Our kids want to be just like us. There are lots of toys that allow our children to role play as adults, but not much beats the feeling of driving your very own car. This is where remote controlled ride-on cars come in. Even young toddlers can now enjoy the freedom of the open road thanks to parental remote controls and safety features like seat belts.
Read on for our buyers guide and roundup of the best ride-on cars on the market.
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This futuristic looking car is sure to turn heads in your neighbourhood. Or maybe if real electric cars become more common it’ll fit right in! The unusual curves and lights make this ride-on car look like it’s from the film Tron.
There are LED lights on the front and back and also on the hub of the wheels. The car’s music player comes with inbuilt stories and songs but you can also use AUX cord, a TF port or USB to connect your own device. Be prepared: other parents say that the speakers are pretty loud! The lights on the wheels flash along to the music, so your child is sure to find the ride exciting.
Of the three speeds this car can drive at, the top is around 2.4 mph. Your child can use the foot pedal and steering wheel or you can use the parental remote control to achieve this. This means that your child can be driven around even before they are old enough to steer independently. The remote has an emergency brake and there is an adjustable seat belt, so you can be sure your child is safe.
The unusual doors of this remote controlled ride-on car lift up when they open and can also be locked via a switch on the inside.
TOBBI Kids Ride On Audi TT RS
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This licensed Audi toy is perfect if you’re a fan of the brand and your child wants to be just like mommy or daddy. The bright yellow colour is appealing and will make your child’s toy stand out.
Like all the models we are recommending, the ride-on car can be operated by your toddler themselves, or by you, using the parental remote control. The manufacturers advise that the car is suitable for children aged 2-5, with a weight limit of 66 lbs.
In terms of safety features, there is an adjustable seat belt and the doors are lockable. The wheels are wear resistant and shockproof, adding to your child’s comfort.
The good news is that, while it requires assembly, this should only take you around 45 minutes to complete. Once it’s built, it will need to be charged. The remote control car takes 8-12 hours to fully charge and then the car can be driven for around 40 minutes.
ZENY Kids Ride On Truck with Remote Control
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This tough-looking truck has the spec to back up it’s looks. The big tires are apparently ‘explosion proof’, which is something I’m sure we’ve all wanted from our kids toys from time to time! The tires are also wear resistant and able to handle a variety of road conditions, so this is a good pick if your outside space is anything other than a smooth driveway.
The two real mirrors, headlights and tail lights add to the realistic feel. Heads up: you will need 2 AA batteries for the lights. The ride-on car itself is rechargeable. After 8-12 hours of charging your child can drive around for about 40 minutes, depending on their weight. Talking of weight, the limit on this toy is 61 lbs, which is a little lower than most of the other models.
The detachable storage box on the back is a nice touch. When you remove it, it looks a little like a chunky suitcase. Your child can store and carry around their favourite toys in their remote controlled car.
Reviews from parents are all glowing and you can see why. It displays pure, quality craftsmanship, and it looks like it has sprung straight from a fairytale. This would make a great gift that could become a family heirloom.
The Best Ride-On Cars for Toddlers with Remote Control
Moderno Kids Kiddie Roadster Children Ride-On Car with Remote Control
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Perfect for a toddler, this red ride-on is recommended for ages 1-3 with a maximum weight of 55 lbs. It boasts a PU leather seat and a five point harness seat belt, while a lot of models just have a lap belt. The front and rear spring shot suspension adds to your child’s smooth ride.
The ride will definitely be smooth, as this car isn’t built for grass or bumpy surfaces. But if you have a big driveway or plan on cruising around on sidewalks it will be fine.
The wheels light up as well as the headlights and tail lights. Your child can play their own music as they drive, with AUX audio input, and slots for a Micro SD card and USB. Once they have had enough of driving, there is a folding handlebar so that mom or dad can pull it home and put it away.
This remote control car has realistic details like mirrors and a removable rubber floor mat. There is also the unrealistic detail of the detachable tray table! Useful for toddlers, this will allow them to have a snack on the move or maybe discourage potential escapees from standing up.
Taking less than 15 minutes to assemble, this car is quick to get going. It also boasts a 1-5 hour charging time, the quickest we’ve seen. Once fully charged, your child can drive around for about 1.5 hours. This is impressive as other models have a shorter drive time for a longer charge time!
Modern-Depo 12V Highway Patrol Police Ride On Car
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It seems to be every toddler’s dream to drive a police car, and with this ride-on car you can make your child’s dream come true. There are headlights and tail lights and the blue and red lights on top of the windscreen flash. At the push of a button there is a siren noise. Your child will really feel like they are on duty with the police radio on the dash. Bear in mind, some parents find the battery runs down quicker when all the lights are on while riding.
Assembly takes under 30 minutes so you can get going quickly. Designed for children aged 2-4, this car is suitable for a toddler. The parental remote control overrides the manual controls so your little officer can’t get into trouble. The four wheel suspension should give them a comfortable ride, too.
As well as the inbuilt sound effects, you can connect a music device via USB. Perhaps your child would like to drive while listening to the Police Academy theme? Luckily, the volume is adjustable so you don’t need to be deafened if they prefer to listen to Baby Shark while on patrol!
Emr Distributors 2020 Mercedes GT AMG 12V Car
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This is one of the most feature-packed cars on the list. Like most, it has the ability to play music. As well as prerecorded songs, you can connect your own device via SD card or USB. But not only that, this vehicle has a color LCD touchscreen, so your toddler can even watch videos on the move. They can pretend they have their very own GPS or just watch their favorite cartoons.
This officially licensed Mercedes has rear spring shock suspension and foam rubber tires, ensuring a smooth ride on paved surfaces (it is not suitable for off-road adventures). There are two speeds, between 2-4 mph and there is an emergency stop on the parental remote control.
The remote control car has working LED headlights and tail lights as well as a foldable handle to pull when your child is done driving. According to other parents, it either takes 20 minutes or two hours to build, so I guess it depends on your skill level!
The Best Pink Ride-On Cars with Remote Control
Uenjoy Volkswagen Beetle 12V Kids Electric Ride on Car
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This cute sporty little car is sure to put a smile on your child’s face. They can drive themselves around using the foot pedal, shift lever and steering wheel but the parental remote control overrides this if they need a hand. The spring suspension and seat belt ensures they are comfortable and safe, as long as they are supervised.
As well as a horn and engine noise on starting, you can play music as you drive. There are three prerecorded toddler tunes and an FM radio. You can also connect your own device via bluetooth or USB.
After 8-12 hours of charging this car gets around one hour of runtime, though according to some parents they got slightly longer. Your child can shift between two different speeds and if the parent is using the remote control, there are three. The top speed is 5 mph. The makers recommend waiting until your child is three before you let them drive solo.
A really neat feature of this ride-on car is for when your child has had enough of riding on! A handle pulls out from under the back of the car so you can pull it along like a wheeled suitcase. Also really useful if you run out of charge at the end of the street.
2020 Mercedes G Wagon Ride On Kids Car with Remote Control
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For those who love pink but prefer a luxury SUV, there is this Mercedes ride-on remote controlled car. Recommended for ages 2-5 with a maximum weight of 66 lbs, it is a big car for a small person. This vehicle can be driven at 3 speeds of between 2 and 5 mph.
The soft start and electric brake system ensure a smooth driving experience for your little one. With soft PU leather seats and seat belt, the interior is comfortable, too. The headlights, tail lights and fog lights add to the realistic feel, as do the music options. You can insert a Micro SD card or connect a device via USB or AUX.
After 8-10 hours of charging, your child will get a drive time of around 1.5 hours, which is a better ratio than some other ride-on cars for toddlers. It requires assembly, but this is luckily fast too, at around 30 minutes.
Uenjoy Kids Ride on Cars with Remote Control New Camouflage Color
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This ride-on remote controlled car is a lot. In a good way! As if bright pink camo wasn’t enough, this jeep had blue grille lights and four raised coloured lights in addition to the usual headlights. To go with the great visuals, your child can also blast tunes. There are inbuilt stories and music as well as a bluetooth connection for your device.
There is a ‘hidden’ storage compartment inside the spare tire on the back so your child can bring some of their toys with them on their adventures. After 8-12 hours charging time, those adventures can be about an hour long.
The manufacturers recommend this remote control car for children aged over three and up to a weight of 66 lbs. Of the three speeds, the top goes at 2.5 mph. Although this pink car looks like a two seater ride-on car it is actually built for one, which is the same for similar toys on our list.
Other parents have noted that the wide tires are able to easily drive over grass, but probably not with a heavier child and bumpy terrain. They also say it takes less than an hour to assemble. This process is made easier by the instructional video on the Amazon listing page and the manufacturer’s Facebook page.
The Best Luxury Ride-On Cars with Remote Control
Aosom 12V Jaguar F-Type SVR Kids Battery Powered Ride-On Car
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Give your child the classic red convertible of their dreams with this officially licensed Jaguar F-Type SVR. It can be operated with the remote control or by your child themselves. A realistic driving experience is created by opening doors, dual side mirrors and a working horn and headlights. The horn is sounded by one of the buttons on the steering wheel.
The other steering wheel button activates the in-car music. Your child can be a mobile DJ and select whatever tunes they like. With USB and TF card slots as well as a radio they’ll be spoilt for choice when you connect your portable music device.
This ride-on remote controlled car is designed for children aged 3-6 with a maximum weight limit of 65 lbs. Of course you must always supervise your child when using this toy, but you are helped out by safety features such as extra-wide tires, lockable doors and a seatbelt.
From a charging time of 8-12 hours you get around 45 minutes of driving time and the instrument panel lights up to indicate the battery is in use. Once you’re powered up the foot accelerator helps your child to switch between two speeds, up to a maximum of 5 mph.
Once you receive your child’s ride-on car, you will need to assemble it. Other parents report that the instructions are a bit confusing but that it takes around an hour. A few parents have also mentioned having trouble with the steering column and wheels falling off.
2020 Mercedes Benz CLA 12V Ride-On Motorized Car
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If your child is the next Lewis Hamilton then this Mercedes could be the right choice. You won’t quite be ready for Formula One at a top speed of 5 mph but the harness seat belt will feel more like the real thing. The PU soft leather seat and removable dining tray ensure this model is more luxury than racecar.
This Mercedez Benz ride-on car is recommended for children ages 2-6. They can drive independently, or be driven by the parent’s bluetooth remote control, which can override the controls at any time.
When it is fully charged the car can be driven for around 1.5 hours with the lights on and for 2 hours without, according to a fellow parent. Talking of lights, this is the perfect choice for an evening drive with front, back, tire and underbody lights, as well as a light up dashboard.
For driving music, you can connect via USB, MP3 AUX or by inserting a micro SD card. The trunk opens so your child can take some toys along for the ride. And if everyone gets tired of cruising, there is a pull-out handle so mom or dad can wheel the empty car home.
Best Choice Products Kids 12V Ride-On Lamborghini Aventador SV
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With a top speed of 3.7 mph this ride-on electric car is not quite as speedy as the other luxury models, but it makes up for it in looks. The iconic doors open upwards, just like a real Lamborghini and the sleek lines and spoiler add to the effect.
There are LED headlights and rear red lights, adding to the realistic effect. You can connect a portable music device with an AUX cable. There are the usual safety features of a seatbelt and ability to override with the parental remote control.
The makers of this Lamborghini ride-on give an age range of 3-8 years, but other parents have advised it is probably too small for children over five, unless they are quite small. They also say it is easy to assemble, taking around 30 minutes. You just need to attach the doors, mirrors and tires.
When you look at the car, it seems as if there are two seats but it is actually designed to take one child. However, other parents mention that they have fit two children in there. It is up to you to decide if your children will be safe riding together, as there is only one seatbelt.
What age group is best for a ride-on car?
Lots of ride-on remote controlled cars state that they are suitable for children up to the age of seven or eight. However, many parents have shared that they feel this is too high. Most believe that are best sized and suited to children under the age of six, with lots citing four or five as an upper limit.
Pay close attention to the age and weight recommendations if you are choosing a ride-on car for a child who is over the age of five or is particularly tall. If your child is within the recommendations, think about longevity: how many months or years of play will they get out of this? Don’t forget you are likely to use it less in the winter.
How do I choose a good ride-on car for kids?
In addition to choosing the right size, think about how it looks. The driving mechanics are broadly similar across the models, so the way it looks will play a big part in your decision. You could involve your child in the shopping process so they feel a sense of ownership and to make sure they really like it before you buy. If it is for a present, think about their favourite toys and try to choose a car that fits with that style, or ticks a few of the same boxes.
Just like real cars, remote control cars for toddlers now come with a host of music options. Consider which type of connection works best with your portable music device or phone. Bluetooth might be best if you don’t want your child riding around with your phone in their pocket! Some come with pre-installed stories or tunes, so this could be a good option if you don’t want to connect a device.
You want to get a good ratio of charging to run time. Your child won’t thank you for a toy that takes three days to charge but only drives for 20 minutes! A lot of ride-on cars take 8-12 hours so an overnight charge will generally be needed. When they start driving, the play time can range from 45 minutes to two hours. Balance this with the other features you are looking for to try and get maximum fun time for your child.
To ensure the battery life lasts as long as it can, always follow the instructions. This avoids over charging, which can damage the battery. A lot of the cars automatically turn off charging when the battery is full.
Most of the cars on our list have headlights and some have tail lights or fog lights too. A few have extra light-up parts. Think about whether this will appeal to your child and add to their enjoyment. If you plan on your child driving at dusk or in the dark this could be a feature that is important to you. Fun lights could come in handy at Halloween if your child wants to cruise around the neighbourhood to collect their candy or if the car ends up being part of their costume. Batmobile, anyone?
How fast does a ride-on car go?
The top speed of a ride-on remote control car depends on the voltage of the battery as well as your child’s weight and the riding surface. The majority of cars have a 12v motor but some have two of these. Generally 5 mph is the top speed, but some cars are limited to 2.5 or 3 mph. If you want your child to be thrilled by going as fast as possible, go for a 5mph vehicle. If you feel more comfortable limiting your child’s speed then you can either choose a toy that has a lower top speed or use the parental remote control to keep them at a certain pace.
What surfaces can a ride-on car go over?
Again, this can depend on the weight of your child, but you should expect your ride-on car to cope with a level, grassed surface as well as smooth roads and sidewalks. Some parents have noted that their car can handle gravel with a younger toddler on board. The Beetle we included in the list is known to mount small hills.
Can you wash a kid's ride-on car?
You might be tempted to set up a cute car wash with buckets of soapy water for your child. Unfortunately, this is not a great idea for your remote controlled car. Because of the electronic components, you want to be careful about getting it very wet. Instead, if it gets dirty, wipe it with a damp cloth. You may also use a cleaning product recommended in the car’s instructions.
Before you buy, think about where you will store the car when it is not in use. This toy will last longer, in a better condition, if it is protected from the elements. If you don’t have a garage or closet it can fit inside, consider buying a waterproof cover.