Articles

ElectrixRC Circuit Stadium Truck Review

7/20/2010 by Gary Katzer

Copyright:© 2010 Horizon Hobby, Inc.

Print This Article Bookmark This Article
Share This Article

     It’s not often when you see a new brand jump into the world of RC but ElectrixRC is doing just that. They have taken the approach to design all-new vehicles from the ground up to be fun, durable and affordable electric-powered cars and trucks for people to take their first steps in RC. The first entry from ElectrixRC, the Circuit Stadium Truck, dives head-first into one of the most popular classes for beginners—the stadium truck class. Known for their good handling traits, ability to drive in a variety of areas, increased ride height and more, stadium trucks have quite a following and were a logical way to get started.
     We had a chance to get some early running with the Circuit Stadium Truck recently to see what 120-bucks got you anyways. Looking at the truck it looks like you actually get quite a bit as the truck features oil-filled shocks, an electronic speed controller, two sets of transmitter and receiver crystals, 20-turn motor and full ball bearings! That’s right, every rotating part of the drivetrain and all four wheels are supported by ball bearings. We loaded up the camera gear, charged up the battery, applied the decals and got ready to hit the dirt running.

Speed Specs
Circuit Stadium Truck
Manufacturer: ElectrixRC
Part Number(s): ECX1000 (Red); ECX1100 (Silver)
Vehicle Class/Type: 1/10-scale Stadium Truck
Target Audience: Beginner RC-enthusiast
Kit/RTR/BND/Race Roller: RTR

Track Notes:
     The Circuit Stadium Truck hits the ground running as a ready-to-run, but if anything you could almost classify it as an “RTR-Plus”. By that I mean most RTRs include the vehicle, electronics and a painted body but other crucial running gear, such as a main battery pack, AAs for the transmitter and battery charger are all extra purchases. Not so with the Circuit as all of those items, down to the AAs and the AC-wall charger, are included with the truck. That’s pretty dialed.
     The first thing you should do before you get started is to set the truck and gear aside and spend a few worthwhile minutes going over the instruction manual. I admit that I hate reading manuals as much as the next guy but when you’re getting involved with something that can be this complex its sage advice. Going through the manual I saw the steps to charge the battery, thread the antenna through the antenna tube, understanding the controls and more. It’s really great information that will get you started on the right foot.
     I charged the Dynamite Speedpack up on the included charger for the first charge. With its 300mAh output it took a little over six hours to charge up the battery completely. I loaded the battery into the Circuit, plugged in the connectors, installed the body, turned on the transmitter and truck and I was ready to get rolling.

Top Speed/Acceleration:
     I didn’t know what to expect from this truck in terms of speed and power. Sealed endbell motors, like the motor that the Circuit comes with, aren’t known as speed demons. The Dynamite 20T motor held its own though and had some decent pep. I was even able to break the tires loose on acceleration without trying. Doughnuts on command were pretty easy on the loose dirt of the track I was running on. As you can see in the video, the top speed is close to 20 mph, pretty respectable for a truck aimed at beginners.
     Once I was done at the dirt track I did run it around our HorizonHobby.com offices in the parking lot to see what it was like on smooth pavement. It was a little easier to get on the power without as much wheel spin as on dirt, but the ability to light up the tires was still there if I really wanted to spin the truck out. I’d best describe the speed as fast enough to be fun and challenging but not so fast as it would be difficult to control for a beginner.

Handling
     Testing a truck like this straight from the box can be pretty exciting. You never know exactly what you may get or what to expect until you squeeze the trigger for the first time. On the dirt I found the Circuit Stadium Truck had a good amount of grip front and rear with a bias towards rear traction. I was able to get the truck around the track at Eli Field rather easily as the suspension did a great job of soaking up the undulations and imperfections on the track surface. I would rate the overall handling as neutral to slightly pushy, something that’s quite good for a beginner.
     On the asphalt the Circuit had a very similar feel; however, it did have more overall grip on both ends. I was pleased that, when I took a corner at-speed, there wasn’t any noticeable front end chatter. Quite often RTRs at a similar price point have the equivalent to water for shock oil in the shocks which can translate into some pretty nasty handling characteristics. This is not so with the Circuit as the suspension did its job all day long.

Jumping
     There weren’t many jumps on the track at Eli Field but what was there the Circuit soaked up in stride. I didn’t make any changes to the ride height or shock position through out the day as the stock positions felt pretty decent for conditions. I would have liked a little thicker shock oil in the rear shocks myself, but that’s more of a personal preference sort of thing. In all honesty the plastic body oil-filled shocks are quite smooth and work very well straight from the box. Over the jumps the Circuit took off straight, didn’t get out of shape and absorbed the landing without a fuss and kept on its merry little way. The plastic body oil-filled shocks are quite smooth and work very well straight from the box.

Off-Power
     If you watch the video you’ll notice a left-hand 180-degree turn in the middle of the track. I absolutely loved how the Circuit handled this, it was so much fun. All I had to do was tap the brakes to break the rear end free, crank the wheel hard left, get on the power and I could counter-steer through the entire corner. I was able to do this lap-after-lap and it was such a blast. I was able to do this thanks to the off-power handling of the truck as it transferred its weight to the nose rather predictably each and every corner without much excitement. Now if I laid on the brakes too hard or too long, it was entirely possible to lock up the rear end and send the truck into a slide, but I really needed to mess up how I applied the brakes to make that happen.

On-Power
     Quite often manufacturers include less-than-ideal rear tires with RTRs just to include something that’s cheap for them to include. Often this translates into poor traction, poor tread life or worse, both. Between running on asphalt, concrete and dirt I didn’t notice any major tire wear for one. For two the rear tires actually did a decent job of hooking up on any surface without excessive wheel spin. As I mentioned, yes, I could break the rear tires free but I really needed to pitch the truck from side-to-side pretty violently to make it happen. Yes, you can always get more rear grip and install stickier rear tires but for playing and bashing around there’s nothing wrong with the shoes the Circuit comes with. They hook up and the truck goes where you point it, point blank.

Out-Of-The-Box Setup
     You can do worse than the Circuit out-of-the-box, a lot worse. The truck handles very well for a beginner-orientated vehicle and, as I mentioned many times in the video, it’s simply fun to drive. I wish the track at Eli Field had more elevation changes, a table top or some sort of roller to it to really push the limits of the truck. But I have a feeling the Circuit would have handled that situation without batting an eye, looked at you, smiled and asked “is that all you got?”.
Anytime I hear a vehicle has fixed camber links and toe links I get nervous. Part of the reason is I have seen some vehicles that have fixed links but still don’t even have the same camber from one side of the vehicle to another. There are still others that have the toe-in so out-of-wack that the truck never tracks straight. I am pleased to say that the camber and toe-in are right in the ball park of where it needs to be for an off-road truck and, thanks to the captured design, I never popped off a ball cup either.

It can be quite difficult to bring, not only a new vehicle, but an entirely new brand to market. Your first offering can be a make-or-break proposition, as if it disappoints or misses the mark it can hamper future offerings. The Circuit Stadium Truck from ElectrixRC is an ideal way to launch a new brand. It features a low price tag, high fun factor with some great hop-up potential mixed in there. I said it in the video and I’ll say it again, this truck is a home run. If you’re looking to make the dive and get into RC or know someone who has been on the fence, then look no further than the Circuit Stadium Truck.