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If you’re wondering what the best RC car kits are for beginners, then you’ve come to the right place. If you are just starting your journey into the world of RC cars, it can feel overwhelming at first. Trust us, we’ve been there, and that’s why we wrote this article. If you are planning on getting involved with the fascinating industry of RC cars, then you’ll need to know a bit about what the best RC car kits are.
So, what are the best RC car kits for complete beginners? The best RC car kits for complete beginners depends on what type of beginner you are. To help you out, we’ll cover some of the best RC brands and the kits they offer. The best RC car brands for complete beginners are:
- Team Associated
- HPI Racing
Since there isn’t a lot of information available on the Internet today covering the best RC cars for complete beginners, we created this guide to help you out. Below we’ll cover what some of the best RC car brands are for absolute beginners and the best RC car kits for complete beginners, depending on what type of newbie you are.
The Best RC Car Brands
If you are just getting started in the wonderful world of RC cars, then one thing you’ll notice right away is the fact that there are several brands on the market nowadays that manufacture different types of RC cars. Some of these manufacturers you may have heard of before and others you may not know. However, keep in mind that when it comes to purchasing a new RC car kit, as with just about any product, you are going to get what you pay for, as the old cliché states.
Applying that old cliché to radio-controlled cars is especially appropriate. Depending on what you can afford, you might wind up with limited choices. However, if your budget is a little more open, then you’ll have a lot more freedom, and you’ll be able to purchase a better-quality RC car. Below we’ll cover four brands that are famous for creating some of the best RC car kits for complete beginners. The four companies that we include below are all known as pioneers and are very well known.
Brand #1: Traxxas
Traxxas is one of the most famous RC car brands you’ll find on the market today. They are also well-known for making some excellent RC car kits for complete beginners. Traxxas was started in the 1980s, and since they’ve been around so long, they continue to be one of the industry leaders in the RC car market today.
If you opt for a Traxxas RC car kit, you’ll notice that their RC cars have a fashionable appearance, drive well, and come with top-notch materials. With Traxxas, you’ll discover a bevy of products that apply to the entire RC car market, including several helpful RC car kits for complete beginners.
Traxxas is famous for creating the ready-to-run RC car, which is one great RC car kit for complete beginners. With the ready-to-run vehicle, once you get the box, you simply plug in the battery and charge it. After you’ve charged it, you are ready to drive your RC car around. Traxxas has made setting up a new RC car for beginners quite easy, as you can see.
Also, with Traxxas, if they have any of the car or car models you want in stock, they’ll be happy to change things up and add customizations if you need them. Most beginners won’t be interested in much customization. However, it’s nice to know that as you advance, you’ll be able to upgrade your car as much as you’d like. Also, because of the fantastic quality of their RC cars, Traxxas has always been and will remain one of the best brands of RC cars you’ll find on the market today.
Brand #2: Team Associated
Another excellent name-brand option in RC cars for newer racers is Team Associated. Like Traxxas, Team Associated is also a famous manufacturer of RC cars in the RC industry. Team Associated has attracted a lot of attention because their RC cars provide plenty of quality, versatility, and several options. Plus, Team Associated’s RC cars are some of the most high-quality vehicles on the market.
Team Associated’s tagline, “World Champion Radio Controlled Cars,” isn’t just an overstatement the company is making to grab your attention. In reality, Team Associated has developed some of the best RC cars you’ll find on the market today. Not only are their RC cars amazing, but they also have a lot of versatility in their options, including on and off-road vehicles.
One thing you’ll probably like about Team Associated if you are new to the RC industry is the fact that their cars tend to be more affordable for those that are just beginning to play around with RC cars. With Team Associated, the price won’t always affect quality, and you can still purchase a fantastic RC car from them at a lower price. That should be very attractive to most of you complete beginners out there.
Team Associated has several affordable RC car kits that are great for complete beginners. Also, the cars built by Team Associated are made to last a long time. Also, if you purchase an RC car kit from Team Associated and you are a complete beginner, you’ll wind up getting a lot of assistance from their aftermarket support if you choose to use it. They are happy to help you out with any questions you’ll ever have.
Brand #3: HPI Racing
Another excellent RC car manufacturer that develops some of the best RC car kits for beginners is HPI Racing. HPI Racing has been around for decades and was started in the 1980s. Since they first started manufacturing RC cars, HPI racing has done an excellent job of consistently evolving to meet the needs of their different customers.
Two of the things HPI RC car kits are best known for is their fantastic engineering and their incredible design features. Another thing we love about HPI Racing is that they’ve been able to design scale models of real manufactured vehicles. Many RC hobbyists love this fact about HPI Racing’s advanced and beginner car kits as they allow people to drive cars they could never own in reality.
HPI Racing is also well known for creating great nitro cars. If you want a beautiful RC car kit and you want to race, these cars are high-speed, and you’ll have a lot of fun with them. One of the best RC car kits for beginners that HPI Racing offers is the Vorza Flux, which is something to try out if you are new to the RC car game.
Brand #4: Losi
Another excellent brand of RC car kits is Team Losi. Much like many of the other RC car manufacturers on our list, Team Losi started in the 1980s and is considered one of the best brands around for both beginners and experts. One thing we love about Losi is that their cars are not only fun, but very easy to drive. That makes them great for complete beginners.
Not only does Losi offer plenty of easy-to-use cars, but they also have a bevy of aftermarket parts you can purchase as you become more advanced, and you want to upgrade your vehicle. That means even if you buy a car kit that’s for a beginner with Losi, you’ll be able to modify your car as you get more experienced.
Losi’s claim to fame comes from their ability to customize their RC cars as much as customers would like. They have very easy customizations you can add at any time, and their brand hopes to make customizing your RC car a simple process as you gain more experience with your RC car. Losi is one of the best brands in the industry, and many racing professionals in the RC industry use Losi RC cars.
With Losi, they offer so many aftermarket parts and accessories, the possibilities with your RC car kit will be endless. On top of that, their cars are already great out-of-the-box. As a beginner, you won’t need any customizations to start, but as you progress, you will probably want to upgrade your car.
While we covered the top four RC car brands above and mentioned why each one has the best RC car kits, you also need to know that there are other brands out there besides the ones we picked above. For some, it may be challenging to shell out hundreds on one’s first RC car. If you purchase a Traxxas, Losi, HPI, or Team Associated vehicle, that’s the price range you may find.
However, you don’t need to worry if the above brand names are out of your price range. If they are, don’t worry. There are several other choices available to you, and you’ll see that once you start exploring the RC car market. Some brands that are more affordable and still make excellent RC car kits for beginners include Kyosho, Arrma, and Redcat Racing.
A Nitro or Electric Power Source?
If you are new to the world of RC cars, you’ll learn that you’ll need to consider several factors before you purchase your RC car kit. Determining what you need to know can be confusing, but we are here to help you with that. Keep in mind that with RC cars, the hobby will be as technical as you want it to be. If you’re simply about getting started and having fun, don’t fret too much yet.
One of the most critical factors you’ll need to consider when it comes to your first RC car kit is the car’s power source. Most RC vehicles are either electric-powered or nitro powered. To help you comprehend a few points about the differences, we’ll break down that information in more detail below.
The Differences Between Nitro and Electric
So, what are the differences between nitro and electric? To break it down and make it easy, remember that one uses battery power, and the other uses nitro fuel. Nitro fuel is a mix of oil, methanol, and nitromethane. Sometimes other additives are also found in the mixture like anti-corrosion materials.
Nitro cars use what’s known as a glow engine, and that can act a lot like a regular car engine. So, when you purchase a nitro car, you’re getting a vehicle with a glow engine, and that glow engine works as a tiny internal combustion engine. On the other hand, electric cars are more complicated to explain. If you purchase an electric RC car, then your vehicle has a motor that utilizes an electromagnetic field that then spins the shaft and rotates your car’s wheels.
When it comes to electric motors, you’ll have two choices. You can either purchase a brushed electric motor or a brushless electric motor. If you opt for a brushed motor, then you are purchasing an engine that resembles your usual DC motor. That means an armature circulates two magnets in the motor. The armature has an electromagnet that makes a field when you use the battery to run the engine.
That electromagnetic field either repels or attracts with its magnets, so it keeps spinning. With the brushes, the polarities can change, and the device will still turn. One benefit of using a brushed motor is that brushed motors are not expensive to make. So, they are affordable. However, unfortunately, they also don’t last very long. Also, you’ll have a slower-moving RC car with this type of motor because you’ll have a much lower max speed with this type of engine.
However, if you’re new to the RC car game, then you might want to consider a brushed RC car. That’s because brushed RC car kits are great for complete beginners, and also for people who simply want to drive and not race.
However, if you want more speed and a longer-lasting motor, then go with a brushless RC car kit. The brushless motors are designed to last far longer than their brushed counterparts and they will often provide much higher speed and acceleration than a brushed motor.
Of course those increased stats come at a cost and that is that a brushless motor will cost you more than the brushed one. For many beginners it is worthwhile to upgrade to the brushless motor to ensure that it will last longer and get better performance. If you are unable to stomach the increased cost for the better motor you could always upgrade to a brushless at a later time.
Which One is Right for You?
So, should you get a nitro or electric RC car motor? That choice relies on what you, as the user wants, and how you’ll be using your RC car kit once you’ve purchased it. Since you are a beginner there is nothing wrong with getting an electric model now and upgrading in the future if you find yourself still into the hobby in a few months or years.
Many people buy expensive cars and then realize in a few months that they simply don’t have as much time or interest in this hobby as they thought they would. It’s better to spend a smaller amount now and upgrade in the future than it is to spend multiple hundreds of dollars on a car that will sit in your garage collecting dust.
Nitro cars are a lot more exciting to drive around since they go faster. They are also loud, can ride around for much longer, and you won’t ever need to worry about charging any batteries besides those on the transmitter. Also, if you are the type of RC car driver that wants to feel like he or she is cruising around in a real car, then this engine type might be for you. Nitro cars resemble real vehicles more than any other RC car kit type.
However, if you feel that a Nitro car might be a little much for a beginner, we understand. So, if you are a newbie to RC cars, we’d suggest considering an electric vehicle to start with simply because electric cars are a lot easier when it comes to maintenance. If you’re a beginner, you probably won’t want to have to do much upkeep to your car, and that’s where you’ll need to spend some time thinking about which option is for you.
If you’d prefer to get an electric car as opposed to a nitro car, but you want something a bit similar, then opt for a brushless electric vehicle. With a brushless electric vehicle, you’ll be able to obtain similar speeds and acceleration to a nitro car without the mess or upkeep of a normal fuel vehicle. You also won’t need to worry about your RC car having a loud-sounding motor that can wake up the neighborhood, which is what you’ll get with a nitro car.
Another advantage electric cars offer to beginners is the fact that electric vehicles are much easier to learn to drive than nitro cars, and they also cost much less to purchase. You also won’t need to tune-up your engine regularly like a nitro car. So, we feel that electric vehicles are excellent for beginners who just want to learn how to drive an RC car and don’t want to have to worry about maintaining a combustion motor.
With a brushless electric car, you can usually take your car out of the box, plug the battery in and charge it up, and then you are ready to drive. However, because these cars do run on batteries, you’ll need to factor in that you’ll get shorter run times. You’ll also need to spend some time off the road, charging your vehicle. However, even with that in mind, we recommend a brushless electric car kit for complete beginners. Still, it’s all a matter of you prefer and how enthusiastic you are about RC cars.
Your Budget and RC Car Pricing
If you’re a complete beginner and you’re trying to figure out your budget and pricing for an RC car kit, you’ll need to think about how much you can afford to spend. Your budget will play a massive part in determining what type of RC car you’ll be able to purchase. Some RC vehicles can cost as little as twenty dollars, while others can cost a couple of thousand dollars. So, you’ve got a huge price range when you are dealing with RC cars.
If you want a decent car that will last for some time, then you’ll need to think about dropping at least one hundred dollars on an RC car. If you do need a good RC car that is less than $100 they can be found but they won’t handle as well or last as long as their slightly more expensive counterparts.
For most beginners a good price range for an RC car is $150-$200. That will allow you to expand your search into the better models while also keeping the prices halfway reasonable. Some larger RC vehicles can run in the $500-$750 range but that is overkill for most beginners.
Car Pricing Factors
Several factors can affect how much a car will cost you. Quality will be the primary factor, but you’ll also need to think about the engine kind you want, the brand you like, and how much the car might cost if you use it for a while.
For instance, if you purchase an RC car kit with a nitro motor, that nitro motor will require a lot more maintenance and money for upkeep as time passes but it will have much better performance and won’t require the charging like an electric car. A nitro car will also normally have a much higher top speed and they can be much larger since they use actual fuel to move.
On the other hand, an electric car allows the newbie to use minimal maintenance, and just one battery for as long as it lasts. So, when it comes to RC cars, you may not want to look at price as face value. If you think about it, an electric vehicle has a much shorter battery life than a nitro car. While it may seem like a cheap move when you first purchase your electric vehicle, if you grow from a newbie into an avid car user, you will get tired of always having to charge it.
That means you’ll probably wind up purchasing an extra battery or two. And, as you evolve from a beginner to a more advanced level, you’ll be buying more accessories, too. So, if you are spending money on your electric car over time like that, you might just want to get a nitro vehicle after you’ve advanced a bit. There is nothing wrong with upgrading after you’ve become more advanced and selling your electric car or giving it away to someone new to the hobby.
The Best RC Car Kits for Beginners
Now that we’ve covered some information about the best RC car engines, we’ll give you a couple of specific options in excellent RC car kits for beginners. Below we offer you the best RC car for your child if he or she is a beginner and the best RC car kit for you if you are a beginner.
The Best RC Car Kit for Children
If you want an excellent RC car kit for your child, and he or she is just starting in RC cars, then consider the Best Choice Products Lamborghini Veneno. With this car idea, Best Choice Products designed an adorable RC car kit that will be easy for a child that is six-years-old or older to use. This car helps bridge the gap for children since many RC cars only focus on teenagers and adults. However, this car is one of the few that’s excellent for a beginning child.
With this car, you’ll get thirty minutes of continuous run time, and you can charge your car for four hours. It’s simple car design, but your child will get to enjoy driving the car around your house for months. Trust us, with your child that entertained, and you’ll be able to get plenty done around the house while he or she is engaged in playing.
This Best Choice car works great on smooth surfaces, whether those surfaces are found inside or outside. Your child will be able to use the control to move the vehicle anywhere. Also, the car goes up to twenty miles per hour. So, it’s not too fast, but it’s fast enough for a child to find it enjoyable. With this car kit, you’ll get an extra rechargeable battery as well as an additional charger.
Another neat bonus about this product is that it is a 1/24 scale version of an authentic Lamborghini Veneno. You’ll even hear the engine roar and see the lights work on this RC car.
The Best RC Car Kit for Beginner Teens and Adults
If you’re a newbie teenager or adult, then we feel the best RC car kit for you is the Traxxas Slash Pro 2WD Short-Course Truck. This neat RC truck can go over thirty miles per hour, and it is also designed to be almost indestructible, which is a very nice feature.
We already mentioned Traxxas as one of our favorite brands in RC car kits for beginners above when we listed some of the best brands you’ll find on the market. This particular truck is one of the best RC vehicles that Traxxas has created. You’ll get plenty of speed, durability, and hours of enjoyment with this RC vehicle. Plus, this truck can take a beating. So, if you wind up purchasing it, you’re likely to get a lot of use out of it.
This truck is excellent for beginners because of its fantastic durability. Also, you can drive this car pretty much anywhere imaginable. It can handle sand, dirt, grass, driving around the house, off-road driving, and on-road driving. You’ll be able to bash this RC vehicle often, and you won’t have to worry about it at all. Plus, by purchasing a Traxxas RC car kit, you’ll also buy into some excellent customer service as well as a Traxxas Lifetime electronic warranty.
Of course everyone will have a different idea on which car is best for beginners so check out the different recommendations in the videos below.
Now that we’ve covered the best brands in the RC car industry and the kits they offer for beginners, you should have some idea about the type of RC car you might want to purchase as a beginner. We not only covered brands but also examples of motors and specific RC cars themselves. Keep in mind that you’ll need to know exactly how you’ll be driving your RC car before you can make the right decision for you.
Whatever RC car you decide to get, always make sure to use it carefully and learn your limits as well as the car’s limits. I personally prefer to take my new RC cars out to a field or empty park and see what it can do. That allows me to not only see how it handles but to see how well I can handle its speed and size.