Introducing the MARQ line, Garmin’s High-End Take on a Digital “Tool Watch”

You might be thinking why are we covering fitness watches here on Worn & Wound? Normally, we wouldn’t, but these new offerings from Garmin break the mold of your typical clunky, plastic fitness watch. They’re designed for those who prefer the on-the-wrist feel of an analog watch but want some “smart” features. The MARQ line is an interesting take on what Garmin calls the “modern tool watch”— blending computer-powered data, analog watch aesthetics, and premium construction throughout. 

Each of the models share the same 46-millimeter brushed titanium case and some core features, like an always-on screen behind a sapphire crystal. But things split off from there. Each watch is built for a specific task with different looks and design cues depending on their theme. Even though the display is fully digital, the MARQs display the time with graphics of analog hands, and they use several traditional watch features like pushers and purpose-driven bezels. Here’s a quick look at these five new watches from Garmin.

MARQ Athlete
The Athlete is packed with training apps to help you get the best out of your workout. It’ll calculate distance and route with with the on-board GPS. It can also display more advanced stats such as stride length, vertical oscillation, and elevation profiles, with recovery time and VO2 max around the bezel. It’s much more than a plain old GPS watch, however, as it’s capable of finding the best running and cycling routes based on the level of workout you’re looking for. The Athlete comes on a pliable silicone band. It’ll remain comfortable while resisting sweat and splashes you’re bound to encounter during your workout.


MARQ Aviator

The Aviator is one of the more traditional looking watches in the MARQ line. Around the outside of the large digital display is a ceramic 24-hour GMT bezel and it’s mounted on a titanium bracelet. The digital handset has the standard hour, minutes, and seconds hand but can also display a GMT hand. Again, the watch is capable of much more than telling the time in another part of the globe. There’s a full-on flight map with GPS tracking capabilities and some handy emergency features. Pilots will appreciate the worldwide airport database that can give you real estimates of travel time.

MARQ Captain

The Captain is the sailboat-centric watch in the lineup. It features a GPS-enhanced regatta timer and real-time tack assist data like windspeed and direction. One of the coolest features is the “Man Overboard” button. It marks the GPS coordinates at the time of activation and points an arrow back to said location. The Captain is mounted on a unique jacquard-weave nylon strap that’s fitted with metal end links and brushed hardware throughout.

MARQ Driver

Perhaps the most aggressive looking watch in the lineup is the Driver. The case is hit with a DLC coating over the titanium base that gives it a stealthy, blacked-out appearance. There’s a single red pusher on the side to activate the racing app or chronograph features. On the bracelet, you’ll find red silicone spacers that complement the red accents on the watch and give one the feel of wearing a rubber strap. Of course, the Driver is capable of much more than recording time. The watch can display live delta time (current lap time vs. fastest lap time), give you an audio report of each lap to review post-race, and give you a rundown of your race.

MARQ Expedition

Last, but not least, is Garmin’s mountaineering style watch dubbed the Expedition. The premium Italian leather strap, brushed steel finish, and 360º compass bezel invoke the classic appearance of an adventure watch. With the press of a digital pusher, you can activate the hiking app that’s capable of tracking your route. It’ll even leave waypoints along the way so you can safely find your way back to civilization. In case you’re not sure where you’re going, you can call up a full set of topographic maps that show land features, elevation, and more.

Referring to MARQ line as modern tool watches makes a lot of sense. These are purpose-driven pieces designed and built to achieve a specific task like the dive/field watches of yesteryear, and Garmin’s banking on there being a market for watches with a narrow focus. The higher-end level of execution here isn’t cheap — the collection ranges from $1,500 to $2,500.  Garmin

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Ed is a Long Island-based writer and photographer with an affinity for watches, fountain pens, EDC gear, and a great cup of coffee. He’s always looking for the best gear for the job—whether it be new watch, pen, flashlight, knife, or wallet. Ed enjoys writing because it’s an awesome (and fulfilling) way to interact with those who share the same interests.