Looking at the title, you may think we have sniffed too much race fuel considering the 2012 Boss 302 is powered by the infamous 302 cubic inch engine… not electric motors. The Boss 302 also is a rear-wheel drive car, not all-wheel drive. So what gives with this hands-on driving story? The Boss 302 we are driving today isn’t made by Ford; this little beast is made by Traxxas.
If you are into remote controlled cars or trucks, you will recognize the Traxxas name as one of the leaders in the RC vehicle market. Traxxas sent us over one of its awesome new Boss 302 RC cars to drive around and we had a blast doing it. The little RC Boss 302 is a 1/16 scale model and rather than being powered by nitro fuel as some Traxxas cars are, this one uses rechargeable battery pack(s).
Out of the box with a single battery pack, the Traxxas Boss 302 is capable of hitting 35 MPH in real-world (not scale!) speed. However, if you are like us, stock is never enough. Traxxas has a kit with an optional pinion gear and a second battery pack with a speed connector that will push the toy to over 50 MPH. We have the second battery and the speed connector, but we didn’t have the pinion gear. That limited our high-speed hoonage to about 45 MPH, but we still had a blast.
Traxxas uses an all-wheel drive system on the Boss 302 for better traction and handling on the streets or racing at the track, while the drivetrain uses ball bearings for smooth and efficient power delivery. The car also has a torque slipper clutch and planetary differential gears. For new drivers, the Traxxas Boss 302 also has an EZ-Set button that can hold the car to a top speed that is 50% of the maximum to keep from crashing the car.
The Traxxas Boss 302 is in the mini category of RC cars, but to hit the top speed the little beast has the largest motor in the class. It uses a Velineon 380 motor with high-speed ball bearings, sintered rotor, neodymium magnets, and gold plated 3.5mm connectors. The result is a 50,000 RPM electric motor that will give you some blistering performance as long as your battery lasts.
The Traxxas Boss 302 Mustang comes standard with one battery, but we added the second battery and splitter upgrade. The batteries sit in plastic compartments between the wheels. We think that having two batteries installed is better for weight distribution.
Traxxas Boss 302 Mustang Specs:
Fully assembled and Ready-To-Race
Officially licensed Ford Mustang Boss 302 body
Powerful Titan 550 Brushed motor upgrade available
Includes Traxxas Power Cell battery pack and charger
Traxxas High-Current Connector
Digital high-torque waterproof steering servo
XL-2.5 waterproof electronic speed control
Easy-access battery compartments
Sealed, silicone-filled differentials
Adjustable Torque-Control slipper clutch
Precision high-quality hex hardware throughout
Efficient rubber-sealed ball bearings
Fully adjustable, oil-filled GTR Shocks
TQ 27MHz AM radio system
Unsurpassed Traxxas support and parts availability
Just like the real Boss 302, Traxxas didn’t want its 1/16th version to only be good in a straight line. Traxxas spent some time on the suspension to make the Traxxas Boss 302 handle with the best RC cars out there. The car uses Traxxas’ award winning coil-over suspension system that was developed for the Traxxas Revo. The suspension has threaded-body GTR shocks with progressive rate springs and the shocks are oil-filled.
The Traxxas Boss 302 also uses a Traxxas TQ 2.4GHz High Output radio system with Traxxas Link. This is a no-channel, no-crystal radio that uses 2.4GHz technology. The cool Traxxas Link technology is able to store settings for up to 20 Traxxas models. That means this one controller will work multiple RC cars. It also means if you head to the track or are racing against a friend, you will have no issues with being on the same frequency as another racer.
The controller is fully adjustable too and allows steering and throttles end points to be set. It has a multi-function knob that can be programmed to control steering sensitivity, throttle sensitivity, steering percentage, braking percentage, or throttle trim. The car is also made to allow you to enjoy all-weather play. If the roads are wet or you happen to drive through water left from washing your real car, you don’t have to fear. The Traxxas Boss 302 uses exclusive waterproof electronics.
If you think coilovers are only big-car technology, you would be wrong. In some ways, the Traxxas Mustang is more advanced than a normal passenger vehicle.
The battery pack the car uses is a 7.2 volt NiMh pack and it comes with the charger. The second battery kit we mentioned before is needed to hit the 50 MPH top speed. You can also buy the car with an upgraded Titan 550 Brushed Power motor. The Traxxas Boss 302 comes out of the box pre-assembled and ready to run; all you need to do is add the batteries for the controller and electronics and charge the main battery pack. The MSRP for the Traxxas Boss 302 is $510 (though the average street price is $199.99) making this a toy for the enthusiast more than for the kids. The thing we all really want to know is how does this Traxxas Boss 302 drive!
A Blast to Drive
In a nutshell, the Traxxas Boss 302 will lay down some 1/16 scale rubber and hauls more ass than the Girls Gone Wild tour bus when you pull the trigger on the controller. The car flat out flies. If you have never had a high-end RC car before you have no idea what this scale Boss 302 will do.
Pull the trigger all the way back and the Traxxas Boss 302 takes off, spinning of all four tires and is at top speed in around three seconds. Press the trigger forward for reverse gear while moving at speed and you can throw the little Boss 302 into some wicked donuts and spins. When you are really wanting to race, the car holds the road very impressively and has more grip than seems possible.
The thing that challenged us the most is controlling an RC car capable of the high speeds when it’s coming towards us; keeping left and right sorted out is a bit to learn. Trust us when we say the last thing you want is to turn the controller wheel right to dodge onlookers and see that car coming at you turn left instead. You have to pay attention until you get the hang of driving an RC car like this. We may have had the most fun simply turning the controller wheel all the way to one side and mashing the trigger down to watch the car spin itself in some wicked donuts. So in summary, if you don’t have $40,000 for a real Boss 302, but want a Mustang that will out accelerate one, check out Traxxas’ new Boss 302.