THE Cub Report, 04.09.2012, Version- Drift and Die
And… wait for it, wait for it… Cubby’s RC Wheel of Doom lands squarely on Associated this week. Seriously, I am a longgg time gnar/core AE fan, but wow, just wow… what a week for the strapping boys in red and blue.
Early in the week AE released info on their way super dope SC10GT. I don’t recall anyone on this planet, or any other planet for that matter, asking for a 10th scale, 2wd, short course gas truck. The current gen of nitro engines have proven to be more trouble than they are worth (at least when compared to BL/Lipo power), so to see AE release anything new with a piston aboard was a shocker. The kind of shocker where everyone here at the BSRC offices just stared at each other in a state of bewilderment. AE doesn’t have any type of scale buggy out, which is arguably going to be the next “cool” genre, yet they introduce a new gas 2wd short course truck? Wow… just wow…
Ok, I know I’m old school and all, old school enough where each and every Associated release was the biggest and greatest news on the planet (signifying I was soon going to be emptying out my bank account), so I guess I hold AE to a higher standard, perhaps a standard I need to knock down a few notches. It will be a very sad day in my life when I finally give up all hope on Associated ever being King of RC ever again, but unfortunately I think that day is coming, coming real soon. BTW, I don’t care if AE ever becomes King of the sales floor again, I just keep holding out for them to be the first company to put out really cool stuff , to get back to being industry leaders again.
AE has been all about racing lately, and hell ya their race crew has been kick’n major ass, but then they release the SC10GT, a truck where there is absolutely no class to race in, and a truck that bashers aren’t going to touch with a ten foot pole. Racers, the only people buying any AE product now days, have no reason to buy the SC10GT because there is nowhere to race them. Some may say that the SC10GT would make a rad new class, but in case you haven’t noticed there are wayyyyy too many classes at your local track right now. And it’s nitro, which means outdoors, which means attempting to race a way overpowered 2wd on a slick/blown out 8th scale track. If you remember the old 10th scale gas truck days, they were perhaps the hardest to control trucks ever put on dirt.
Bashers aren’t going to buy the new SC10GT because nitro is “out” right now, and its got the AE name on it. Too many old school bashers are out there, old school bashers that spent hours on hours attempting to get their nitro engines to run properly (but they never did). I wouldn’t expect those types of guys to get back in to nitro until the engines are far more reliable- meaning that they start easily, tune easily, and generally aren’t a pain in the ass for at least 5 gallons of fuel. And while AE did make a push for the basher buck back in the RC18 and BFT days, they’ve shown little to no interest for the basher crowd for years now, also something consumers don’t forget.
So… who are the target buyers for the new SC10GT? Well that’s a great question. None of my rc friends/industry types had even the slightest interest in owning the SC10GT. So…. maybe they’ll sell some of them to noobs at full scale Lucas Oil off road events? Maybe give them away free to Toys for Tots programs? Cross market them as static models or doorstops? But… if I was in the market for an uber short course truck doorstop I’d buy the Venom Gambler, the Gambler is way cheaper and much better looking.
And then later in the week AE put out a PR on their new umbrella. Give me PR’s for AE race wins, give me PR’s for uber new AE products, but a PR for an umbrella? Yes, the net has changed a lot of things, yes there are a lot of stupid PR’s going out every day, but I never thought I’d see the day when AE would release a PR for an umbrella. Wow… just wow…
To boil it down… it’s probably just me, me holding the almighty Associated to a higher standard than I should, me longing for the old days when AE always lead the pack and always had the coolest gear. Back when they always made all the right moves, back when they won all the races on Sunday and all the local racers AND bashers bought their gear during the week. I should get real and realize what they really are right now- a company with a great race team but with an aging and increasing bizarre product line-up.
That’s it for this week, support your local hobby shops, tracks and bash spots!
YOUR Cub Reporter