Traxxas Rustler 4X4 VXL vs Arrma Vorteks 3S BLX Comparison
These two trucks are extremely similar yet different in their own way, with their own pros and cons, so which one is better for you to find out. We’Ll compare the specs and features of both of these trucks in our studio, then we’ll share our driving experience, including speed, runs bashing and broken parts. So let’s do it. Let’S start this comparison with some facts: the wrestler 4×4 vxl and the vortex 3s blx are both ready to run vehicles they’re both tent scale, they’re, both stadium trucks. They also both have four wheel drive drivetrains with brushless electronics that are also waterproof, and both of these trucks will accept a maximum cell count of 3s lipo power for body style options. The rustler 4×4 is offered in five different styles and the arma is offered in three. Lastly, there are required items for these trucks. Each one requires double a batteries for the transmitter and then a light bow for the vehicle, as of today in may 2021, the rustler 4×4 vxl cost about 430 and the vortex 3s blx cost about 380 now with our vehicle weight. This is where things get interesting. The vortex is six and a half pounds and the rustler a little over five that’s, a big difference between these two trucks now spoiler alert. Some of that extra weight is coming from our tires with the arma qatar tires being just a little bit taller and a little bit wider. Now, if we remove all of the tires – and we put them on a scale we’re going to see that the arma qatar tires are over 200 grams heavier than the traxxas talions, which is about 7 ounces of weight.
Now, if we put these vehicles back on the scale without the tires and wheels, the rustler is only 4 pounds and the vortex is only 5 pounds now to continue on with the wheels and the hex sizes. Atraxis uses a 12 millimeter hex, where the arma uses. The 14 millimeter hex, a 12 millimeter hex, is very standard and common, a 14 millimeter is not the last thing. With these tires is the venting and traxxas uses the standard wheel, vent hole which needs to be covered with tape when driving in wet conditions. On the arm of vortex, we see a better strategy used with the vent hole being punctured on the outer tire, so that way, there’s no need to cover any holes with tape, because it’s harder for water to get in, but much easier for it to get back Out for any fans and cooling inside the traxxas, you won’t find any fans, but on the arma vortex there is a 25 millimeter fan used on the esc and then with the motor. A big aluminum heatsink is used along with a 30 mil fan. Lastly, both of these trucks are equipped with a steering gyro on the traxxas side. They refer to it as tsm or traxxas stability, management and four spectrum, it’s avc active vehicle control, and you can control the sensitivity of that gyro with a knob on the transmitter. Each transmitter has for our bodies, the traxxas uses a body clip less fastening system where the body slides on and locks with a latch in the back where the arma uses traditional body clips tethered with rubber leashes.
The rustler also has self righting, which is a nice feature, and it works, but only on 3s. The vortex doesn’t have this, but what the vortex does have is the new safety pinion gears which key onto the motor shaft so throttle and braking never disengage. Even if the pinion gear set screw comes loose, the rustler doesn’t have this for battery compartments. The rustler uses this strap size for traxxas batteries, with the largest compatible battery being this 5 000 milliamp hour 3s. Unless you want to buy the expansion kit optionally on the arma, it uses velcro straps to secure the batteries which are really adjustable, but not nearly as quick to use as the rustler’s battery strap. Now, when choosing a lipo battery, the rustler uses the traxxas id connector. So you’re going to need to use traxxas batteries and chargers with the rustler. Now, with the arma vortex, it comes with an ic5 connector which is compatible with ec5 as well. So you can use any brand of lipo battery. You want as long as it has one of those connectors. Now let me show you what batteries we used for all the driving for the wrestler. We used the biggest traxxas battery that would fit the 5 000 milliamp hour 3s that we just showed you for the vortex. We use this gens ace 3s hard case with an ec5. Both batteries are 5 000 milliamp hour capacity and very similar to each other and they’re, both brand new purchased.
Just for this video, these are going to be the only batteries we use for this comparison, video we’re not going to use or test any 2s lipos for top speeds. We first tested the trucks with their out of the box setup and the traxxas rustler reached 44 miles per hour, and the arm of vortex pulls out an impressive 55 miles per hour. Next, we test the absolute top speed using the optional speed, gearing that both trucks include for the rustler. With the included 17 tooth high speed, gearing we were able to achieve a top speed of 61 miles per hour and with the vortex 20 tooth high speed, pinion gear, we reached a speed of 60 miles an hour but wait there’s more in the traxxas manual. It says if we buy our own tooth pinion for the wrestler. We should hit 65 miles per hour, so let’s try it well, as it turns out with that 20 tooth. Ultra speed, gearing our wrestler 4×4 vxl achieved 66 miles per hour. If you’re a fan of fling and dirt and popping wheelies well dango subscribe, if you haven’t already now something to note driving the traxxas wrestler at those really top speeds is a bit sketchy and a little unstable and it’s, mainly because the tires balloon out so much That when you drive you’re on a very narrow contact patch on those tires and it’s like skating on the edge with the vortex, those tires don’t balloon up nearly as much and at high speeds.
The vortex is extremely stable and easy to drive. Now this symptom has nothing to do with the trucks it’s all about the tires, and this is probably why the arma tires are so much heavier because they have more material in them to help them keep their shape. Now something else that we actually mentioned in our vortex review video it has to do with the throttle response on the vortex being a little bit laggy or there being a little bit of a delay before the power kicks in now. This is mostly noticeable only when accelerating from a dead stop, but it just feels like the motor needs to kind of slowly ramp up before you find that torque – and this is what that looks like now. If you take the rustler up against the curb and you squeeze the throttle, the truck finds instant power and jumps the curb when you try this with the vortex, the torque isn’t there and by the time it actually kicks in it’s just too late. In some cases. Now, when it comes time for wheelies, we know that the rustler has a lot of instant torque for popping the front end up and it does it effortlessly. The vortex, though, doesn’t pop wheelies nearly as easily as the rustler does, and it needs a moment to kind of ramp up its power to find that torque, which unfortunately often results in tire spin on slick surfaces. Like the sealed parking lot out in front of a main hotties, now the vortex power slides around beautifully in this parking lot, but it does not like popping wheelies here, i’ve been unsuccessful at popping any wheelies on more rough asphalt, surfaces that are really coarse.
The vortex will find its traction a lot better, giving you all the wheelies you want now regarding wheelies. There is one big difference between these trucks and basically it comes down to that. The rustler uses a soft and spongy wheel bar making holding long wheelies more challenging, but it does make for some cool wheelie dancing out of the truck. The vortex, on the other hand, uses a really stiff, wheelie bar, so it tends to not dance and just hold the wheelie down the road, of course, there’s no right or wrong here, it’s, just two different ways to do it now, for some general driving here are The trucks on grass and they scoot around just fine, but the grass does drag on the underside of the chassis, slowing them down a little bit and you can feel it. The ground clearance on these trucks is less than two inches so that’s to be expected. Now, in this smooth dirt lot at our local track, both of these powerful trucks struggle to find traction, but the steering gyros do come in handy here. There are also some big old rocks out here and the rustler hits one head on popping off the front of the body, but nothing breaks now, just for fun, let’s see if the rustler can jump over the vortex toe to toe. Now, how about the vortex jumping the rustler? No, without giving it a chance to ramp up the motor just cogs in the vortex now here’s, some really chunky uneven dirt and the trucks need power maintained to stay in motion or they get stuck.
This type of terrain is better suited for large eight scale vehicles, but it’s fun, watching these two little trucks try now. Lastly, we’re back in the street having fun with the two trucks where the vortex is noticeably faster and power slides around better than the rustler, but mainly because the arma tires feel a bit harder than the rustlers and have less traction. Testing run. Time is really difficult. Guys because you have to keep all the conditions the same for each truck for each test, so this isn’t, perfect science, but each of our trucks is equipped with a 5 000 milliamp hour battery. We did this intentionally and our strategy for wearing down these trucks consistently from test to test was to take each truck with a fresh battery and drive it full wood back and forth until it died. Now this type of test stopping and going like this is really hard on the trucks. It causes a lot of heat and it’s, most likely going to cause us to overheat, our electronics. So please nobody try this at home now driving back and forth for the traxxas rustler, we were able to go for nine and a half minutes full speed before the esc went into a thermal stage: 1 shutdown to protect itself. Now, interestingly, the battery had 3.8 volts of cell remaining when the vehicle shut down. Now with the vortex, we went back and forth same dang thing and we were able to drive full wood for seven minutes before the esc went into another thermal protective shutdown.
Just like the rustler, but when we checked the remaining power on the battery, it only had 3.7 volts remaining, it turns out. You can’t even see it, which is really disappointing, but you can make out that it says eight percent in there. So i just wanted to show really quick. I have the same battery on a storage charge, it’s at 3.8 volts a cell, and it says it has 14 battery power left. So what does this even mean? My interpretation is that the lightweight rustler is able to use its battery power a bit more efficiently than the vortex, even without the use of a single fan on the motor or esc. But to be fair, the traxxas is using a 25c battery and the arma had a 60c. The 25c is much more tamer than this gens ace, so the extra power in this from the 60c battery in the arma could be contributing, but i don’t really know guys. It’S, just the tests for fun take it with a grain of salt. Most people don’t drive their cars at a hundred percent. These lipo batteries under normal driving conditions, will probably present 20 to 30 minutes of run time for the average user. Now the only broken parts that we experienced came from that right, rear plastic drive shaft on both trucks it broke, but other than that there was nothing else. Hopefully this solves the age old question: traxxas plastic, driveshafts versus arma plastic drive shafts.
Well, guess what they both break now here, take a look at this. Some of the engineering behind these two trucks is worth a look because there’s quite a few examples on the vortex of how arma used over built parts to increase the durability. Now, for one all, the links use a double share point as well as the shocks, and the double shear point is where that piece is secured from both sides, and you don’t have this on the traxxas, except for the front camber link the arma also uses thicker Links thicker link ends oversized steering carriers and front and rear hubs. When you compare them to the parts used on the traxxas now. Does that mean one vehicle’s more durable than the other? I don’t know – and i don’t even know how you would test that i just wanted to bring it up because it’s kind of interesting. So, in summary, guys to give you pros and cons for these trucks for the rustler 4×4 vxl, it produced the fastest overall top speed with that optional gearing. It also has excellent throttle response the longest run times it pops wheelies, effortlessly, almost anywhere it’s got self righting. Clipless body fastening, it comes in five body styles and it has tsm stability. The cons, it’s the most expensive truck of the two, the tire stretch and balloon. When you do high speed runs producing unstable, driving and it’s difficult to hold long wheelies with that spongy wheelie bar.
Lastly, you must use traxxas lipos with an id connector with your rustler. Now the pros for the vortex 3s blx it’s, the fastest out of the box, truck that we tested without any gearing changes needed it’s, also extremely stable at high speed, runs it’s also the least expensive truck it holds long, clean wheelies. It features double shear points used throughout with oversized suspension parts safety, keyed pinion gears. The tires are vented, not the wheels and it allows any lipo to be used with an ic5 or ec5 connector and then, of course, it has avc stability. The cons for the vortex include 14 millimeter wheel, hexes yuck, inconsistent wheelies because of that motor ramping and, of course motor ramping is the last con. You see guys most of the differences between these trucks are small superficial details, and both of these trucks are awesome. If they weren’t both awesome, it would be pointless to try to compare them to each other now, just for the fun and entertainment enjoy. These drag races and tug of wars between the rustler and vortex, using the stock out of the box, gearing but spoiler alert the heavier and faster vortex wins it all all right guys.