Last updated on January 12, 2022
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Garmin and Lowrance have proven themselves worthy of being the king of trolling motors, despite only recently releasing new trolling motors.
When it comes to the head-to-head matchLowrance spiritagainst theGarmin Force, which one is the best?
Honestly, it comes down to brand preference. Both trolling motors offer similar features and quality at a comparable price. If you own Lowrance electronics, go for the Ghost. If you own Garmin electronics, go for the Force.
Let's start this duel to see why they are fellow kings.
Table of Contents
- Lowrance Ghost quick reference
- Garmin Force
- Garmin Force features versus Lowrance Ghost features
- Brushless motor
- anchor lock
- Integrated sonar
- power options
- control options
- Outstanding features
- Unique Lowrance Ghost features
- Unique Garmin Force features
Lowrance Ghost quick reference
- Three shaft lengths - 47", 52", 60".
- Maximum thrust of 120 lbs at 36 volts and 97 lbs at 24 volts
- Brushless (quiet) motor
- 360 degree tear-off mount and automatic reorientation
- It doesn't interfere with the sonar
- Customizable foot pedal buttons
- Freshwater only
- Less than ideal factory support
Lowrance has long been established as a quality manufacturer of fishing electronics. The Ghost is the first trolling motor produced by Lowrance and it really delivered and that's why I gave it a 9/10 in myLowrance Ghost review. It has all the features we've come to expect from high-end trolling motors:
- Quiet brushless motor
- Point lock/anchor lock
- Multiple control options
- Integrated Lowrance sonar
- Multiple power options
The Lowrance Ghost offers 360-degree breakaway mount and auto-reorientation, which is the secret weapon that will help it gain an advantage in this fight.
- Two shaft lengths - 50" and 57"
- Maximum thrust of 100 lbs at 36 volts and 80 lbs at 24 volts
- Long battery life
- Brushless (quiet) motor
- fresh and salt water
- Responds like a cable controlled trolling motor
- Only two shaft lengths
- Garmin compatible sonar only
Like Lowrance, Garmin has been at the forefront of electronics for a number of years. The Force is their entry point into the trolling motor market and Garmin is swinging by the fences as you can see in mineGarmin Force-Test. The Garmin Force trolling motor offers all the features we've come to expect from our trolling motors, such as:
- Point lock/anchor lock
- Quiet brushless motor
- Garmin integrated sonar
- Multiple power options
- Multiple control options
The Garmin Force has a unique feature that no other trolling motor offers. The ability to steer in the desired direction by pressing a button and pointing the remote control. This helps to rebalance things in the battle for the king of trolling motors.
When we comparedGarmin Force vs. Minn Kota Ultrex, it was easy to see why use the Force instead of the Ultrex. The force trolling motor has several unique features like gesture control that the similarly priced Ultrex doesn't have.
Garmin Force features versus Lowrance Ghost features
Both trolling motors offer several of the same features such as rack and lift assist and power steering. Let's find out how each one performs in terms of the quality of their features.
A brushless motor is quieter, more powerful and more efficient than traditional trolling motors. Both the Force and Ghost offer brushless motors; which one delivers best?
The Force is extremely quiet during use. The only sounds you hear are the electric motor turning and the water lapping against the boat.
As for the Force, at face value it looks like the Force isn't that powerful. However, Garmin claims that it outperforms the competition when using the same testing standards. After my research, I found no reason to doubt the power of the Force. The ability to move a 21 foot bass boat at four miles per hour is very powerful for any angler.
The efficiency of the force trolling motor is overwhelming. That means you don't have to worry about running out of battery juice on the water. You also don't have to recharge the trolling motor batteries after every single fishing trip.
Like any other ghost, the Lowrance ghost is silent. You will hear the water lapping and the head unit spinning, but that's all you'll hear.
On paper, the Ghost is more powerful. With 120 lbs of thrust versus the 100 lbs of thrust of the Forces, powered by 36 volts.
Once again, the Ghost is highly efficient. You don't have to think about charging the batteries after every trip, nor do you have to worry about running out of power during your fishing adventures.
“The narrow winner of this role is theLowrance spiritbecause they claim to offer more thrust.”
The anchor lock has become a game changer for many anglers. The ability to stay in one spot without fiddling with the trolling motor means you can catch more fish.
The Force is GPS compatible and offers spot lock or anchor lock. In the early stages of the release, it was known that there were some issues with drifting off the spot and then quickly returning to the original location.
These issues have been fixed with software updates, so you shouldn't worry now.
You trigger the anchor lock by pressing a button on the remote control or the foot pedal.
The Ghost is also GPS compatible and offers anchor/spot lock. Lowrance made it easy to get started with a button on the foot pedal or wireless remote control.
Both brands offer an anchor lock and it's easy to initiate, so this feature is oneTIE.
Gone are the days of attaching a transducer to the bottom of the trolling motor. Today's top trolling motors offer a converter built into the lower assembly of the trolling motor.
The Force offers multiple transducer options so you can use CHIRP sonar, ClearVu and SideVu. However, it's only compatible with Garmin electronics, so you'll need to buy a different transducer if you want to use a different brand of fish finder.
The Lowrance Ghost comes with the HDi sonar nosecone, perfect for using the CHIRP sonar, and you can easily upgrade to Active Imagining 3-in-1. Quickly place waypoints on your maps with the foot pedal. Again, only Lowrance Sonar is supported. So if you have another brand of electronics, you will need a separate transducer.
Both trolling motors offer their brand only integrated sonar, so this feature is oneTIE.
The ability to switch between 24V and 36V can mean the difference between ending your adventure early or staying out on the water. Both trolling motors offer this feature.
Use the Force at 36V when you need more boost and 24V when you don't need as much power. The Force can function correctly with any configuration you choose.
The Lowrance Ghost is the most powerful at 36V; However, it still works properly at 24V with less boost.
Both engines offer multiple power options, so this feature is aTIE.
Having more than one way to control your trolling motor allows you to focus on playing with a fish in the back of the boat and not worry about rushing back forward to adjust your trolling motor. Both engines offer multiple options, but one comes first.
You can control the Force using the traditional or wireless foot pedal, wireless remote control, or chartplotter on your Garmin electronics. When using the wireless remote control, you can enable gesture control to point in the direction you want to go.
The Lowrance Ghost is controlled via the foot pedal, the wireless remote control or the Lowrance electronics.
Both trolling motors come standard with multiple control optionsGarmin Forceoffers the coolest way to control.
We've entered the era where we no longer have to deal with constantly controlling the trolling motor.
It must have autopilot capability to be considered the king of trolling motors. Luckily, they do that for both of our competitors.
The chartplotter on Garmin sonars allows you to create a path for your trolling motor to follow. That means you can spend more time fishing and less time steering your boat.
The Lowrance Ghost also offers the ability to create a path and then have the trolling motor follow it.
Neither engine outperforms the other in this feature, so it's a TIE.
To be the king of trolling motors, you have to stand out. The king must have abilities and features that no one else has, but what happens when both options have features that the other doesn't?
Unique Lowrance Ghost features
The Ghost has two unique features that I think help it stand out from the crowd. You are the-
- Breakaway 360 Degree Mount: This is ideal for fishing in rocky or blunt areas where you will inevitably hit something with the trolling motor. You don't have to worry as much about bending the shaft or snapping off the bottom unit. It automatically repositions itself after impact, so you don't have to worry about adjusting.
- Customizable Foot Pedal: You can program the buttons on the foot pedal to perform the functions you want. This is great if you're used to certain keys performing specific tasks. You don't have to relearn a whole new system.
Don't miss our in-depth review of theLowrance spirit!
Unique Garmin Force features
The Garmin Force has a remote control that offers two unique features. They are:
- Gesture Control: The ability to point your remote in the direction you want is mind-blowing! Other brands likeBy Kota and Motorguideoffer the ability to use a remote control, but no other brand has anything like gesture controls.
- Waterproof and Floating Remote Control: While the Lowrance remote control is waterproof, it won't do you much good if it's on the bottom of the lake. If you accidentally drop your Garmin remote overboard, you can have peace of mind knowing it will float.
Motorguide trolling motors have been a fan favorite for many years, which is why I suggest you check out mineMotorguide x5 rating.
The last unique selling point of the Garmin Force is:
- The ability to be used in freshwater, brackish water or saltwater is perfect for anglers living along the coast and seeking varying levels of water salinity. Garmin emphasizes the need to properly clean the Force after each use in brackish or salt water.
For a more in-depth trolling motor review, check out the one we wrote on theGarmin Force!
As for the king of the battle between Garmin Force and Lowrance Ghost, it's a tie. Each motor has unique characteristics that benefit every angler who uses them. However, there are certain instances where one brand outperforms the other.
You should buy a Lowrance Ghost if:
- You already own or intend to own Lowrance electronics.
- You will encounter many underwater structures.
- You need a customizable foot pedal.
- You need a 60″ shaft.
If any of these cases sound like you, check them outLowrance spiritTrolling-Motor!
You should buy a Garmin Force if:
- You already own or plan to own Garmin electronics.
- You fish brackish or salt water.
- You need a remote control that is waterproof and floats.
- They like the gesture control feature.
If these cases sound more like you, check them outGarmin Force!
If you want to dive deeper, check out ours as wellLawrence Ghost vs. Von Kota UltrexReview.
About the author of the post
Wesley Littlefield lives in northeastern Oklahoma, where he has spent most of his life searching for nature. Growing up, he was introduced to different styles of fishing from his father. In college he joined the bass fishing team where he learned that competitive fishing was not for him. However, he discovered how much he just loved being on the water. He has followed in his father's footsteps and introduced his wife and daughter to the incredible adventures that nature has to offer!
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Which trolling motor is the quietest? ›
1. Minn Kota Endura C2 55 Transom Mount Trolling Motor. This stealthy motor from Minn Kota is one of the best trolling motors in the business. The Endura C2 series is ideal for those looking for adequate power that's delivered in a discreet and quiet manner.Is ghost better than ultrex? ›
The Lowrance Ghost has a silent brushless motor, so you can stay out on the water longer with more power and catch more fish. The Lowrance Ghost is the winner because it has a brushless motor unlike the Ultrex.Does Lowrance Ghost have built in GPS? ›
Ghost's revolutionary propulsion technology and brushless motor generates the most thrust and the longest run time of any trolling motor on the market. With integrated Lowrance sonar options, GPS anchoring and a three-year warranty, there's no reason not to believe in Ghost.Does the Lowrance ghost self deploy? ›
Lowrance Ghost - Freshwater Trolling Motor, 47" Shaft, Bow Mount, 97/120 lbs Thrust with... This motor does not self-deploy completely, but the built-in hydraulic cable-pull system makes it easy to stow and deploy.What is the best speed to troll at? ›
Trout typically like faster trolling speeds around 1.5 to 2.0 mph. Slower speeds may work better in cold water in winter, but generally trout are looking to chase forage items. Let the fish determine what speed will entice the bite. Start at 1.5 mph and troll in S-patterns.What is the perfect trolling speed? ›
The best trolling speed depends on several factors including the type of fish, water conditions and lure choice. In general, trolling speeds between 1.5 and 2.5 mph, as measured by GPS, are a good starting place for most species like walleye, trout and salmon.How much thrust does the Lowrance Ghost have? ›
Lowrance Ghost - Freshwater Trolling Motor, Ultra Quiet, Bow Mount, 97/120 lbs Thrust with Configurable Foot Pedal. Brief content visible, double tap to read full content. It looks like WhatsApp is not installed on your phone.Does the Lowrance Ghost have Spot-Lock? ›
Ghost Trolling Motor - Does Ghost have Spotlock or a similar anchoring feature? Yes, Ghost has Anchor Mode, which holds your vessel in one spot. Anchor Mode can be activated from the foot pedal and from the touchscreen of an HDS Live, HDS Carbon, and Elite-Ti2.Can Lowrance Ghost be used in saltwater? ›
Ghost Trolling Motor - Can I use Ghost in saltwater or brackish water? No, Ghost is designed to be used only in freshwater. Operating Ghost in saltwater or brackish water will void the warranty.Does Lowrance Ghost have side imaging? ›
Product Details. Get all of your fish-finding sonar and structure imaging from a single transducer with the Lowrance Active Imaging 3-in-1 Sonar Ghost Nosecone transducer for Ghost Trolling Motors, which features Lowrance CHIRP, SideScan, and DownScan Imaging.
Does Lowrance Ghost have autopilot? ›
Latest Lowrance® Software Release Delivers New Ghost® 360 Sonar Feature and Autopilot Compatibility | Lowrance.What units work with the Lowrance ghost? ›
The Ghost can be controlled using the foot-pedal, remote, or Lowrance HDS Live, HDS Carbon, Elite FS, and Elite Ti2 fishfinder.What transducer comes on Lowrance ghost? ›
The HDI Nosecone Transducer comes standard with the Ghost Trolling Motor.When did Lowrance ghost come out? ›
Ghost 52 and 60 models will be available in December 2020.Is the Lowrance ghost cable driven? ›
Designed with advanced fly-by-wire steering, the Lowrance Ghost Trolling Motor offers the instant, smooth control of a cable-steer motor, without the mechanical cables that wear out over time.How far behind the boat should I troll? ›
Proper distance for most boats will be anywhere from 20 feet to 150 feet behind your boat. Whether you have inboard diesel or outboard gas engines, your power dictates the distance you troll your baits and lures.What depth do you troll at? ›
Your trolling should be concentrated close to or in the thermocline for best results. It will be from 15 to 50 feet down in most lakes, depending on size and depth.Is it better to troll with mono or braid? ›
Mono line tends to be best for live bait fishing, trolling, and kite fishing. On the other hand, braided line works well for bottomfishing and jigging, fishing kelp, fishing structure, and casting plugs and lures.At what speed should you troll for walleye? ›
The magic speed for walleye is somewhere between 1.8 to 3.5 miles per hour, about the pace of a fast walk or slow jog. The best trolling speed varies widely based on lure type and water temperature. Rod placement is another important aspect of trolling that a lot of anglers neglect.What size rod is best for trolling? ›
What should you look for in a trolling rod? Rod Length: The most versatile length for a trolling rod is anywhere from 7.6' to 8', so a good bet would be to get a rod anywhere between 7' and 9'.
How deep should you run your trolling motor? ›
Submersion Rule: You'll want the top of the motor submerged at LEAST 12" under the water to ensure adequate power and to prevent noisy cavitation which will scare fish.Does Garmin force have autopilot? ›
The built-in autopilot, with integrated heading sensor and GPS, provides anchor lock, heading hold and cruise control. Just set your track, and it will guide you along your course.Can you put Humminbird 360 on Lowrance ghost? ›
This kit is to mount your 360 Imaging Transducer onto your Lowrance Ghost. The kit includes the mounting bracket and hardware to mount the 360 transducer on the trolling motor and the stabilizer to add extra support and reduce bouncing and vibration while running down the lake or driving down the road.Does Garmin force have Spot-Lock? ›
The Garmin Force has Anchor-Lock. You initiate this GPS anchor by pressing the button on the foot pedal, remote control, or using the compatible Garmin fish finders. Garmin had a few issues initially with the boat drifting off of the spot, but as of today, they have been resolved with a software update. What is this?How many volts is the Lowrance ghost? ›
The Ghost trolling motor is designed to work with either 24- or 36-Volt systems, making it compatible with any set-up and easier to implement future upgrades to batteries and chargers.Is the Garmin force good for saltwater? ›
A: Garmin Force trolling motors are designed to be used in fresh or saltwater.Can you use the Garmin force in saltwater? ›
Move your fishing to a higher level with Garmin Force Garmin Force Freshwater/Saltwater Trolling Motor. The Force trolling motor is the most powerful and most efficient trolling motor available. The three year warranty for the Force trolling motor now includes use in freshwater, saltwater and brackish water.What is better down imaging or side imaging? ›
Side imaging is going to be more useful in shallower water or when you are scanning for shallow diving fish, whereas down imaging sonar is going to serve the deeper fisherman who are fishing vertically better.What mapping system does Lowrance use? ›
Lowrance uses preloaded C-MAP charts that not only make navigation safer, but also make it easier for you to find areas to fish.What is Lowrance legacy mode? ›
Legacy mode means your unit will only work as a single source network. Single Source: has the ability to change source to any sonar source on the network, however, you could only view one active sonar source at one time.
What is CMAP Lowrance? ›
The Lowrance C-MAP Precision Contour HD Maps bring together the best data form professional lake surveys, C-MAP Genesis Social Maps, and traditional lake maps to deliver high-detail, statewide fishing maps with 1-foot contours.Does Lowrance have 360 imaging? ›
– Lowrance®, a world-leader in fishing electronics since 1957, released a software update this month, which introduces the new Ghost 360 feature and new compatibility for NAC-2 and NAC-3 autopilots.Can two Lowrance units share one transducer? ›
How Can We Help? Networked units that are connected using Ethernet, can share sonar transducers TO or FROM other sonar devices, modules or units on that network. Sonar cannot be shared over NMEA 2000 or NMEA 0183 networking.How much does a Lowrance Ghost weight? ›
Packaged Weight: 92.00 Lbs. Reliable, rugged and built to last, the new ultra-quiet Lowrance® Ghost™ freshwater trolling motor lets anglers fish longer, run faster and move in closer without spooking fish.How long will a 100Ah battery last on a trolling motor? ›
Amperage Hour Rating
In more technical terms, a 100 amp hour rated battery can deliver 100 amp hours of current to a trolling motor. So if a motor was running at low speed and pulling 4 amps, the battery should last around 25 hours. (100 amp hour rating / 4 amps = 25 hours).
While the Minn Kota Endura C2 30 Freshwater Transom Mounted Trolling Motor (30" Shaft) model takes 32 amps/hr to get that 30 lbs of thrust, this one can do 30 lbs of thrust for roughly 18 amps/hr. 40 to 45 lbs thrust is roughly 29 amps/hr instead of the 42 amps/hr that those respective motors draw for the same thrust.How long will a 100Ah battery run a trolling motor? ›
For example, say you have a 100Ah battery and a trolling motor with a max amp draw of 50 amps. 100 divided by 50 equals 2, so the battery would last for about two hours with the trolling motor drawing the maximum number of amps.How long will a trolling motor run on a full battery? ›
The Runtime of a 24V Trolling Motor Battery
Our 24V trolling motor batteries from Abyss Battery feature a general runtime of five to seven hours on a single charge and under favorable conditions. With a 24V 75 Ah or 24V 100Ah setup from Abyss Battery, you can expect an even longer runtime of over eight hours.
Lithium Batteries maintain higher voltages for longer. Motors engineered to make the most of flooded lead acid batteries can be damaged by the higher power output. To prevent this damage when using Lithium batteries you should not run your motor at its highest speeds, staying at 85%/Speed 8.5 or lower.What size inverter do I need for 100Ah battery? ›
We recommend having a minimum of 100Ah battery for each 1000watts inverter capacity. For example, a 3000-watt inverter would need at least three 100Ah Battle Born Batteries. Just as important as the capacity is the battery type.
What is best amp-hour for trolling motor? ›
- We suggest selecting a 12-volt deep cycle marine battery with at least 110 amp hour rating. ...
- The higher the amp-hour rating, the more run time your trolling motor will receive.
24 Volt Power Source.
|90%||345 N-m (78 lbf)||54 A|
|100%||355 N-m (80 lbf)||57 A|
If your trolling motor is your primary means of propulsion, then we recommend opting for a higher Ah system that your budget will allow such as the 100Ah battery compared to the 54Ah battery. * Using a lower power setting will significantly extend total run time.Can you overcharge a trolling motor battery? ›
Overcharging and Undercharging Marine Batteries
Over or undercharging your batteries will shorten their overall life. Minn Kota chargers are digitally designed to deliver just the right amount of juice every time you plug in. No more.
It is possible to recharge your trolling motor battery pack with a solar panel after use, but it does come with some limitations. A higher wattage solar panel is larger in size, so typically most people don't have enough space for mounting the solar panel.Are lithium batteries hard on trolling motors? ›
How Could A Lithium Battery Damage a Trolling Motor? Like all other trolling motor brands, we advise against using lithium batteries without Battery Management Systems (BMS). Lithium batteries can run at a higher voltage for longer durations (14-16V) than Lead-Acid batteries (13V).Are lithium batteries worth it for trolling motor? ›
Lithium trolling motor batteries have substantial advantages over the lead-acid wet cell, AGM, and gel cell deep-cycle batteries. But longer run time is the greatest benefit. Typically, a lithium battery will provide about twice the run time on a single charge as a lead-acid battery of the same capacity.How long will a 54ah lithium battery last on a trolling motor? ›
54 Amp hours of capacity provides a full day of power for mid sized trolling motors or for long days on the open road in your RV. Ideal for deep cycle applications where you need lots of power for a long time.Does it hurt a trolling motor to run out of water? ›
The motor will run just as well out of water as if it were submerged. However, there's no reason to run a trolling motor out of the water. Doing so will waste the battery and may cause damage to the motor.