Traxxas Slash vs. Rustler: Which Is The Better RC Truck?

The Traxxas Slash and Rustler are both exceptional hobby-grade RC car options. They differ primarily in design, giving you a unique handling experience no matter which one you choose.

The Slash is the more popular choice. It has a truck design, the Rustler has a stadium-truck design with big wheels that protrude from the body of the car. The Rustler is wider, making it more stable for performing tricks. The Slash has higher ground clearance and is suited for short-course racing.

So, get the Slash if you want good off-road and pavement speed and handling. If you’re looking for something that won’t roll over as easily, the Rustler has a wide wheelbase to keep the wheels on the ground. There are a few different Slash and Rustler models to choose from, the higher the price, the better the internal components, like motor and electronics.

traxxas-slash-vs-rustler

Let’s look at all the Slash and Rustler models for you to make the ultimate decision.

Traxxas Slash 1/10

Last update on 2024-02-07 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Here are all the Traxxas Slash models available from the very affordable 2WD to the 4X4 Ultimate for extreme speed and control.

Slash 2WD

All the Slash models are 1/10 in scale. This is a good size for a balance between affordability and performance. It’s big enough to get over humps and bumps on an off-road track, but small enough to be affordable to anyone, even if you have to save up for a few months.

Even the 2WD Slash has no problem on grassy terrains and rugged tracks, thanks to its suspension and potent 12-turn 550 brushed motor capable of reaching speeds up to 30mph. This amount of power proves quite satisfying for most people.

There are a few advantages to 2-wheel-drive cars, they’re lighter and easier to maintain due to fewer components, making 2WD models cheaper to maintain. Notably, the 2WD setup also facilitates exciting maneuvers like drifting and executing tight corners with relative ease.

Please check out my article if you’re not sure whether a 2WD or a 4WD RC car is better for you.

The standard Traxxas Slash model is available, excluding the battery and charger components. However, an upgraded version, priced slightly higher, provides an appealing option featuring an 8.4V 3000mAh NiMH battery and charger package.

Key Features

  • Motor: 12-turn 550 brushed motor.
  • Battery Compatibility: Various options.
  • Speed: Up to 30mph.
  • Unique Feature: Agile 2WD design for easy drifting and maneuvering.

Check the latest deals on Amazon here: Traxxas Slash

Slash 4X4

The 4X4 model has a higher suspension to get over obstacles easier and saves battery life because there is less friction under the vehicle. Of course, it’s a 4X4 wheel drive, so that also helps a lot when driving on very uneven surfaces. So it travels faster over bumpy grounds and also climbs hills without a sweat. The traction is higher than the 2WD Slash because all four tires are rotated.

Everything else on this model is the same as the standard Slash 2WD.

Key Features

  • Motor: 12-turn 550 modified brushed motor.
  • Battery Compatibility: 7-cell NiMH battery included.
  • Speed: Up to 30mph. (with optional gear change for 60mph)
  • Unique Feature: 4X4 capability for excellent off-road performance.

Here are the latest specials on the Traxxas 4X4 on Amazon: Traxxas 4X4

Slash VXL 2WD

The VXL comes equipped with an extremely powerful brushless motor that will blast your Slash to over 60mph. To handle that speed, Traxxas installed Stability Management so you’re less likely to lose control during high acceleration. This Slash is stronger with a reinforced driveshaft and handles well with an upgraded steering system.

All you need to do is choose the battery and charger you’d like to use. A 3000mAh NiMH will give you about 35mph, around 40 mph with a 5800mAh 2S LiPo, and over 60mph with a 5000mAh 3S.

To get speeds over 60mph, install the 76-tooth spur gear and 31-T pinion.

Me with my Slash

Key Features

  • Motor: Super-fast brushless motor.
  • Battery Compatibility: Various options, can exceed 60mph with a 3S LiPo.
  • Speed: Over 60mph.
  • Unique Feature: Traxxas Stability Management (TSM) for better control.

Slash VXL 4X4

Slash VXL models are powered with high-performance brushless motors. This is the motor you need to reach speeds of over 60mph. It’s one of the fastest Slashes ever and comes with stability management for you to maintain control.

The Slash VXL 4X4 is compatible with a few different batteries. You can achieve speeds of around 35mph with a 3000mAh NiMH battery. A 5800mAh 2S LiPo battery will push the truck to around 40mph. To unleash the full potential and reach speeds over 60mph, you’ll need a 5000mAh 3S LiPo battery.

Besides the powerful motor, the Slash VXL 4X4 also comes equipped with Traxxas Stability Management (TSM). This enhances control and stability, especially during high-speed acceleration and cornering. It helps prevent the truck from losing control, so it’s much easier to get to high speeds while retaining control.

The Slash VXL 4X4 is also equipped with a reinforced driveshaft and an upgraded steering system, ensuring durability and precise handling on a variety of terrains.

Key Features

  • Motor: Velineon brushless motor.
  • Battery Compatibility: Various options, can exceed 60mph with a 3S LiPo.
  • Speed: Over 60mph.
  • Unique Feature: High center of gravity for off-road stability.

Here are all the latest deals for the Slash VXL on Amazon: Slash VXL 4X4

Slash 4X4 Ultimate

Last update on 2024-02-07 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The Slash Ultimate uses the same awesome motor that the VXL models use, the Velineon 3500 Brushless. It’s a low-maintenance, high-power motor with high-speed ball bearings and a precision-balanced rotor.

It uses a 7-cell NiMH battery, but there are more powerful options as well. If you want faster speeds, you can always explore different battery options and gear setups.

The Slash 4X4 Ultimate can hit speeds of up to 30mph right out of the box, but there’s an option to change the gear to get you to around 60mph. Just be warned, lower-end acceleration is going to be a bit slower with a high-speed gear.

You also get upgraded shocks, stronger suspension, and other top-of-the-line components. The 4X4 drivetrain means it can handle all types of terrain, and those four rotating tires give you superior traction.

For those who are conscious of their budget but still want a taste of the high-quality Traxxas experience, here’s a list of cost-effective alternatives in the Traxxas line-up.

Key Features

  • Motor: Velineon brushless motor.
  • Battery Compatibility: Various options, can exceed 60mph with a 3S LiPo.
  • Speed: Over 60mph.
  • Unique Feature: Loaded with premium features and accessories for top-notch performance.

Here are the latest options for the Traxxas Slash 4X4 on Amazon.com.

Traxxas Rustler 1/10

The Traxxas Rustler comes in five different options, let’s look at each one from low to high range.

Rustler 2WD

Last update on 2024-02-07 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The design of the Traxxas Rustler is that of a stadium truck. So the tires stick out on the sides making the wheelbase very wide compared to the Slash. This makes the Rustler the smart choice for anyone who wants to take on ramps, flip through the air, and land back on the wheels without a problem.

The combination of parts in the Rustler makes it go a bit faster than the Slash but still not as good at handling turns and keeping a straight line at high speeds.

This Rustler has the same 2WD advantages as the Slash, namely, low maintenance and better handling around tight corners compared to the 4X4 options.

Key Features

  • Motor: Titan® 12-turn 550 modified motor.
  • Battery Compatibility: Various options.
  • Speed: Up to 35mph.
  • Unique Feature: Agile 2WD design for nimble handling.

Rustler 4X4

The Rustler 4X4 gives you maximum traction for climbing hills or running up ramps. It also helps to get you through bushy terrain. This is a good option if you plan on performing the stunts the Rustler is designed to do. With the 4X4 option, you get more airtime because the tires push all the way up the ramp, whereas the 2WD cars have less traction going up and therefore less airtime.

The standard 4X4 has the same Titan 550 modified brushed motor as the 2WD Rustler, but the power gets transferred to all the wheels instead of just two.

If you can stretch your budget, this is the better choice when it comes to stunts and off-road power.

Key Features

  • Motor: Titan 550 modified brushed motor.
  • Battery Compatibility: 7-cell NiMH battery included.
  • Speed: Up to 30mph. (with optional gear change for 60mph)
  • Unique Feature: 4X4 capability for versatile off-road adventures.

Take a peek at all the latest deals on Amazon: Rustler 2WD

Rustler VXL

Last update on 2024-02-06 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The VXL range of Rustlers all use Velineon brushless motors just like the VXL Slash range. But it manages to push the Rustler to a slightly higher top speed due to the car’s design and gear setup.

The Rustler VXL moves at insane speeds of over 65mph, making it the faster option compared to the Slash but not by much. I also think that the Slash handles the speed much better than the Rustler because it can perform tighter turns. But if you’re not planning to race against short-course vehicles, you’ll be fine.

This is the type of RC car you need if you plan to blast off a ramp into the atmosphere. Besides the VXL 4X4 model, this is the most powerful option on the list.

Key Features

  • Motor: Velineon brushless motor.
  • Battery Compatibility: Various options, can exceed 65mph with a 3S LiPo.
  • Speed: Over 65mph.
  • Unique Feature: High-speed brushless power for extreme performance.

Here are all the latest deals for the Rustler VXL on Amazon: Rustler VXL

Rustler VXL 4X4

The Rustler VXL 4X4 is built to deliver breathtaking performance with its Velineon brushless motor and 4X4 drivetrain. It compares to the Slash VXL 4X4 but is capable of slightly higher speeds. (Around 5 to 10 mph faster than the Slash.) It can reach these speeds mostly due to its smaller chassis and body.

To reach these top speeds, the conditions need to be perfect, a straight line with no bumps in the way. The Slash VXL 4X4 is still the faster option for racing around courses.

However, if you just want to have fun performing stunts and spinning around without rolling over too easily, the Rustler is the better option.

Key Features

  • Motor: Velineon brushless motor.
  • Battery Compatibility: Various options, can exceed 65mph with a 3S LiPo.
  • Speed: Over 65mph.
  • Unique Feature: 4X4 capability for all-terrain versatility.

Here are the latest options for the Rustler VXL 4X4 on Amazon.com.

What Is The Top Speed Of A Traxxas Slash?

The standard Slash can reach up to 30mph. The 4X4 Slash reaches the same speed with the same motor. These models use brushed motors. The Slash VXL models reach speeds of 60mph and above with the help of Velineon brushless motors. The Slash Ultimate also achieves these speeds with the same parts.

What Is The Top Speed Of A Traxxas Rustler?

The Standard Traxxas Rustler can travel up to 35mph with its 12-turn 550 brushed motor. The Rusler 4X4 does the same speeds but handles them better on rough terrain. The Rustler VXL models reach over 65mph with brushless motors.

Curious about how Traxxas models stack up against each other in terms of speed? Speed is one of the defining features of Traxxas models, and it can vary greatly across their wide range. To get a comprehensive understanding of their performance, check out our detailed guide on how fast Traxxas RC Cars go.

Can You Race A Traxxas Rustler?

There are races that you can participate in with a Traxxas Rustler. This model is perfect for racing on dirt tracks but will do well on any track if you fit the appropriate tires.

Can You Race A Traxxas Slash?

You can race a Traxxas Slash in many different events all around the world. The Traxxas Slash is built for high speed and excellent handling, making it perfect for racing. You can search for local rc car races to find relevant places where you can take your RC car and start racing!

Traxxas has positioned itself as one of the leaders in the RC world, but it’s not without competition. Losi, another popular RC brand, often comes up in discussions alongside Traxxas. To see how these two giants stack up against each other, check out our detailed guide on Losi vs. Traxxas: Which Is Better?

Conclusion

The Traxxas Slash is bigger than the Traxxas Rustler. This makes it slightly slower but still more capable of making it around a race track quickly. The Rustler has a wide wheelbase so it doesn’t roll over as easy as the Slash. The wide base also helps to land on your tires after performing flips or just ramping straight over something.

So it really depends on what type of driving experience you’re looking for. Choose the Slash for a bigger, more race-capable RC. For performing stunts and going very fast in a straight line, the Rustler is the right choice.

In addition to the Slash and Rustler, Traxxas boasts a wide range of high-quality models, including the X-Maxx. This beastly RC truck is renowned for its size, power, and durability. For a deep dive into its capabilities, don’t miss my Traxxas X-Maxx Review.

I hope that you found this article helpful. Here are some more articles that may be of interest;

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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