WLToys have done a lot right with this little RC Crawler but the tinkerer will be able to get the best out of it
If you are a regular to this site you know that WL Toys is a RC Car manufacturer that by and large strikes and excellent value with a good balance between price and performance with reasonable quality thrown in. Some of the models can be hits (like the 144010 and all of the variants that came before it) and some misses (like the 104001 and 104002). The WL Toys 2428 reviewed here is WL Toys' first attempt at a micro crawler and there is a lot to like about it but like pretty much all WL Toys models it's not perfect. Read on to find out more.
In this article:
Wltoys 2428: RTR 1/24 4WD RC Rock Crawler
The WL Toys 2428 is a small, 1/24 scale crawler with permanent 4wd. This car comes with a full set of electronics, remote, battery charger and full instructions - everything you need to run except for the 4 x AA batteries needed to run the 2.4GHz digital remote. Crawler RC cars like this are made to run at very low speeds but to make up for this they can tackle tricky obstacles and terrain as they are made for grip and power rather than speed. This makes them a lot of fun for scale driving in rough condition outdoor or even indoor with everyday obstacles. Better yet the low speed makes them a good options for kids to learn since you are unlikely to damage the car, the surroundings (or yourself).
Before we get into how this car drives I want to take a closer look at the car. The embedded YouTube video above will show this but if you'd prefer to see closeup pictures and read my comments carry on below. I won't judge you if you choose to do both.
More detail on the remote can be found in the embedded video above.
In this section you'll be able to see how it drives for yourself in the embedded YouTube clip above and I'll give you my thoughts below.
For the most part this is a very capable little crawler. The soft and well articulated suspension does a great job of keeping the tyres in contact with the ground as does the excellent choice of a very soft rubber compound that WL Toys has used for the tyres. Steering is very precise and not prone to bump steer due to the fine design job where the servo was place directly on top of the front diff. Compare this to the WPL C24 where the servo is mounted to the chassis. The advantage for the WLToys 2428 is that is steers true regardless of what the suspension is doing.
Gearing in this car is good and the gearbox has little play - it feels very precise however the ESC doesn't do a great job of very low speed control compare to say the WPL C24 or the HBX 2098B which have excellent throttle resolution at very low throttle settings. My guess is this is probably the same programming that is used for the 1/28 scale cars like the 284161 I reviewed here that don't rely on good low speed control. It's not terrible and most wouldn't notice but I've tested a few small crawlers now and would have preferred better.
The motor for me is a little on the small side. There are occasions when the car can stall, even with the very short gearbox and this shouldn't really happen. To be honest the 2428 may be a victim of it's own success on having such good grip but a little extra power would be well appreciated.
Overall though don't take my negatives too strongly - I'm a review it's my job to be critical and share my findings honestly but don't let that cloud the fact that this is a really fun little car that does scale crawling really well.
I think this car is good out of the box. It has excellent suspension and tyres meaning it has great grip and the electronics are precise and reliable. There is room for improvement on the low speed control offered by the ESC and the lack of power from the motor but I'm excited to see what modding could bring - this has the potential to be a truly awesome scale crawler with just a little tinkering. As it is though this car is good but not perfect which is why I have rated it with 4 out of 5 stars overall. I'm presently working on some mods to these functions and will link here when I have completed this work.
Update: Improvement mods have been completed
Ok so it turns out the stock ESC depresses the throttle quite substantially. I've found and excellent all in one receiver-ESC unit that greatly improves this and have written a full article here:
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