For a company that’s been criticized for re-releasing the same vehicle over and over again, Traxxas has stepped up the plate in a big way with their newest mega-machine. The X-Maxx is, simply stated, a monster. With a length of 29.84″ and a width of 22.26″, this radio-controlled monster truck is like none-other. Not only is it larger than most models on the market, but it is packed with a number of innovative concepts that Traxxas is rolling out in this breakthrough beast.
I came away with a few thoughts after watching the X-Maxx introduction video, with all of those thoughts focusing on the various innovations that Traxxas is bringing to the table with this truck. The first one that jumps out at me is the “self-righting” feature. If you end up flipping this beast on its lid, you should (in most cases) be able to press the “Set” button on your transmitter and the X-Maxx will attempt to turn itself back over, rubber-side down.
Before I saw how this worked, I wasn’t sure what type of mechanism would be used to flip this massive vehicle back over, wondering if there was an additional mechanical bar/arm system that would be utilized. In reality, the vehicle appears to perform a series of forward and reverse throttle movements that rock it back and forth, eventually flipping itself over. On the surface, this may seem underwhelming, but the fact that it’s been programmed into a single button press on a controller is rather ingenious.
Battery Strap Bar
The closer you look at what lies under the body of this beast, you’re quick to notice many typical aspects of radio-controlled car chassis construction are either missing or have been re-thought and reinvented. For one, I’m not sure I’ve seen one body pin on this entire machine, either on the outside or on the inside. That strikes me as unique as the juice for the X-Maxx comes from two LiPo battery packs that are mounted on each side of the chassis. The latching/battery strap system that has been devised for the X-Maxx relies on a locking bar that snaps into and out of place when you need to remove or replace the batteries. Not only does this system look sturdy, but it also is nice to not have additional body pins to worry about either losing in your shop/rc garage or loosing outdoors during a bashing run or race. The overall security and effectiveness of this strap seems evident from the satisfying “click” that you can hear in the promo video.
Body Release Latch
Knocking down another standard convention in the world of radio-controlled car construction is the body mount lock/release latch. An item that I missed in my initial viewing of their product photos was the lack of body posts and body pins sticking out from this rig. The system that is used to secure and remove the body is centered around a latching system that sits in the bed of the truck. While I haven’t seen this in-person, the video demonstration(s) that I’ve witnessed give the impression that this is a very secure mechanism, much like the battery strap bar. The lack of body pins and exposed body posts is both appreciated from the “seek and find” aspect as it is from the overall clean and sleek appearance that it helps to give this massive machine.
The chassis on which the body sits is something to behold. Traxxas has re-thought and re-imagined many of the traditional aspects of R/C design that we’ve come to know over the years and all of those new aspects appear to be for the betterment of your driving experience. The shock towers are molded into the chassis itself, giving the vehicle added security and rigidity for tackling any type of terrain. The overall chassis design uses the same modular chassis construction that we’ve come to know from Traxxas over the years. Not only does that familiarity help when making adjustments and repairs, but it’s a nice feature that I’ve had the “privilege” of encountering on my own Traxxas and LaTrax vehicles from time-to-time.
Impact cushions are utilized behind the front/rear bumpers to help soften the effects that are experienced during collision impacts. Given the size, power, and overall speed that this truck is capable of producing, my guess is that you’ll undoubtably hit something during one of your outings, either on purpose or by accident. Since this is a Traxxas rig, you can be sure that it’s been made as waterproof (or water-resistant) as possible. Another area of focus is the motor mount that holds the 1600 kv sensorless brushless motor. Designed to reduce flexing during acceleration, this small feature will not only aid in performance but should also help in prolonging part life.
Given the large size of this vehicle, it’s easy to get lost in the many details surrounding the measurements and specifics that go into the construction of this truck. From the overall size and length to the 8″ tall tires that it rides on, the massive GTX aluminum shocks that make it float over bumps and perform like a dream in almost any situation, everything about this vehicle has been super-sized. As point of comparison, the Traxxas E-Maxx has been used in the official promotional video, and the X-Maxx dwarfs it with ease.
While there are a number of additional aspects that haven’t been touched on yet, I should call out the speed estimate for the X-Maxx, which has been presented as 35+ mph. When most radio-controlled vehicle manufacturers give speed estimations for their vehicles, I usually take them with a grain of salt. With this vehicle, I’d be willing to bet you could easily hit that mark with the default gearing and ample power that has been supplied out-of-the box. Given that the ESC is capable of handling 4s or 6s LiPo batteries (max voltage of 25.2), you should be able to jam the power into this beast and see the results as you drive it.
Giving greater control to that power, this vehicle is also equipped with the TSM (Traxxas Stability Management) system to keep you on the straight and narrow when running wide-open over wicked terrain.
This new truck doesn’t look like a toy, no matter what angle your viewing it from. It’s an impressive feat of engineering and innovation that I haven’t seen in a radio-controlled vehicle in quite some time. In short, I’m impressed.
- Length: 29.84 inches (758mm)
- Front Track: 21.26 inches (540mm)
- Rear Track: 21.26 inches (540mm)
- Ground Clearance: 4 inches (102mm)
- Weight: 19.1lbs (8.66kg)
- Height (ride): 13.79 inches (350mm)
- Wheelbase: 18.92 inches (480mm)
- Shock Length: 7.4 inches (187mm)
- Tires (pre-glued): 8.0×4.0 inches (203mm)
- Wheels: 4.3×5.7 inches (110x145mm)
- Speed Control: Velineon VXL-6s
- Motor (electric): Velineon 1600
- Transmission: Single-Speed
- Overall Drive Ratio: 8.24 (stock, out-of-box)
- Differential Type: Sealed, Hardened Steel Bevel, Limited Slip
- Gear Pitch: 1.0-Pitch
- Chassis Structure/Material: Composite Nylon Tub
- Brake Type: Electronic
- Drive System: Shaft-Driven 4WD
- Steering: Bellcrank
- Radio System: TQi™ 2.4GHz Transmitter with TSM receiver™
- Servo: Torque: 365oz. Speed: 0.17 sec/ 60 degrees(6.0V)
- Top Speed: 35+ MPH with two 3s LiPo Batteries
- Skill Level: 6
- Battery Tray: 197mm x 51.5mm x 44mm
- Required Batteries: 4 “AA” (transmitter)
Photos of the Traxxas X-Maxx
Priced at $799.95, the X-Maxx will be available in mid-December 2015. Learn more about this mammoth machine at Traxxas.com.
Outside of the official Traxxas details, Peter Vieira from RC Car Action has posted a great inside-look at this mega-monster of a radio-controlled machine. If you’re looking to get as much information as you can on this beast, check out his overview write-up and video.
If you have one of these beasts parked in your R/C garage, here are some hop-ups and upgrades that you can add to it to make it your own:
Image credit: Traxxas