Earlier this year, I discovered a new way to experience my radio-controlled vehicles through the lens of FPV. Popular on the quadcopter and drone racing front, FPV has made its way to the surface side of the R/C hobby…and with good reason. It’s incredibly fun.
I’ve been singing the praises of this form of driving over at rcnewb.com, after outfitting an Axial Yeti Jr. Rock Racer with FPV gear. If you’re interested in putting a new spin on your small-scale radio-controlled machines, Dromida has introduced two new vehicles that put you in the center of the action.
Hobbico graciously sent me one of these new models to get a closer look at, further stoking my passion for FPV driving. With that, let’s take a closer look at the Dromida 1/18-scale FPV Rally Car ($229.99).
- 1 Dromida 1/18 FPV-equipped Rally Car
- 1 2.4GHz trigger-style radio transmitter
- 1 Tactic FPV RM2 FPV monitor
- 1 Tactic FPV-G1 FPV headset
- 1 Tactic FPV monitor sunshade
- 2 charging adapters/cables (1 for the car and 1 for the FPV monitor)
- 1 Instruction manual
Unboxing the Dromida 1/18 FPV Rally Car:
Initial Thoughts on the Dromida FPV Rally Car:
As soon as I removed this model from its packaging, I had flashbacks to my first 1/18-scale rally car purchase, the LaTrax Rally. It was a rush of enjoyable memories and a slight twinge of regret, as I sold that car earlier this year. While a comparison between the two would have been fun, I felt fortunate to once-again have a smaller-scale rally car in my lineup.
The rally car body and chassis design have always been appealing to me and there aren’t many things that can top a compact, nimble automobile.
Dromida’s FPV Rally Car is, in essence, the same model you’ll find in their brushed lineup (Dromida 1/18 Rally Car – $99.99). The main components are the same, save for the addition of an onboard FPV camera, which requires a slightly modified body.
The chassis design is well thought out, and Dromida has implemented a smart mounting solution for the camera system. Sitting atop a tweezer-style mount, the camera isn’t simply stuck to the chassis, requiring the vehicle suspension to dampen any jitters or jolts. This camera suspension system allows for an extra level of “give”, should the car encounter rougher terrain.
Powered by a brushed motor, this car has some instant zip. While it’s not as fast as one of their brushless models, the speed you get from this model is impressive and suits FPV driving perfectly. Overall vehicle performance has impressed me as well, as this vehicle is quite nimble while still allowing for some sliding and drifting action to take place.
The Radio Transmitter
While it’s not dripping with features, the transmitter that’s included with the Dromida FPV Rally Car is the same model that you’ll find with other Dromida surface vehicles. It’s straightforward, allows for throttle and steering trim adjustments, and provides a handful of smaller adjustment points to help you dial in your car’s performance. On top of it all, it feels great in your hand.
The FPV Gear
Now for what really sets this vehicle apart, the FPV component(s). You might expect a ready-to-run machine with the included FPV components to cost quite a bit, however, I feel that the $229.99 price tag is worth the investment for the FPV gear alone. Now granted, you can spend much more and get additional features, but you’d be spending that amount purely on one area of the FPV setup. With this model, the headset enclosure, video monitor, and FPV camera are all included (and installed), making a well-rounded package for indoor and outdoor fun.
In my limited testing, the video reception is solid, with a few situations of interference popping up from time-to-time. The camera and monitor feature eight bands and 40 total channels to choose from, so making adjustments to clarity isn’t an issue.
At this point, I feel that I’m the most impressed with the Tactic FPV RM2 video monitor. Between its clarity and the fact that it includes a DVR feature to record your FPV action, it’s a crucial piece of equipment for first-person video and appears to be a very solid component in this package.
At this point, I’m a solid fan of this car, both from the driving standpoint and from the FPV perspective. FPV has opened my eyes (no pun intended) to an entirely new world of experiences with R/C. For those looking to get into FPV, this 1/18-scale vehicle isn’t a bad choice, as you can easily drive it indoors and out and take it just about anywhere you’d please. It’s an impressive model at a solid price, so what’s not to love?