Evader has become the flagship of Duratrax's RTR vehicles, and
the task of picking the one that's best for you can literally
keep you up at night. You can choose from buggy or stadium truck,
nitro or electric. Then, just when you thought you'd found your
new vehicle, you get to choose your "trim" level; do
you want plastic or aluminum shocks? Ball bearings or bushings?
The Evader has more options than most luxury cars with a price
tag that's slightly more affordable.
what about those beginners out there that don't need a pro-level
truck or buggy? Or what about the guy that's looking for a first
vehicle for his son or daughter? This is where the Evader
EXT takes center stage. It's relatively high-turn motor
is mild enough to put into the hands of an eager kid, yet packs
enough punch to satisfy any person looking for some wheel-spinning,
of the testing was done in my driveway and at the local park,
because that's where this particular Evader belongs. I could have
taken it to the track, but the thought of busting through piles
of freshly fallen leaves was just too tempting! Now, lets take
a look at Duratrax's newest model, the Evader EXT.
RCUniverse interactive review.
Rollover the top of the picture.
Power Shot electric motor cleaner spray (DTXC2458)
2 ESC w/ reverse
Evader EXT is packaged nicely and comes with everything you'll
need to get it going, minus batteries and a decent charger. The
only tool included is a standard multi-wrench for the wheel nuts,
slipper adjustment nut, and a few fasteners. If you plan on working
on your Evader, you'll need a set of hex drivers and a Phillips
head screwdriver; I used Duratrax Ultimate Hex Driver Set (DTX0292).
body comes mounted to the chassis without stickers and it's your
job the put them on. There's six different body colors to choose
from, all of which look pretty good with flames and carbon-fiber
graphics. The rear wing needs to be attached with double sided
tape that's surprisingly not included...seriously, it's a four
inch piece of tape and not something a beginner would have lying
around the house. I think there will be a few Evader EXTs running
around "sans-wing" because of this.
a look at the chassis and you'll see a clutter free platform made
up of Duratrax's Stress-Tech parts which are warranted against
breakage for the first year of ownership. These parts include
the chassis, front and rear shock towers, gearbox, rear chassis
plate, front and rear suspension arms, and many other parts. This
is a great insurance policy for those rookie drivers who might
encounter fixed-objects more than the other guys. The bottom of
the chassis has raised sides to decrease contact with the ground,
thus reducing drag when you bottom out.
shocks included with the Evader EXT are plastic oil-filled with
light/medium springs. They effectively reduce shock transferred
through the chassis but will cause the Evader to bottom out on
big jumps. This isn't much of a problem because the entire truck
can take some pretty nasty hits without faltering. Shock mounting
points are adjustable at the top and bottom for changing the ride
characteristics to suit your needs.
clutch and clear cover
motor included with the Evader EXT is the Photon Speed 2. It's
a sealed 540-sized "silver can" motor aimed at economy.
It's got enough juice to have alot of fun, but don't expect the
whole shot advantage on race day. The stock spur gear is 88 teeth
and the pinion is 18 teeth, both at 48 pitch. Feeding electricity
to the motor is the Duratrax Speed 2 esc with reverse. It is a
quality esc that didn't exhibit any bad habits although it has
zero adjustability. Both the motor and the esc are a good combo
for the beginner and help keep the overall price of the Evader
EXT way down. It was nice to see a large plastic motor guard out
back to protect it from whatever you encounter.
nice feature of the Evader EXT is the slipper clutch; loosening
it helps control wheel spin and protects the gears from being
stripped. The Evader also features a clear gear cover that protects
the pinion and spur gears from debris that could damage them.
There's a removable cover to access the slipper nut for easy adjustments.
the slipper clutch, power is transferred to the gearbox and on
to the rear wheels via hardened steel driveshafts. The transmission
is a beveled-gear type and is very strong, compared to more pricey
vehicles that feature ball-bearing differentials. Inside features
three gears and no bearings, just bushings, and again helps keep
the price of the Evader EXT down. Hardened steel outdrives complete
the transmission and the dogbones tie it all together. The whole
setup is pretty strong and can take the added power of lower-turn
motors. I even threw in my Novak brushless setup for the heck
of it and the transmission performed flawlessly even with the
massive power increase.
shock tower/body mount
a-arm and hardened steel dogbone
front and rear a-arms proved to be worthy of some hard hits without
breaking. They are pretty wide and give the EXT a nice stance
and added stability. The hinge pins are held on with c-clips and
are protected up front by the bumper. Wheelbase is adjustable
by moving the washers on either side of the front hub; putting
both behind the hub lengthens the wheelbase, both washers in front
of the hub shortens the wheelbase. Front toe, camber and camber
link placement are adjustable and a tuning guide is included in
the manual to help those interested in learning how these adjustments
effect the Evader's ride. Front caster is not adjustable and is
set at 30 degrees front kick-up. A detailed maintenance guide
is also included and explains step-by-step how to tear-down and
rebuild your Evader.
wheels and tires included with the Evader EXT are a perfect fit
for all-around bashing. The tires are glued to the rims and don't
have any foam, mainly because the Evader EXT doesn't need them.
They grip well on hard and soft surfaces and wear was minimal
after running on asphalt. After sliding into a few objects, the
wheels didn't chip or break like some other inexpensive RTR trucks.
radio equipment included with the Evader EXT also worked well
for the price. I was impressed with the fit and finish of
the transmitter; the Tactic 2-channel AM with adjustable trim.
It's a basic unit that lacks all but the bare essentials...and
that's really all you need to operate the Evader EXT. The
only thing I wish it had was a charge jack; without it, your
limited to non-rechargable AA batteries. Included with the
transmitter is the Tactic TRX200 2-channel receiver and TSX200
steering servo. Both functioned as expected and the servo
had enough power to turn the front end quickly. I was also
glad to see an adjustable servo saver to protect the little
guy from stripping it's gears.
Evader EXT doesn't need much to get it going; you will need to
install the antenna tube, charge a 6-cell battery and add 8 AA
batteries to the transmitter. Don't forget to strategically place
the decals on the body. If you have a piece of double-sided tape,
you can install the rear wing. Otherwise, you can pick some up
at the hobby shop or order some from Duratrax.
that the battery has charged, let's go test the Evader EXT.
I could sum up the Evader EXT in one word, that word would be
"fun". It's not the fastest ship in the fleet but it
makes up for it in durability and spunkiness. I found myself challenging
the little Evader with jumps that I "thought" it wouldn't
make but would then suprise me by clearing the jump and landing
on all fours. The shocks included with the Evader EXT worked well.
They kept the truck running fairly level on rough terrain and
kept bottoming to a minimum on medium sized jumps. The bigger
jumps resulted in a hard "smack" as the chassis bottomed
but the Evader just shrugged it off.
and acceleration are not the Evaders strong points; again, Duratrax
created the Evader EXT for beginners and the stock high-turn motor
allows those getting used to rc a certain level of safety that
faster vehicles lack. It also allows the beginner to concentrate
on control which, sadly, quite a few people lack. Anyone can pull
the throttle but the subsequent control involved separates the
good drivers from the not-so-good.
around the park, I found the Evader quite a joy to operate. Other
park patrons were not bothered by it, and believe me, that's a
plus. People tend to get annoyed at rc vehicles and their owners
because they are fast and loud and disturb their "quiet time".
Not so with the Evader EXT; I shared the park with a few people
and their small children and everyone was all smiles.
time on the Evader was around 15 minutes on a Piranha NiMH 7.2v
2000mAh. The battery, motor, and esc were only warm to the touch
after running mostly full-throttle the whole time.
pushed the Evader EXT as hard as it would go and it still ran
strong. Nothing broke or was damaged after 10+ battery pack charges
and I'd say that defines the truck as a basher. My only complaint
has to do with the double-sided tape used to secure the esc and
receiver; it isn't strong enough to hold either in place after
a few hard hits or up-side-down landings. I re-secured both with
some velcro strips and that solved the problem.
Evader EXT is the latest in a long line of Evaders and it's durability
is no surprise. I repeatedly bashed this stadium truck and never
broke anything. This is great for beginners or anyone wanting
run-time over down-time. Even though the Evader EXT is not a super-fast
truck, it can easily be hopped up and can definitely take the
added power. I would recommend the Evader for a kid's first real
rc, the beginner looking for an inexpensive route into this wonderful
hobby, or anyone wanting a friendly, low maintenance rc truck.
Distributed exclusively by: Great
Planes Model Distributors
P.O. Box 902
Champaign, IL 61826-9021
to Jessica Halsak for helping me test the Evader EXT.
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.