Axial Yeti XL RTR Review
Review by Adrian Apodaca, RealRCReviews Owner
All Stock Yeti XL RTR
2x 2s 7600mah lipo batteries
- BIG (says 1/8 but is bigger)
- Great looking
- Built strong
- Handles 4s or 6s
- Same easy open body as 1/10 Yeti
- Mine came with diff shims in a bag, not pre installed
- Like the 1/10, no spare tire
- Torque lift in front on 6s when throttle is punched
Again, I am going to start this review by reminding everyone that I am not one to go into detail on the specs, or what they mean, and technical jargon about fine tuning. As I've mentioned in my other surface reviews, I'm what I like to call an expert newb. I know enough to get around in the hobby and know good from bad, I just haven't messed around enough with locking diffs, changing shock or diff oils or anything like that. Even with the couple of kits I have put together, I have stuck with mostly stock suggestions.
The Yeti XL is rivaled only by the 1/10 Yeti in uniqueness and innovation. I can only imagine that Axial's competitors are scrambling to try to bring something to market to give Axial a run for their money. So now onto the rig itself. Opening the box is pretty exciting... just pulling this beast out of the box is a thrill. If you're like me, you'll run and get one of your 1/10 vehicles and set it side by side to compare the size and take in the majesty of this animal. This truck is big, heavy and built like a tank. It's weight gave me the confidence that it was a strongly built truck. I took Axial's advice and gave the Yeti a once over to tighten anything that was loose. I don't recall anything being loose, so lucky me. My RTR came with diff shims in a bag with a brief instruction sheet. Installing them is fairly straight forward, if you've built an Axial kit before, but if not, it may take a little longer. I would have loved to have had them preinstalled. From what I understand, Yeti XLs are now being shipped with the shims installed, so if you don't already own one, you won't have to worry about it if you purchase a new one.
Now for the action. My advice would be to first drive the Yeti XL with 4s. Get a feel for the rig and it's size and momentum. When you get cozy with that, go ahead and give 6s a shot if so inclined. I have driven it both ways, and I think for me, 4s is the sweet spot for the XL. 6s is crazy fast, and not only fast, but a little squirrely. When punching the throttle on 6s, the right front tire will lift off the ground and make things "interesting". Still fun, but not full controlled. I installed a home-brew sway bar in the rear, and it cut down on the tire lift on 6s and eliminated it on 4s. One 4s, I almost feel like the sway bar gave it the handling of a short course truck.
The huge tires and plush suspension allow the XL make short change out of some pretty large bumps and rocks without taking the rig off it's line. As heavy as the XL is, the powerful and torquey brushless system allow you to catch some nice air off ramps and hilly terrain without much of a run up. Landing is also nice and cozy with the giant tires and suspension. Where other cars and trucks make you flinch waiting for impact, the XL gives you the confidence to keep going with bigger, higher and longer jumps.
As it has become customary, I will address things I've read or heard about the XL and what my experience was. First, I had heard the XL had a very large turning radius. I guess I would have know what is meant by large. Can it make a hairpin turn? Probably not, but if you watch the video below, I have no issue turning around in a narrow parking lot, and that is running the stock servo. Are there stronger servos out there? Sure. If I ever blow the stock one, I will replace it, but I'm not all that into fixing something that isn't broken. Another thing I have heard is that, like the 1/10 scale Yeti, it is nose heavy on jumps. I didn't feel it. Perhaps, the 7600mah 2s lipos I'm using are heavy enough in the middle to balance everything out, whatever the case, it has not been an issue for me. And finally, like pretty much every rc car/truck on the market, you'll have tons of people saying you need to replace gears, drive shafts, tires, hubs, blah blah blah. Not in my experience. Sometimes I think that what needs changing is the driver hehe. I get told sometimes when I dispute these claims, that I'm just not driving it hard enough. Well... maybe not, but my 8 year old son (and durability tester) drives it as hard and crazy as they come. I don't have any cliffs around here to jump off of, and I'm not going to drive it off of my house to do any EXTREME testing. Like all RC cars/trucks, there are limits to what you can do with a stock vehicle. I just haven't had any issues with how we drive it. Like all Axial vehicles, there seem to be more and more upgrade parts coming out every other day it seems. So again, the option is there if you want to drop a paycheck or two into upgrades. For now, I'm keeping this sucker stock and driving it the way I like to until something breaks. Then I'll fix, and continue to play. I do warn you, if you get the XL, you WILL start neglecting your other vehicles. Since getting it, almost every time I have started to reach for one of my many vehicles, I go back and grab the XL. Unlike most vehicles, this thing is fun on pavement, grass, dirt, rocks, the moon, you name it! Now that your done reading this, click the link below and click the buy now button, you won't regret it. There is a kit version available now too, so you can do it your way. Have fun, and click the submit review tab above if you want to email me any questions or join our Facebook group to submit your own RC review.