I’m always on the lookout for vehicles that can bring R/C fun both indoors and out. During the winter months (and when the weather doesn’t quite cooperate), having a vehicle that can be driven in a smaller amount of space, while still bringing big-time fun, is always at the top of my “must-have” list.
Thankfully, there are a variety of fun and capable small-scale radio-controlled vehicles to choose from. One model that had been at the top of my list is the ECX Barrage 1/24. Equal (or very close to it) in size to the Pro-Line Ambush 4×4, this scaled-down Barrage aims to bring a wide world of R/C adventure into your living room. After receiving my pre-order, I couldn’t wait to get this tiny truck fired up and rolling.
- 1 ECX Barrage 1/24-scale Micro Crawler
- 1 Controller/transmitter
- 1 USB charging cable
- 1 Decal sheet
- 1 Instruction manual
- 4 AA Batteries (for the transmitter)
Unboxing the ECX Barrage 1/24
Initial Thoughts on the ECX Barrage 1/24
Starting with its appearance, I love the job that ECX did with the body and chassis details for this truck. Echoing design queues from the 1/10-scale Axial SCX10/SCX10 II Trail Honcho, the ECX Barrage 1/24 packs a trail-ready design into a small-scale package.
Visual features such as the functional spare tire, rock sliders, winch-ready front bumper, and LED lights make this truck fun to look at, both while driving and when sitting still. With the amount of scale detail this truck has, it’s easy to get lost in the moment when driving across a living room or basement, dodging errant toys and other “unnatural terrain”.
Underneath the hood (or body) you’ll find a ladder-frame chassis, four-link suspension, and shocks with an impressive amount of travel. I’m resisting the urge to draw direct comparisons to the Pro-Line Ambush 4×4, however, it’s hard not to when you look at how the small-scale Barrage is set up.
The suspension and wheel travel on the Barrage is impressive for a vehicle of its size. Combined with a width of 4 inches (102mm), this truck is quite stable when driving over obstacles and uneven terrain. The stock springs are quite soft, which help the articulation of the truck, however, this also causes the truck to bounce and bobble which could lead to “bump steer”. All in all, the chassis and suspension of this truck are quite solid.
This leads me to the battery and motor for this rig. At “cruising speed”, this truck is an excellent performer, happily motoring along and getting to where it needs to go. This truck, however, begs to be driven over “trail-like” terrain, which is where I first put the Barrage 1/24 to work.
Using my go-to indoor crawling obstacles (rain gutter foam inserts, wood shims, and crafting driftwood) I lined up my rig and set off to see how it performed. At first, it took to the makeshift trail like a champ, however, it quickly began to slow and eventually stop after the first encounter with a steep incline.
My approach to this incline was no different than that of a 1/10-scale R/C trail rig, minimal throttle, smooth approach. Whether it’s the battery (4.8v, 22mah NiMh), the stock gearing (12t pinion/64t spur), the motor, or a combination of all three, this truck doesn’t have much torque and seems to lack power when and where it needs it the most.
At first, I was a bit disappointed by this, however, subsequent trips around my “indoor adventureland” (aka: my house) have found me driving over 3-ring binders, blankets, and random kids toys without much issue. The power/gearing setup is an area that I’ll be looking into further and appears to be an item which could be improved.
In all, I’m still happy with this rig, as it’s a fun “grab and go” machine that looks great and can motor around to just about anywhere I’d like. We’ll see how it performs over time and ultimately, how it stacks up against other small-scale trail rigs in the 1/24/25-scale category.