If you ask most people who have 1/10-scale or larger RC vehicles how they feel about mini 1/18-scale vehicles and they might be wondering what’s the point? I admit that I was one of those individuals–until recently. I’ve never really been a fan of driving anything smaller than 1/10 scale, but once I got my hands on the Dromida MT4.18, my opinion changed. While this might sound like a love at first sight romance, I’m actually in a long-term relationship with this truck. What I mean is, instead of being a few test runs, this long-term review spanned over a few months this past summer.
Length: 10.6 in (270 mm)
Width: 7.4 in (190 mm)
Height: 4.3 in (110 mm)
Weight w/battery: 1.4 lb (639 g)
> Big Bore oil shocks
> Waterproof electronics
> M370 brushed motor
> 2.4 GHz radio system
> 4-wheel shaft drive
> Full ball bearings
As you’d expect with a RTR, it has factory installed electronics. The motor is a simple M370 brushed unit, but Dromida states the little truck delivers 20 mph out of the box. While the steering servo is a separate unit, the rest of the electronics are a two-in-one combo, so the speed control and receiver are all one unit. While this non modular setup might not be what most hobbyists are used to, the combo unit gets props for being waterproof. The D100 2-channel radio system is 2.4 GHz–another plus–and features end point adjustments for steering and throttle control.
The included battery is a 7.2-volt NiMH 6-cell with 1300 mAh for capacity. Domida also includes a simple 8 to 12 hour A/C wall charger and an inline charger monitor. Four AA batteries for the transmitter are also included in the box to get you running right away. Well, after you wait up to half a day to charge the battery if you use the stock charger.
The drivetrain is shaft driven 4WD and features gear differentials and ball bearings. The driveshaft axles and center driveshaft are all plastic. The motor mount however is aluminum, which provides more strength and heat transfer than plastic.
The four wheel independent has four rather oversized fluid-filled shocks. Camber, caster, toe and shock positions are adjustable.
The Dromida MT4.18 is 1/18 scale, so testing this vehicle was done in a manner befitting its size. Taking it off a 10-foot jump like a 1/8-scale truggy isn’t really fair, but while I don’t want to spoil the ending I will say the Dromida MT4.18 does raise the bar in handing and drive ability compared to other minis I’ve messed with.
The 370 brushed motor has plenty of torque and propelled the MT4.18 just fine. In my opinion, 20 mph is cooking along pretty good for a truck this size. This is the type of truck people will want to try, so don’t be afraid to dial it back a bit by turning the throttle down on the transmitter with the throttle end point adjustment. When something goes fast, you’ll want it to be able to stop too, so I’m happy to report that the brakes are pretty solid and consistent–no noticeable fade.
Remember, this thing isn’t very big, so big massive jumps are generally out. I ripped it around one of my go-to bashing spots, but gave it a try at a decently groomed 1/8-scale dirt track to really see the full potential of the Dromida MT4.18. It gets over the humps and bumps with ease and even the big stuff. The soft shocks are near perfect out of the box and the large tires on the MT version help give it more ground clearance and cushion when landing from up high.
Throughout all the long-term testing, I haven’t broken a single part. Nothing. You read that correct. I have tired. Okay, so I “could” if i beat on it like 1/8-scale, but let’s be reasonable. The only thing I had to do was remove the gear cover and air blast the small tiny gravel dust from the spur gear area and pinion. Sure, the gear was a little worn, but I was basically driving in sand. Sand kills RC cars. It gets in places you don’t want. But, with a couple screws the cover came off, cleaned and good to go. Sure, I might soon need a spur gear, but the mileage and abuse to this point is well earned. It’s worth noting that the pinion is metal and the spur gear is plastic.
The MT4.18 has a healthy list of upgrades from Dromida for improved performance and durability. They are all reasonably priced.
Some upgrades include:
> Brushless Speed Kit > Part no. DIDC1150 > $119.99
> Aluminum Shocks and Tower Kit > DIDC1171 > $69.99
> Aluminum Drive-train Kit > DIDC1160 > $29.99
I have driven more than a few 1/10- and 1/8-scale vehicles in the last 20 plus years that don’t compare to what this little vehicle offers right out of the box. You get a lot of bang for your buck. The durability of this platform is pretty impressive for its size, and even when you compare it up to larger vehicles, it handles pretty good. I tried to push the MT4.18 to its breaking point, but honestly without being just stupid, I couldn’t break it. In the event that something does give out, the parts are inexpensive and easy to change. This would be a perfect first time vehicle for anyone new to the 1/18-scale class however experienced you are in the hobby.
> Ready to run with everything.
> 2.4 GHz radio
> Full ball bearings
> Waterproof ESC/Receiver
> Metal Motor mount
> Oversized fluid-filled shocks
> 1200 mAh battery
> Slow charger only
> Plastic drive shafts and center prop shaft