Life-size Tamiya R/C buggy ready to star on (adult) Santa wish lists
The Little Car Company is taking a brief break from shrinking vintage cars into incredible (and exorbitantly expensive) kid-size creations to do the exact opposite: grow a kiddie car into an incredible full-size, street-legal dune machine. One of the coolest auto projects in recent memory, LCC's Tamiya Wild One MAX has been in the works for several years now. The upsized, drivable R/C car is a dream come true for children and adults alike and is about to go up for order. Santa better get ready for a rare July frenzy of letters and wish lists.
Even if you never actually took the handheld remote of the Tamiya Wild One radio-controlled car, first released in 1985, you have to admit there's something pretty cool about a company actually building and selling a life-size version. It's the type of fantasy virtually every child has had at one point, seen through to reality. We're pretty sure there are more children of the 80s drooling over this thing than children of the 2020s, but both should be pretty stoked about the effort and the other possibilities it might foreshadow.
Usually when we see a project like this, it's a one-off concept or YouTube DIY build, but the Tamiya Wild One MAX will officially go up for sale this week. The Little Car Company will begin taking orders on Thursday, July 13, the same day it will give the Wild One MAX a public premiere at the Goodwood Festival of Speed. Let the holiday and birthday list writing commence ...
The Little Car Company has filled out the spec sheet a little more since it last detailed Wild One MAX progression earlier this year. It says the 14.4-kWh eight-pack battery will provide an on-road range up to 124 miles (200 km) and an off-road range around 68 miles (110 km).
The MAX grew in size during its development and measures in at 141.7 in (360 cm) long and 74.8 in (190 cm) wide. The Little Car Company also switched out the original R/C car's trailing-arm front suspension in favor of a double-wishbone design.
The Wild One MAX's ground clearance remains the same as before at 11 in (270 mm), and the approach/breakover/departure angle split scores in at 34.1/28.4/50.8 degrees. The 62-mph (100-km/h) top speed is just a touch quicker than the previously estimated 60 mph (96.5 km/h), or perhaps simply adjusted to advertise that clean 100 km/h in Continental Europe. The buggy's electric drive puts out 38 hp peak and 20 hp continuous (28 and 15 kW).
"We believe that you don’t need one thousand horsepower, stomach churning acceleration or electronic torque vectoring systems to make EVs enjoyable," The Little Car Company's CEO Ben Hedley said of the company's Wild One MAX approach. "We’ve strived to make the Tamiya Wild One MAX an exhilarating drive by following Colin Chapman’s ethos of 'Simplify, then add lightness.'"
The Wild One MAX starts at £35,000 (approx. US$45,300) or €41,000 on the mainland, before VAT, and the first 100 buyers to put down the 10% deposit will receive a Launch Edition. The Launch trim brings a few extras, the coolest of which is a rereleased 1/10th Tamiya Wild One R/C model car kit with remote control, battery and charger. A titanium launch edition plaque inside and launch edition badging outside distinguish the MAX build, and carbon fiber trim adds an extra touch of premium performance.
All Wild One MAX models include premium components like adjustable Bilstein dampers with Eibach springs, Brembo brakes, 14-in Maxxis Bighorn tires, and two Cobra bucket seats. Each car also comes with a giant sticker sheet filled with decals that the owner can put on himself, just like an actual R/C car. The standard Road Pack brings the off-roader up to UK/EU street-legal L7e heavy quadricycle standard, adding in a windscreen with wiper, mirrors, mudguards, exterior lighting and license plates.
The Little Car Company will begin deliveries of full cars in early 2024. The company says it also plans to develop lower-spec variants and car kits for future launch – good news for anyone that loves this as much as we do but can't quite fathom spending 40K.
Source: The Little Car Company