Toy Grade vs Hobby Grade RC Cars - What's the difference? - RC Dedication (2022)

Parents and new hobbyists, you’re here because you have a pressing question that needs answering and you will not stop until it is answered! Is there really that big of a difference between a toy grade RC car and a hobby grade RC car? To some it might seem like they’re one and the same, but that simply isn’t the case!

What is the difference between a toy grade vs a hobby grade RC Car? A Toy grade RC car is less powerful, less sturdy, and is not meant to be taken apart. If they break, then you have to replace the whole car. In comparison, hobby grade does have the option to replace the parts to keep them for longer periods of time.

Ok, that answered my question, why should I keep reading? If you’re a parent, it will be useful to know the difference in prices. For all you new hobbyists, you’ll get to know your new hobby a little more in depth and have a much better understand of what to look for in a RC Car.

What is a Toy Grade Radio Controlled Car?

Typically toy gradeRC Cars are found in toy stores, department stores, or electronic shops. They are similar to hobby grade solely on the fact that they are both controlled with radio frequencies via transmitters to communicate between the controller and car.

The similarities end there. Toy grade cars tend to be the cheaper of the two, around $50 depending on the car you get. Typically the cars are not as durable as hobby grade, typically do not have replaceable parts, and aren’t as powerful.

(Video) The difference between toy and hobby grade RC

Wait! So why do they still make them if they’re not as good? Glad you asked! Toy grade toys are great for kids and new hobbyist. Because they are the least expensive of the two options, when they break, it’s not as big of a loss. The controls tend to be easier for beginners without taking away from the fun of the toy itself.

What is a Hobby Grade Radio Controlled Car?

Hobby gradeRadio Controlled Cars are the more expensive of the two. You’d buy this RC Car in a hobby store. It does have replaceable parts, the transmitter is less likely to be interfered with by other toys (one draw back of the Toy Grade) and the car overall is more durable.

The transmitter might have more channels. A channel is a very fancy way to describe what the frequencies control- the steering, the throttle, the lights, the music, etc. The car is also easier to replace the parts on. With the replaceable parts, it’s also easier to upgrade it if necessary. Or if you just want to.

What is the difference in durability?

Imagine a bike going up against a minivan, which is gonna win? A toy grade RC car is a very flimsy fabric that covers the small engine. Its transmitter is more likely to catch interference from other toys if they have the same frequency.

When the frequencies are crossed, the cars act up. In comparison, Hobby grade are made of stronger material. Hobby Grade RC cars can be used for various activities. Most commonly they are used for racing.

They’re more durable because they are being knocked into by other cars. Can’t have plastic shards flying into people’s eyes! The transmitters for Hobby grade RC Cars are not as temperamental as the toy grade. You can have multiple Hobby grade cars without risking ruining them or crossing frequencies.

(Video) Toy Grade Vs Hobby Grade! Tug Of War! 1/8 Vs 1/12!

What is the difference in price?

There is a very big price differencewhen it comes to a toy grade and a hobby grade RC car. A decent toy grade RC car might be about $50, compared to a decent hobby grade which might be upwards of $120.

Part of the price gap comes from the fact that hobby grade is far more durable than the toy grade. Hobby grade has replaceable parts, absorbs the impact of the turns easier, and has more power. They’re far more likely to last longer. If the battery dies, no worries! You can easily order the part and replaces it with little hassle. You’re paying for convenience.

Are parts replaceable on the hobby grade?

The short answer is YES! That’s why you pay a more for a hobby grade RC Car. Hobby grade cars are typically used for racing, so it makes sense that you should be able to replace the parts. If you want to replace parts of your car, you have to understand what might be causing the problem.

For example, if you trying to steer the car around corner, is it sliding towards the outside of the corner or is it turning inside the corner? If it turns out, it is understeering. If it turns in, it is oversteering.

This problem is linked to the damper/ the shocks. The shocks are what absorbs the impact of turns and what keeps your car from playing bumper cars.

Can you upgrade the shocks on a hobby grade?

First question really should be: what are shocks? Shocks are also called dampeners. What they do is they absorb the energy that occurs from a sudden impulse. They keep your RC car from flying all around the track or road or wherever you’re driving it.

(Video) Convert Toy Grade Ferrari into Proportional Steering

You can upgrade itor manipulate them a number of ways. Damper there are some standard parts: the piston, o-ring seals, shock Shaft, and oil. For less resistance you can use larger piston holes or less viscous oil. For more resistance, smaller holes and thicker oil.

If you’re planning on racing, you really want to make sure that you won’t be flying all around the track and that you can take those sharp turns. Is it over turning or under turning? Well don’t worry, there are plenty of DIY Upgrading shockvideos online to help you figure it out. They’re easy to understand and make your life much easier.

Can you easily upgrade the parts of a hobby grade?

With this question it really depends on which part you’re planning on upgrading. Much like a normal car, there are some parts that are much easier to find/replace/upgrade than others. Unlike a normal car, you can replace the engine and motor much, much cheaper than your normal car.

You can find the parts on places like Amazon or from local hobby shops. Also, don’t be afraid to look at chat rooms for some help! They’ll be able to help you out and might even have advice on which are the best parts to buy. If only all car upgrades were this easy!

(Video) The Only 60mph Toy Grade RC Car In The World! You MAD Bro?

Is there more support for hobby grade RC cars?

There is more support when it comes to support for this grade of car. Because hobby grade cars are more expensive and are used for different purposes, and typically they are used by teens and adults rather than children, more care is put into them.

There are articles on how to upgrade different parts of the car, such as the engine and battery. There is some support for Toy Grade cars, but it is not as easy to fix those. They aren’t meant to be fixed, they’re meant to be replaced. Fixing your RC car might seem hard, but a few easy searches will put all your troubles at ease.

What is the best Hobby Grade RC Car?

If you’re looking here, then you’re looking for a real deal RC car. Fortunately, you’ve come to the right place! Here are some of the best RC Cars for beginners:

  • Traxxas 4-TEC- 4wd 1:10 scale sedan, made for racing, allows you to run at a reduced power.
  • Losi Micro-T Stadium Truck- best for beginners on a budget.
  • Traxxas Bandit XL-5- 2WD RC buggy ().
  • Traxxas Stampede XL-5- 2WD RC monster truck.
  • Traxxas Rustler XL-5- 2WD RC stadium truck.
  • HPI E10 Car- Entry level 1:10 scale RC car, built with beginners in mind.

These are only six of the options for a hobby grade RC car for beginners. There are more cars to be discovered for beginners, with all types of budgets in mind! If you continue to grow your collection. There are even more options available for you to choose as your skills grow!

What is the best Toy Grade RC Car?

It depends on who the car is for. In terms of Toy Gradecars, if you’re a hobbyist just trying out the RC circuit, consider getting a Tamiya to start out at first. NitroRCX’s are also a community favorite and is described as ‘barely hobby-grade.’ Tyco’s were a super popular choice in the 90’s. One car suggestion is a Maisto RC Rock Crawler Extreme. It’s a $40 car, so even if the car doesn’t last as along as you’d like, or you figure out that RC cars aren’t for you, it’s not a big monetary loss. Start small and build your way up.


What is hobby RC? ›

Hobby-class RC models are designed to be serviced and repaired by the owner with basic hand tools. The materials used in manufacturing hobby-class RC vehicles are very durable and can withstand many crashes or rollovers.

What does RC Toy mean? ›

Radio-controlled or remote-controlled toys, popularly called RC toys, are self-powered and can be controlled from a distance using a remote that works with radio waves.

What are the different types of RC? ›

When researching I found that there is five primary types of RC cars that you can purchase in the RC community. These are racing (touring) cars, dirt buggies, short course trucks, monster trucks, and RC tanks or crawlers. Each have distinct terrain and conditions that they will operate best in.

What is the toughest RC brand? ›

When it comes to the building the fastest, toughest, most capable RC models, Traxxas is number-one. No other brand is as relentlessly innovative and engineering-driven to make sure every car, truck, and boat delivers maximum performance, fun, and value.

What is a hobby car? ›

Hobby Cars means vehicles used for the purpose of a hobby, i.e. race cars and car restoration activities.

How do I start a RC hobby? ›

How To Get Started In RC? - YouTube

What makes an RC car hobby grade? ›

Our hobby grade cars require some level of skill and experience as well as enjoyment of the hobby. They are not designed as one off 'toys' to be 'played' with, they are designed to be used regularly and maintained after every use. An aspect of the hobby grade, is for the car to be upgraded and pushed to limit.

What is the best scale for RC cars? ›

The most common size or scale of an RC is 1:8 scale (or 1/8th scale). Mini-RCs come in even much smaller scales, 1:28 and 1:64 being most typical.

What does RTR mean in RC cars? ›

RTR (Ready-to-Run) vehicles are pre-built RC vehicles that have been bound to a radio system (included with the vehicle). Some RTR vehicles come with everything needed to power the vehicle, including AA transmitter batteries, vehicle battery, and a suitable charger.

What type of RC car should I get? ›

Comparison of the best RC cars for 2022
Best RC car overallTraxxas MaxxElectric
Best RC car overall runner-upTeam Losi Mini B 1/16 scale buggyElectric
Best RC car for kidsFeiyue FY-15Electric
Best RC car for kids runner-upTraxxas Rustler 2WDElectric
7 more rows
Jul 9, 2022

How do I choose the right RC car? ›

5 Things to Consider when buying your first RC Car as a Beginner!

How do I choose the right motor for my RC car? ›

How To Choose The Right RC Car Motor - YouTube

Is Arrma or Traxxas better? ›

So is Arrma the best brand? Keep reading to see what we found out. Traxxas primarily makes beginner-friendly RC's with a narrow focus on creating extreme RC's. Arrma, on the other hand, primarily makes powerful basher RC vehicles, and they also limitedly create beginner-friendly RC vehicles.

What is the best RC car in the world? ›

The best remote control cars 2022: ranked
  • Traxxas TRX-4 Land Rover Defender. ...
  • Lego Technic Off-Road Buggy 42124. ...
  • CMJ Cars Aston Martin Vantage. ...
  • Tamiya Hornet. ...
  • Traxxas XO-1. ...
  • Riva776Yale Nitro RC Car 94155. ...
  • Lego Technic 4x4 X-treme Off-Roader 42099. ...
  • FTX FTX5570 Outlaw. Rock crawling without the high-end outlay.

Is RC cars and expensive hobby? ›

An RC car is not only expensive, but also the upgradable parts are costly too. Some parts require to be upgraded as a part of the maintenance cost. Even for an actual car, you do some regular maintenance, right? To keep the car running, you need to spend on an RC car too.

Why do people buy RC cars? ›

A Remote Control car offers a unique insight into the real world for children, where they get to develop interest, and their fine motor skills at an earlier age. Essentially, a two-year-old child could grasp the concept of controlling an RC car easily.

Is RC a popular hobby? ›

Combining the pastimes of model cars and racing, the RC motorsports industry has boomed in popularity in recent years.

How much does it cost to start a RC Hobby Shop? ›

What Does a Remote Control Hobbies Franchise Cost? To buy a franchise with Remote Control Hobbies, you'll need to have at least $70,000 in liquid capital. Franchisees can expect to make a total investment of $150,000 - $250,000.

How much does it cost to run a hobby shop? ›

According to Entreprenuer, startup costs for a hobby shop average between ​$10,000​ and ​$50,000​. Once you have figures on costs, prepare your business plan. You need it to explain your business idea and its potential to bankers when you apply for funding.

Can you build your own RC car? ›

No matter what type of vehicle you're into, you'll need to decide whether you want to build it yourself with a kit or let the manufacturer build it for you as a “ready to run”—or RTR, as they're generally called. It's easy to build your own car—just follow along as the manual tells you what goes where.

Is an RC car considered a toy? ›

The word toy implies simplicity. Calling them toys implies real RC cars are for little kids. This is also a hobby and not just playing.
RC In Action.
96 more rows
Jul 20, 2015

How do you make a RC dirt track? ›

Build Your Own Backyard RC Track - Horizon Hobby All Terrain - YouTube

What is the fastest RC car? ›

Traxxas XO-1 – Fastest RC Car In the World

As we noted in another article here, it can reach 100 mph (160 kph) in just five seconds so we can easily call it the supercar of all RC cars. And the Traxxas XO-1 has a body kit that's been aerodynamically optimized for extra stability and downforce at higher speeds.

What's the biggest scale RC car? ›

The 1/5 scale Primal RC Raminator Monster truck is a hulking monster of a machine. Weighing in at 80 pounds, it's one of the biggest, most powerful RC vehicles you've ever seen!

How fast is a 1/10 scale RC car? ›

A simplified way of looking at it: a 1:10 scale RC would go about 1/10 the speed of the full-scale vehicle it's modeled after. A 1:8 scale RC listed with a scale speed of 110 mph probably has an actual speed of around 13-14 mph.

What does bind mean on a RC car? ›

To bind it you power up the transmitter, power up the receiver (turn on the car), push and hold the 'link' button (found on the receiver box) until it turns red before shortly turning off. The receiver LED will then flash once and then return to a solid on.

What does ready to run RC mean? ›

You can get your RC car already assembled (RTR=Ready-to-Run) or you can do the assembly yourself. As the name implies, Ready-to-Run cars are already assembled and typically only require a battery to run, whereas the kits don't include electric components and you assemble the car yourself.

What are RTR models? ›

R.T.R models for sale means 'ready to run'. This covers all model kits which are sold in a ready to run condition, that is, kits that are ready to be taken out of the box and placed onto the track.

What does RC car scale mean? ›

Scale refers to the size of the RC vehicle in regards to it's full size counterpart. So, 1:1 would mean the vehicle is exactly the same size as the real thing. A scale of 1/10 would mean that the RC car is 1/10 the size of the real thing, 1/8 would mean 1/8 the size, and so on.

How do RC electronics work? ›

Hobby Electronics Explained - YouTube

How do electric RC cars work? ›

Once the signals have passed through the transmitter, they are translated into the motor's electronic commands. A servo motor is the heart of the electric RC car. These motors are usually powered by a battery pack or an electronic speed controller. They are often powered by a single or dual-power pack.

What type of RC car should I get? ›

Comparison of the best RC cars for 2022
Best RC car overallTraxxas MaxxElectric
Best RC car overall runner-upTeam Losi Mini B 1/16 scale buggyElectric
Best RC car for kidsFeiyue FY-15Electric
Best RC car for kids runner-upTraxxas Rustler 2WDElectric
7 more rows
Jul 9, 2022

How fast is a 1/10 scale RC car? ›

A simplified way of looking at it: a 1:10 scale RC would go about 1/10 the speed of the full-scale vehicle it's modeled after. A 1:8 scale RC listed with a scale speed of 110 mph probably has an actual speed of around 13-14 mph.

What's the biggest scale RC car? ›

The 1/5 scale Primal RC Raminator Monster truck is a hulking monster of a machine. Weighing in at 80 pounds, it's one of the biggest, most powerful RC vehicles you've ever seen!

What's the fastest RC car in the world? ›

Project World's FASTEST RC Car on RUNWAY - YouTube


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