Unless we're talking about one of the high-end 3000-series Garmin models, it's pretty much impossible to distinguish one Garmin car GPS from another. Gather a posse of Garmin units together, and besides screen size, there's little to set them apart, as most feature a rubberised body and an inset resistive touchscreen bounded by a glossy black bezel. In amongst this coterie of navigators, you'll no doubt find a Nuvi 2455LM, the entry point to the brand's mid-range set of 2012 GPS devices.
Fire up the 2455LM, and long-time Garmin aficionados might notice a few changes to the interface that still features the brand's oversized "Where To?" and "View Map" icons on the main screen. The company has finally seen fit to split its suite of mini-apps (Help, EcoRoute, Audible, TripPlanner, Picture Viewer, Where I've Been, World Clock, Alarm Clock, Last Spot, Calc, Unit Converter and Language Guide) from the unit's battery of settings. Settings and Apps now have their own small icons on the main screen, meaning that tweaking the Nuvi to your personal taste is no longer quite as time consuming.
Garmin has also given the main "Where To?" menu a once over, but the results are a little less successful. There's now a search bar at the top of the screen, but unfortunately it's limited to searching for points of interest (banks, parks, stations and the like). This is a shame, really, as a Navman-style street-name search or freeform address entry, for example "42 Tarragon St, Mile End", would be handy.
Three shortcut buttons (by default Categories, Favourites and History) live to the side of a streamlined grid of functions (Go Home, Address, Restaurants, Petrol Stations, Shopping and Personalise). If, like this writer, you're likely to enter many destinations via cross-streets, you'll have to hit the Personalise button and rearrange things a bit — you'll also find buttons for the missing town and coordinate searches here, too.
So what does the recommended retail price of AU$229 get you? There's the usual bevy of features, including spoken street names, multi-stop routes, lane guidance for most roads in Australia's capital cities and realistic junction view overlays for large intersections, as well as motorway entrances and exits. As always with a Garmin device, New Zealand maps are thrown in gratis — which is handy if you're planning on heading across the ditch.
What you do miss out on is traffic messaging, although you can acquire that for an extra AU$30 if you splash out on the otherwise identical Nuvi 2455LMT. For a unit asking north of AU$200, the more glaring omission is Bluetooth hands-free. The cheapest way you'll get that functionality in this year's Garmin range is to fork out AU$299 for the Nuvi 2495LMT.