By Steve Woodfield
Auto racing is really, really expensive. A single day with your car at a track is going to cost hundreds of dollars. Preparing a car to race usually costs hundreds or even thousands of dollars, and the car that these modifications are going into better not be some $16,500 econo-hatch. RC racing, on the other hand, is an exciting and fun alternative. A few hundred bucks and you’re ready to go. Take a look at the top five most awesome RC cars to help you get your racing fix.
#5: Kyosho Lazer ZX5
One of the best buggies money can buy. It has a few nice options right out of the box and is very tweakable for the tinkerer who wants to really create a personalized racing machine.
#4: Team Associated Nitro TC3
This car wins competitive races. It wins lots of competitive races. It handles brilliantly and has a ton of options so it can be tuned for whatever track lies ahead. A modified TC3 holds the world record for fastest RC car at an absurd 134.4 miles per hour.
#3: HPI Racing Baja 5B
The Baja is built to be tough and fast. It has the shocks to survive encounters with seriously nasty rocks and potholes, and extremely durable chassis, and great differentials. All this makes for a car that can handle any terrain elegantly. To top it all off, it’s huge at 1/5 scale and runs on regular unleaded gasoline, just like your real car.
#2: Traxxas Jato 3.3
Probably the best all-round RC car. It handles nicely on dirt or pavement, and hits 65mph on dirt or pavement. Nobody can complain about the Jato’s looks either, since it has the 4.2 second 0-60 to back it up.
#1: Traxxas Rally VXL
In the world of RC cars, “best” and “electric” don’t usually go together, but the Traxxas Rally VXL’s superbly precise handling earns it the top spot on this list. It accelerates very quickly and even though the top speed out of the box is only about 30mph, a few simple modifications will get it up to 50mph. This car will easily tackle stunt driving, racing, drifting, and just general 1/16 scale hooning. It can even be had with a licensed Ken Block Ford Fiesta body.