RC cars get kids outside to run and play, which is important to their overall health, and they also stimulate the development of hand-eye coordination. Models made with cool features, like RC drift cars for kids, are popular and plentiful but can vary significantly in quality. If you’re tired of disappointing RC toys and are looking for a kids drift car that will ACTUALLY drift, look no further! We’ve taken a closer look at the 10 best RC drift cars to help you make the best pick for your kiddo.

Our Top Picks

How to Pick the Best RC DRIFT CARS

1. Recommended Age

The recommended age range is always something you should check out when you’re buying clothes, toys or gear for kids. When it comes to RC cars, the recommended age range indicates the complexity of a toy’s use and potential assembly. Make sure to pick something age appropriate for your child so that they can safely and easily enjoy their new toy.

2. Design

There are all kinds of RC vehicles, and RC cars take the shape of sports cars, buggies, trucks and more. If your child has a collection or a preference, the type of vehicle being modeled may be important to you. The options are numerous in all categories, fortunately, so it’s not hard to find a specific sort of vehicle if that’s what they’d prefer.

3. Batteries Included

All RC vehicles require a source of power, and most are powered by batteries. Many models feature a car body that is powered by an included rechargeable battery, but they often require additional batteries for controller operation that aren’t included. This is an important thing to know, as it can be very frustrating to open a toy and realize you don’t have the necessary batteries, particularly a remote control toy that won’t be operable without them.

4. Size

Size can be an important product feature for a few reasons. If your child is younger, a larger RC car can allow them to focus on learning the basics and getting comfortable with a remote control toy that fits their motor abilities. Older kids who are more experienced may actually like and prefer zippy little models which can be more easily used for tricks and drifting. It’s never a bad idea to take a peek at the dimensions to be aware of the product you’re purchasing.

5. Colors

These cars come in many colors, and if your child has a favorite, it’s likely you can find an RC vehicle to match. Likewise, some vehicles are very utilitarian in appearance and others stand out – you’ll know best what your child will enjoy. Some vehicles come in a range of colors, which can be an enticing factor as well. If the hue is important to you, make sure you check out the rainbow of possibilities.

6. Includes

Some models have unique accessory items included that may make them more appealing choices, such as extra tires. At bare minimum, a kit should contain a car and a remote control – most that need recharging include a USB cord, but if they don’t, they’re usually compatible with common standard micro USB cords. Some contain all the batteries needed to operate, but other times you’ll need to provide them. Knowing what’s included means knowing if you need to bring anything extra to the table to facilitate play.

The Winners

#1

Liberty Imports Drift King

Best Overall

This very quick and responsive car features full function mobility. The Liberty Imports Drift King can easily perform U shaped drifts and figure 8s that kids will love, and the working front lights, rear lights and side lights add awesome detail to the model. The controller has a cool radar gun shape and comfortable rubber grip that makes it easy for little users to handle. The Drift King comes with 4 rubber tires for great multi-terrain traction and 4 smooth tires that kids can use to perform drifting tricks. The 1:12 scale model comes fully assembled, and four color options means kids can choose their favorite.

Recommended Age: 3+
Design: Street Racer
Batteries Included: 4 AAA and 2 AA batteries needed to operate
Size: 10 x 7.1 x 4.2 inches
Colors: Black/red/silver, black/silver, black/yellow, yellow/blue
Includes: Car, remote control, 4 rubber tires, 4 smooth tires

#2

Redcat Racing EPX Drift Car

Upgrade Choice

Available in red or blue, the Redcat Racing EPX Drift Car features aluminum capped, oil filled shocks that offer exceptional protection and function. Glossy, cool and ready to run, the sporty car has All Wheel Drive, drift tires and waterproof electronics that make it a great toy for use outdoors. The vehicle’s aluminum top brace acts in tandem with the shocks to stabilize the drift car in the event of a crash, offering additional durability. One downside, though – not all manufacturers cite charge times, but this one does, and it’s 8 hours. Luckily, other compatible and much quicker chargers are available for a low price online.

Recommended Age: 14+
Design: Street Racer
Batteries Included: 8 AA batteries needed to operate
Size: 14.2 x 8 x 4.5
Colors: Red or blue
Includes: Car, remote control, rechargeable battery, charger

#3

Force1 Mini Drifter

Best Budget Buy

An inexpensive and simple pick that’s ideal for younger kids, the Force1 Mini Drifter is easy to operate – even the tricks. The no-frills toy-like body hides a fair amount of power, and the tilting tires on this little marvel allow it to drift, slide, spin, do wheelies and perform original combo tricks. It’s not a very big car, and the design is a little childish, but it’s a powerful, high-performance toy smaller kids will be able to grasp easily in a design that’s cute and appropriate for their age range.

Recommended Age: 6+
Design: Racecar
Batteries Included: 2 AA batteries needed to operate
Size: 12.2 x 7.8 x 5.9 inches
Colors: Blue, white, green, black, silver
Includes: Car, remote control, rechargeable battery, charger

#4

METAKOO CH1 Advanced

This rugged black and red street racer features big, detailed buggy tires and looks ready to take on any challenge. Its easy to use LED lights on the controller make calibrating it with the car a simple process. The METAKOO CH1 Advanced can reach an impressive 28 MPH (not all manufacturers cite speed, but the average is 10 – 20 MPH), which kids will love, plus it claims to be “amphibious” – test the bounds of this at your own risk, but the waterproof body and electronics will definitely hold up to muddy and messy outdoor play as a bare minimum. The vehicle’s wide tires make performing drifts easy and fun, and the PVC construction is explosion resistant, so kids can crash without fear.

Recommended Age: 8 – 14 years
Design: Buggy
Batteries Included: 4 AA batteries needed to operate
Size: 14.6 x 10.8 x 5.9
Colors: Black, red, orange
Includes: Car, remote control, rechargeable battery, charging cable, manual, screwdriver, 2 wrenches, 50 shock absorbers, 4 screw assemblies, R-type pin

#5

Exceed MadSpeed Drift King

Featuring a low, centralized center of gravity that improves performance and makes doing tricks easier, this brushless model looks like a real street racer. The Exceed MadSpeed Drift King has awesome detailing that includes realistic bumper sticker and front sticker decals, the “drift king” moniker on the side and more. The 1:10 model is ready to race, and the exceptional detailing on the side mirrors, wheels, wing and exhaust make it a visual standout. Additionally, the high-quality independent suspension provides the vehicle with a smooth and sturdy ride. 

Recommended Age: 14+
Design: Street Racer
Batteries Included: 4 AA batteries needed to operate
Size: 17.32 x 7.48 x 10.2
Colors: Black, yellow, chrome
Includes: Car, remote control, rechargeable battery, charger

#6

Tacon 1:14 Soar Buggy

This 1:14 buggy values performance over aesthetics – not that it’s bad looking, just a little less sleek than some others listed here. The Tacon 1:14 Soar Buggy is lightweight and zippy with a body that’s designed for aerodynamic performance, including a rounded front bumper. The buggy is an awesome pick for bumpy outdoor terrain, navigating rocks and grass easily and performing fun power slides and drifts on smoother surfaces. It’s a small, durable model that can be modified if the user desires, so if your child is a builder, it’s an ideal choice.

Recommended Age: 14+
Design: Buggy
Batteries Included: 4 AA batteries needed to operate
Size: 12 x 8 x 4.3 inches
Colors: Black, yellow, brown, green, red
Includes: Buggy, remote control, rechargeable battery, charger, manual
NQD Remote Control Trucks Monster RC Car

#7

NQD Monster Truck

The biggest on our list, this model features a rugged monster truck design as well as powerful all-terrain performance. Unlike most RC cars, the NQD Monster Truck is truly ready to go right out of the box – it already includes all the batteries you’ll need to operate both the car and the remote control, which is a rarity. On top of that, if you can believe it, the company will offer all buyers free extra batteries just for calling their customer service line! When it comes to performance, this model’s impressive drifts are even cooler to see because of it’s large size, and it’s an easy toy for younger users that won’t stop being fun as they grow.

Recommended Age: 8 – 18 years
Design: Monster truck
Batteries Included: Included
Size: 30 x 20 x 8 inches
Colors: Blue
Includes: Car, remote control, batteries, charger

#8

UniDargon 1:18 Sprint

This sturdy monster truck performs well off-road with shocks that hold up to rough play. The bright blue and yellow 1:18 scale truck model stands out with cheerful colors, and it’s a good toy for playing both inside and outside. UniDargon 1:18 Sprint performs impressively on flat surfaces, and is able to break quickly and do awesome drifts and wheelies. Although some manufacturers don’t cite a specific run time, it averages around 15 minutes – this truck runs for an impressive 20, so playtime lasts a little bit longer. On the flip side, the speed is a bit low at 10 MPH, but its technical ability balances this out.

Recommended Age: 12+
Design: Monster truck
Batteries Included: 2 AA batteries needed to operate
Size: 4 x 5 x 6 inches
Colors: Blue, yellow, black
Includes: Car, rechargeable battery, charger, remote control

#9

Vinciph 1:20 Cheetah

Featuring high-quality PVC construction and an independent suspension for a steady ride and durability during crashes, the Vinciph 1:20 Cheetah also has impressive all-terrain tires that hold up to slippery conditions. It performs well in rainy or muddy yards and other areas that some RC cars struggle to travel over. Kids will love perfecting the awesome drifts this car can perform, which look even cooler thanks to its unique blue flame design. The 1:20 race car model features eye-catching decals that add a realistic feel to the vehicle.

Recommended Age: 6+
Design: Racecar
Batteries Included: 2 AA batteries needed to operate
Size: 9.9 x 7.6 x 6.1
Colors: Blue, yellow, black, white
Includes: Car, remote control, rechargeable battery, charger, screwdriver

#10

Jada Toys Fast & Furious Nissan Skyline

Kids who love drifting cars are no doubt fans of the Fast and the Furious movie franchise. They’ll love racing with Brian’s Skyline by Jada Toys, which features extra tires, a turbo boost and, of course, drifting performance. The car’s iconic blue and silver design with racing decals is sturdy, recognizable and holds up to rough play. The cool remote is super easy for younger kids to grip and use, and they can do tricks easily with this vehicle. It’s a great frustration free first RC for 8+ because it’s easy to operate, plus all batteries are included, so it’s ready to run right out of the box.

Recommended Age: 8+
Design: Street racer
Batteries Included: Included
Size: 18 x 7 x 8 inches
Colors: Blue, silver, black
Includes: Car, batteries, charger, remote control, extra tires

FAQs: All you need to know

Q What are some features I should look for in an RC drift car?

A There are many that may wind up mattering to you, but three of the most pertinent are durability, charging time and running time. Aesthetics and features are great, but cars that break easily, take too long to charge or die too soon will go unused by kids for their inconvenience. Make sure to focus on the basics and THEN the features to make sure you make a well-rounded pick.

Q How long will my RC car take to charge, and how long will it run?

A There is no one answer to this question, as it varies by model. The average charge time of an RC drift car is between 1 and 2 hours, and most run for an average of 15 – 20 minutes. It’s normal for the drive time to be significantly shorter than the charge time, as the car cannot be safely charged as quickly as it is able to expend energy.

Q What is “drifting”?

A In stunt driving, drifting is the process of making a turn so sharp that the rear wheels lose traction with the road and the car begins to “drift” sideways. Made popular in the mainstream by the Fast and the Furious films, we wouldn’t recommend you try it with your sedan, but drifting RC cars offer the action without the danger.

Quick Decision

Liberty Imports Drift King – Best Overall
It comes with two sets of tires, one for quality all terrain performance and one smooth set for performing drifts and other tricks.

Redcat Racing EPX Drift Car – Upgrade Choice
It has All Wheel Drive and waterproof electronics that make it a great outdoor pick.

Force1 Mini Drifter – Best Budget Buy
It’s a simple pick that’s easy for younger users to grasp with tilting tires that let them do awesome tricks.

RC car

BUILD YOUR OWN RC CAR KITS

We’ve taken a look at ten of the best build your own RC car kits to help you choose the right one for your aspiring engineer.

Hannah H.

Hannah H.

Hannah is both a parent and a freelance journalist and author. You go, girl! She is an impeccable wordsmith and her warm and witty outlook on life makes her pieces a joy to read.

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