1/10 Tamiya F104 v2 Review
After 18 years Tamiya finally introduces a new design. From the proven t-bar rear suspension to the modern rear link suspension. Based on feedback by the racers, this is a very nice car to have. Read on...
Above are three Tamiya F104 version 2 kits that showed up on a Saturday test session which later turned into a 5 x 15 minute race with other F1 rc cars such as the Tamiya F103, F104 and Sakura FGX.
Above: The F104 v2 can also use a regular TRF shock (left). Basic F104 v2 with no hop ups (center). F104 version II with full hop ups which increase the price by 50% (right).
While the front end is exactly the same as the F104, it is the rear end design that makes the difference. While the side to side feel felt similar to the t-bar design, the front to back suspension movement of the rear pod felt softer on the version 2. This should in theory be better on bumps and give good traction.
F104 v2 Test, Review and Verdict
Let's get down to it and put theory in a real race condition. There were 8 of us fairly experienced and good drivers who decided to run a 5 x 15 minute race session.
While the F104 v2 was fast, it was not faster than the t-bar design for our indoor asphal track and our rule of running stock 540 silvercan motor with maximum gearing of 3.7 FDR and rubber tires. Even a basic F103 with minimal hop ups at half the price was on same pace. My F104Pro with t-bar suspension was more than able to keep pace.
And then there is a downside to the version 2. It seemed that the link type suspension was more prone to breaking. Two of the cars lost the rear link side springs during racing conditions resulting in DNF.
On the bright side, there may be situation where the Tamiya F104 v2 will be faster than a regular F104. Reports from racers in the USA mention that they find the v2 faster on the tracks they have tested on.
Personally, I would stick to the t-bar design for now as it provides better value for money. The v2 is very expensive and with durability issues. But to each his own. If you love to own the latest from Tamiya, here it is with a street price of around $300 USD. And that does not include tires, body and electronics.
My friend's fully hopped up chassis reached $500 and that is excluding the electronics. Wow!
The product video by Tamiya.
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