Are all RC cars toys? | what about hobby-grade RC cars


Many non-RC enthusiasts believe RC vehicles to be “toys.” 

Why? Because RC cars are not real cars and, like toys, are used for fun recreational pastimes. But what are toys? Are RC cars really toys?

In this article, we explore the true nature of RC vehicles to know whether or not they are toys. Keep reading to find out if RC cars are toys or not. 

Should RC cars be considered toys?

Toys are miniature play objects primarily used by children to entertain and educate themselves. In the case of a car, toys are miniature model replicas that keep children entertained. 

When it comes to RC cars, they’re not just a replica of actual cars. RC cars have much more power than toys, with speeds ranging from 15mph to 70+mph.
Unlike toys in smaller sizes, RC cars are often larger and are engineered with high-quality electronic components that can be replaced or upgraded.

With these factors, it’s easy to see why RC cars cannot be considered toys. 

Our hobby-grade RC cars toys? 

If you’re wondering whether hobby grade RC cars are toys, the simple answer is no. Wonder why? The reason boils down to various factors; 

  • hobby-grade RC cars have massive car supports that toys don’t have, 
  • the availability of car parts for replacement and upgrades is infinite, 
  • hobby grade cars are built with durable, superior-grade, and high-quality materials toys don’t have,
  • RC cars operate with much more advanced technology than toys,
  • They are designed to last for more extended periods, 
  • They can withstand ruthless bashing that toys can’t withstand.

Apart from this, other factors that make hobby-grade cars standout from toys include:

The complexity of the cars

RC cars have a more sophisticated build that keeps them at their peak when run. 

For instance, consider the different frequencies they come in, their real bodyshell body materials, electronic components, chassis, ESC, motor, battery, and every other part that makes the RC cars

It’s not just about hobby-grade cars being run on the track. It’s the complexity of their electronics that differentiates them from everyday toys.
Hobby-grade cars have almost every technology used in real cars, including transmitters, receivers, and robust tires. Some Hobby-grade cars even run on nitro-fuel, which toy cars won’t do. 


Like how complex hobby-grade cars are, they also demand expensive repairs and maintenance you won’t perform on regular toy cars.
You even find replacement parts available in various hardware stores. It’s also possible to upgrade the electronic components of your RC vehicle for improved performance. 

Price of the cars

There’s also a significant price difference in purchasing toys and hobby-grade RC cars.
On average, a toy car will cost you less than $40. Compare this to the price of hobby-grade RC cars, and you may have to purchase one from $150 upwards, up to 1,000$. 

Part of the price gap results from the fact that hobby-grade RC cars are far more durable than toy-grade models, and even if the battery dies, you can easily order replacement parts at a stipulated sum. 

Races and competitions

Another factor that differentiates hobby-grade RC cars from toy grades is that they can be used for competitive races. 

Toy-grade cars don’t have the speed levels and endurance power like hobby-grade RC cars.
So, they can’t perform well on rugged terrains and in different weather conditions, nor do they have the speed levels that a racing competition demands. 

Hobby Grade RC Cars Have High Speeds

The speeds that hobby-grade RC cars can reach are far from the speeds that toy-grade cars reach.
A hobby-grade RC car can travel at speeds of up to 70 mph, and some can even go as fast as 100mph. No toy-grade car can reach or even handle that kind of speed.

RC cars Are a hobby

RC cars are a great hobby that requires no prior qualification or skills. Apart from this, it is a hobby that suits not just children but everybody with different RC vehicles to cater to users’ preferences. 

One of the best aspects that makes RC cars a great hobby is that there is something for everyone to enjoy. Whether you love the thrill of driving a crawler, drift car or monster truck, you’re pretty much covered from all angles. 

Plus, driving a remote-controlled car may be one of the most fun things you can do. If you love racing the trails, you can bring an RC Jeep along with you to run the trails. Not to mention that RC cars work exceptionally for bashing. 

What is the average age of hobby-grade RC cars users

Compared to toy-grade models primarily built for children, one of the best reasons hobby-grade RC cars are not toy cars is the fact that no matter our age or maturity level, you can form a hobby with RC cars and stick with it forever. 

The variety of vehicles available makes the hobby inviting to many enthusiasts.
Hence, remote-controlled cars can be used at almost any age, with cars specially designed for kids and adults. 

Why don’t we like it when people call them toys

As die-hard RC car fans, it can be infuriating when someone calls your RC car a toy car. 

Generally, toys are objects used for having fun or playing; and they could be a plushy, a miniature toy car, a cheap RC car, and even a regular sports car. Does this define hobby-grade RC cars? No. 

Toys aren’t meant to last a very long time or be used constantly. They aren’t engineered for rugged terrains, and even their build isn’t as rugged as something meant to last with the constant bashing. 

So, when people classify toys and the real RC stuff, they do so without the facts to back up their claims which can be aggravating. 

Hobby-grade RC cars are rugged, expensive, and repairable if something happens to them. Plus, it took a lot more effort, time, and money to make than toys you get from Walmart, e-bay, or amazon. 

Hobby-grade RC vehicles are more capable, faster, and potentially more dangerous since they are designed for menacing speed levels. 

What are the differences between hobby-grade and toy-grade cars

While hobby-grade RC cars and toy-grade cars may have a similar build, several factors differentiate these two types. Some of these factors include:

  1. Durability

Toys are fun when they allow you to play around with them for weeks. But, when moved around with great care and caution to keep them from damage, you no longer enjoy the fun in them. In comparison, hobby-grade RC cars come fully engineered with durable materials that will last longer, can take on much pounding, and easily withstand wear and tear. 

Unlike toy-grade cars built with brittle plastics that easily break, RC car manufacturers today design hobby-grade cars using durable materials such as aluminum, metals, alloys, and nylon composites. 

Although these materials aren’t rock-hard and damage-proof, you can bang them around for a very long time without them breaking. This means hobby-grade RC cars have a longer life span than toy cars. 

  1. Availability of Parts

As is the case with every real car, hobby-grade cars come with a parts diagram. 

It’s easy to find replacement parts, whether you are looking to get simple replacement parts like screws, nuts, shells, or every other part of a hobby-grade car.
So, when a part is damaged, all you need to do is order that particular component and reassemble it. Some hobby cars even have spare parts to ensure they perform exceptionally. 

On the other hand, toy-grade cars don’t come with replacement parts or spare parts. So, when a part damages, you can’t fix them. You will have to purchase an entirely new toy car. 

  1. Modification

Since you can’t get readily available parts for toy-grade cars, it means an upgrade won’t be possible. But, this is not the case with hobby-grade RC cars. 

You can modify or upgrade various parts to meet your taste with hobby-grade cars. What’s more, hobby-grade RC cars have a kit type that makes it easy for RC enthusiasts to buy and install these parts for a more sturdy and robust build. 

  1. Quality, Technology, and Support

Hobby-grade manufacturers even offer technical support to customers to help with whatever problem you may be experiencing with your hobby grade car. 

The type of material used, its quality, and the technology used affect how your hobby-grade cars behave. This is why manufacturers carry out constant upgrades to the car parts to improve their quality and ensure a more advanced technology.  

  1. Cost

Due to the high-quality materials, technology, and replaceable parts of hobby-grade cars come more expensive than their toy counterparts. 

Final thoughts

Unlike toy-grade vehicles, hobby-grade RC cars are built with sophisticated electronics, technology, and materials for maximum performance. In fact, hobby-grade RC cars are designed to be incredibly durable as they can withstand extreme pounding and risky physical abuse that results from their higher performance capabilities. These features are what distinguishes them from toy-grade cars. And while they do what toys are intended to do; make our lives more fun, they are one-of-a-kind RC cars that make for a great hobby.