The 3 Best RC Excavators: Pros & Cons

If you’re in the market for an RC excavator, the sheer number of options on the table can be confusing. Most people who are shopping for remote control excavators are buying them for their children (or a child they know), and you don’t want to waste money on an option that disappoints your kid.

Or, worse, on something that your kid loves, only to have it break after just a few minutes of use. If you want to avoid that situation, it’s best to do a bit of product research before you go shopping.

Remote control excavators are going to end up getting put through a lot of punishment, so getting a great model that is built well the first time around is essential. We’re going to discuss what you should be looking for, as well as highlight a few of the best products available.

The 3 Best RC Excavators: Pros & Cons

RC Excavator FAQs

There are quite a few questions when it comes to RC excavators. What should you look for? Where can you get the best options for purchase? When you go to buy one, what should you expect to pay?

1. What should you look for?

2. Where can you get the best options for purchase?


For each RC excavator, we’ve laid out the size, battery options, remote features, recommended age range, bucket features, and movement details, in an easy-to-scan bullet list. None of these excavators will break the bank, but some may be better for certain purchasers than others. 

Without battery upgrades, the average RC excavator on this list will last for about 30 minutes of play.

Our Picks for the Best RC Excavator

Below, you’ll find some of our highlighted favorites on the RC excavator market in 2018. Because what makes an option “the best” can be so varied, we’ve included several models, as well as full, comparable feature lists for each product.

1. ToyThrill Remote Control Excavator


  • Size: 1:14 scale
  • Comes with a 7.2v 400mah Ni-cad battery for the excavator itself, but the two AA batteries are not included
  • This RC excavator uses a 2.4GHz signal and has 15 channels, allowing for long-range control without interference
  • The manufacturer recommends that children ages six or up use this toy
  • Has a durable metal bucket, and every joint can move individually
  • The cab rotates a full 360 degrees, and the workbench rotates up to 680 degrees


  • With intuitive controls, this RC excavator is a great choice even for young kids. 
  • ToyThrill excavator is also great — the lights and sounds are all realistic, and even the interior of the cab is well-detailed.
  • Its all-metal die-cast body will stand up to a lot of abuse.


  • Some users report that the bucket is not as strong as they’d prefer. 
  • Operating instructions are located on the box instead of in a separate manual.
  • There is a running theme of complaints about connectivity issues. 

2. Top Race TR 211 Excavator


  • Size: 1:14 scale
  • Includes a 7.2v 400Mah rechargeable battery for the excavator. Remote requires two AA batteries; these are not included
  • The Top Race TR 211 is a 15-channel, 2.4GHz RC excavator that works from up to 100 feet away
  • Recommended for ages 8+
  • Heavy-duty steel buckets with three different motors can dig and lift dirt, sand, etc. The cab rotates 680 degrees and can move in all directions


  • This one is a fantastic excavator.
  • It digs in the sand, snow, and loose dirt all without issue. 
  • People also report that the customer service for this brand is great.


  • Some of those who have purchased this RC excavator report problems with the remote.

3. Double E Full Functional RC Excavator


  • Size: 1:20 scale
  • Comes with an 800mah 4.8V battery for the excavator. It requires two AA batteries for the remote, which are not included
  • This RC excavator has a 2.4GHz, eight-channel remote that allows for control from up to 100 feet away
  • For all ages, with adult supervision for younger kids
  • Made from heavy-duty plastic with a bucket that can lift a couple of ounces of dirt at a time. The cab rotates 660 degrees


  • European adapter, the seller includes a link to a free USB adapter promotion
  • Kids love the realistic sound effects and the full range of motion


  • Less durable than other options on our list
  • Can be a problem if you don’t see the promotion for the free USB cable

So Which RC Excavator Is the Best?

Out of all of the RC excavators on the market in 2018, our favorite is the Top Race 211. Top Race also has some other excellent selections this year, including a TR-215 model excavator that uses a grapple instead of a bucket.

They have a fantastic balance of price and features, and durability that can’t be matched. However, these models are suitable for older children — probably children who are old enough to know what they want.

If you’re buying a gift for a kid who may or may not be into remote control excavators, it might be better to go with a cheaper, simpler option. Yet when it comes to value, the Top Race 211 is not going to be matched.

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