This large scale 4wd Truck from Pinecone is well made and true to scale but makes for mixed performance results as an RC version which makes a hard sell at this price
SG / Pincone Forest is perhaps best known for the budget small scale drift cars that were so popular around 2 years ago, one of which I reviewed here: SG1604 / 1603 These little 1/16 scale brushed drift cars were low cost and a lot of fun but pretty cheap in build quality. The brand SG also appeared on the SG 1601 I reviewed here which was a rebranded HBX 16890 - brother of the HBX 16889a pro I rate so highly. These cars share no similarity other than brand and I can say this is the same with the 1002s SC / trophy truck as reviewed here too - this is a much higher quality build that reflects the much higher price point, a significant departure from the cheaper cars they've dabbled in before. Read on for more
In this article:
SG Pincone Forest 1002s: RTR 1/10 Brushless 4WD Short Course Trophy Truck
The SG Pincone Forest 1002s is a 1/10 Brushless 4WD Short Course Trophy Truck. For this review I'm looking at the Ready To Run (RTR) version but it's also available as a kit if you want to add your own electronics. As an RTR version this has the remote, and all electronics but lacks the battery and charger - you'll need to purchase one or two x 3s lipo batteries and a suitable charger separately. I'd recommend a pair of these batteries and check out this guide for chargers. Included spares are fairly minimal here but does include a nice set of hex drivers and a well prepared manual. Short course trucks like this one tend to run on narrower tyres and the large closed-wheel bodies look more life-like and protect the car well by putting themselves in harms way. This particular model has a fairly extensive lattice-work underbody like the roll cage of a real car and makes it tough as a result.
Before we get into how this car drives, we'll take a closer look at the car and what's included. Click any of the images below to enlarge and get a better look. I must say that after having had the car apart the build is very high quality, clearly heavy inspiration has been taken from the Traxxas UDR - more of a focus on trueness to scale than conventional RC car geometry.
Above are images of the Traxxas Ultimate Desert Racer (UDR) larger in scale but unmistakably the inspiration for the 1002s. As I said earlier the quality of this build was better than I was expecting and goes some way to explaining the price.
The top speed of this car was very hard to measure because of the poor grip. I've had issues with my GPS unit so haven't been able to repeat on better surface but the best I could get on loose gravel was 39km/h although I honestly think it will do more like 50km/h on a smooth surface. This speed is about what I expected based on the fairly conservatively low 2600kV motor on 3s. I think probably a 3000kv motor would be better suited here but we know that this one will run cool and reliable. This low kv motor makes for strong acceleration which makes the low-grip tyres even more frustrating. On the whole the powertrain seems to be well put together.
On to the handling now which is a bit disappointing. The stock tyres are awful so I will say no more here other than in an upcoming review I'll be testing these onroad tyres to see if they are an improvement (Update: I've finished the review here and the are really good). It's a real shame because the locked diff on the rear with solid drive shaft should make for excellent traction. Moving on the front suspension is ok with barely adequate dampening thanks to the small bore shocks. The spring rate is about right. The rear suspension is based on an extremely long trailing arm setup which offers a huge range of articulation but the lack of a big bore shock means this is badly under-dampened and even the heavy spring is a little light for this geometery. I will experiment with a beefier shock for this car like these ZD racing ones one shown on the right but for now the rear suspension as stock is pretty soft which makes the car squat down a lot on take off. If you are a fan of the scale "look" (like me) then this actually looks pretty cool but it does hinder the actual handling performance. I should also note that this truck does have a gyro that can be adjusted for strength from a dial on the remote but this doesn't resolve the lack of grip although I'm looking forward to trying some better tyres to see how it performs in more ideal conditions.
So far durability on this car is excellent. For one the nylon cage that sits underneath greatly supports the polycarbonate body which is usually the weak-point on short course trucks like this. It is the cage that provides the strength to the car here much like the cage on a real race car with the body is just a facade. The car itself is also very strong (and heavy) particularly the driveline which is all metal and so far as I can tell fairly bomb-proof although time will tell. This car does need to be strong because so far I have found this car to be fairly easily to tip and roll to to the tall ride height and quirky handling.
As you can tell, the SG Pincone Forest 1002s was not an easy car to review. One the one hand I love the scale look and the durability of the car and components but on the other hand the handling is really poor as a result of the awful tyres and the way the suspension has been setup. Like anything this can be fixed though and I have parts here and on the way to review in a future update but out of the box it's clearly a mixed experience for me. Probably the issue that will put most off though is the tall asking price. I can see why the cost is what it is for this car - it is complex and well built but quite aside from the handling issues, this brand and design is pretty well unknown - $350+ is a lot of money to shell out for out for a car that may be hit or miss compared to the $150 or so you might pay for a really good 1/14 scale car (looking at you or you MJX ?)
Furthermore the remote feels a little cheap (I'd have trusted a rebranded DUMBORC remote like ZD racing use) and I've had like a battery + charger to have been included. If you don't already have a charger check out this guide and a pair of these batteries should do the job nicely
I've gone back and forwards a few times on my final rating but have settled on 2.5 star. Overall the car is nicely designed and built especially if you are in to scale looks but it's a hard sell at the RRP considering the handling shortcomings. Definitely worth a look in if you can get it on a sharp sale price.
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