5 Most Influential Trucks

First, we have to define what we mean by influential. These are not the five best or coolest trucks of all time, and this certainly isn’t a list of all of the cool trucks that are now or have ever been available. It is a list of what we feel are the top five trucks that have shaped the truck segment of the hobby (in alphabetical order).

1. Axial AX10 Scorpion
Before the short course craze (see below), there was rock crawling which is still going strong and evolving. The AX10 officially and undeniably brought rock crawling from somewhat fringe to totally mainstream. And while the AX10 wasn’t the first crawler kit available, it was highly capable and had tremendous potential.

2. Tamiya Blackfoot
This is the truck that made everyone well aware of how cool RC trucks are. Before the Blackfoot, the focus was almost entirely on buggies. People bashed the Blackfoot, raced it and modified it. It was a huge hit and was practically a household name.

3. Tamiya Clodbuster
The Clodbuster could be declared RC’s first jaw dropper. By today’s standards it wouldn’t be considered very capable, but when it was released in 1987, the Clod was simply amazing. Its big tires and dual motors could conquer some serious terrain. And, it was amazingly scale. There was no shortage of hop-ups for this truck and we saw almost countless custom rigs being made.

4. Traxxas Slash
You may have noticed that short course is currently dominating the hobby. Veteran and new RC’ers alike seem to appreciate the scale realism of these trucks and enjoy the fact that the big bodies allow them to take a real beating. While it wasn’t the technically the first short course truck available, the Slash got it right and started one of the biggest crazes RC has ever seen.

5. Traxxas T-Maxx
The T-Maxx ushered in a huge change in RC. Almost overnight, electric was out and nitro was in. It didn’t end with just changing the hobby from electric to nitro; the T-Maxx also started the RTR era. The T-Maxx, while labeled 1/10-scale, was bigger than what we were used to and a bigger is better trend was also launched.


Got a different opinion? Let’s hear it! But, remember, it’s only a top 5 list, so if you think a truck should be added, you have to also make an argument for which it should replace.

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  1. I have been checking out a few of your stories and i can state pretty clever stuff. I will surely bookmark this site.

  2. Top 5 Matt,

    Man you don’t make it easy do ya? LOL. I don’t know if I could make enough valid points to replace one from you list with one I’d put in. It it were a to 10 maybe. So I’ll go with a different list all together.

    The Tamiya Bruiser:
    The OG of scale crawling. That truck had it all on the scale side. Right down to the leaf springs in the rear to the three speed tranny. Not a fast truck, but I think was a huge influence to the scale crawling side of years to come. Tamiya isn’t not known for their scale looks, even if the details are a little too much at times.

    The Losi LXT and RC10T:
    This a two for one. Now before someone points out that it’s only one per spot on the list, let me explain. Those two trucks opened the door to what a 1/10th racing truck could be and would later become. Sure there were other “race” trucks before them, but once those two started hitting the tracks, no one would dare throw down a Blackfoot on the same track. Plus in the U.S., those two trucks just happened to come from two U.S. Mfg.’s that already had a solid 2wd buggy following which opened up another class for those with the 2wd buggies to run.

    The Cen Arena truck:
    Yeah I said Cen. LOL. This was the first actual Truggy kit. Before that it was something like a T-Maxx or some converted 1/8th buggy that was raced in the Monster truck class. That truck showed people and Mfg.’s what a 1/8th race truck could be and thus the 1/8th Truggy class was born. I’m not sure if it weren’t for that truck coming out when it did, if the Truggy class would have taken off as quickly as it did. It did help to partially kill off the MT class though or at the very least helped build the coffin that most MT’s for racing would eventually find themselves in.

    The Slash 4X4:
    While the Slash 2wd gets most of the credit for the whole SC craze, the 4X4 Slash brought in a new class for the SC crowd to enjoy, and though it’s still a growing class with more newer and perhaps better designed trucks, it showcased the full poetential of where the SC class could go. For me it did everything that the 2wd’s didn’t do right and the less than areo bodies they run were much less of an issue if you ran outdoors.

    Lastly the Losi 8T:
    Why this one? Well it was a toss up for me between that and the RC10GT. While the GT could easily make the list, when I look at the influence on the class it’s in, well, it was a game changer. From the out of the box thinking on chassis layout, thanks to it’s brother, the 8ight Buggy, to the Big Bore shocks, again from the 8ight, it usered in a new way of thinking. One that made people stand up and take notice. Changes that have been copied or have been incorperated into other chassis. Not that the traditional chassis layout isn’t good, many still have that style of layout and are just as good and capable. The placement of the componets in the chassis as far as weight placement goes, all changed from that truck. Plus the BB Shocks are everywhere now in that class and has even started to work it’s way back into the 1/10th classes. Before the 8ight’s hit the track no one was really looking at updating the shocks used.

    So there you go, my list, and I’m sure Matt’s and mine could peobably make for a good top 10. Maybe. Matt, I know mine is more slanted towards the racing side. Sorry about that, I just love me some racing. Your list was just too good for me to argue against any one seperately.

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  4. While I’m sure it didn’t sell nearly as many, the Kyosho USA-1 do doubt influenced the T-Maxx. I am willing to bet there wouldn’t be a Traxxas T-Maxx if there hadn’t been a USA-1

  5. Keep up the superb work , I read few content on this web site and I think R/C Truckstop is real interesting and has sets of good information.

  6. I reckon the Ofna Titan was a game changer. I believe it was the first nitro truck built as a truck from the ground up. I mean, it wasn’t just a buggy with big tires (like USA-1), but a truck with a double-deck chassis.

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