Do RC Nitro Trucks Have Reverse? Let’s Find Out

RC nitro vehicles are growing in popularity due to their affordability, modification possibilities, and variety of uses. Whether you’re competing in a tournament or casually driving around in your street, these cars and trucks offer loads of fun, but Ive always wondered if Nitro RC trucks have reverse?

On-road cars and trucks don’t have reverse, but you’ll be able to reverse with a few different models of off-road RC nitro trucks. These models include:

  • Traxxas Revo Truck.
  • Hpi Savage.
  • Exceed RC Mad Beast Monster Truck.

There are a few reverse modules that you can add to your nitro RC trucks as well.

Throughout this article, you’ll learn whether or not you should invest in a reversible nitro truck, how fast they go, and how to add a module.

On-Road vs Off-Road RC Truck Reverse Capabilities.

There are loads of differences between on-road and off-road RC nitro trucks. For example, the tires require completely separate sizes, textures and shapes.

However, the biggest change is that on-road RC vehicles rarely ever have the ability to go in reverse. On the other hand, off-road vehicles sometimes do.

The reason that you won’t find too many on-road RC nitro trucks that can go backwards is that there isn’t really any need to do so. If you drive it into a corner or near some bushes, nitro vehicles have more than enough power to get themselves out of the situation. Worst case scenario, you might have to run over and manually move it out of place.

Off-road RC trucks often get themselves into trenches, mud pits, rocky areas, and other terrains that require a reverse motion. Although they’re loaded with power, it’s far too difficult to try to drive right over anything that gets in your way when you’re cruising around off-road. Remember that larger tires will help you to not get stuck as often, but reversing is still ideal.

It should be noted that, while they’re not considered nitro, electric RC cars almost never have reverse capabilities. Even if you’re using them off-road, the components and procedures needed to add reverse onto an electric RC truck or car are far too complicated. Not only that, but they can end up ruining other parts if they’re installed incorrectly.

Many competitors believe you shouldn’t ever use electric RC cars and trucks off-road at all. If you want to take the situation seriously, or you prefer to power through obstacles rather than constantly adjusting in tough terrain, then nitro RC trucks are the way to go. Let’s check out what you can do to add reverse manoeuvres to your RC vehicles.

Can You Add Reverse Modules to RC Vehicles?

Only a small handful of RC nitro trucks come with reverse, but that doesn’t mean that you’re forced to buy one of them if you want to go backward. Adding reverse module is the best way to improve your chances, but still it’s not a guaranteed process. You should always consult the manufacturer before performing any mechanical changes to your RC vehicles.

Each reverse module operates differently, but they all require you to remove the transmission. If you’re not comfortable doing this, you might want to seek the help of a professional. There are dozens of tutorials online as well. Removing the transmission can lead to a host of problems if you don’t do it properly, including:

  • Pulsing and dragging when you try to move forward.
  • A ticking or clicking noise when you drive in reverse.
  • Complete stoppage and inoperability.
  • Ruined transmission gears.
  • Flipped switches (forward is going backwards, backwards is going forward)

As you can see, there are far too many issues to play with guesswork. You should always know what you’re doing before you dive into a project. Fortunately, RC nitro trucks are designed to to be tinkered with.

After all, redesigning and modifying is half of the fun that we can enjoy with RC vehicles! They have far fewer parts than real trucks, so why not give it a shot?

Note: Although there aren’t any electric RC cars that come with reverse capabilities, some people have managed to modify them to do so. However, they’re a bit more difficult to work with since they’re not created for alterations. If you want something to modify, reverse, and rollover everything, choose a nitro RC truck.

How Fast Do Nitro RC Trucks Move in Reverse?

We all know that cars don’t go as fast in reverse as they do when they’re accelerating forward. You might be wondering whether or not that statement holds true when it comes to RC nitro vehicles. In short, it depends. There are too many variables that can pinpoint a single accurate answer.

These are the five components that determine how quickly an RC nitro truck moves when it goes in reverse:

  1. If you purchased an RC vehicle that’s designed with reverse capabilities, then it’ll tell you right on the label. Most of them go at the same speed as they do when they’re moving forward. If you have an RC truck that goes 15 to 20 miles per hour, that includes the reverse speed as well.
  2. On the other hand, if you installed the module yourself, you might notice that it doesn’t go as quickly. This slowed speed is due to the fact that the transmission wasn’t originally made to go in reverse. You might see up to 50% speed reduction if you customized the reverse module.
  3. The terrain that you’re driving on directly impacts the speed in both directions. Some transmission work powerfully when they’re moving forward, but the speed is reduced when they’re going backward on bumpy, rocky, or muddy surfaces.
  4. Unfortunately, incorrect installations can lead to a slow-down of the entire unit. You could see a dramatic drop in acceleration and top speed by changing out or modifying the transmission with a new version.
  5. Finally, the wheels that you’re using will change the speed. Some tires are textured facing forward, which helps to propel them in that direction. That being said, it can cause a severe drop in speed when you’re trying to move backward. If you notice this issue, you can buy a new set of tires to fix it.

Do You Need Reverse on Your RC Nitro Truck?

Whether or not you need reverse depends on your personal preference. Many people who’ve purchased an RC car that comes with reverse capabilities have found that they don’t use it enough to make it worth the extra money. Others have even pointed to the fact that it complicates the transmission, leading to the previously mentioned problems.

However, if you’re tired of having to constantly replace your nitro truck, then it’s definitely worth considering. Again, don’t do any modifications if you’re not sure what you’re doing. The last thing you want is to ruin your RC truck!


While you can definitely buy or alter RC nitro trucks to go in reverse, most of them don’t come with it. You’ll quickly find out that the nitro powers through almost any obstacle, which means you won’t need to go backward at all. The sharp turning radius also helps out quite a bit!

Need sharper turning? My post covering how to improve the steering radius of your RC car will help.

Throughout this article, you should’ve learned:

  • The Traxxas Revo Truck, the HPI Savage, and the Exceed RC Mad Beast Monster Truck all come with reverse capabilities or integrated modules.
  • You can modify certain RC nitro trucks and cars to go backward.
  • There are numerous complications that come with reverse modules.
  • Nitro is powerful enough to not need reverse on-road, but they might require off-road assistance.

Paul Good

This awesome hobby has something for everyone, whether you like to build your RC from scratch and keep modifying till you've got it to just how you want it, to track racing. You might be out with a boat, or perfecting your skills with a plane. Are you taking some cool pics with your drone? I'm sure my site will help you on your journey.

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