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Lifewire / Rebecca Issacs
Small, compact design is child-safe
Bright, child-friendly colors
Long battery life
Makes noises and flashes lights
Can’t handle outdoors
Limited controls and slow speed
For a very basic kid’s car, the Holy Stone will provide hours of fun with its simple steering options and lengthy battery life.
Radio-controlled cars aren’t just for hobbyists, they’re popular among children too. However, not all RC cars are child-friendly, some are extremely large and can go as fast as 30 miles per hour. The Holy Stone RC Cartoon Race Car is a vehicle clearly designed and intended for kids, from its brightly colored plastic to its cartoon figurine driver. Over the course of a week, we checked out its battery life, its versatility on various surfaces, and its controls. Read on to see how well it suits children.
At 5.3 by 3.9 by 6.7 inches (LWH), the Holy Stone RC car is a small, rounded RC car, made of bright red, green, and yellow plastic. It’s eye-catching and easy to spot across the room, especially with the yellow, blue-tipped antenna protruding from the back.
The car requires three AA batteries to be slotted into the compartment hidden in the undercarriage. The remote is a two-toned wheel with orange buttons, and the same antenna design as the car. We felt it was a little too small for our adult-sized hands, but would be a comfortable grip for a child. The antennae on both the car and the remote were thick, but flexible, allowing them to bend and helping avoid injuries or breakage.
It’s eye-catching and easy to spot across the room, especially with the yellow, blue-tipped antenna protruding from the back.
The only major issue we had was with the RC car’s small wheels. It’s a cute design, but we wish the wheels would have been bigger, as they affected the car’s performance for outdoor driving.
When we pulled the Holy Stone RC car out of its box, it was attached to the cardboard via wires and plastic twist screws. The nice part about this packaging was that it’s really simple to extract. Simply unscrew the plastic screws and remove the wires, releasing the car.
However, the rest of the setup was a little trickier. The car and the remote both required a small four-pronged screwdriver to open the battery compartment. Once we unscrewed this panel, we were able to pop in three AA batteries into the car and two AA into the remote, flip the car’s On switch (located on the undercarriage), and it was ready to drive. One important note, the batteries don't come with the car so you’ll have to buy them separately.
The remote has three buttons on it: the Forward arrow, a Light-toggling button, and a Turn/Reverse button. These controls responded quickly and effectively, without any lag, making the car fairly easy to maneuver around the house.
We noticed a major flaw immediately. While other cars have the option of turning left and right, the only way the Holy Stone RC Car can turn is if you press the back button. The car’s undercarriage has a small wheel which turns it as it backs up. However, as we kept testing it, we realized this is, in fact, a strength. This directional control is basic, but it’s simple enough for young children to grasp. For adults who help kids control it, however, it is annoying leading to many crashes. There is no buffer to prevent the car from chipping away at wall paint either, so parents should beware.
These controls responded quickly and effectively, without any lag, making the car fairly easy to maneuver around the house.
The car also comes with two buttons on it, one behind the driver, and another that on the car’s steering wheel. These buttons let you play music and allows the car to flash its lights and honk its horn. Children will enjoy this, but parents may find it a little irksome since you can’t set the volume.
We tested the Holy Stone RC Car over various terrains: wood floors, carpets, grass, and sidewalks. Indoors on wooden floors, the car drives at a slow, steady pace—not the advertised fast speeds. This is actually a selling point since it’s easier for kids to control (or for parents to prevent potential crashes). The Holy Stone RC Car struggled a bit on carpet, but was still able to drive. Because it’s still a relatively smooth surface, the car didn’t flip or get stuck unless we accidentally drove it into a corner, in which case it was difficult to extract using the limited controls.
Outdoors is a different story. Due to small wheels and a low undercarriage, the car kept getting caught on small rocks and even berries on the sidewalk, causing it to tip over several times. When tested on the grass, the Holy Stone stalled, simply spinning its wheels.
We didn’t have to swap the batteries at all, despite 20-30 minutes of usage per day.
That said, when we found a clean patch of sidewalk, we were surprised at the distance the Holy Stone RC Car could go. The car drove across a large church parking lot without lagging or slowing down. While it may not be great for outdoor use, the car’s indoor performance redeemed it. Also worth noting, if children want to, they can remove the race car driver and play with him separately. Parents should note that he’s small and can easily be lost, though fortunately he’s too big to be a choking hazard.
Over the course of the week we used the Holy Stone RC Car, battery life proved impressive. We didn’t have to swap the batteries at all, despite 20-30 minutes of usage per day. You might still want to keep an extra set of batteries on hand for when they run out, but that’s not likely to happen quickly.
At $14.99, the Holy Stone RC Car is the perfect price for a young child’s first RC car. It’s not going to match full-fledged RC cars in speed or performance, but as a basic, colorful toy for children, it’s perfectly suited.
The Holy Stone RC Cartoon Car is closest in price to the Top Race Rock Crawler car. But there are several important things to consider. Firstly, their designs are completely different. Whereas the Holy Stone has a cartoonish design, the Rock Crawler is designed to model a monster truck. As a result, it’s sturdier-looking in appearance, but lacks the rainbow hues the Holy Stone RC Car sports. The controls on the Top Race Rock Crawler are infinitely easier to use, allowing you to turn the car in all four directions.
At the same time, because it only comes with two directions/buttons, the Holy Stone’s controls are a lot simpler, making it better suited for children. The price difference is drastic too. While the Holy Stone car rings in at $14.99, the Top Race Rock Crawler costs $32.99—more than double. A young child will generally be better off starting with the Holy Stone RC Cartoon Car, but an older adolescent will likely be more attracted to the Top Race Rock Crawler.
A good starter RC car for kids
With a long battery life, brightly-colored design, and very basic controls, the Holy Stone Car car won’t suit avid RC car enthusiasts but shines as a child’s toy. Once your child is older, you can move them up to more powerful vehicles.