The Best Polar Watch Of 2024

Best Polar Watch 2024: Jump Menu

Sleep Tracking With The Polar Vantage V2

(Image credit: Polar)

The list in brief ↴
1. Best Value: Polar Pacer Pro
2. Best Fitness Tracker: Polar Ignite 3
3. Best Sports Watch: Polar Vantage V3
4. Best Adventure Watch: Polar Grit X Pro
5. Best Budget Watch: Polar Unite

Polar makes some of the best sports watches, with a range of devices to suit many budgets and users. Whether you want a stylish fitness tracker to record workouts and activity or a multisport watch to track outdoor adventures, Polar has a watch for you.

In recent years, Garmin has had the edge over Polar in producing better sports watches across the price range, while Coros is also worth exploring for cheaper devices. However, there’s no doubt Polar still makes great watches and you can often scoop them up for a good price in sales.

How I Test Polar Watches

You can trust Coach We give honest reviews and recommendations based on in-depth knowledge and real-world experience. Find out more about how we review and recommend products.

I wear each Polar watch I review for Coach for several weeks and use it to track all my everyday activity, workouts and sleep. For sports watches, I check the GPS and heart rate accuracy during runs and cycles in particular. I’ve tested most of Polar’s current line-up, along with older watches going back to the Polar M430, which I loved. I’ve tested a wide range of sports watches from other brands like Garmin, Suunto and Coros.

The quick list

There are full reviews of all the watches below. However, this section is a one-stop shop for those who need a headline recommendation.

The Best Polar Watches 2024

Best Value

Polar Pace Pro running watch

(Image credit: Nick Harris-Fry / Future)
Best value

Specifications

RRP: $299.95 / £259
Battery life: 7 days (smartwatch), 35 hours (GPS)

Reasons to buy

+
Polar’s key features in a cheaper watch
+
Lightweight
+
Great training and sleep analysis
+
Breadcrumb navigation

Reasons to avoid

-
Looks dated
-
Short battery life

The Pacer Pro undercuts the price of the top-end Vantage V2 and Grit X Pro watches while offering all the key sports tracking features, as well as breadcrumb navigation. The Pacer Pro is a less attractive watch than the Vantage V2 and Grit X Pro, which use more metal in their designs, though it’s slimmer and lighter.

There is also the Polar Pacer to consider if you’re hunting for a watch based on value, since it is cheaper than the Pacer Pro. The latter includes useful extras like navigation, a barometric altimeter and running power measurements, so for my money, the Pacer Pro is the better-value option.

Read more in my Polar Pacer Pro review

Best Fitness Tracker

Polar Ignite 3 Titanium nightly skin temperature screen

(Image credit: Nick Harris-Fry / Future)
Best fitness tracker

Specifications

RRP: $329.95 / £289
Battery life: 5 days (smartwatch), 30 hours (GPS)

Reasons to buy

+
Attractive and lightweight design
+
AMOLED screen
+
Useful sleep tracking

Reasons to avoid

-
Laggy software
-
Poor GPS accuracy
-
Short battery life
-
Awful strap

The Polar Ignite 3 is a gorgeous watch that does a great job of tracking your sleep and everyday activity, even if its sports tracking proved inaccurate during testing. The AMOLED touchscreen is colorful and while it hits the battery life quite hard—I had to charge the watch every day or two when the screen was set to always-on—it’s by far the best display within Polar’s range.

Although the Ignite 3 offers multi-band GPS tracking and has all of Polar’s usual sports modes, if you are looking for a running or triathlon watch it falls short of the standards set by the Pacer Pro, Vantage and Grit watches. The Ignite 3 works best as a general fitness tracker that can record workouts. There’s also a titanium version that looks even more stylish and is more rugged thanks to the titanium bezel, but it costs a bit more.

Read more in my Polar Ignite 3 review

Best Sports Watch

Polar Vantage V3

(Image credit: Nick Harris-Fry / Future)
Best sports watch

Specifications

RRP: $599.90 / £519
Battery life: 12 days (smartwatch), Up to 61 hours (GPS)

Reasons to buy

+
Great design and AMOLED screen
+
Multi-band GPS
+
Maps

Reasons to avoid

-
Poor HR accuracy
-
Limited smart features
-
Short battery life

The Polar Vantage V3 is a notable upgrade on the Vantage V2 and Grit X Pro with regards to features and design. The lightweight aluminum watch has a bright AMOLED display that reduces battery life, yet makes it far more enjoyable to use the watch day in, day out. It also has multi-band GPS and, unlike on the Ignite 3, I found this to be accurate with the Vantage V3 and an improvement on Polar’s other watches.

Polar has added color maps to the V3, which make it easier to follow routes on the watch. These new features add to the already-impressive sports tracking and training analysis you get on all Polar watches. The Vantage V3 is one of the best sports watches available from any brand, though the Garmin Forerunner 965 retains the edge as an AMOLED sports watch.

Read more in my Polar Vantage V3 review

Best Adventure Watch

Polar Grit X Pro worn by male climber

(Image credit: Polar)
Best adventure watch

Specifications

RRP: $529.95 / £459
Battery life: 7 days (smartwatch), 40 hours (GPS)

Reasons to buy

+
Hardy, attractive design
+
Impressive sleep tracking
+
Training load analysis
+
Navigation features

Reasons to avoid

-
Unimpressive battery life
-
Lacking smartwatch features

The Polar Grit X Pro has the same features as the Vantage V2, but in a more rugged, outdoorsy design. It has a sapphire glass display, and the Titan version of the watch has a titanium bezel. The chunky look and feel of the watch will appeal more to those spending hours in the great outdoors for their activities, while the sleeker, lighter Vantage V2 will appeal more to those chasing fast times in runs and triathlons.

Read more in my Polar Grit X Pro review

Best Budget Watch

Polar Unite

(Image credit: Unknown)
Best budget watch

Specifications

RRP: $149.95 / £129.50
Battery life: 4 days

Reasons to buy

+
Cheaper than other options
+
Impressive sleep tracking
+
Training recommendations

Reasons to avoid

-
Poor battery life
-
No GPS

The Unite is a basic fitness tracker that has a couple of Polar’s best features: detailed sleep tracking, and training suggestions each day based on how well recovered you are. However, it doesn’t have GPS, so it’s more for those who train indoors. Its battery life is also short at just four days, which will come down if you track a couple of workouts in that time. 

If you’re looking for a good budget Polar watch for running and cycling then the Polar Pacer is a better option. But if you just want a cheap watch that will track everyday activity and gym workouts, the Unite will do the job.

Read more in my Polar Unite review

Nick Harris-Fry
Senior writer

Nick Harris-Fry is a journalist who has been covering health and fitness since 2015. Nick is an avid runner, covering 70-110km a week, which gives him ample opportunity to test a wide range of running shoes and running gear. He is also the chief tester for fitness trackers and running watches, treadmills and exercise bikes, and workout headphones.