If you are willing to step up a notch in terms of available budget, then this next list will surely seem interesting. I concentrated on more expensive models that can still be considered as budget options. Today, we’ll talk about best RC Cars under $200.
With all of their prices dropping below $200, I’m sure plenty of you will find your next favorite RC car among them. So, what are you waiting for? If you are looking to purchase the best RC car under $200 but you are not sure which one to go for – then consider yourself extremely lucky since this list will help you do just that.
How? Well, it features a total of 10 models ranked from 10th to 1st spot (where the 1st spot is, obviously, the best). Each and every one of them offers a great value for money and is bound to provide you with a ton of quality RC fun! P.S. If you’re looking for a cheaper solution, you might be interested in our list of 10 RC Cars under $100.
Table: Best RC cars under $200
|5. HOSIM ONSLAUGHT||45km/h||1/12||30min||See price now|
|4. DEERC SNEAK||50km/h||1/10||40min||See price now|
|3. DANCHEE RIDGEROCK||35km/h||1/10||45min||See price now|
|2. ALTAIR 1/10||50km/h||1/10||30min||See price now|
|1. LAEGENDARY LEGEND||50km/h||1/10||30min||See price now|
5. HOSIM Onslaught 1/12
We’re starting off with a sweet affordable bugger by HOSIM. From the looks of things, HOSIM seems to be the leading brand in the lower end of the sphere. Come to think of it, HOSIM might just have the best RC trucks under $200 that you can buy on Amazon right now. What’s their secret?
Excellent AIO Package
The secret of affordable RC cars by HOSIM lies in their packages. You see, all of their entry-level models are RTR (ready to run) which is a big plus for beginners and first-time RC enthusiasts. What this means is that they come with everything that’s needed to get them up and running, including the essentials such as the battery, charger, necessary cables, transmitter, and the actual RC car.
Believe it or not, more expensive RC cars usually come in BNR (bind and run) packages that aren’t equipped with transmitters. Some of them don’t even pack batteries nor chargers. But those are models meant for the enthusiast, folks who already have high-end base stations and a buttload of batteries readily available.
Performance That Won’t Disappoint You
When it comes to the performance of HOSIM’s Onslaught 1/12 scale model, you should know this thing is powered by a hefty 500 brushed motors featuring plenty of power. If we are to be more precise with our measurements here, you can expect around 45km/h from this bugger, which is kind of the industry’s standard at this price point. Plus, if it was any faster, I reckon it wouldn’t really be suitable for kids… On top of that, this 1/12 RC truck can go both on and off-road, all thanks to its oversized, anti-skid tires that do all the dirty work.
- Absolute bargain at just above $100
- Roughly 45km/h or cca 30mph top speed
- Dual batteries bring forth half an hour of runtime
4. DEERC Sneak 1/10
Now, let’s say a thing or two about a 1/10 model that’s actually smaller than some 1/12 models. Well, technically not smaller but lower, but you get the gist of it. Just by looking at its pictures, you can assume it’s not your typical monster truck. Instead, it offers a different RC driving environment, some of which might come to appreciate it.
DEERC Sneak 1/10 model is an absolute champ as far as the stats go. The runtime, thanks to two provided batteries, extends all the way to 40 minutes, making it the longest-lasting RC car on this list. In fact, it’s definitely one of the longest-lasting RC cars under $200, which makes it the perfect model for our list here.
On top of that, you can expect a ton of speed from this bugger. After all, it’s much lower than your typical RC monster truck, so it’s not that surprising. Numbers-wise, we’re talking close to 50km/h, which is outstanding for the price it goes for.
As mentioned above, DEERC Sneak 1/10 scale RC car is not your typical monster truck. Its ground clearance is much lower, almost non-existent, which makes it more aerodynamic and thus helluva lot faster. But that also means it’s not exactly good on rougher terrain. Sure, grass and dirt roads are fine, but don’t expect this little bugger to climb over rocks and stuff like that. It’s not gonna happen, period.
- More than 40 minutes of runtime
- Almost 50km/h top speed
- Better aerodynamics than RC monster trucks
- Low center of gravity and no ground clearance
3. DANCHEE RidgeRock
If you’re looking for an affordable rock crawler for less than $200, then you’re at the right place. Heck, this little bugger goes for slightly above $100, which makes it an absolute bargain! DANCHEE RidgeRock is the name and we’re going to take a closer look at it to see if it’s the ideal solution for all your rock crawling needs.
Rock Crawling Expert
As you’d come to expect from a rock crawler, DANCHEE RidgeRock has front and rear multi-link suspensions as well as front and rear transmission. On top of that, it’s also nicely poised with two brushed motors that make all the difference in a rock crawling system.
Additionally, what makes this bugger such an awesome model is its rock crawling ability. You see, even though its price tag would suggest it’s a basic model, it’s capable of doing some pretty advanced things. For instance, it supports 4-mode 4-wheel steering with the touch of a button, ensuring seamless switching between several steering modes that allow for an incredible array of maneuvering.
Not only is this a nimble little fella, but it’s also quite durable too. The ground clearance is massive, the independent shocks are outright superb, and the overall chassis sturdiness is well beyond what you’d come to expect at this price point. DANCHEE RidgeRock really is a potent bugger that’s bound to exceed all of your expectations.
- Affordable entry-level rock crawler
- Multi-select 4-wheel steering system
- Potent 1500mAh rechargeable battery
2. Altair 1/10 RC Monster Truck
Next up, we have Altair’s 1/10 RC monster truck with massive ground clearance and great all-around performance. I’m sure you’ve heard about Altair already – they’re making affordable drones too. The Altair Aerial AA108 is one of the best affordable drones on the market. How does their RC truck stack up against the competition? Let’s find out!
Great All-Around Performance
30ish minutes of runtime and a cca 50km/h top speed makes up for a great basis. The rest of Altair’s performance isn’t half bad either. We’re talking about a radio-controlled monster truck here, one with plenty of ground clearance, and a sturdy chassis that you can abuse for quite some time.
Last but not least, let’s say a thing or two about the package. The best thing about it is the fact that is sports two 1600mAh batteries. Even better – both can be used simultaneously with the dual battery adapter that comes with the package. On top of all that, you’ll be greeted with an in-depth operating manual with full-color instructions on how to get everything started.
If that’s not enough, the true beginner-friendliness of Altair’s 1/10 RC monster truck lies in its ability to limit the top speed. As mentioned above, the typical max speed is close to 50km/h and you can easily set it up to max at 25km/h if a child is going to be using it.
- Can achieve roughly 50km/h
- Sturdy enough to take quite the beating
- Supports dual battery operation
1. LAEGENDARY Legend 1/10 – Best RC car under $200
As far as awesome RC cars under $200 go, LAEGENDARY Legend offers by far the greatest overall experience. We’re talking about a bulky 1/10 model here with two batteries, the dedicated controller and a small carrying case, all for cca $170. If that’s not a good deal, then I don’t know what is…
Quite the Speedster
When talking about maximum speed, they don’t come much faster than LAEGENDARY Legend at this particular price point. Close to 50km/h is what you can expect from this little bugger, which is pretty faster than all of the aforementioned models. This top speed is a big reason why the Legend 1/10 model is at the first spot on our list of the five ultimate RC trucks under $200.
The target audience for this particular model isn’t perfectly clear right off the bat. Even though it’s being marketed at children, I honestly can’t recommend it for younger audience, especially first-timers. Yes, it does have a beginner-friendly mode that prevents the car from going over half its top speed, but children aren’t really known for following safety precautions. If you’re buying for a kid, you’re better off purchasing a smaller/slower model.
Impressive Value for Money
Once again, LAEGENDARY Legend brings forth an impressive package. Not only are we talking about a RTR (ready to run) model here, meaning it comes with everything needed to kick the fun off (including the transmitter) but it also comes with an extra battery. You can either use it separately, or place both of them in the battery slot and use them simultaneously. The extra weight will lower the maximum speed, but only for a bit. Overall, a great purchase! It’s definitely among the best RC cars available for under $200… well under $200, to be more precise.
- Close to 50km/h top speed
- Two batteries ensure 30 minutes of pure fun
- Solid ground clearance
- Way below the $200 mark
How do RC cars work?
Even though RC cars are sophisticated radio-controlled devices, I will do my best to explain how the work in the simplest of manners.
First things first, let’s focus on the controller… or how we should really be calling it – transmitter! That’s because it is essentially a nicely packed transmitter with an intuitive racing-style interface which is set to transmit radio waves towards the RC car. It does so usually via 2.4Ghz radio frequency which has established itself as the standard solution for most radio-control inspired devices.
Transmitters send the radio wave towards receivers found in each RC car. They communicate through a specified protocol allowing the receiver to perform commands to the RC car. Batteries and motor (or motors in some cases) are also important parts of this story as they allow everything else to work properly. Batteries provide the contraption with power and motors are considered as the designated workforce.
Should I go with NiMH or LiPo batteries?
As you’ve had the chance to see in the list above there are 2 main types of batteries that these mid-tier RC cars use. I’m referring to NiMH (Nickel Metal Hydride) and LiPo (Lithium Polymer) batteries which are, by far, the most represented ones.
But what makes them superior to other types of batteries? Or better yet, what are the main differences between them? Let’s check out the main traits of these 2 battery types:
Amperage delivery goes heavily in the favor of LiPo batteries. However, due to higher voltages, NiMH batteries will usually have a faster burst of power right off the bat… but as their voltage gets dropped down to the degree of a LiPo, it’s going to be a neck to neck race to the finish line.
Even though most people consider NiMH batteries to be much safer than LiPos, that’s not the case anymore… if you are following the basic guidelines of using LiPo batteries. Furthermore, NiMH batteries tend to heat up (especially with brushless amperage demands) due to power inefficiency which is not usually the case with LiPos… unless you abuse them too much.
LiPo batteries are well known for having an extremely high energy density. In other words, they are superior to NiMH batteries when it comes to the weight/capacity ratio. If we are to be more precise with our numbers here, the same capacity LiPo would be approximately half the weight of a NiMH battery.
What sort of performance can I expect from best RC cars under $200?
In terms of maximum speed, most models are capable of going above the 30km/h mark. Pricier models, those that are inching towards the $200 cap, can achieve close to 50km/h. Needless to say, those models are much more difficult to control and aren’t suitable for all types of users.
The average range you can expect at this price point goes around the 100-meter mark (slightly above 300 feet). Typically, though, you can expect RC cars just below $200 to support a couple of extra meters. For a more precise picture, please refer to each specific listing featured above.
Durability-wise, these RC cars can usually take quite a beating. That’s nothing surprising, especially considering the fact RC cars under $100 are well-versed durability-wise as well. Most importantly, we’re talking about models that sport a ton of replacement parts, which is of crucial importance if something goes south. In that case, Amazon will be your best friend with a massive amount of spare parts for various RC car models.
Last but not least, some of these affordable RC cars under $200 aren’t really suited for beginners and/or children. That’s because they are either too fast and can hurt children, or too massive and pose a threat to nearby cars and/or other objects.
How to pick the best RC cars under $200 to buy?
There are several primary characteristics of good RC cars you should keep a note of when purchasing your next model. In addition to the aforementioned factors such as durability, max range, and top speed, you should also consider things like ground clearance, motor type, and the presence of a four-wheel drive.
Ground clearance is of crucial importance for rock crawlers and off-road RC trucks. The good old saying works like a charm here – the more, the merrier. Furthermore, motor type refers to either brushed or brushless variants. The latter is more suitable for speedier beasts meant for road use, while brushed work best with rock crawlers that depend on high torque for off-road maneuvers. The same goes for four-wheel drive.
In the end, the decision is all up to you! Before your purchase, you’ll have to decide what kind of an RC car you’re looking for. If you’re leaning towards the on-road, speedy devils, you’ll need something that’s aerodynamic and runs on brushless motors. If, on the other hand, you’re looking for a potent off-road RC truck with decent rock-crawling abilities, you’ll have to go with something that comes with brushed motors, has plenty of ground clearance and extremely durable chassis. Waterproof electronics are, as always, an added bonus.
How to Take Proper Care of Your RC Cars
Taking a proper care of your RC cars is no nuclear physics. It’s a pretty straightforward set of procedures all of you should follow. They go something like this:
- Always make sure all the wiring is good. Make sure the solder joints are intact and there are no loose or shorted wires anywhere.
- Keep your batteries charged and always at an optimal level. Never overcharge them or discharge to dangerously low levels.
- Have a healthy amount of spare parts at bay so you don’t have to wait for shipping when your break something or stuff goes south.
- Configure your shocks correctly and make sure everything is clean and adjusted according to your liking.
- Always know what your machine is capable of – the best way of increasing its longevity is to avoid putting it to too much stress.
Obviously, we’ve focused on electric RC cars here, since they’re the only type you can purchase for less than $200. When talking about gas-powered cars, there’s a lot more regular maintenance to do… but that’s a story for some other time!
Different Types of RC Cars Available for Under $200
Not all RC cars are made the same. Even the cheapest parts of the market, we’re talking RC cars under $100 and under $50 here, have plenty of diversity as far as different types go. That said, here’s a closer look at the three different types of RC cars under $200:
Buggies are arguably the most popular type of RC cars under $200. At this price point, the main target audience are children and teenagers. They’re looking for cool looks and plenty of speed, but a bit of a parkour spirit too. And that’s exactly what buggies offer – the best all-around performance that’s in massive demand at this price tier.
Monster trucks have slightly higher ground clearance than buggies, but their overall performance and style of play aren’t that different. They aren’t exactly known to be speed devils, but aren’t too slow either. Typically, though, monster trucks under $200 can do all sorts of stuns, which is why people love them so much. Don’t put them up against anything too extreme – for something like that, you’ll have to turn your attention to the rock crawling section of the market.
Rock crawlers have superb ground clearance, coupled with quality shocks and all-wheel drive. These three things make rock crawlers ideal for… well… rock crawling. They can overcome massive obstacles and are really entertaining to play around with. They are not for everyone, though. Children aren’t their biggest fans simply because they can’t reach high speeds, which eliminates any sort of potential bragging rights… and we all know children are all about that.
These little buggers are all about speed. Yes, that does make them insanely cool, but only for an extremely short period of time… typically until the realization that they can only be driven on concrete. As soon as these fellas hit the grass, dirt, or even a small obstacle, their speed drops to zero and it’s game over. That’s basically why we haven’t included a single speedster in our list of the best affordable RC cars available for under $200.
Why We Opted for These Five Models?
The answer is pretty simple – they offer by far the greatest value for money at this price point. Once again, that’s everything that matters in this section of the market, and you should remember that before purchasing your next model. On top of that, most of the above-listed devices have a multitude of spare parts available for purchase. This is of crucial importance for the longevity of your purchase, but often goes under the radar.
Believe it or not, we’ve reached the end of this piece! That said, it’s only logical to wrap everything up and call it a day! So, here goes nothing:
As you could’ve seen for yourself, the current state of affairs in the RC cars market is pretty good. There’s no lack of good models, especially if we’re talking about RC cars below $200. The technology has gone through massive advancements over the last few years, paving the way for much better models at insanely affordable price tags.
Nowadays, you can get your hands on a 50km/h speedster with solid ground clearance and off-road capabilities around the $200-mark, which was pretty much impossible a few years ago. So yeah, long story short, 2020 is a great year for RC cars and if you’re starting out slow, there’s really no need to go above $200.