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The best buggies and truggies RTR for 2009

The best buggies and truggies RTR for 2009 Articles

For many new comers, ready-to-run vehicles are the best way to start in R/C. Most of them are well built, easy to use and their price tags are extremely attractive. Each company has their own definition of what a ready-to-run vehicle should be. Some manufacturers include basic radio equipment while others go with high-end radios or add extra equipments like batteries, charger, glow starter or fuel bottle. Of course the price varies according to what it is included in the box. Take note that not all manufacturers offer RTRs, some only offer their vehicles as kits.

In this article, I tried to pick what represent the best ready-to-run vehicles for 2009. With the huge variety and quality of RTRs on the market, this was not an easy task! I didn’t not use the traditional first, second or third position to rank the vehicles. I simply picked the three vehicles that are the most interesting for anyone who wants to get into the hobby. I evaluated the vehicles by using criteria like overall quality, price, included items and support.

1/8 buggy category

There are several excellent RTR buggies on the market. I picked three that represent excellent choices for anyone looking for a good vehicle to race or simply run in your backyard. All manufacturers have at least one RTR buggy in their lineup. The price range varies from 250$us to 700$us. Of course, price goes with the quality and quantity of the included equipment.

Team Losi 8ight 2.0 RTR

The best buggies and truggies RTR for 2009 Articles

The Losi 8ight 2.0 RTR is the most complete RTR on the market. It comes with a starter box and a Spektrum DX3S 2.4 GHz DMS radio with telemetry. The radio system is not only the best radio you can find in a RTR but it is also one of the best on the market. The telemetry lets you know the engine temperature, RPM and receiver pack voltage directly on the radio display screen while you are running. The 8ight 2.0 RTR is equipped with a race inspired .21 engine that is legal for racing in the higher classes. The street price is 700$us. That may look expensive if you compare to others buggies on the market but you can be sure to have an excellent ready-to-run package for every dollar invested.

  • Designed with the entry-level racer in mind, the 8IGHT 2.0 RTR is completely assembled and ready-to-run with the chassis, wheels, tires and electronics already installed
  • The installed Losi 350 .21-sized performance engine is specifically built for a 1/8-scale off-road buggy and provides an optimal amount of power
  • The included Spektrum DX3S 3-channel sport radio system with 2.4GHz DSM technology offers precise control plus the added benefit of integrated telemetry
  • The 8IGHT 2.0 RTR includes a Starter Box for simple starting time after time
  • The extended-length chassis offers unmatched performance and stability that will be appreciated by novice and expert drivers alike
  • A high-capacity 1400mAh NiMH receiver battery is included to ensure longer running times and plenty of power
  • Heavy-duty silicone filled differential cases in the front, rear and center increase the driveline durability
  • The Sure-Close fuel tank is designed for automatic, positive closure and the pull-handle on the lid offers added convenience
  • Large, race inspired heavy-duty brake disks will consistently slow down the 8IGHT 2.0 RTR when needed, even after accelerating to full speed
  • The 4mm thick chassis, shock towers, wheel hexes and wheels nuts have been anodized blue for a stylish custom look
  • The pre-painted, fully decorated body boasts a custom look with its race inspired scheme designed to match the color anodized chassis

Team Associated RC8RS RTR

 The best buggies and truggies RTR for 2009 Articles

Another excellent RTR buggy on the market is the Team Associated RC8RS RTR. The buggy comes with good equipments such as a FM radio with 10 model memory and a Pro-Start hand held starting system. The included .28 engine is easy to tune and runs flawlessly tank after tank. Even if the RC8RS is at its best on a race track, it doesn’t mean it cannot be run in your backyard. The buggy can be upgraded with many Factory Team option parts. The street price is 490$us and that is a good deal considering the race potential and durability of the RC8RS RTR buggy.


  • Team Associated’s Powerful .28 Pro Engine
  • Pro-Start Hand Held Starting System
  • Painted and Pre-Mounted Body With Custom Graphic Decal Kit
  • S2008 Metal Gear Steering Servo And S1903 Throttle Servo
  • Hard-Anodized 3mm Thick 7075 Aluminum Chassis
  • Team Associated 2-Chamber Muffler
  • Sealed Radio Box With Thread-Through Molded Antenna Mount
  • Fuel Bottle
  • 3mm Low-Profile Black Anodized Aluminum Shock Towers
  • Pre-Mounted Team Associated Tires and Molded Inserts On Dish Wheels
  • Hard-Anodized Shock Bodies With Pre-Load Clips, 4mm Shock Shafts, Composite Shock Caps and Rubber Boots
  • XP3D Computerized Digital 3-Channel FM Radio System with 10 Model Memory
  • 3mm Black Anodized Aluminum Steering Rack With Ball-Bearing Steering System

Cen Matrix R2 RTR

The best buggies and truggies RTR for 2009 Articles

The Cen Matrix R2 buggy is the perfect budget buggy. Its low price tag of 299$us and the quality of its components combined to a nice looking body make the Matrix R2 one of the best choice in the market. A .28 big block engine with pull-start powers the buggy. Two metal gear servos with 144oz of torque are used for the steering and brake duties. To control the buggy, Cen Racing added a 10 memory Skyion DX-Pro FM radio. The Matrix R2 will perform well in any backyards or on any race tracks.


  • Full precision ball bearing support
  • Super Strength 4mm Aluminum front and rear shock towers
  • Front CVS axles
  • Splash resistant fuel tank with added splash guard
  • Metal brake system
  • Captured rear hinge pins, no e clips needed
  • Lightweight racing rims
  • 3 shoe racing clutch
  • Fully adjustable down travel
  • Low profile radio tray for low CG
  • Lightweight aluminum chassis with 2 bumps design, tuned for racing out of the box
  • High efficient fuel filter included
  • Front aluminum C hub design
  • Fully adjustable suspension w/ Thick shock shafts
  • Super Sleek Gun Metal anodizing with hints of Gold
  • Front and Rear High strength chassis stiffeners
  • 22 degree caster blocks
  • Ultra strong 6 gear differentials
  • All hard steel gears throughout the car
  • Championship winning quality
  • Ultra beefy Tie Rod ends for durability
  • Sleek lightweight body

Truggy category

Another “hot” category is the truggy class. They are wider, longer and have bigger tires than 1/8 buggies. Their bigger stance makes them more appropriate to be bashed and more stable. On a race track, especially when the track gets rough, truggies are as fast as buggies if not faster. The price varies from 400$us up to 800$us and you get what you pay for. The truggies are a little bit heavier, so manufacturers equip them with .28 engines that have more torque.

Team Losi 8ight-T 2.0 RTR

The best buggies and truggies RTR for 2009 Articles

Just like the buggy version, the Losi 8ight-T 2.0 RTR comes fully equipped staring a Spektrum DX3S 2.4 GHz radio and a starter box. The included Losi 454 (.28) engine has more than sufficient power to push the truggy far away in front of your competitors. The 2.0 version has an extended chassis for more stability. This truggy is a solid performer and the asked 800$us are justified with excellent quality components, race attitude and accessories.


  • Designed with the entry-level driver in mind, the 8IGHT-T 2.0 RTR comes completely assembled with the wheels, tires, engine and electronics installed
  • The included Losi 454 .28-sized performance engine provides the optimum amount of power for dominating a race or bashing in the backyard
  • An included Spektrum DX3S 3-channel sport radio with 2.4GHz DSM technology offers the added benefit of integrated telemetry
  • The 8IGHT-T 2.0 RTR includes a custom Starter Box for simple starting time after time
  • The extended length chassis offers unmatchable performance and stability for the everyday RTR driver
  • A rugged radio tray design simultaneously increases response and reduces stress on the throttle servo by optimizing the position of the servos
  • The pre-painted, fully decorated body allows increased airflow to the engine cooling head and also allows easy access to the fuel tank lid
  • Lengthened suspension arms with zero offset wheels offer a wider, more stable base, allowing the truggy to maintain outstanding handling over any terrain, especially while cornering
  • A high-capacity 1400mAh NiMH receiver battery ensures multiple runs between charges and plenty of power for the on-board electronic components
  • Heavy-duty silicone fluid-filled differential cases in the front, rear and center increase the driveline durability
  • Large, heavy-duty brake disks meet your demands to reliably slow down the 8IGHT-T 2.0 RTR when needed after accelerating to speed
  • From backyard fun to on-the-track domination, the race-length shocks greatly enhance suspension travel providing controlled landings and a smooth ride.

Team Associated RC8TRS RTR

The best buggies and truggies RTR for 2009 Articles

Another excellent truggy on the market is the Team Associated RC8TRS RTR. The truggy comes with a 10 memory FM radio, big bore shocks and an electric hand-held starting device to make starting a breeze. The included .28 engine is powerful, easy to start and easy to tune. It makes life easier for new comers to have such engine included in a truggy. The tires have low profile with a race type tread that will work on many tracks. For 590$us, you have a race-ready truggy right out of the box.


  • XP3D Computerized Digital 3-Channel FM Radio System with 10-model memory
  • Powerful Pro.28 engine
  • Pro-Start hand-held starting system
  • Painted and pre-mounted body with custom decals
  • S2008 metal gear steering servo
  • Composite ‘Big Bore’ 16mm shock bodies and caps. 4mm shock shafts with protective rubber boots
  • Hard-anodized 3mm thick 7075 aluminum chassis
  • Team Associated 2-chamber muffler
  • Pre-mounted Team Associated tires, foam inserts on low-profile (LPR) dish wheels
  • 3mm low-profile black anodized aluminum shock towers
  • 3mm black anodized aluminum steering rack with ball bearing steering system
  • Sealed radio box with thread-through molded antenna mount

Jammin’ X2 CRT RTR

The best buggies and truggies RTR for 2009 Articles

The Jammin’ X2 CRT RTR is packed with many race features. The suspension uses big bore shocks to let the truggy absorb bumps with easy and to add extra stability. A well known Force .28 engine is included with the X2 CRT and has the reputation of being reliable and easy to tune. For easy starting, Jammin’ added an electric shaft starter. The truggy is controlled by an AM radio. A receiver pack and glow igniter are included with the truggy. With a street price of 490$us, the Jammin’ X2 CRT RTR is affordable and an excellent choice.


  • Force .28 Engine
  • Polished Tuned Pipe
  • Roto Start for easy starting
  • Aluminum Shock Towers
  • Top Loading Servo Saver
  • 16mm Super Big Bore Shocks
  • Stiffer Front & Rear Ars
  • Longer Front Upper Arms
  • Stiffer Bulk Heads
  • Smaller Spur Gear
  • 2-Piece Center Diff Mount
  • Lowered Radio Tray
  • 3mm Aluminum Narrower Chassis
  • High Down Force Wing
  • LPR Wheels & Tires


There are many others good choices on the market that have deserved to be listed here but we had to select only six of them. The number one criteria of selection must be your budget. Don’t go crazy with hopups and keep few bucks for fuel, glow plugs, batteries and charger. Take your time before buying your first vehicle; don’t be afraid to ask questions to your hobby shop. I you wish to know more about buying a first R/C vehicle, please read our “First R/C Buying Guide” posted few months ago.

Thanks for sharing...

Sylvain Lafrance

Hello, my name is Sylvain Lafrance and I am the man behind MyRCBox.com. I have bought my first hobby grade RC in the early 90s. With years, what that started as a simple hobby, quickly became a strong passion. I am so much passionate about R/C that I have created MyRCBox.com in 2006 to share my experiences with R/C products that I use for racing and bashing. Follow me !

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Avatar

    WOW, what a crock! A CEN? come on, you have to be kidding. The Kyosho Inferno 7.5 US Sports 2 is superior to the CEN in both features and its racing track record….. Ultimately, the Losi would be the best RTR due to features. What a joke…….

  2. Avatar

    Pretty fair view.
    Considering cen and kyosho.

    Kyosho sports 2 (or now 4) should never be considered track worthy, since it was designed as a ‘leftover’ car by kyosho.
    Cen on the other hand, always try to slam price lower that thought possible. So the R2 would of a better value to sports 2 (and it’s not because price either)
    Have you own any kyosho sports?! Plastic spur gear and 2-spider-geared diff can’t be considered race-worthy (nor bash worthy).
    The other stuff in the package won’t help either, AM radio, old engine,weak servos.
    In japan and throughout asia, kyosho sports intended and considered for ppl that really shopping by price and want to only try out the nitro side of this hobby, to the upgrade it to full MP7.5 spec, or more often sell 2nd hand to another beginner.
    Since price is a lot more expensive in jpn, difference between sports and full-spec is pretty wide, that’s why sports still considered worth it.
    But still, mainly used as promo kit to prospective hobbyist 🙂

    Cen presents you an adequate package at a very comfy price level.
    I think this article have been appropriate in its selections of the RTRs.
    Keep up the good work. I always direct newbies to your pages

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