Who was the biggest mover and shaker in rc last week? Thunder Tiger/Associated!!! But first….
Rc has a new face to the masses, and his name is Peter Viera, the marketing manager for Traxxas. I only say this because Peter got some serious face time on mainstream CBS television this morning during their broadcast of the Oakland AMA Supercross. Peter was teamed up with Valli Motorsports rider Nick “Way Fast/Michigan Mafia” Wey for a short feature on hobby grade rc trucks. Nick was witty as usual, and Peter came across as very professional, overall a great segment on our hobby. Props to everyone involved with getting our hobby even more mainstream play.
Last week I complained about how bogus Associated’s new product teaser campaign was. Well….. turns out, they really should have went wfo with this one, as the truck they were teasing about is a nearly brand new from the ground up 4×4 short course truck labeled the SC10 4×4. It’s rare when any manufacture comes out with an entirely new platform, so when they do, they really should go all out.
Car Action let it be well know last week that they had the “exclusive” and they’d release the info on Friday at 6 pm. Well… I’m not sure what their idea of “exclusive” is, but NeoBuggy, RcTech, BigSquid, and even the Associated site all had the info up before they did. Well sort of at least, LOL. RCCA seemingly has no clue on how to keep timed queue articles secure, as any Joe Blow could search their site and come away with the goods. To make it even funnier, once people did exactly that, the RCCA camp went into meltdown mode. Freak’n web noobs.
Anywhos….. on to comments about AE’s new truck….
Around the office, well, the SC10 4×4 came across like a lead balloon. Why? Because it’s belt drive, and belt drive has always been the kiss of death for bashing on dirt. On top of that, the SC10 4×4 has not one, but two tranny’s. Bashers don’t like working on anything (except for our Bill The Master Wrench Technician Guy), and the more complicated it is, the more likely something is going to need wrenching. For one final kicker, the battery tray on the new AE doesn’t look large enough for a pack bigger than 2S. Bashers want to go fast, reallyyyy fast, faster than 2S is going to take them. To boil it down, the SC10 4×4 doesn’t look like it’s going to be a hit for the bashing market.
IMO, I very highly doubt the bashing crowd was even considered when the SC10 4×4 was being designed. It’s pretty obvious it was designed from the ground up to be a racer. Which is all good and fine for the racing only crowd, but- TT/AE could have designed the truck in such a way that it appealed to racers, and actually worked for bashing. They didn’t opt to go that route, which might help their street cred with the race crowd, but will surely hurt them massively in terms of overall sales.
My opinion doesn’t mean one bit more than yours, or Joe Blows, or Billy Bobs, I’m just lucky (cursed?) enough to have an audience for mine. So….. when I first saw the new SC10 4×4 I was impressed that TT/AE went with a new platform. New platforms aren’t cheap, and I’m quite certain it took a lot of arm twisting (read- politics, long meetings, begging) to convince those with the power to cut the big checks at Thunder Tiger to allow this truck to be new from the ground up. The design team took a lot of chances on this one, that takes a lot of balls to do, so I applaud them for saying “screw conventional design” and put in the two transmissions, the belt system, and clicker up front.
In the past, AE went above and beyond testing unproven designs, making sure they were perfect before they hit the publics hands. Lets hope the AE crew has months and months of real world driving on this new SC10 4×4, ensuring it’s rock solid. If it’s not…. well, we all know what will happen to their cred, and their cred can’t take too many more knocks right about now. Anywhos, I’m choosing to go the “optimistic” Cubby route on this one, I’m choosing that they put in their testing hours on the track and that the SC10 4×4 will blow away anything currently available (on track at least).
For the bashers that this site is intended for, you gotta look at TT/AE and wonder why they chose to exclude you (again) in their design plans. Do they really not want your money? Are they too obtuse to know they can take the racers money and the bashers too? Bashers aren’t stupid, nor do they have short memories. When AE designs a lil’ 2wd buggy for full tilt racing, bashers could care less, but when AE ignores the bashers on a 4×4 truck, then it hits close to home. Offend the bashers enough, and they won’t even consider a certain brands products anymore, even if they were the best. And like it or not, because of their vast numbers, it’s the basher that make or break companies in this industry……
So…. that’s it for this week. Support your local hobby shops, tracks, and bash spots!
YOUR Cub Reporter