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REVIEW: Dromida Speed Series Rally & Touring Cars

REVIEW: Dromida Speed Series Rally & Touring Cars

10-31-2016-2-20-36-pm

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Dromida first hit the RC car scene back in late 2013 with short-course, monster-truck, and buggy models that shared the same versatile 1/18-scale 4WD chassis. Affordable and fun with brushed power, the lineup has since spawned new looks (including the missilefiring Wasteland models we reviewed back in the April 2016 issue) and gone brushless with Speed Series models. And now, Dromida is hitting the pavement with the new Rally and Touring models, also available in “Brushed” and “Speed Series” versions. I took both for a spin, and the little shaft-driven machines turned out to be bigger fun than I expected for their small scale.

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Features

  1. Road- or Rally-tread tires with foam inserts on 7mm hex wheels
  2. Oil-filled shocks
  3. Adjustable-length camber links
  4. Plastic semi-tub chassis
  5. 6-cell 1300mAh battery
  6. Shaft-driven 4WD with gear differentials
  7. 5300Kv sensorless brushless motor
  8. 3-channel 2.4GHz receiver
  9. 25A speed control
  10. Separate micro steering servo
Oil-filled shocks smooth the ride. The plastic bodies are threaded for easy preload changes.

Oil-filled shocks smooth the ride. The plastic bodies are threaded for easy preload changes.

 

The Touring and Rally models get the same wheels, but each wears unique tires. Road on the left, Rally on the right, if you didn’t already figure it out. There are foam inserts in there.

The Touring and Rally models get the same wheels, but each wears unique tires. Road on the left, Rally on the right, if you didn’t already figure it out. There are foam inserts in there.

 

This little blue bullet is good for 27mph on the included NiMH battery. The electronics are waterproof; note the silicone-covered switch.

This little blue bullet is good for 27mph on the included NiMH battery. The electronics are waterproof; note the silicone-covered switch.

 

The steering links are fixed-length, but camber is adjustable. Ball bearings are standard, and the wheels slide onto 7mm hexes.

The steering links are fixed-length, but camber is adjustable. Ball bearings are standard, and the wheels slide onto 7mm hexes.

 

Behind the Wheel
Confession: I went ahead and used my Duratrax Onyx 245 charger to juice up the included battery instead of the supplied 700mAh charger. The included charger works just fine, but I wanted to get to the action quicker (charging takes 90 minutes to two hours with the included charger). With the pack still warm from charging, I strapped my GPS to the roof to get in a speed run. After three fullthrottle passes, I confirmed a solid 27mph. That’s especially fast when it’s a 1/18-scale car strafing the neighborhood. Acceleration is just about instantaneous, and the shaft-driven 4WD system digs in hard. The finely treaded Road and Rally tires seemed to offer equal grip and driving feel, with both cars reacting instantly to steering inputs. Dromida doesn’t list specs for the little DS100 servo, but it’s speedy and certainly seems to have all the torque required to steer the cars with authority. The cars sit on fairly long shocks and offer deep suspension travel by on-road standards, which gives plenty of cushion for cracks and heaves in the pavement. It also allows for some body roll that makes the cars look as if they’re really hunkering through turns. Like shaft-driven tourers in 1/10 scale, the Dromida cars tend to push when turning in hard on-power but will transition to oversteer if you clip the throttle. But watch out: There’s more than enough grip to traction-roll the cars (at least on my neighborhood’s rain-cleaned Texas concrete). A little road dust makes for easier pitch-it-sideways driving, and if you’ve got a smooth concrete floor in your garage or basement, you’ll be in drift heaven.

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Final Word
I was ready to chalk up the Dromida Rally Car and Touring Car as perfectly OK beginner funmobiles, but with their brushless power systems and surprisingly aggressive handling, they’re actually entertaining hot-rods for enthusiasts of any skill level. 1/18 scale is great for small spaces, but there’s speed and performance here for anyplace you want to drive (as long as it’s smooth, of course). Speed running my neighborhood didn’t make the cars feel small or slow, and if you’ve got two (or more) of these little bullets and buddies to run with, get ready for some good fenderrubbing fun.


SPECS
Item no.: DIDC0074
(Touring); DIDC0076 (Rally)
Scale: 1/18
Price: $170
Wheelbase: 6.7 in. (170mm)
Length: 11.1 in. (282mm)
Width: 5.1 in. (130mm)
Weight, as tested: 1 lb. 5.1 oz. (598g)
Chassis
Material: Plastic
Type: Semi-tub with upper deck
Suspension
Type: Lower H-arm with adjustable camber link
Shocks
Type: Oil-filled
Bodies: Threaded plastic
Drivetrain
Type: Shaft-driven 4WD
Differentials: Bevel gear
Driveshafts: Plastic dogbone
Bearings: Shielded ball
Wheels & Tires
Wheels: One-piece plastic, 7mm hex
Tires: Road or Rally tread
Inserts: Closed-cell foam
Included Electronics
Transmitter/receiver: Dromida D100 2-channel/
Dromida RX18 3-channel 2.4GHz
Servo: Dromida DS100 waterproof
Speed control: Dromida BE18 25A
Motor: Dromida 5300Kv sensorless

To download this article as a PDF, click the image below. 

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Updated: November 2, 2016 — 6:12 PM
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