So today I received the new Mini Q Cartoon Car from HobbyKing. I sat there staring at the pink version of this model and was instantly happy and excited to open it. Staring at the model for as long as I did, the song lyrics ‘Life in plastic, it’s fantastic’ popped into my head. In all seriousness though, these little plastic cars are indeed very fantastic, let me tell you why.
For a start, the cartoon car body is durable and strong. Similarly, the car’s design and aesthetic is playful, vibrant and bright. The quirky design will be appreciated by older RC fans who remember the fantasy style cars of the 80s whereas younger generations will find this ‘retro’ style quite unique and charming. However, let’s not kid ourselves, this isn’t a design that is going to be everyone’s cup of tea, but if you have a sense of humour and enjoy driving with a smile on your dial, you’ll love these.
Now, let’s talk about the specs and the build of the car itself. The frame is made of translucent blue ABS, which is relatively strong for its weight. The body is made from opaque ABS which has great impact resistance. It is equipped with a 5g servo and brushed 130 motors. The rubber tyres, although they are solid bands on the plastic wheels, offer really good grip, probably a little too much for carpet but great on concrete.
The instruction manual in the box explains how simple it is to use and control the remote for the car. It has a simple proportional radio with steering and throttle trim and throttles dual rate. The point is that it is really simple to use and control making it the perfect gift for beginners in the RC hobby world or a muck around model for the more experienced. Please note, the transmitter takes four AAA batteries which are not included in the box, as does the car itself, make sure you have them ready so as soon as the car is unboxed, it’s ready to go.
Which brings me to the unique handling characteristics of this car; to say it is top-heavy is an understatement, it is comically top-heavy, which is what I love about it because it means you have to be really on your toes when racing these things around, it’s a little bit like on-road monster truck racing, give it too much in a corner or try to whip around a competitor too aggressively and you will find yourself on your lid. Anyone who has raced M Chassis cars with the Mini Cooper body will know the feeling. So even though the Mini Q Cartoon Cars are far from the fastest cars around, they offer their own challenges which can be just as much fun.
If you wanted to really raise the laugh factor on these cars you could upgrade it to a brushless system which means changing the servo over to a mini three-wire servo and putting your own radio in because the Cartoon Cars have their own integrated receiver and ESC. It could kill the fun of these cars but I don’t know if I will be able to stop myself!
What surprised me the most, is that the Cartoon Car appears to be quite unassuming, even a bit ridiculous, but as soon as you begin to use it, you realise just how much fun this model really is. The car moves surprisingly fast and is really easy to control at lower speeds and offers enough challenge at higher speeds to keep even the most seasoned racers on their toes. Ultimately, this car is a lot of fun for the whole family to enjoy!
Written by Rebecca