Witness The Evolution Of The Savage To Maybe The Ultimate RTR Monster Truck...
Let's talk monster trucks. Lets talk big power monster trucks that can hit 41mph. Lets talk Ready To Run monster trucks that are faster, tougher and better handling. Let's talk HPI Savage X.
The other day I was lucky enough to have a quick go on a Savage X for about half an hour, and the experience inspired me to do more of an in-depth review. How has the Savage X evolved from the Savage 21 and 25 RTR? Have these changes made the 4WD truck better or just more expensive? What's a Monster truck like to drive compared with a stadium truck or a touring car?
Let's start with what it's like to drive a Savage X Monster Truck. I'll get my first reservation out of the way quickly because I know that a lot of readers will scoff at this. The Savage X is LOUD! Compared to one of these my MT2 is like an electric buggy. Squatting next to the truck to tune it while running gave me a headache, but when it's running at full throttle, it is a an impressive sound, but if you think a bigger engine means a deeper, throatier sound you'll be disappointed. It's a very 2-stroke sort of roar, and everyone within half a mile will be watching, so I hope your neighbors don't mind!
Onto the actual driving. The acceleration is amazing, tightening up the slipper clutch means you can pull wheelies from a standing start. The 2 speed transmission kicks in early and throws the truck forward in a rush of speed, so you'll have to be quick on the brakes (which are good) before you hit the first turn.
Handling on any Monster truck around corners is going to be suspect. High centre of gravity, grippy tires and long travel suspension lead to roll-overs if you're not careful, but you can adjust the suspension height on the Savage X for a lower, corner-friendly feel.
I got to play with the HPI Savage at my local bashing haunt, an old drainage pit that has a great sandy / stony bottom, and plenty of small plants to avoid. It's quite a challenging surface as you can't see all the hazards, but it's possible to achieve high speeds if you choose the right line. The Savage X excelled, ripping around with ease. I did spill it a couple of times, but no damage was done, and I took it easy because it wasn't my car. I guess the question would be would I buy one? They are very expensive pieces of kit, but it is fantastic fun, and the performance is astounding. I guess the down-sides are the noise, cost and the actual size of the truck. 1/8th trucks are big. It's not like you can carry it, with the fuel and rotostart, tools and bits, down to the local rec. You need to load it into the boot of your car and use that. Saying all of this, if I had the cash I would buy one, definitely, they're brilliant.
Let's talk about the technical side of the HPI Savage X, engine, chassis, suspension and body.
The Savage X gets the new F4.1 Big Block, kicking out a maximum of 2.75 horsepower, and pushing the Truck to a possible top speed of 41mph. Fitted with rotostart it's easy to get started and tune.
The chassis has improved access for the servicing parts, and a lower centre of gravity for improved cornering and overall stability.
Suspension is handled by HPI's acclaimed eight damper/spring system, which gives the driver many options to change the setup to his or her driving needs.
HPI have supplied a new pre-painted body shell in striking colours, which only needs slight modification to allow fitting of the new full plastic roll cage.
For a more in depth coverage of the technical aspects of the truck, check out this Savage X Review.
So there we have it, HPI have produced another winner in the evolution of their Savage - if you're after a Monster Truck, and have the funds, you can't go wrong with the Savage X.