Where are cars made (Losi)

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Where are cars made (Losi)

Post by JosephS »

I know that a long time ago that RC car manufacturing abroad. Form what I gather there are no us made 2wd buggies or trucks manufactured in the US. But..
I am curious about where cars are made.
From what I gather Thunder Tiger is a Taiwanese company that manufacturers in China.
Traxxas is an US company that manufactures in China.

I assume every company sources some parts from China
Tamiya makes select kits in Japan.
X-Ray is EU
Schumacher is Great Britain.

When I look up Losi, all I can find is Canada. Google tells me the cars are made in Ontario.
That would be pretty cool if Losi actually made most parts in Canada. Does anyone know?

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Re: Where are cars made (Losi)

Post by juicedcoupe »

Always looking for new and interesting ways to waste money.

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Re: Where are cars made (Losi)

Post by duckhead »

The contentiousness over whether Taiwan is a country (autonomous or otherwise) or part of China aside, hopefully we can assume that "Made in Taiwan" is in fact made in Taiwan, and "Made in China" is in fact made in mainland China. **Saves Hong Kong debate for another day :lol:

This information is also largely relevant to 1/10th scale competition off-road buggies as I do not have many 'in box' examples for other scales and classes.

Lastly, it is worth mentioning that manufacturers will outsource the lower end kits to places like China, etc. and manufacturing premium kits onshore. Tamiya is a good example of this.


Associated Electrics: Taiwan (Currently)
-----------------------------------------------

With the retiring of Gene Husting in ~2000 changes already were possibly happening, but even with the 2005 merger with Thunder Tiger it possible kits were still being manufactured in Costa Mesa, CA.

I don't own but have seen B3 clones under the Thunder Tiger brand, not sure when that started.

The circa ~2000 9043 B3 Factory Team shows 'Made in the USA':

9043-B3-FT.png

Even the 9034 B4 Team (~2003) show 'Made in the USA':

9034-B4-Team.png

By the time the 9036 B4.1 Factory Team (~2010) comes around we see it being 'Made in China':

9036-B4.1-FT.png

** There is a multi year gap in this data, hopefully others can piece the gap between 2003 -> 2010. My assumption is that at some point (2005?) the molds and production moved to China. Possibly coincided with the downsizing move to Lake Forest, CA in 2007?


All the way up through 2016 we see kits still 'Made in China', such as the 90011 B6 Team Kit:

90011-B6-Team.png

** Late 2017 / Early 2018 appears to be when the 'Lost' or 'Stolen' injection molds debacle happened in China. By 2018 we started seeing all new B6 parts were clearly made from new molds (different ejector pin locations, etc) and were also of a superior plastic to the previous.

Starting in 2018 kits were 'Made in Taiwan' such as the 90021 B6.1D:

90021-B6.1D-Team.png

All current kits are still being 'Made in Taiwan'.


Team Losi Racing (TLR): Taiwan
------------------------------

All TLR 22 kits, and presumably all kits from 2011+ appear to be 'Made in Taiwan':

TLR0022.png
TLR03022.png

** Again these are 'Team Losi Racing (TLR)' kits, not to be confused with 'Losi' which is the non-competitive, RTR focused brand. Presumably 'Losi' is 'Made in Taiwan' as well.


Yokomo: Japan
-------------------------------

Yokomo's most recent 2WD race buggy (YZ2-DTM) is 'Made in Japan':

YZ2-DTM3.png

Kyosho: Japan
------------------

Kyosho's most recent 2WD Race Buggy (RB7) is 'Made in Japan':

RB7.png

Schumacher: UK?
---------------------

Schumacher does not stamp their boxes with "Made in . . ." They are a UK based company, but can anyone confirm they are indeed manufactured in the UK?


XRAY Model Racing Cars: Slovakia
----------------------------------------

All XRAY kits are manufactured onsite in their facilities. Their business is subsidized via a larger manufacturing business (owned) with the Hudy family. It is unclear the level of governmental involvement with their interests.


Hot Bodies (HB) / HPI Racing: Taiwan?
----------------------------------------------

I do not have their latest 1/10th 4WD or any of their current 1/8th platforms, however their last 2WD Race Buggy, the D216 (2015) was 'Made in Taiwan':

D216.png

Honorable Mentions:
------------------------

Tamiya: Japan / Phillipines
Traxxas: Taiwan
Tekno RC: Taiwan
Serpent:
Mugen Seiki:
Redcat:
Arrma:
Axial:
CRC:
Custom Works:


Conclusion: The large majority of RC manufacturing is performed in Taiwan.

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Re: Where are cars made (Losi)

Post by duckhead »

Plot thickens... :mrgreen:

For Kyosho it appears only their race buggies (RB6, RB7, etc.) are still made in Japan.

The "Legendary" series re-release cars are all 'Made in Taiwan'.

kyosho-rere.png

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Re: Where are cars made (Losi)

Post by JosephS »

Duckhead,
Thanks for that thorough listing.
I had been going off older listings. I have a preference order of country of manufacture.
It's interesting to see things made outside of an industry cluster. Most of an rc car can be made in most places, but the specific machining for things like driveshafts and shocks require certain manufacturing or technology.

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Re: Where are cars made (Losi)

Post by juicedcoupe »

JosephS wrote: Sun Jun 06, 2021 5:24 am Most of an rc car can be made in most places, but the specific machining for things like driveshafts and shocks require certain manufacturing or technology.
Don't think that the Chinese are incapable of manufacturing and machining at higher quality levels.

Most turn to them for cheaper products and that is exactly what they get.
Always looking for new and interesting ways to waste money.

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Re: Where are cars made (Losi)

Post by JosephS »

juicedcoupe wrote: Sun Jun 06, 2021 9:51 am
JosephS wrote: Sun Jun 06, 2021 5:24 am Most of an rc car can be made in most places, but the specific machining for things like driveshafts and shocks require certain manufacturing or technology.
Don't think that the Chinese are incapable of manufacturing and machining at higher quality levels.

Most turn to them for cheaper products and that is exactly what they get.
That wasn't my direction at all. It's that it's way more costly to manufacturer things outside of a hub of similar items.
So Schumacher and Xray are the one I am most curious about. Current technology makes the tolerances for RC way under current aerospace. I can't think of many applications where things like RC shocks need to be made. Seems like manufacturing lines for RC shocks would sit idle a lot outside of Taiwan.

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Re: Where are cars made (Losi)

Post by terry.sc »

It used to be a lot simpler to work out where cars were made, as Kingstar Neo in Taiwan was the worlds biggest rc car manufacturer that no one had heard of. They shut down in 2017, but before that they designed and manufactured cars for many brands, with their biggest customer being HPI Racing and HB models. They also manufactured Losi, Mugen and Kyosho cars and trucks as well as owning the Axial, Durango and Arrma brands. The 'all american' Axial brand used to be a Taiwanese company until those brands were sold to Hobbico, but Kingstar still manufactured them until they closed down. Kyoshos vintage re-releases were designed by Akira Kogawa at the Kingstar factory.

Since the demise of Kingstar these brands have moved round various places, Arrma and Axial are currently manufactured by FS Racing in China, which explains why the FS Racing Free Men crawler is identical to the Axial SCX10II. HPI Racing have since set up their own factory in China to manufacture their products, so less reliant on other businesses.

Most Tamiyas are made in their own factory in the Philippines, with their high end TRF models being made in Japan.

Associated has been owned by Thunder Tiger since 2005, but they were manufacturing parts and building all Associateds RTR products for many years prior to that. While Thunder Tiger is based in Taiwan, they have a large factory for manufacturing in mainland China.

Losi cars used to be made by Kingstar in Taiwan, while I don’t know as Horizon Hobby owns them as well as Axial and Arrma I would suggest it’s likely the RTR models are also made by FS Racing in China.

As for the Associated “Made in USA” and Losi “Made in Canada” labels on the boxes, to be able to stick those labels on there has to be “substantial transformation” in production, which can mean getting the parts imported from China and have someone put all the parts into the box. The company I work for does a similar trick, we supply ‘British Made’ bikes by having the Chinese factory supply the frame with the rear end complete, and the front wheels, forks and handlebars are sent over in another container and then fitted to the bike by us.

Traxxas are made by Jason Toys & Electronics Co., Ltd. in Taiwan, and the special Traxxas batteries are made for them by Grepow.

Redcat for most of their time were just rebranded Chinese products, the Redcat Gen7 is a rebadged RGT Boxer made by HSP, the Redcat Volcano is a rebadged HSP Brontosaurus, the Redcat Lightning is an HSP Flying Fish, etc. They have started designing their own products now such as the Impala Lowrider, which is why their own products are so much more expensive than the rebadged ones.

Schumacher have their own factory to manufacture parts, but they also buy in a lot of parts production from China. With disruptions caused by the pandemic they have been trying to source parts from the UK, but the difference in costs is so big UK manufacturers can’t match the prices.

CRC and Custom Works as far as I know are both completely US manufactured, but they are small scale suppliers compared to the rest of the list.
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Re: Where are cars made (Losi)

Post by JosephS »

Wow, Sounds like only Tamiya makes off road cars substantially outside of China. That's a bummer. I'm even happy to get things manufactured in Taiwan.
I don't buy things frequently so I like to local manufacturing, but it sounds like everyone is on the same level. Thanks for the information.

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Re: Where are cars made (Losi)

Post by terry.sc »

People complain about the price of Tamiyas compared to most others, while they don't make their models in China.

Guangdong and Fujian provinces are the worlds manufacturing capital for consumer electronics, so it's always going to be the place to go to get something like an rc model built. There are huge factories over there set up just to make rc toys and models with the worlds experts in rc model production running them, while the likes of FS Racing I mentioned above are part of a bigger group that make everything up to ATVs and RVs, and the electric scooters for Razor. Not much point in going elsewhere for manufacturing unless you have massive government incentives to build your factory locally. While Xray are built in Europe, they are in Slovakia where the average wage is about 1/3 of what the US and UK earn which keeps their costs down, and they have had to invest a lot to keep up with Chinas factories.

Quality is dictated by the buyer even in China, if you are dealing directly with the factory then they will make whatever changes you need to the product to make sure you buy it. China got a reputation for cheap and nasty products because that's what would sell, the people who were buying Chinese companies products were buying them based on price, while others were buying more expensive big brand products that wouldn't buy anything else. Now they have built up the huge manufacturing base and expertise it makes little sense fo rc car companies to go elsewhere.
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