7 Best RC Cars Under $50 of 2019

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There are plenty of RC cars under 50 dollars that offer exceptional value. There are also lots of poor quality models around that fail to deliver on their claims. The purpose of this down-to-earth guide is to review some of the best radio-controlled cars in this price category. These are all models that have stood the test of time and met the expectations of those who bought them.

You’re on the right page if you’re new to RC cars and want to explore the current options. Keep reading if you’re not sure what to look for or what to avoid. A little knowledge makes all the difference here. It’s the only way to help kids and parents avoid the hype and make better buying decisions. Or, jump straight to the review section if you know what you like and just want to check out the models.

Budget
best-budget-rc-cars-under-50-dollars
Jellydog Stunts RC Race
4.7/5.0
Drive: 4WD
Playing Time: 12+ minutes
Double-sided rotating wheels, anti-skid tires, cool LEDs, crash resistant.
Check Amazon
Best Value
best-value-rc-cars-under-50-dollars
SZJJX High Speed Drift Buggy
4.8/5.0
Drive: 2WD
Playing Time: 15+ minutes
Waterproof, direction spinner, spring suspension, all-terrain capable.
Check Amazon
Top Pick
top-value-rc-cars-under-50-dollars
Vandora 4WD Monster Truck
4.9/5.0
Drive: 4WD
Playing Time: 30 minutes
Child-safe materials, easy battery access, off-road capable, anti-collision structure.
Check Amazon

Types of RC Cars

The RC world uses “car” in broad terms. A practical car is an automobile used as a form of people transportation. An RC car search, though, brings up other results like the following:

  • Regular RC cars: family sedans and minivans (people carriers), etc.
  • Fantasy: Batmobile, cartoon vehicles, acrobatics stunt cars
  • Luxury high-end: sports cars, Mercedes, Rolls Royce, BMW, Jaguar, etc.
  • Working: military, police cars, ambulance, recovery trucks, etc.
  • Competition cars: Monster trucks, rock crawlers, drift cars, desert buggies

Some of the above are not technically cars but still come under the category more broadly. Vehicles used for construction, firefighting, and battle, etc., fall under separate categories.

What every RC’er Needs to Know

Newbies to RC cars often make avoidable buying blunders. There are certain things to know—and consider—before getting any radio-controlled model. A common disappointment is the car’s size. It can be much bigger or smaller than the buyer expected. The way to avoid this is to check the model scale (if it’s a replica) and the dimensions before you buy. It’s surprising how people skip this vital step.

Here are the 7 essential buying considerations:

  1. Build and materials (look for non-toxic plastics when buying for toddlers)
  2. Suitable for what age range and skill level
  3. Features and functions meet personal expectations
  4. Playing time (battery life) on a single charge
  5. Charging times in the case of rechargeables
  6. Cost and availability of extra batteries if swappable
  7. The cars’ control range: distance it can travel from the controller

Point 1 above is important because not all cars use kid-safe materials. It’s quite common for toddlers to put toys in their mouth. Also, check the manufacturer’s recommended age range for the product.

About My ‘RC Cars Under 50 Dollars’ Guide

The 7 RC cars on this page are the result of extensive research. I also took user reviews and the opinions of industry experts into consideration as part of the selection process. There’s a whole range of vehicles to suit different ages and skill levels. All models cost $50 or less at the time of selection. The first three reviews are Best Budget, Best Value, and the Top pick.

The table below shows the RC cars under $50 in the order they appear on the page.

RC Cars Under $50 Comparison Table

Make and ModelDrivePlaying TimePrice
Jellydog Fast 360 Degree Stunts RC Race Car4WD12+ minutesCheck Price
SZJJX High Speed Radio-Controlled Drift Buggy2WD15+ minutesCheck Price
All-Terrain Super-Tough 4WD Monster Truck4WD30 minutesCheck Price
Growsland Sleek Looking RC Sports Racing Car2WDDepends on batteriesCheck Price
KidiRace Realistic Remote Control RC Police Car2WD30 minutesCheck Price
High-Speed Nissan Skyline GT-R Drift Race Car2WD20 minutesCheck Price
Multi-Colored 4WD Off-Road RC Rock Crawler4WD25 minutesCheck Price

1. Jellydog 360° Flips Stunts RC Race Car | Best Budget

Jellydog 360° Flips Stunts RC Race CarView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.7/5

The Best Budget pick goes to an RC electric car with a difference—the Jellydog RC Stunt car. It’s a fun vehicle guaranteed to entertain the over 6s as few models can. Its unique design also appeals to kids.

  • Best feature 1: Exciting high-speed stunts
  • Best feature 2: Super-easy to operate
  • Plus points: Double-sided rotating wheels, anti-skid tires, cool LEDs, crash resistant
  • Minus points: Low average battery life, longish charging time

Jellydog 360-degree Stunt Car Highlights

A lot of RC cars for kids go forward, backward, left, and right. That’s fine, but such vehicles can quickly bore youngsters. The Jellydog Stunt Car does all the above plus some, and it’s easy to operate. The fun stunts include 180° flips and 360° rotations. Performing tumbling flips and spins in any direction are tremendous fun for users. It can also help to develop eye-to-hand coordination in younger users.

Stunt car’s double-sided design is a unique feature that lets users drive the model upside down. Anti-skid tires keep the toy steady when performing non-stop rollovers. The bright LEDs add an extra magical touch to all the flip-spinning fun. The maker’s short video shows how these maneuvers work much better than words. And the ABS child-friendly plastic keeps the model tough and crash resistant.

The Not So Good

Most kids want flat-out fun but it results in faster battery drain. A single charge only lasts for around 12 minutes in these cases. Charging time is also quite long at 2+ hours. It’s a good idea to buy one or two extra rechargeable batteries at the time of purchase. They cost around 12 dollars give or take.

amazon

Tech Specs
Model type: RC Stunt car for kids
Model Scale: N/A fantasy model
Makers recommended age: 3-6 years
Dimensions: 6.3 x 5.9 x 2”
Product Weight: 1.23 lbs.
Max Range: 66 ft. (20 meters)
Battery: 4.8V 400ml lithium
Running time: 12+ minutes
Charging time: 2+ hours
The Pros
Performs multiple stunts
Super-easy to operate
Double-sided rotating wheels
Anti-skid tires
Cool LEDs
Crash-resistant
Child-safe paint
The Cons
Low average battery life
Quite long charging time

2. SZJJX High-Speed 2WD RC Drift Buggy | Best Value

SZJJX High-Speed 2WD RC Drift BuggyView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.8/5

The Top Pick is for RC racing car enthusiasts. It’s the durable, SZJJX high-speed drift buggy with a waterproof design. The model can reach speeds up to 15.5 mph (25 km/h). That’s fast for a toy.

  • Best feature 1: Classic appearance
  • Best feature 2: Fast top speeds
  • Plus points: Waterproof, direction spinner, spring suspension, all-terrain capable
  • Minus points: Average playing time, long charging

SZJJX RC Drift Buggy Highlights

The SZJJX RC Drift Buggy looks fantastic and drives well for a toy-grade RC car. The classic drift buggy appearance is half its appeal though it’s smaller than the images imply. The direction spinner at the bottom allows users to fine-tune the steering if the car starts to veer. That’s handy as some cheaper drift models don’t have direction spinners to correct errors.

Each of the four wheels has PVC grip tires and working independent suspension springs. These are the things that make the car more versatile, shockproof, and multi-terrain capable. The flexible, waterproof design also keeps the electronic components dry and protected. The 164 ft. (50 M), control distance is also quite impressive for a model RC car in its class.

The Not So Good

Playing time depends on how hard you drive and across what terrain. You can expect anywhere between 15–20 minutes before the battery dies. That’s about average for an RC model of this type and price category. Charging takes about 2.5 hours so consider extra batteries.

amazon

Tech Specs
Model type: RC 2WD Racing Buggy
Model Scale: 1:20
Makers recommended age: 6+ years
Dimensions: 15.9 x 11.1 x 4”
Product Weight: 1.7 lbs.
Max Range: 164 ft. (50 meters)
Battery: 3.7V 500mAh
Running time: 15+ minutes
Charging time: 2.5 hours
The Pros
Classical appearance
Fast top speeds
Direction spinner
Spring suspension
All-terrain capable
Waterproof
Long control distance
The Cons
Average playing time
Long charging time

3. Durable All-Terrain 4WD Monster Truck | Top Pick

Durable All-Terrain 4WD Monster TruckView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.9/5

The Top Pick goes to the durable 4WD monster truck/crawler. It’s an excellent choice for first-time users of all-terrain RC trucks. It’s super-easy to operate and comes with a pistol grip style controller.

  • Best feature 1: Easy for kids to operate
  • Best feature 2: Long playing time
  • Plus points: Child-safe materials, easy battery access, off-road capable, anti-collision structure
  • Minus points: Long charging time, small scale size

All-Terrain 4WD Monster Truck Highlights

This truck has a lot to offer for a model that costs less than 50 dollars. The use of 100% harmless metal and electronic elements in the build is welcome news for parents. Another refreshing feature is the easy-to-access bottom-loading battery compartment. It sounds logical, I know. But battery swaps are not straightforward on all RC models due to poor designs.

The 30 minutes running time is a lot better than many rivals. The truck is also off-road capable. That gives users more playing areas to drive this cool looking monster outdoors and in. Most important of all is its crash-resistant anti-collision structure. Some toys are overly fragile and don’t meet this vital quality despite claims to the contrary.

The Not So Good

Charging is around 2.5+ hours and quite typical for an RC monster truck. That doesn’t make charging any less frustrating, though. The other negative is the small size of this model. That’s only a con for those who overlook the 1:16 scale and expect something bigger. Ignoring scale size or product dimensions is a common buying error. It’s an excellent truck for anyone who’s happy with the size.

amazon

Tech Specs
Model type: RC Monster Truck
Model Scale: 1:16
Makers recommended age: 3+ years
Dimensions: 15 x 11 x 8”
Product Weight: 3.1 lbs.
Battery: Rechargeable pack (included)
Running time: 30 minutes
Charging time: 2.5 hours
The Pros
Easy for kids to operate
Long playing time
Child safe materials
Easy battery access
Off-road capable
Rugged, anti-collision structure
The Cons
Long charging time
Small scale size

4. Growsland Sleek RC Sports Racing Car for Kids

Growsland Sleek RC Sports Racing Car for KidsView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.5/5

This model is sure to be a hit with lovers of flashy aerodynamic RC sports cars. It’s a small 1:24 scale and an ideal first-time toy to play and practice with indoors.

  • Best feature 1: Excellent choice for first RC electric car
  • Best feature 2: Non-toxic ABS plastic
  • Plus points: Easy to control, scratch-resistant finish, LED headlights
  • Minus points: No batteries included, slow

Growsland RC 2WD Sports Car Highlights

The Growsland remote control sports car uses child-safe non-toxic ABS plastic in its build. It’s an easy-to-control model for kids 6 years and older. The body has a high-gloss finish protected by a scratch-resistant coat to keep it looking good. Kids love the bright LED headlights that come on when the model drives forward. The model goes well across hard floors and short pile carpets.

The Not So Good

Make sure you get all batteries in advance if you buy this car as a gift. Most models don’t include batteries for the controller (transmitter). Well, this one doesn’t include car batteries either and needs a total of six AAs. That’s four batteries for the car and two for the controller. The car is slow with a top speed of only 8 mph. That’s fast enough for younger users but older kids may soon get bored.

amazon

Tech Specs
Model type: 2WD RC Sports Car
Model Scale: 1:24
Makers recommended age: 6+ years
Dimensions: 9.8 x 4.3 x 2.2”
Product Weight: 8.5 oz.
Battery: 4 x AA (not included)
Running time: Depends on batteries
The Pros
Excellent value
Ideal choice for first RC car
Non-toxic ABS plastic
Easy to control
Scratch-resistant finish
LED headlights
The Cons
No batteries included
Slow speed

5. KidiRace Durable Realistic 2WD RC Police Car

KidiRace Durable Realistic 2WD RC Police CarView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.5/5

Police cars have always been a favorite among kids and this model doesn’t disappoint. It has a realistic look with plenty of cool features to keep young minds entertained.

  • Best feature 1: Easy for younger kids to control
  • Best feature 2: Realistic sound effects
  • Plus points: Durable build, flashing lights, rubber tires, long playing time, simple charging
  • Minus points: Long charging time, built-in battery

KidiRace Realistic RC Police Car Highlights

This RC police car is sure to please kids with its easy control and realistic sound effects. They include a police siren, car horn, and revving engine sounds. Now add the flashing lights and it’s easy to see the model’s appeal. The vehicle is quite durable and stands up well to those inevitable knocks. The rubber tires have an excellent grip that keeps the car upright on tight turns and at fast speeds.

Playing time is around 30 minutes on a full charge which is on the high side of average. Charging the batteries is straightforward, but it takes a while (see below). The car has an integral battery that recharges using the included mini-USB wall charger.

The Not So Good

Charging time is 3 hours or even longer, and the car’s battery is built-in. That means it’s not possible to swap it to continue play. The 30 minute play time for 3+ hours charging is the only negative. Other than that, it’s an excellent RC police car.

amazon

Tech Specs
Model type: 2WD RC Police Car
Model Scale: 1:16
Makers recommended age: 3+ years
Dimensions: 14.8 x 7.6 x 6.5”
Product Weight: 2.65 lbs.
Battery: Built-in Lithium-ion rechargeable
Running time: 30 minutes
Charging time: 3+ hours
The Pros
Easy for younger kids to control
Realistic sound effects
Durable build
Flashing lights
Rubber tires
Long playing time
Simple USB charging
The Cons
Long charging time
Built-in battery

6. High-Speed Nissan Skyline GT-R Drift Race Car

High-Speed Nissan Skyline GT-R Drift Race CarView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.6/5

They styled this RC model from the movie The Fast and the Furious. It’s a striking model that looks fantastic. It’s not bogged down with unnecessary extras either.

  • Best feature 1: Impressive drift action
  • Best feature 2: Pistol grip controller
  • Plus points: Turbo button, four extra tires, fast USB charging, batteries included
  • Minus points: Average running time, takes practice

Nissan Skyline GT-R 2WD Drift Car Highlights

The high-speed Nissan Skyline GT-R drift race car is a large 1:10 scale model made for outdoors. It comes with a standard pistol grip controller that’s comfortable to hold and easy to use. A turbo button on the controller slides the vehicle at high speeds. The button makes a huge difference in the way this puppy moves. It can drift without turbo—it’s just not as impressive, that’s all.

The four extra tires are welcome as drifting wears them down faster than other models. There’s also a tire removal tool included that’s attached to the USB charging cable.

The Not So Good

Playing time is around 20 minutes and average for a 1:10 scale drift car. The good news is that charging takes only 45 minutes and that’s fast. Drift racing is brilliant fun, but it does take practice if you want to compete around a course. That’s something to think about if you buy any RC drift car as a gift for a first-time user. The makers recommended age is 8+ years.

amazon

Tech Specs
Model type: RC 2WD Drift Car
Model Scale: 1:10
Makers recommended age: 8+ years
Dimensions: 18 x 7 x 8”
Product Weight: 1.67 lbs.
Battery: Built-in rechargeable
Running time: 20 minutes
Charging time: 45 minutes
The Pros
Impressive drift action
Pistol grip controller
Turbo button
Extra tires included
Fast, convenient USB charging
Batteries included
The Cons
Average running time
Takes practice

7. DOUBLE E Multi-Colored 4WD RC Rock Crawler

DOUBLE E Multi-Colored 4WD RC Rock CrawlerView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.4/5

Last on the list is the DOUBLE E Multi-Colored 4WD RC Rock Crawler. The personality body graffiti is a nice touch that helps the model to stand out against its competitors.

  • Best feature 1: Eye-catching personality body graffiti
  • Best feature 2: Double motors for added electric power
  • Plus points: Detailed interior, non-toxic ABS, suspensions shocks, fully-waterproofed body
  • Minus points: Awkward battery access, long charging time

DOUBLE E 4WD RC Rock Crawler Highlights

DOUBLE E’s multi-colored 4WD RC rock crawler uses child-safe non-toxic ABS plastic. The model has a detailed interior and a driver figure. It also boasts a working suspension system plus twin front and rear motors. The extra power, suspension, and super-grip tires provide the vehicle with its strong driving force. It navigates and climbs across all manner of challenging terrains with relative ease.

Another welcome feature is the waterproofed body which is vital for outdoor rock crawling. Waterproofing ensures the electronic components stay safe and dry. A fully-charged battery gives around 25 minutes of playing time. The control range is also impressive at 328 ft. (100 m).

The Not So Good

Charging is a hassle as you must unscrew the cover and remove the battery each time. And the long 2+ hour charging is reason enough to invest in one or two spares.

amazon

Tech Specs
Model type: 4WD Rock Crawler
Model Scale: 1:18
Makers recommended age: 8+ years
Dimensions: 13.7 x 8.7 x 7.9”
Product Weight: 2 lbs.
Max Range: 328 ft. (100 meters)
Battery: 4.8v 800mAh
Running time: 25 minutes
Charging time: 4+ hours
The Pros
Eye-catching personality body graffiti
Non-toxic child-safe ABS
Double motors for added power
Detailed interior
Working shocks
Fully-waterproofed body
Decent playing time
The Cons
Awkward battery access
Long charging time
5/51 rating