As traffic data in cities like New York attests, traffic is up, and so are car sales and prices. Unsurprisingly, accessories like radar detectors are experiencing a concomitant uptick in sales, and many, like the Escort MaxCam 360c that we have recently tested, are becoming more and more sophisticated.
Simply being able to detect all the radar bands used by the police to scan the roads is not enough these days. Speed camera detectors also need to be connected to the cloud to get red light and speed camera locations, get software updates, and exchange information about upcoming hazards. Radar detectors should also connect to smartphone apps, include Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, and come with built-in dash cams. The latest high-end Escort MaxCam 360c has it all, and more.
Although others, like the Cobra Road Scout Elite, have already integrated a dash cam into a radar detector, the MaxCam 360c is the first Escort model to do so. On the radar side, it searches all available bands using two antennas and a Lidar detector to cover what is ahead and behind you on the road. This proved useful in recording law enforcement following us on at least two occasions. Directional arrows on the detector screen show you where the radar is coming from, including radar speed signs used around construction sites and school zones so you know to slow down sooner.
On the video side, the dash cam records scenes at 1440p, and the clips we sampled, even those recorded at night, looked crisp and clear. The MaxCam 360c is set to record continuously by default and will also permanently record “events” triggered by an internal accelerometer, should you be involved in a fender bender. You can upload videos to the cloud, view them on a smartphone, or simply transfer clips using the microSD card.
Over more than 800 miles of road testing, we’ve found the Escort MaxCam 360c to be a reliable companion, faithfully signaling K- and Ka-band speed traps. In terms of sensitivity, it seemed to deliver warnings just half a second or more before an older Escort Redline detector. These anecdotal results were based on the detection of regularly stationed speed cameras. Of course, there were also several surprises, including laser blasts, but the alerts came early enough that at least once we let another driver pass in front of us to see this car come to a halt for a few moments. later by the police.
While no detector is perfect, the Escort MaxCam 360c seems to keep false alerts (such as those from security and other wireless systems) to a minimum, automatically cutting out about 50% of the false readings we usually get. along a route. The company also uses filters to minimize potential interference from onboard technology like blind spot detection and collision avoidance systems. We found no issues with the driver assistance systems.
The Escort MaxCam 360c is easy to install using an included suction cup windshield mount. It’s also relatively simple to use using a dial with an integrated four-way directional pad on the left side to let you cycle through menu options such as volume levels.
For more control, there’s the Drive Smarter app paired with Escort, which includes live traffic and navigation data. It can also be used to take a quick photo using the detector’s camera or to record a video clip. If you’re quick, you can also use the app to report a construction zone, speed camera, or traffic jam to other Escort users via the cloud. Conversely, it’ll talk to you, warning you that there’s a “red light camera ahead” while you’re driving. In general, we’ve found red light camera alerts to be accurate, although like other apps and detectors, it will sometimes alert you to cameras positioned on adjacent roads rather than the highway you’re on. Actually.
The Escort MaxCam 360c is a full-featured finder and is therefore priced at $850, which pits it against the likes of the Valentine V1 ($499) and Uniden R7 ($600). Although the MaxCam 360c is considerably more expensive, none of the high-end competitors include a dash cam. Plus, with fines in many states costing hundreds of dollars — plus surcharges and points that increase insurance premiums — the price may seem worth it to many drivers. While sales in the pandemic era are hard to predict, the radar detector market is expected to grow from $343.1 million last year to $463.7 million by 2028, according to Fortune Business Insights. But regardless of the size of the market, we expect the Escort MaxCam 360c to become a big player in the future.
Escort MaxCam 360c
- Price: $850
- Features: Radar Detector and dash cam
- Radar and laser bands: K, Ka, X and lidar
- Included: windshield mount, 12 volt adapter and cable, 16GB microSD card and travel case