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How Big Are RC Cars?

If you have plans to purchase an RC car, the size is something you would probably want to know beforehand. In the world of RC cars, how large or small an RC car is is generally called scales. Many RC cars are modeled after full-size cars just as RC boats, trucks, and planes are modeled after their corresponding full-size vehicles.

The sizes of RC cars are mainly dependent on which scale size vehicle you are looking at. The larger the scale (⅕, 1/10, etc.) the larger the RC vehicle will be. RC cars are scaled after the original cars so a ⅕ scale monster truck will be larger than a ⅕ scale Nissan GTR. 

Now, scales refer to the size of an RC car’s model when compared to the size of the actual car of the same model, which the RC is modeled after. If, for instance, an RC car is 1/10th (or 1:10 in the ratio), the scale of the actual car is modeled after; each measurement of the RC will be 10 times smaller than the actual car.

RC cars generally come in different sizes, depending on the model. In the rest of this article we will talk some more about RC scales as well as some things to consider when looking at different sized cars. 

Different scales of RC cars

You’re soon going to find out after you come into the world of RC cars, that they come in many different scales such as 1:6, 1:8, 1:10, 1:12, the most common size is normally 1:8 scale. This can also be read as 1/8.

Mini RCs come in a lot of smaller scales, most typically 1:28 and 1:64. Generally, the higher the ratio of an RC car, the smaller the size and the lower the ratio, the bigger the car. You should also know that since the scale of a particular RC car is in comparison to its full-size version, two RC cars of the same scale may be a lot different from each other.  What this means is that since a full-size army tank is a lot bigger than a full-size sports car, a 1:8 army tank will be bigger than a 1:8 sports car.  

These scale model RCs are not only smaller versions of the full-size vehicle but are also often exact replicas of both the style and painting of the full-size version.

Choosing a scale size

Choosing an RC car scale size would typically depend on what you want to do with your car. Plus, how mild or dangerous are the activities you want to carry out with the car? 

There are many activities you can do with your RC car for fun. The size of the RC car you choose will largely depend on what kinds of activities you plan to do with the car. So, before you actually pick an RC car, consider what activities exactly you plan on doing with it. 

Are you looking to go rock crawling with your car or, do you want to race it against other cars on the street? Generally, bigger cars have bigger tires and are more powerful. If you want to race on tougher terrains, therefore, a bigger RC is a better choice. Larger RC cars typically have the capacity to withstand more challenging activities as well as more difficult terrains.

All things being equal, a 1:8 or 1:10 scale model will very likely serve you well for a variety of different  purposes. However, if you aren’t sure exactly what you will be doing then it is a good idea to chat with some people in your local RC club or at your local hobby shop to see which sizes they like the best. 

To see some side by side comparisons of RC car scales check out the video below. 

Factors to consider when choosing the size of your RC car

There are quite a number of factors you need to consider when you’re trying to pick the perfect size of RC car for you. As we have already mentioned, the size of your RC car will depend, a lot, on the activities you plan to do. But, more than just that, there are other things you need to keep in mind when you’re trying to make a choice.

The terrain

Racing on tough terrains requires quite a lot of skill and effort. But more than just the skill and effort, the RC car being raced contributes in a large part to the ease of maneuvering tougher terrains. Bigger cars normally have bigger tires, which can be a lot stronger than the tires on smaller cars. As a result, they can handle tougher terrains much better. If you intend to race on rough terrains or just use your car to offroad a lot then bigger sized RC cars will do it much better. 

The price

Here is another very important factor to consider. You can only buy what you can afford, and generally, bigger cars are more expensive than the smaller ones. If you do not have a large budget for an RC car, you might want to consider getting a smaller car. However, RC cars are not necessarily always more expensive just because they’re bigger. Smaller cars of a much higher quality could cost a lot more than big cars that aren’t made as well. 

Ease of movement

This might be an issue when you want to travel with your RC or move it to a different location. Of course, small things are always more portable, and you can easily carry them around, unlike their bigger counterparts. If you plan to travel with your RC car or move it to different locations, you might want to get a smaller one for ease of movement. However, it all depends on you and how well you think you can handle whichever size you choose.


RC cars come in different models and sizes, which are in relation to the actual versions they are modeled after. There is no single size to all of these cars, as they all fit into different ratios. If you’re looking to purchase an RC car, you simply need to look up the model you have in mind and be sure that the size works for you.

Deciding which RC car you should buy can be difficult but hopefully this article has made your buying decision a little bit easier! 

Happy Racing!