A Guide to Choosing RC Cars for Your Hobby

Everyone has their own hobby. Some people like to read, some like to build, some prefer decorating and some like going on bike rides, skating or rollerblading rides. We all spend our free time differently, doing the things we enjoy.

One of the most popular hobbies nowadays is RC driving. These small electrical “toys” are super-fast and give you an adventurous thrill. They come in different shapes and sizes, from on-road drift cars to off-road crawlers. They look very realistic and are almost exact copies of the real cars we drive.

Types of RC Vehicles

rc vehicle

source: dontwasteyourmoney.com


This is the most common type of car that stores sell on the market. They come in many sizes, shapes and designs that can be hard to choose sometimes. They can reach high speeds in a short time. Their impressive speed is the reason they’re so popular you can find them as drift, rally or on-road cars. These highly-realistic and super-fast electric RC cars, provide endless entertainment. Plus, you can race them on both, hard and flat surfaces.


RC trucks have a bulkier design. They’re scaled-down models of the real trucks we see around us. You can choose between a monster and a stadium truck. They’re meant to climb mountains, cross deserts and even cross some rivers. The monster type is good if you want to do some off-road driving. They’re durable, powerful and heavy-duty. Stadium trucks are great for indoor use. They’re very stable and have more speed.


This should be your choice if you can’t decide which type of vehicle you enjoy. They’re fairly fast and are good with off-road driving. They can go through uneven surfaces and piles of obstacles. Plus, they glide well across grass or gravel. Most of them are electricity-powered which makes them perfect for beginners.

What to Consider When Buying

remote control car

source: rcsphere.com

This is not a hobby that just requires you to buy the car from the store and start driving it. Yes, this is an option, but most enthusiasts love the whole thrill. They buy the car parts and put them together. Some of them even create designs of their own. This is a great way to go through the whole process, and the final result, when you turn on the engine, can be very exciting and satisfactory.

But before buying one, you should know some of the things you need to consider. This includes size, assembly, fuel type, motor, battery, durability, weight, speed, design etc. Many of the models give you the thrill of speed without including any danger for you.


The size guide for these cars can be confusing if you’re a beginner. It has different size measurements such as 1/16th, 1/10th, 1/8th and 1/5th. As you can see these are scales. If you see that a car has a scale of 1/16th, it means that the model car is 16 times smaller than the original size of the vehicle. But don’t get confused if you see the same scale on two different models, for example, a monster truck and a car. This is because in real life, a monster truck is bigger and bulkier than a race car.

If you’re a beginner, the best scale to start would be 1/10th. This is a common size that allows for more customisation. You can change the motor, engine, tires, steering wheel and much more. Plus, it’s easy to store when you’re not using it. A 1/5th.model will be big and you’ll have trouble controlling and manipulating it.

Buy a Pre-build or Build Your Own?

rc monster

source: altdriver.com

You can buy pre-built electric RC cars in specialised stores or order them online. They’re pre-assembled and ready to use as soon as you get them. Depending on the power source, you should just insert batteries or plug them in to charge. If they require any type of assembly, it’s pretty minimal and very simple.

As a beginner, this is the type of car you should buy. You’ll get to know the car parts and see how they work before taking on the task of building them into one piece. These cars are mostly labelled as ARR, which is short for “almost ready to run”. The build-you-own models are more complicated and are the first choice for experienced car enthusiasts.

Their kits come equipped with every part they need to assemble the vehicle. This includes the interior and exterior of the car, plus screws and bolts that hold them together. This is a great way to customise the item and requires some skill and experience. It’s not an easy task to do and it may require some time to learn the basics and improve over time.

Electric or Gas-Powered?

There are two ways in which these cars can be powered: electric and gas. If you’re a beginner, RC electric cars will be better than gas-powered ones. They’re easy to maintain, come with a lower price tag and are much quieter than the other models. They’re ready to drive as soon as you buy them and there’s no need to break them as you need with gas ones. On the other hand, they won’t be as powerful, but can still be quicker at the start line.

Gas RC cars are mostly powered with Nitro Fuel. This is a common fuel type, and it comes at a reasonable price. These are powerful and fast. But they’re also quite noisy, which some neighbours won’t find very pleasant. They’re also heavier than electric ones. This means you can break them easily and invest some money in repair and maintenance.

Keep in mind that, although inexpensive, the fuel costs will add up over time. This is not a budget-friendly option for some people. There can be some gas spills and leaks from time to time and you’ll need to break it in first before you start driving it fast. You should do a couple of full-tank slow rides, and many people find this to be boring. So, all things taken into consideration, choosing the right RC car depends on you, your personal preferences and your experience.

What About the Motor?

There are 2 types of motors you can choose from. The brushed type is best for beginners. They use brushes to start the car. This is the reason they’re less powerful than a brushless motor. The brushless motors are more efficient because less energy is lost through friction. These cars will be faster, more durable and can be harder to control.

Author: Michael Hobbs

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