place in the test
With the purchase of a GPS Pro tracker, you also acquire 100% free of charge membership of a tracking portal with a lot of useful information and functionalities, – up to an automatically guided logbook.
- GPS Tracker Mini© – Tracking Platform / App: The same software is available for this device as for the Pro version (see above). So far also here: Top marks for this software.
- GPS Tracker Micro – Tracking Platform/APP: The software was unfortunately not available here. However, tracking information can be accessed here using internationally established tracking software, some of which are subject to a fee. Standard Google Maps services are available. The GPS accuracy in the software sometimes deviated by more than 100m.
A GPS tracker is quickly ordered. But what use is the most beautiful GPS tracker or the cheapest one if the device disappears into some drawer afterwards, because the installation seems too difficult, too complicated, or even only a foreign instruction manual is enclosed, from which you don’t really know what to make of it? Several devices were therefore already ruled out at this point in our test. It should be possible to install a GPS tracker without having studied electrical engineering. Here are our test results of the three test winners of the GPS Tracker Test for car devices:
GPS Tracker Pro© – installation and mounting: The device is more clearly test winner because it is simply installed with “Click and Go“. The device is contained in a small weatherproof box with very strong magnets on the bottom. This allows you to attach the Pro GPS Tracker to the underside of the vehicle in seconds. no cables have to be connected and no further work has to be done. For laymen optimal and fast possible. The app installation also went smoothly. After entering the IMEI number and password, the app and the device worked perfectly. Therefore for us place 1 in the test of the Car GPS Tracker.
GPS Tracker Mini© – installation and mounting: The device can be “mounted” in three different ways:
- Easy without cable connection somewhere in the car , e.g. in the glove compartment or with adhesive carpet tape in the door lining or trunk lining. This is simple and usually done in seconds.
- Cigarette lighter with a supplied plug. That is also simple: Plug it in and you’re done. However, the device can then be detected faster. The cigarette lighter connector for the GPS tracker is included with the device.
- Enclosed power cables (incl. plug). This is easy to do e.g. behind the trunk cover (where cables for the rear lights are located), behind the radio or under the dashboard (here you can usually find cables when you lie down in the footwell of the vehicle). Depending on where you want to connect it, you have to calculate 15 to 30 minutes of installation time here. Most of the time is not needed for connecting the few necessary cables, but for removing covers and reattaching them. As this only has to be done once and the device then remains there permanently, the effort is calculated on time, but negligible. For us place 2 in the test.
- GPS Tracker Micro – Installation and Mounting: This device is rather meant to be placed quickly somewhere in a pocket or glove bar – without the need for complicated mounting, which is not provided for this device. You could also fix it somewhere with carpet tape, but you have to keep in mind that due to the short battery life, it is necessary to change the battery or reload it frequently. This could be a bit annoying for some users, therefore it’s place 3 for us in the test.
Of the 10 devices tested by us, some of them did not even include the accessories that were reasonably required in the first delivery, which then again made it necessary to order additional accessories, e.g. for connection to the vehicle electronics, which was time-consuming and costly. This is annoying. With well-thought-out concepts, everything that is reasonably required was included in the first delivery. How was it in the test with the three devices that performed best among the car GPS trackers? Here is an overview:
+ GPS Tracker Pro© – Functional Range/Scope of Delivery: The device convinces with its dimensions of 123 x 62 x 31 mm and its 227 g weight in its waterproof housing. The range of functions is astonishing (see below) and leads to the first place in the test. Included:
+ GPS Tracker Pro©
+ Android/iOS app
+ Tracking Portal
+ USB charging cable
+ operating instructions
+ no monthly fee
Since the device does not need to be wired, the device is immediately functional with the supplied accessories. Simply click on the underside of the vehicle and off you go.
The features contained in the device and software are convincing even for the highest demands, here is a selection
– Tracking-App enables you to access the position of the Pro GPS Tracker from your smartphone or tablet.
– Display of past routes and alarms possible (history)
– Geofencing technology: If a room defined by you is left, an alarm can be triggered (Geo-fence technology)
– Vibration sensor: triggering of alarm in case of vibration or movement
– Signal Reflection Technology enables the recording of signals reflected from the ground
– Extra strong magnet – impossible to fall off
– 4G GSM Tracking (radio cell tracking), if no GPS signal is available
– Extremely simple tracking via portal and SMS
– Alarm also possible with low battery status – via SMS
– Waterproof, therefore suitable for outdoor use
– Babyphone function possible: listening to the surroundings at any time
– Tested from -20 to +70 degrees Celsius
– Works with standard SIM card (prepaid or contract)
– no monthly fee
GPS Tracker Mini© of functions/scope of delivery: Also here applies: Sim card (here: Micro-Sim) plugin and off you go, a suitable prepaid Sim card can be ordered from the provider. There are no extra costs for accessories, which have to be reordered because everything is already included. Both the device, the app, as well as connection cables for cigarette lighter and the direct connection to vehicle electronics.
Smallest GPS tracker: only 3 x 4 cm and 24g weight
The tracking app is already included, can be called up from a smartphone or tablet
Hazardous routes are accessible
Logbook guide function possible
Geofencing function: You are informed when a defined radius is exceeded
Vibration sensor with four-stage sensitivity adjustment triggers an alarm on movement/vibration
Alarm possible in case of noises in the environment (over 45 dB)
Babyphone function allows listening to the environment at any time
GSM tracking (radio cell location), if no GPS signal is available
Low battery alarm via SMS
+ GPS Tracker Mini©
+ Android / iOS App
+ Tracking Portal
+ USB charging cable
+ Car USB plug for cigarette lighter
+ Connection cable for the car battery
+ loop/collar for cats / dogs
+ Instruction manual
GPS Tracker Micro – Features / Delivery: This model is suitable for minimalists. Only the Mini-Tracker and a USB-cable were included in the delivery, plus a user booklet. Due to the lack of rain resistance and powerful magnets, the device is only partially suitable for outdoor use. A cabling with the vehicle electronics seems not to be planned. The device needs a signal for the SIM card to establish a connection. With small magnets it can at least be fixed inside a vehicle. In our test of the three devices place 3.
Modern and sophisticated car GPS trackers not only have the function of locating the device, but also have numerous additional functions. Good devices can switch between GSM and GPS tracking, also allow additional functions like:
But what is the situation with the three devices tested? What can the GPS Tracker models and the mini GPS tracker do and what can they not do? This can be important when making a purchase decision, here the three devices in the test:
GPS Tracker Pro© – special functions: The test winner in the test is not only the only long-term tracker in the test that sticks to any metal surface without falling off, but also has numerous additional functions that you usually look for in vain with simpler devices – we were convinced:
tracking portal with route tracking, fuel consumption, logbook guidance
iOS and Android App: This makes a convenient app available for practically every smartphone
Real-time tracking possible in 10-second intervals
Historical data accessible
Babyphone function: You can listen in to the surroundings of the Pro GPS Tracker at any time
speed measurement possible
Data export to Excel possible
driver profiles can be defined
proof of private and business-driven km possible
Alert low battery status via SMS
If a GPS tracker has all these functions, there is hardly anything left to be desired. Because of the wireless functionality of this device, you can also use it to place it in a suitcase or backpack, for example. The next time your suitcase doesn’t arrive at its destination during the flight, you only need to look at your mobile phone and you’ll know where your suitcase is. Also ideal if you have to leave a suitcase in a hotel’s luggage storage room and you want to make sure that no one but you removes it. Since the device is much smaller than usual baby monitors and it has a sound alarm, you can also use it to monitor your baby during holiday stays or similar: While you are having a cozy meal in the hotel restaurant, your GPS Tracker Pro© will monitor whether your baby is still sleeping and will sound the alarm if it gets loud…
GPS Tracker Mini© – Special Functions: This GPS tracker also makes numerous additional functions possible, via the App and/or a provided portal. After the GPS Tracker Por©, the device comes in second place in the test and enables the following additional functions, for example:
Route tracking via App
Geofencing option (if a defined radius is left, an alarm is triggered)
Babyphone function (listening in on the room)
Electronic logbook possible
Noise alarm possible (over 45 dB)
Low battery alarm
Historical routes displayable
Vibration alarm, four-stage
Motion alarm possible
Can be used from any smartphone/tablet through iOS and Android APP
GPS Tracker Micro – Special Functions: This small-format device enables, among other things, a voice recording function and can otherwise approximately determine the location of the vehicle by means of a SIM card, if it receives a signal and the battery is still powerful. For users with simple requirements a satisfying device, which came in 3rd place in our test.
In the GPS tracker market, are now numerous manufacturers and suppliers. The devices differ not only in technology, range, location accuracy, and software but also in workmanship and weather resistance. What good is a device that fails the first time it rains or drives through a puddle or gives up the ghost as soon as it gets warm or cold? Here there were considerable differences in the test. Here are the characteristics of the three test winners with no monthly fee:
GPS Tracker Pro© – workmanship/weather resistance: The test winner makes a very solid impression in the test. The device, which is only slightly larger than a deck of cards, measures 123 x 62 x 31 mm and weighs 227 grams. No junk device, but very solidly manufactured. The device is weatherproof and above all waterproof. Whether it rains or you drive through a puddle: the machine remains functional.
GPS Tracker Mini© – workmanship/weather resistance: The small device with its 40 x 34 x 14 mm and the weight of 24 grams is designed for indoor use and therefore does not have to withstand a water bath. However, if it gets splashed in the engine compartment during installation, it has not damaged the device. The standard place of use is probably behind the dashboard, glove compartment, or behind a trunk cover. There it must possibly withstand vibrations or even summer temperatures. The device survived all tests well and worked permanently in the test. The device is solidly manufactured, nothing looks sparkling or cheap here. The manufacturer seems to have attached importance to reasonable workmanship. A temperature environment of minus 20 degrees to plus 70 degrees Celsius is mentioned as a condition for the device to function properly. Even with the interior heating fully turned on, it worked just as well as with the coldest air conditioning setting. It has survived drives over rough and smooth and impassable field paths without any complaints. A device that provides reliable data and is extremely solidly built. Hence, in the test a second place for this device.
GPS Tracker Mico – Workmanship / Weatherproof: This device can theoretically be attached to the outside of the vehicle with light magnets, but the housing construction rather shows the way inside. If mounted on the outside of the vehicle, water could otherwise quickly damage the interior. The housing and overall construction was manufactured with cost considerations in mind. During a test drive and fixing it to an internal metal part of the vehicle, the box slipped a bit, which could possibly – at least for a certain period of time – be handled with additional adhesive tape or other materials. In the test, the device made it to 3rd place.
If you buy a car GPS tracker, you also need a SIM card, otherwise, the device will not work. In this case, it is crucial to consider the convenience of the SIM card purchase, as well as the running costs. If you want to avoid unpleasant surprises regarding the cost of data traffic, you are well-advised to think about this before buying a car GPS tracker. In the test, devices with high follow-up costs were ruled out at an early stage. Some SIM cards generated immensely high costs when driving abroad, others already generated high costs at home. What is the situation with the three test winners in the GPS Tracker Test for devices that are primarily used in cars?
GPS Tracker Pro© – SIM card costs: A special GPS SIM card is offered for this device and working for any GPS Senders. It works in 2G, 3G, 4G, LTE for a one-time price of 34.90 € and is ready registered. The otherwise necessary registration with an ID card is not required. The map can be used worldwide and there are no connection costs for GPS queries and route tracking. 1 year you have an unlimited data flat. So the map is practical for all those who want to use a GPS tracker without follow-up costs and without high costs for data usage. This led to the GPS Tracker Pro© device in the GPS tracker tests for car use to the first place. Low one-time costs (for one year) without the risk of high follow-up costs.Here is an overview of the features:
SIM card is already registered, no registration or badge required
Suitable for all GPS trackers
Worldwide use, tested in: USA, Canada, EU and other countries
No connection costs for GPS queries and route tracking (1-year data flat-rate)
Prepaid: No connection fee
No minimum term
3-in-1 format: also fits in every mobile phone
1 year SMS for GPS tracker commands free of charge
Through EU Roaming of course also usable in Germany, Austria and Switzerland
GPS Tracker Mini© – Cost of SIM card: Here, as with the PRO device, the same card is recommended and offered with the same advantages. Therefore in this discipline also 1st place for this SIM card in combination with that model.
GPS Tracker Micro – Cost of the SIM card: No 2G card is supported here. Only 3G and 4G cards are supported. A special SIM card was not included in the test order and was not offered. This leads to the fact that you have to buy – against ID registration – a card from one of the providers, which then usually has monthly follow-up costs, which lead to overall higher costs per year even with inexpensive prepaid SIM cards from discounters, or with contract SIM cards even to a contractual obligation and a subscription relationship. Moreover, GPS tracker buyers often do not prefer the circumstance of a SIM card registration to the presentation of an ID card and registration. This leads to a third-place for the GPS Mini Tracker in the Auto GPS Tracker test.
Conclusion: Modern Car GPS Trackers are multifunctional tools
The test of various car GPS trackers has shown that modern GPS trackers for the car are multifunctional tools whose performance goes far beyond just tracking a car. If you buy a reasonable device, you will not only have an accurate GPS tracker that can determine the location so accurately that you can quickly find a stolen car, but you will also have one:
car alarm system
Monitoring tool for routes traveled and stays made
With a modern car GPS tracker, you can also prove when the car has been where. No monthly fee of a tracker is useful if mechanics are tricking with time data or if your partner claims to be working overtime, but actually was somewhere else – no monthly costs appear. The main purpose of the car GPS Tracker is still to track where the car went after it was stolen. In this way, the police can be given valuable information. Those who have switched on the alarm function or the geofence function will immediately know if their own car is stolen and can immediately inform the police and then track where the car is going on the smartphone. The police can thus be directed to exactly where the thief is going with your property. This leads to quick arrests and above all to a quick recovery of your property. And the best thing is: Such a modern GPS tracker does not cost a fortune, it is much cheaper than most car alarm systems and even more powerful.