RCU Review: VsTank Tiger I Early Production

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    Contributed by: Leonard Cacciatore | Published: August 2007 | Views: 64903 | email icon Email this Article | PDFpdf icon

    Review by: Leonard Cacciatore

    PO Box 9021, Champaign, IL 61826-0008
    Tel 217-398-0007


    • Scale Look
    • Realistic Sounds
    • New Controller

    • No Transmitter reset
    • Recoil not "scale" when turret is turned

    VsTank has released a new tank to their infrared Pro series of products. It's the Tiger I Early Production model and they are available in two color schemes (Dark Grey and Desert Camouflage). The quality and looks of these tanks are incredible and the features are unbelievable for their price point.

    In this release, VsTank added more realistic tank sounds and a multi-piece suspension system closely resembling full scale.  The biggest enhancement however, is the new transmitter.  In the older series they included a pistol grip transmitter, making it a little difficult to control the tank while battling. The new transmitter makes controlling the tank much easier.

    The tanks are RTR and require little more than 10-15 minutes to get them ready.

    Product Name: VsTank 1/24 Tiger I Battle Tank RTR
    Est. Street Price: $119.9
    Includes: Tiger I Battle Tank with transmitter, crew figure and tank accessories, antenna and instruction manual.
    Requires: 14 AA batteries.


    • Full function controls
    • Rotational turret up to 330°
    • Adjustable angle of cannon
    • 3 Forward speeds
    • Exchangeable bands, allows for 6 different players at the same time
    • Individual wheel suspension system
    • Can climb up to 30 degrees and more
    • Rubber treads
    • 1/24 scale with high details
    • Working front
    Infrared Battle Features:
    • Infrared beam
    • Battle with up to 5 other people using different bands
    • Life counting system
    • The tank flashes lights, explosion sound and shakes when hit
    • Tread movement sounds
    • Recoiling action and firing sound when shooting
    • Invincibility after being shot
    • Real life reloading time after shot

    The tanks come packed very well. Everything was secured and none of the parts were bouncing around in the box. The tank itself was so well secured in the box that un-securing it was the longest part of the assembly.

    Once everything has been removed from the box there really isn't much left to do but add 6 AA batteries to the transmitter, 8 AA batteries to the tank and inserting the antenna into the tank. If you want a little more realism you could also add the tank commander figure to the tank turret.

    Once I had both tanks assembled I wanted to test out the infrared battle system so I set up both tanks across the table from each other and tried firing one tank at the other. Well nothing happened so I tried repositioning them and still nothing. So I looked back through the manual and found a section that I overlooked that mentions about taking a protective cover off an infrared sensor. This brings me to the one compliant I have with the included manual.

    Most of the instructions covered in the manual are general instructions and cover all the tanks in all the series. They use graphic icons to point out instructions that are for a specific series which works well but I had a problem with finding the infrared receiver on the Tiger tank. In the manual they used the M1A2 Abrams tank to show were the protective cap is and how to remove it to expose the infrared receiver. Well this didn't help me find it on the Tiger because the cap is actually a sensor pod that is on the Abrams and stands out but the Tiger has nothing like this. The Tiger has 2 hatches but one is for the placing the tank commander into and the other one opens but there wasn't a receiver in it. Well not to drag this on any longer I contacted their technical support about this and they reassured me that there was a receiver on the turret of the Tiger tank but didn't tell me exactly where it was I re-looked over the turret. The only spot that the receiver could be was under this little round vent on the turret. I had tried pulling on it when I first found in the manual that there was a receiver to expose but it felt pretty solid and I didn't want to start breaking off piece of the tank to try to find this. This time I took a small screw driver and wedged it under the vent and popped it off and there was the receiver. Just a word of warning here be really gentle and slow when you do this. I broke 2 of the little legs on the first tank I did this on. Get one side started a little and then go to the other side; this will keep you from bending off a couple of the legs.

    Now that I found the infrared receiver I had no problem with testing the battle system on both tanks. It also turns out that you can use the one hatch as a storage spot for the receiver cap. This way you don't lose it.


    The new transmitter is similar to a game controller you would find on an Xbox or PS game console. You have all the tank's directional controls on the top face of the transmitter and all the guns controls down the front of the transmitter. This controller takes some time to get use to using but is 100 times better than the old pistol transmitter.

    The controls are grouped by functionality. On the top left side you have the 3 forward and 2 reverse controls nicely dividing up a circle. This makes it real easy to switch between the controls without having to move your thumb too far. The controls on the top right control the tank's direction and are grouped into 2 groups of controls. The top group controls the turning of the tank while it's moving forward or in reverse and you have 2 speeds that you can either turn left with or right with. These controls won't do anything if the tank isn't moving. The bottom group controls rotating the tank while it's stationary. Again you have two speeds to rotate the tank to the left or right.

    The controls that are down the front of the transmitter starts with the upper 2 right and left buttons fire the cannon and machine gun respectfully. The middle 2 buttons move the cannon muzzle up and down. The bottom 2 right and left buttons move the turret to the right and left.

    So with this new controller you really have more control over the tank than you had with the pistol grip controller. This was a very nice improvement.

    Before I got into battling against a second tank I wanted to get use to the controls and see how well the tank could maneuver indoors and outdoors. Indoors the tank didn't have any problems maneuvering on the surfaces or transitioning from one surface type to another. It easily climbed over magazines spread over the floor and other obstacles as long as they didn't make a steep angle to climb.

    Outdoors the tank still could maneuver very well. It easily went from pavement to dirt to grass and any other combo with very little problems. The only problem area was with dealing with tall grass. The tall grass would get caught up in the tracks and could make the tracks come off the tank. Also if you hit some tall thick patches of grass the grass would actually lift up the tank and the tank would lose traction. I could actually turn the turret to shift the tanks weight to help regain some traction sometimes but this didn't work all the time. The tank didn't have any problems climbing over obstacles as long the climb angle didn't get to steep about 35 degrees or more.

    Ok! Time to battle.

    One of the first things that hit me when playing around with these tanks was the realistic engine and track sounds that they have. It may not seem like a big deal but it does add an extra dimension to the fun you have while battling with these tanks. The sound and the recoil effect of the canon is another cool feature. There's even a 3 second delay to simulate reloading of the canon.

    The infrared battle system that these tanks have is really cool. When the tank is hit, it will shake and play an explosion sound. It even flashes lights under the turret to simulate a small explosion. After it has been hit it will have a 6 second invincibility and other tanks can't hit this tank. After 6 hits the tank will start flashing continuously and will play an explosion sound. This signals that the tank is defeated and will not be able to move. To reset the tank you have to turn it off and back on.

    You don't have to only use your canon to shot at your opponents you can use the machine gun to score a hit. You have to score 5 consecutive hits with the machine gun for it to be scored as one canon shot.

    With some practice on the controller you can perform some slick maneuvers. You could be moving forward at one of the 3 forward speeds while either turning hard or soft to the left or right and be turning the turret in either directions to try to get a shot off on your opponent. You could then quickly throw her in one of the 2 reverse speeds and take a shot at your opponent while backing away from them. I did have a bit of trouble trying some of the multiple maneuvers like trying to turn left while turning the turret to the right. It was sort of like trying to rub your belly and pat your head at the same time. With a little be of practice you can do it.

    One last feature of the battle system is that each tank only has 40 shots that it can take before it needs to reset by turning it off and then back on. This kind of gives the tanks a built in match feature and forces you to try to not waste your shots. It would be nice if you could turn this feature off. You would be able to play your matches and not have to worry about your shot count while battling up to 5 other opponents in a death match or last man standing.

    I'm not ashamed to admit it but these tanks brought me back to my childhood. You might be laughing at me for saying it but these tanks would have been great to have while my friends and I were battling it out with our little green army men. The realistic looks and sounds that these tanks have would have had those little green army men shaking in their boots. LOL.

    These tanks are also not just for guys. My girlfriend has been also getting a kick out of battling with these tanks and she couldn't believe how nice they were when she first saw them.

    At this years Reading Air show I got to see one of these Tiger tanks up close and personal and I got to tell you that it was very impressive. I mean it was just sitting there idling and you could feel its power.

    If you are looking for a great RC tank at a great price of $119.99 you can't go wrong with the VsTank Pro series of tanks. These tanks look and sound great and are great fun. VsTank also offers some very nice display bases that will show them off when you're not battling with them.

    PO Box 9021
    Champaign, IL 61826-0008
    Tel 217-398-0007


    Comments on RCU Review: VsTank Tiger I Early Production

    Posted by: JAG10 on 03/20/2010
    Excellent Review, It was definitely a help for me in deciding which way to go as I step forward into the realm of RC Tanks....
    Posted by: Eggman1965 on 11/14/2010
    That tank is a T34 mock-up of a Tiger, not actually a Tiger.
    Page: 1
    The comments, observations and conclusions made in this review are solely with respect to the particular item the editor reviewed and may not apply generally to similar products by the manufacturer. We cannot be responsible for any manufacturer defects in workmanship or other deficiencies in products like the one featured in the review.

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