Garmin Force vs Ultrex Comparison: What’s The Difference

garmin force vs ultrex
garmin force vs ultrex

Debates about different types of equipment are quite common on online forums. Many users express their opinions while weighing the pros and cons of each piece of equipment. It is a good practice to look at different reviews before spending money on a project.

This will not only save you from a wrong purchase, but you will also avoid wasting your time getting a replacement. Here we will cover some fundamental aspects of Garmin Force vs Ultrex. 

So, if you’re confused about the two devices and need some background information, this is the place for you. Hopefully, this information will help you make an informed decision about what device to go for.

Garmin Force vs Ultrex Comparison

Specifics Garmin Force Ultrex 
Build Quality Robust Moderate
Thrust 100/80 lbs. 112/80 lbs.
Foot Pedal Wireless Wired
Voltage  36/24 V 36/24 V

To start, you can think of both the Garmin Force and the Minn kota Ultrex as the most phenomenal units on the market.

These units have been dominating for years, and you will not find any option that will even come close to competing with these brands.

You can think of Garmin Force as the more robust system that can work in a variety of situations like brackish and saltwater.

You will not have to worry about any buildup as long as you clean the motor after the use, and it will help you with a consistent thrust throughout the trip. 

Moreover, the owners have been amazed with the performance of the wireless foot pedal.

It will allow for more mobility, and you will not feel the need to switch to any other steering method when sticking with the Garmin Force. 

Other than that, some experts do point out the minimal difference in thrust.

However, this difference is not enough to have an impact on the purchase decision, and you should only stick with the Garmin Force in rougher regions.

On the other side of things, the Minn Kota Ultrex is another great option.

In terms of convenience and a quieter presence, the Ultrex system is simply better. You will not feel the need to switch to any other brand, and the Ultrex system will serve you perfectly in freshwater. 

You can’t really use this motor in rougher regions and taking it out for a spin in saltwater will only reduce its lifespan.

The best thing that you can do to get the ideal performance and a smoother lift from Ultrex is to keep it fully maintained.

This motor will serve you perfectly as long as you are sure that the water conditions are not too rough.

Everything will boil down to the budget and the local water conditions. If your local conditions are not rough and you need the motor for fresh water, then Ultrex is better. 

However, if you’re looking for a rougher region where the water conditions are not that great, sticking with the Garmin Force is the better idea.

If you’re not that sure or experienced about the water conditions, just ask the local professionals. 

Seeking help from the local fishing experts will not only help you with valuable information on what system is better, but you will also be able to figure out how to go about the best routes. So, don’t hesitate to ask for help.

Garmin Force

The primary difference that you will notice between Garmin Force and Ultrex is that the size of the Garmin Force device is much larger.

garmin force

It can be a deal-breaker for some people, still Garmin tries to make up for it with an easy lifting mechanism.

So, you don’t have to worry about struggling to manage your motor while on tour. It is pretty easy to operate, and the best thing about this device is that you don’t have to worry about cable management.

The majority of the controls on a Garmin Force are wireless, and instead of bundles of cables connected to the controller, you get a sleek design.

Many people prefer this motor because of its ability to work in Salt and brackish water. 

On the other hand, the Minn Kota Ultrex is primarily used for fresh water and doesn’t give good performance anywhere else.

The power from both systems is somewhat comparable, and you won’t notice much difference in that department.

One drawback that Garmin Force has is that the motor only supports electric steering. Other than that, this device is quiet and doesn’t make much noise when you’re out fishing.

The power indicator and other controls on the Garmin Force are pretty easy to notice and help you plan. 

As far as the power output is concerned, both devices have pretty similar performance, and you shouldn’t feel a difference when you’re on freshwater.

All in all, Garmin Force is an exceptional motor that is in use by countless experts worldwide. So, if you’re thinking of making a purchase, Garmin force is a valid option.

However, it would still be better to ask the local experts to help give you more insights on the maintenance tips for Garmin Force.

You can easily finalize the purchase of the Garmin Force and the Minn Kota Ultrex by checking the water conditions. If you’re not really sure about the water conditions, just ask other experts.

In case the water is calm and you’re only sticking with the freshwater conditions, Ultrex is better. 

On the other side of things, if the water is brackish, then going with the Garmin Force is better. So, have that in mind when you’re stuck between Ultrex and Garmin Force.



Let’s start with the size of the Minn Kota Ultrex. This device is relatively more minor when compared with Garmin Force side by side. However, many experts have shown their disappointment with the noise generated by the Ultrex.

Even though the anchor mode is quite a handy feature, it can be challenging to remain competitive with a noisy motor. For this reason, you will notice many experts go for Garmin Force over the Ultrex for their fishing boats.

Just like the Garmin Force, Ultrex is relatively easy to set up and use on your boat. The performance and power of both of these devices are pretty similar. 

You won’t notice much difference as long as you’re in the freshwater. Other than that, a significant difference between these devices is that it can be pretty challenging for users to deal with the cables attached to the Ultrex unit.

In the Garmin Force unit, the foot pedal is wireless and brings a variety of features to the table.

On the other hand, Ultrex offers a cable steering option to enable users with better control over their units. The foot pedal in the Ultrex unit is connected to a massive cable.

This can be annoying to deal with at times. So, if you’re not a fan of cable management, then Ultrex is not for you.

As far as the customer response is concerned, it is apparent that the market sentiment is tilted towards the Garmin Force unit.

So, if you’re new to fishing, it is likely that you will like the Garmin Force unit better than Ultrex. However, you won’t know for sure unless you give both teams a try for yourself. 

To do this, you can head over to your local experts and ask them for a review.

Then they’ll tell you which unit they like better for fishing. Moreover, you will get concrete opinions on how these motors will perform in your region.

Testing out the system on your own is not that smart a decision when you can save a lot of money and time when going with the opinions of the local experts.

So, have that in mind when you can’t seem to finalize the purchase decision on your end.

Hopefully, you will save yourself from a bad purchase and find the perfect system between Ultrex and Garmin Force.

The Takeaway

Figuring out the right motor for your boat might seem like a rather simple decision, but there are just too many factors that play into finding the right system.

You gotta look at the weight of the boat, the roughness of the waves, the desired control, and the basic build quality. 

Most of the time, anglers will get stuck between the Minn Kota Ultrex and Garmin Force.

Both of these meteors are beyond exceptional and you won’t have to worry about much when sticking with either one. Just make sure you’re a bit aware of the local water conditions.

The Garmin Force will serve you well in murky or brackish water with a robust and consistent response.

You will not have to worry about much when it comes to the hardware side of things, and Garmin Force will serve you perfectly in most situations.

With that said, the features and the utility brought forward by the Ultrex unit is simply better. It might not work in brackish or murky water, but it is still better in terms of convenience.

So, you need to first figure out the budget and the water conditions before finalizing the purchase decision. 

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