M1A2 Abrams Tank
Street Price: $32.00 US
Manufacturer: XQ Toys
Mfgr's recommended min. age: 8
Our recommended age range: 7-10
Primary use: Indoors or hard outdoor surfaces
Top speed: n/a
- Assembled tank
- 10x AA batteries
At about 16 1/2 inches tip to tip, this RC M1A2 Abrams tank by XQ is large enough to make a big impression without being unwieldy. The fine details and fairly realistic-looking matte-finish desert paint scheme make it look pretty good as even just a display model. The controller has a lot of buttons for different things on it, but I'll cover that once I get to testing. The only thing I don't like about this tank in my initial look at it is the need for so many batteries -- it's 6 for the tank and 4 for the controller. While controller batteries tend to last a long time, you'll probably want to use rechargables for the tank itself to keep costs down.
The first thing I did after installing batteries was, of course, try out every single switch & button. This thing has a fair number of 'em on the controller:
- Twin sticks for general movement
- Turret rotation left/right
- Main gun raise/lower (a single button you hold down to cycle between up & down movement in a fixed range)
- Main gun firing
- Machine gun firing (sound only)
- Sounds on/off
Ah yes, did I mention the tank has sounds? Pretty good sounds, too, and plenty loud. If the volume is too high and it bothers folks in the next room, before turning it off altogether you can move the on/off switch on the tank itself into the middle position, which puts it into "low volume" mode. Then you can still hear the cool sounds, they just won't travel as far.
XQ's instructions say to use the M1A2 Abrams tank indoors only. I tried this, and it was fun and all, but I felt compelled to take it outside for some more scale-looking video footage and to test out its terrain-handling capabilities. The results very thoroughly impressed both me and another guy I let full around with it for about 1/2 hour after I wrapped up. The tank is pretty low to the ground in the middle (between the tracks), so you have to be careful not to get it stuck on rocks that are taller than its ground clearance. It also won't go on soft sand, wet terrain, or grass. Once you get used to planning out your route, knowing what it can and cannot do, the fun is almost limitless. See for yourself in the video!
(Click a video a second time to view it larger in a new window.)
This 1/24th scale XQ M1A2 Abrams tank is a ton of fun at a reasonable price. The only thing it's really missing is some sort of laser or BB-shooting battle system, but you generally have to pay more for tanks with that sort of equipment. Plus, the ability to actually shoot physical objects can be very dangerous for some kids. My tank went over an hour of pretty continuous use on one set of batteries and it's still going, but I would very, very strongly recommend rechargeable AA batteries for the tank to make sure it doesn't become expensive over time. You can find this tank in various stores that sell toy-grade RCs, or online here on Amazon.com.