Hey guys,

I've had this idea that I want to build an RC car with the help of an Arduino. I'm doing this purely for a learning exercise.

What I'm thinking:
A) Get a cheapie RC Car from KMart and rip out the internals
B) Buy a premade chassis and go from the ground up.

What I'd need (Suggestions here please)

  • Arduino Uno
  • Breadboard?
  • Chassis/Cheap car
  • Motor(s) not sure if I should have one for each wheel or what
  • Servo for steering
  • PS2 wireless controller (cheap)
  • Battery and charger

Insight is welcome and kind of what I'm looking for here.


Won't you need some kind of receiver for the PS2 wireless controller?

If you rip out all the electronics of an RC car or use a bare chassis you will need motor controllers to drive the motors. If you get an RC car and remove only the receiver chip you should be able to control the existing motors using the existing driver electronics.

Most RC cars go much too fast for robotic like control with a microcontroller, if that's what
you're after, so try to find one that doesn't go too fast. Usually in the section of RC cars
for 2 year olds, as 6 year olds drive 50 MPH, LOL. Also,

Find a used ready to run car on ebay and add an Arduino for traction control, data logging, engine sound effects, lights that react to the controls, yaw control etc.

You can find some ideas in the project pages here -

Alternatively there is a long and detailed thread on the forum about converting a k-mart style toy RC car to work with Arduino - you can build some of the same things - (light, sound, autonomous control if its a slow one) at a lower cost and with less challenge which may or may not be what you want.

Duane B