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RC Rock Crawler vs Buggy: Which Is Better And Why?

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As we all know when it comes down to RC cars, we are not short on choices by any means. However, it can be difficult to know what factors you should consider before choosing between two of the most popular RC cars, the rock crawler and buggy. 

The rock crawler is better for going around or over obstacles but it is considerably slower than the RC buggy. For racing when speed is an issue you will no doubt want a buggy to use. Which one you should choose comes down to how you plan on using the RC vehicle. 

If you plan on using your RC car to try and climb up the side of a steep hill or plan on using it in the woods to climb over rocks, trees, etc. then a rock crawler will likely work best for you. If however you are going to be using your vehicle in sand, grass, dirt, etc then you will want to choose an RC buggy instead. 

Both RC vehicles are excellent choices but they are really different in how they are designed and what they are best at. 

This can certainly be a really hard choice as both of these RC cars have their own unique designs and features that give them an edge over the other in certain ways. However when you look at exactly what you will be using the vehicle you can make the decision much more easily. 

In the rest of this article I will cover some important features and differences between these two types of vehicles that should hopefully help you make a better decision on which one you should get. 

To learn more about the differences between these two types of vehicles you can also check out the video below. 


What is it about the RC buggies that make them preferable over RC rock crawlers? The open-wheel design of buggies is the main reason why they are suitable for every ground type and great for racing. If you are someone who is looking to win off-road races then RC buggies are going to be the best choice for you.

If speed is the parameter that you use to measure the worth of your RC car then an RC buggy is much better than a rock crawler. An RC buggy is comparatively less heavy and can win a race with a rock crawler on any given day as long as the terrain isn’t over large rocks or obstacles. 

For all the speed lovers out there, you should definitely go for an RC buggy or else you’ll be disappointed every time you lose because of the relatively slow speed of a rock crawler. 

Most people avoid RC rock crawlers all their life due to a misbelief that just because they are slow, they are not worth it. Well, let’s be honest RC rock crawlers are not that good when it comes down to speed but there are some other amazing features that could make you choose it over an Rc buggy or other RC types. Keep on reading to see if you prefer a rock crawler or RC buggy in other areas. 

Dealing With Rough Terrain 

What’s the first thing that crosses your mind after hearing “rock crawler”? Yes, it works really good when it comes down to climbing rocks and rough terrains. The design of these vehicles is worth appreciating as they are capable of handling virtually any hurdle that might come along the way. 

If you are a monster truck lover then just know they aren’t as large bodied as them but the power and suspension are normally the same.

On the other hand, an RC buggy might impress you a lot with its speed but it will lead to disappointment if compared with a rock crawler in terms of difficult situations. Whether you put them across mud or hard rock climbing, RC crawlers will never let you down. They are built in a manner to tackle every difficult situation and if you are afraid it might fail to survive rough conditions then you should be sure and read the name again. 

Nothing can beat a rock crawler in dealing with a rough situations as it is made to survive it at any cost. No matter how large an obstacle might be, rock crawlers will get through it, or over it! 

The material used in the manufacturing of a rock crawler protects it from most possible damage. If you are thinking about extreme conditions like mud and grass where usual cars might get stuck then there is no need to worry. Rock crawlers are equipped with oversized tires in order to deal with it and easily too. 

However, along with enjoying the amazing performance, you should keep in mind that maintaining rock crawlers is not everyone’s cup of tea.


If you consider cost as a parameter of measuring which one is better then it totally depends upon the features of a rock crawler or buggy that you picked. For example, metallic bodied RC’s are comparatively costlier than plastic ones. 

Other than that, brushless motors can also be much more costly due to the faster speeds that they offer. When it comes down to brand, some brands are more expensive than others so the cost would vary from type to type. This is the main reason why a proper analysis is needed before making the decision.


If a rock crawler and buggy are connected with a rope and both of them are at their full speeds, which do you think will pull the other? Well, no matter how good a buggy is in terms of speed when it comes to power it can never overtake a rock crawler. 

When it comes to pulling power or even traction a buggy is nowhere close to a rock crawler. Therefore, if you are going for a one-on-one like this then you know which one would be better.

Battery Power

What if you are in the middle of an obstacle and suddenly the battery dies? It sounds disappointing, doesn’t it? Most of the RC cars come with high powered batteries, thereby ensuring your battery doesn’t die while you are about to overcome a big hurdle. Once you have charged it fully, it will last up to 45 minutes. 

Well, when it comes down to battery power both of them are equally satisfying in most cases.

Which One Of Them Looks Better?

In terms of appearance, a rock crawler definitely looks better than a buggy although this is of course subjective. Due to the giant wheels and amazing design, you can easily predict which one of them is more powerful and the stance of the rock crawler just looks better in my opinion. 


These are just a few of the things that you should consider before making a choice. Both of these RC cars are great and have their place but if thoroughly observed, rock crawlers are somehow better than a buggy in that they have multiple other uses besides going fast. 

Rock crawlers can easily survive any situation and are powerful enough to handle any terrain. 

In the end, the decision lies in your hands. Make sure you think it through and go for the choice that satisfies you the most and that would work best for how you plan on using your RC vehicle.