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RC Car Action - May 2013

F I R S T D R I V E

F I R S T D R I V E Vaterra Takes Motorsports Head On WORDS AARON WALDRON PHOTOS JASON BOULANGER What makes a radio-controlled car? Is it the scale appeal, exciting driving experience, or the quality of the overall package? Horizon Hobby started off in 2013 with the announcement of an entirely new line of RTRs that make the argument that all three of those characteristics are equally important. Coming out of the gate with seven vehicles aimed at hitting all corners of the RC road map, with many more rumored along the way, the new Vaterra brand kicked things off in a big way. Each is controlled by a genuine Spektrum radio system and powered by Dynamite electronics that round out a total package that includes everything you need to hit the ground running, all the way down to the Alkaline AAs needed for the transmitter. Of the seven cars to make the opening round of releases, three are impeccably detailed and officially licensed on-roaders that recreate some of the most iconic road cars of all time. I was sent four wildly different off-road rigs, each named for the environment in which its full-size counterpart is driven – the Glamis Uno dune buggy, Twin Hammers rock racer, Kemora rally car, and Kalahari desert raider — and had the chance to log considerable run time with each to get a better idea of what the new Vaterra line is all about; after all, even I couldn’t wait for the full review to tear into these cool cars. The brand’s slogan is “Adventure Driven,” and if these are any indication of what’s to come, you may want to pack a lunch and some supplies – you’re going to be venturing far off the beaten path. 32 RCCARACTION.COM

What’s in a name? According to Horizon Hobby’s Surface Category Manager Brian Miller, Vaterra comes from the combination of two Latin words: “Va” meaning “Go” (a form of the verb “ir,” which means “to go”) and “terra,” which means “Earth” or “ground.” 33

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