With Christmas coming up, a slot car set under the tree would fill many racing fans with festive cheer. They can provide hours of high-speed fun, with infinite possibilities for layouts and vehicles.
There are many choices in this market, from tiny ‘Micro’ sets for kids to top-class hobbyist material. In recent years, though, more hi-tech advancements have become available to add to the traditional slot car – as well as brand new ‘slotless’ racing sets that break free of some of the boundaries of the classic formula.
We’ve tested some of the standard slot car sets from Scalextric and Carrera, and put them up against two slotless sets from newcomers Real FX and Anki, to find out which is the best for some festive fun.
The most important consideration in this test was the fun factor – above all, these sets should be exciting to play and have us constantly coming back for more.
Variety was important – we didn’t want to have to build the same layout over and over again. And we assessed durability to ensure the sets could handle many Christmases’ worth of racing – so we tried to crash the cars as much as possible.
It’s very important to note who the set is aimed at – durability matters more in a set aimed at children, for example, while seasoned hobbyists wouldn’t be too happy with cars that aren’t very detailed. Finally, we looked at cost. Our prices were taken from a range of online retailers as we went to press.
Anki set a high bar with its original Drive, and Overdrive improves on that, taking top place in our test here. For those wanting a more traditional set, Carrera’s Evolution is a great choice, while Scalextric’s ARC One finishes in third place.
1. Anki Overdrive
2. Carrera Evolution LaFerrari
3. Scalextric ARC One