1/24 Barrage 4WD Scaler Rock Crawler RTR Review

Review by Adrian Apodaca, RealRCReviews Owner

Equipment Used:

- Stock everything!

Pros:

- Great scale looks

- LEDs on the front bumper

- Tackles big obstacles for its size

- Everything you need is included!

- A blast to drive indoors and out

- Battery charges faster than advertised

Cons:

- No other battery options

- Didn't work out of the box

- Motor could use more torque

Intro:

I've been a long time fan of most ECX products, most recently having bought and reviewed the Barrage Kit, which I loved. When this little 1/24 Barrage was announced, I was pretty stoked. Having given away my old Losi Micro Crawler a few years back, I was longing for a cool looking micro crawler for driving mostly indoors. I put in my pre-order and waited and waited! By the way, this will be a relatively short written review because I spent a decent amount of time talking and driving in the video below.

 

Out of the Box:

Included in the box is the truck itself, the battery, a USB charger, batteries for the transmitter and the transmitter. The truck looks really sharp, especially considering it's size. I love the bed area and love that they threw on an actual spare tire and LEDs on the front bumper. The manual says the battery should take a few hours to charge, but I find my battery gets a full charge in around half hour. Speaking of batteries, I wish this ran on lipos and not nimh. Nimh so their discharge curve is so annoying. Because of the voltage, I don't think there are any other options as far as batteries go. My battery was totally dead when I got it (which is expected) so I charged it up and prepped for some testing.

 

Driving:

With my battery fulled charged, I was ready to tackle some terrain. I turned on the transmitter, plugged in the battery, and pressed the trigger........THEN NOTHING!!!! The darn thing didn't move. The steering worked, but the truck would not move forward or backward. I tried rolling it forward and backward with the battery unplugged and the tires wouldn't even turn. Finally, in a moment of frustration, I conked my truck on the top of the cab...and go figure, it worked. What ever was binding, broke free or loosened up. The drive train made a little noise for the first few minutes, then it went away.  One other thing I noticed was that turning with the rates all the way up, resulted in some binding and the side you were turning to rising up a little bit. I lowered the travel on the steering using the steering knob and all was good to go.

 

After some mild driving inside, I figured I'd see what the truck could handle outside. Surprisingly, the Barrage can take on some pretty large obstacles for it's size. The one thing I found slightly annoying is the motor's lack of torque. Because of the low torque, when you are going over a steep or larger obstacle, there is no "finessing" over it. There is no good low speed crawl. If you try to take a large obstacle, you pretty much have to roll up to it, and blip the throttle to full to get up and over. Those limitations were admittedly kind of expected. After all, this is a micro $100 crawler. All things considered, my overall impressions of the driving experience are pretty positive. Indoors it's quite fun and outdoors it can take on a lot more terrain than you'd think looking at this tiny thing. One last thing that I didn't mention in the video, is that the servo is pretty fragile. It will do what it needs to do while you drive around your obstacles and terrain, but one too many impacts will strip it as my son discovered today. Replacement servos are hard to find and cost as much as a decent full sized servo (around $15 bucks).

 

Conclusion:

My final conclusion on this little sucker a bit mixed. It's a fun little truck to own and drive, but at $99, I'm not entirely sure it's worth that much. Especially considering that you can get an entry level 1/10 scale vehicle for a few bucks more. Not only that, but a truck this size having replacement servos cost $15 and extra batteries costing $18 is just downright ludicrous, especially in todays RC market. If you really feel drawn to this vehicle, I'm pretty sure you'll enjoy it, but if you were hoping for a really great truck with value to boot, you might want to skip this.

 

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