Custom RC Drift Cars: Build Your Own for Top Performance

Custom RC Drift Cars: Build Your Own for Top Performance

RC drift cars are a niche subset of remote control vehicles that have gained popularity in recent years. These small scale cars are built to slide, drift and spin around tight corners and turns. With the increasing interest in the sport, many hobbyists are looking to build their own custom RC drift cars. Customization allows for greater control, better handling, and enhanced performance, resulting in a unique and personalized car perfect for a hobbyist’s specific needs. Building a custom RC drift car requires understanding the various components that make up the vehicle, choosing the right base car, and selecting the appropriate upgrades and modifications to improve performance. In this article, we’ll discuss how to build your own custom RC drift car, step-by-step.

Custom RC drift cars require a careful selection of the base car. Suspension with adjustable dampers and spring rates, drivetrain, and weight distribution are the primary things to look for. The Yokomo YD-2 and MST RMX 2.0 S are the popular choices for the base car. A lower center of gravity and even weight distribution provide better performance while making sharp turns.

RC Garage Hobby Shop could be a one-stop destination for buying base cars for custom RC drift builds. The website offers a wide range of options from established brands. It is recommended to research and read reviews before purchasing a base car. Choosing the right base car is crucial, as it sets the tone for the entire build and determines the customization options.

With a proper base car to start with, the customization can begin. A custom RC drift car requires a combination of high-quality parts, precise installation, and engine tuning. It is essential to make sure all the components match the chosen base car. Upgraded suspension, differentials, tires, and body shells could all make a difference in performance and aesthetics.

Professional custom RC drift car builders stress the importance of getting the right balance between form and function. Care should be taken to balance the custom body shell’s weight with performance parts that could improve the car’s handling and speed. Several websites offer a broad selection of parts and components to create the perfect custom RC drift car.

It is important to note that building a custom RC drift car requires patience, time, and skill. Many builders suggest starting with a simple build and upgrading as necessary, as custom RC drift car builds could be very daunting for beginners. With the right approach and the perfect base car, building custom RC drift cars could be an incredibly gratifying and entertaining hobby.

How can I make my RC car drift?

Drifting is a fun way to spice up your RC car experience. Here are some tips to help you start drifting:

  • Lower the center of gravity by using heavier components on the chassis
  • Install drift tires, which have a harder compound and less grip than normal tires
  • Adjust the suspension and dampening to allow for more sliding
  • Practice on a smooth, flat surface to build up your drifting skills

If you’re looking to upgrade your RC car specifically for drifting, there are performance parts and kits available from manufacturers like HPI Racing, Yokomo, and MST. You can also find helpful tutorials and advice on websites like and RC Geeks.

Step 2: Upgrading the Chassis

Upgrading the chassis is the next step in building a custom RC drift car. Here are some popular upgrades to consider:

Upgrade Description
Carbon fiber upgrades Lighter and stronger than stock parts, which can improve handling and increase speed.
Metal suspension links Provide greater durability and precision during drifting.
Aluminum shock towers Offer improved shock absorption and better handling at high speeds.

Each of these upgrades can improve the car’s handling and performance during drifting. Websites such as Drifted and RC Planet offer a variety of chassis upgrades to choose from. Keep in mind that too many heavy upgrades can negatively impact the car’s performance, so choose upgrades wisely.

How to make your RC car drift?

Making your RC car drift isn’t rocket science, but it takes some practice and patience. Here are some simple steps to help you get started:

  • Choose the right surface: look for slick floors or pavement, preferably indoors.
  • Lower the center of gravity: add weights or switch to soft springs to improve the stability of your car.
  • Slippery tires: fit your car with drift-specific tires or apply tire conditioner for better grip.
  • Practice: start with small turns and gradually increase the speed and angle of the drift.

There are various websites and forums where you can find more information, tips and tricks on how to improve your drifting skills, such as or You can also browse online stores like or for drift-specific RC cars, parts and accessories.

Choosing the right wheels and tires is crucial for a custom RC drift build. Here are some options to consider:

  • Hard compound tires: Provide better grip and last longer, but require a higher power motor to get the car moving.
  • Soft compound tires: Ideal for drifting due to their high traction, but wear out quickly.
  • Reverse-wire wheels: The spokes on the wheels are angled backwards, which can improve grip and reduce the likelihood of the car flipping over.

The combination of wheels and tires can greatly affect a car’s drifting ability. It’s important to carefully consider the surface being drifted on and choose a combination that works best for that surface. Websites like AMain Hobbies and RCMart offer a range of wheels and tires that can be used for RC drifting.

What kind of tires do you need to drift?

Drifting is a driving technique in which the driver intentionally oversteers the car, making it slide through the corners. To achieve this, you need special types of tires that provide the necessary grip and slip. The tires you need to drift are:

  • High-performance, sticky tires with a soft compound
  • Tires with a low profile for better control and precision
  • Widened tires for increased traction and stability
  • Tires with low air pressure for better grip

Drift-specific tires, such as the Falken Azenis RT615K+ or the Nitto NT555 G2, are designed for maximum grip and slip. They have a unique tread pattern that provides outstanding lateral grip and allows the tire to break traction easily.

Remember that drifting is dangerous and should only be attempted in a controlled environment with proper safety equipment.

Step 4: Choosing the Right Motor and Electronics

The right motor and electronics are crucial for achieving the desired level of performance in a custom RC drift car. Here are some options to consider:

  • Brushed motors: Affordable and beginner-friendly option that provides enough power for basic drifting.
  • Brushless motors: More expensive but provide better performance and speed. Ideal for those looking to take their drifting to the next level.
  • Transmitter and receiver: A high-quality transmitter and receiver setup can improve the precision and control of the drift car.

When selecting the right motor and electronics, it’s important to consider the compatibility with the chosen base car and the overall budget for the build. Websites like HobbyKing and Tower Hobbies offer a wide range of motors, ESCs, and transmitters that can be used for custom RC drift builds.

Which RC transmitter is best?

There is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, as different RC hobbyists may have different requirements and preferences for their RC transmitters. However, there are a few things to consider when choosing the best RC transmitter for your needs:

  • Brand: Look for well-known and established brands, such as Spektrum, Futaba or FrSky, for quality and reliability.
  • Compatibility: Make sure the transmitter is compatible with the type of RC receiver and model you plan to use.
  • Channels: Determine how many channels you need for your specific RC application.
  • Features: Consider features such as programmability, telemetry, and compatibility with simulators.

Some popular RC transmitters that are well-reviewed by hobbyists include the Spektrum DX8e and the FrSky Taranis X9D Plus. However, it’s important to do your own research and read reviews before making a purchase.

Websites such as and offer forums where hobbyists can discuss different RC transmitters and share their experiences. These can be helpful resources when researching which transmitter to buy.

Step 5: Body Modifications and Customization

Body modifications not only enhance the look of the RC car but also improve its performance during drifting. Here are some popular options to consider:

  • Rear Wing: Improves downforce and stability during drifting.
  • Body Kit: Helps distribute the weight evenly and reduce the center of gravity for better stability.
  • Diffuser: Reduces drag and improves downforce for better handling in corners.

Before selecting specific body modifications, it’s important to select a compatible body style that suits the chosen base car. Popular brands like Tamiya and HPI offer a variety of body styles that are compatible with multiple base cars. Additionally, several online retailers like AMain Hobbies and RC Planet offer different body modification kits and accessories for custom RC drift builds.

How Can I Improve My RC Car?

Improving your RC car can be done in a variety of ways. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

  • Upgrade the motor for better acceleration and speed.
  • Upgrade the battery for longer run times.
  • Install high-performance tires for better grip on the track or road.
  • Upgrade the suspension for better handling.
  • Upgrade the radio system for better control and responsiveness.

There are many online resources available to help you improve your RC car. Websites such as HobbyKing, Tower Hobbies, and Horizon Hobby offer a variety of parts and upgrades for your RC car. You can also find helpful tutorials and forums on these sites to help guide you through the process.


Custom RC drift cars are a great way to combine the thrill of remote-controlled car racing with the creativity of customization. By following the steps outlined above, anyone can build their own custom RC drift car that looks great and performs well on the track.

It is important to select the right components and upgrades based on the chosen base car, and to consider the intended use and individual preferences when selecting modifications. Many retailers offer options for chassis, wheels, motors, and electronics, as well as body modifications, giving RC enthusiasts plenty of options to build a unique and high-performance drift car.

Overall, building a custom RC drift car is a fun and rewarding experience that allows you to create a unique machine that suits your style and preferences. So why not give it a try and see where your creativity takes you?