How do remote control cars work

How do remote control cars work

Do you remember the first time you got your first RC car? It must have been quite an exciting experience to see the remote-controlled toys go as you manoeuvred the remote. However, did you ever wonder how these remote-controlled cars work? If the question ever crossed your mind, here is your chance to find out how RC cars work.

The working premise of RC cars

The basic premise of all remote control cars, rather all RC toys, is that you use a remote control to send signals to the car through radio waves and convey instructions for speed and direction. The radio signals are converted into electrical signals through the receiver in the car, and it follows the instructions you send.

The components of RC cars

While the basic premise is the same, most RC cars vary in terms of the components, including the power source, motor etc. Let’s look at some components.

Power source

Nowadays, mostly battery-powered RC cars are being used. However, you may also have seen a gas-powered car powered by nitro fuel and is hence such cars are also referred to as fuel-powered RC cars. The electric RC cars come with a rechargeable battery pack.


The rotation of the motor in the RC car enables the wheels to move, manoeuvre the steering, and apply brakes or accelerate. Usually, there are two types of RC motors. RC vehicles are either equipped with a brushed motor or a brushless electric motor. While the brushed motor has carbon, the brushless electric motors do not have carbon, and the magnet is present on the rotor. Many advanced RC systems have dual motors to cater to the features and superior performance of the advanced RC models.

Transmitter and receiver

The transmitter sends the commands from the remote control joysticks to the RC vehicle in the form of radio signals. The receiver located in the car converts the radio signal into an electric signal to control the components in the car.

Circuit board

The circuit board receives the command in the RC car and communicates to the car controls.

RC Cars types

RC cars can be divided into two main types; toy-grade RC cars and hobby grade cars.

Toy-grade RC cars are cheaper and are easy to use. They have a single circuit board and are easier to maintain than the hobby-grade car.

Hobby-grade RC cars are quite advanced compared to the toy-grade. They can go as fast as 130 km/hr and are liked by hobbyists for RC racing. They are either electrical or have a gas-powered engine.

What to look for in RC cars

Now that you have a basic idea of how an RC car works, you can make an informed decision when buying an RC vehicle for yourself or your kids.

RC cars come in many designs, variations and types, and you have a huge variety to choose from. Do consider the design, power source, and model price before deciding which kind of car you want to buy.