Remote Control Cars for Kids

By Kevin Hanson
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Almost from the day we are born, we are interested in just about everything that moves. Literally. When we are still at the infant and toddler stages of development, we are fascinated with motion. Boys and girls love to watch animals, other people, cars and trucks doing everything from swooping, running and dancing to flying, jumping and swimming.

Then one day everything changes. Life as we knew it disappears forever. Somehow, in some way, we figure out that we have the power to control motion. We can make things move with our hands, with our feet and with our minds. Okay, not literally with our minds. Still, if you stop and think about it for a minute, you have to admit that, at least in some ways, this is what we are doing when we drive a remote control car.

If you are looking for toys for your children that are both fun and educational, you will no doubt be happy giving them a remote control car for their birthday, Christmas or just some lazy Tuesday afternoon.

Remote control cars get kids outside, for one thing. They can also teach them how gears work, what different scale model sizes mean (like 1/10 and 1/12 scale) and every parent’s favorite drum to beat: responsibility. This is especially true for older kids in their tweens and teens, especially if you have them use their own money to buy the remote control car and pay for any subsequent maintenance and repairs.

If you are a parent of a child who is expressing an interest in remote control cars and you are not familiar with the hobby, you should know a few things. First, you must consider your child's age. This is perhaps the biggest factor to think about because almost every other factor involved in choosing a remote control car stems from this one.

Before you start shopping around, you should be aware that there are almost as many makes, models and varieties of remote control cars as real, grownup, drive-you-to-work cars.

There are gas-powered cars that remote control car enthusiasts often refer to as Nitro cars. There are both electric and battery-powered remote control cars as well. There are remote control cars made to look like real, grownup and probably-way-too-expensive-for-you-to-afford cars, such as Porsches, Lamborghinis and Ferraris. There are off-road cars, racing cars and many other varieties, and we haven’t even gotten to remote control trucks yet.

Don't let all the options intimidate or overwhelm you, though. When you do start shopping around, break the process down into bite-size chunks. Again, it’s crucial to begin with your child’s age and work from there.

Luckily, most remote control car manufacturers make many of these decisions easy for us. You can quickly eliminate makes and models just by referring to the information provided on the packaging. Look at the recommended age limits and warning labels that indicate whether the car has small parts that pose choking, cutting and other hazards for young children.

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