Little Car Company Wild One Max: Tamiya tribute gets some Hop Ups | CAR Magazine

Little Car Company Wild One Max: Tamiya tribute gets some Hop Ups

Published: 18 May 2023 Updated: 18 May 2023

► Iconic Tamiya Wild One reimagined in 8/10th scale
► Concept further developed by the Little Car Company
► Launch Edition good for 60mph

If you were a car crazy child back in the mid-eighties, there’s a good chance a Tamiya radio controlled model such as the Wild One was top of your Christmas wishlist.

If you’ve still got fond memories of tearing through the wrapping to reveal the beautifully illustrated box of goodies within, the Little Car Company (manufacturer of shrunken delights such as the Bugatti Baby II and Aston Martin DB5 Junior) has your back. Thanks to a licensing agreement with Tamiya, you’ll soon be able to buy one big enough to get into and drive.

If that rings a bell, it’s because the Little Car Company announced the Wild One Max project back in 2021. Unfortunately supply issues have delayed deliveries to 2024, but LLC has used this time to tweak and tinker the design after receiving feedback from deposit holders.

Tamiya Wild One Max - in garage

So, what’s different?

When first announced, the Wild One Max was a single-seat buggy capable of 25 miles from its 2kWh battery with a top speed of 25mph (see above). However, it soon became clear that potential buyers fancied taking a friend along for a ride, and ideally the route would include the public highway.

That’s led to the length and width being increased to 3.6m long and 1.9m wide, the battery size pumped up to 14.4kWh (spread over eight packs) and top speed increased to 60mph for the Launch Edition model you see at the top of the page. It’s all been designed to fit into the UK and Europe’s quadricycle rules, with a pack to make the Wild One Max road legal standard for the Launch Edition.

The front suspension has also been switched from model accurate trailing arms to double wishbones, while the front shock towers have been made more pedestrian friendly. Yes, that does make it less faithful to the original, but the upshot should be better handling, improved safety and besides, any Tamiya nerd (guilty) will be able to recognise it a mile off.

LCC Wild One Max rear static

For pub bragging rights the 14-inch wheels hide Brembo brakes, springs are made by Eibach and dampers by Bilstein. There’s even a 5-inch digital display flanked with marine-grade switches for the driver.

When can I get one and what will it cost?

The Little Car Company will be durability testing the Wild One Max during spring and summer, with production starting in early 2024. No price has been given this time around, but we’d expect the Launch Edition to be significantly more than the ‘£6,000 plus taxes’ quoted back in 2021.

Thankfully the Launch Edition is limited to just the first 100 units, with ‘other versions offering a variety in performance’ appearing further down the line. Indeed, engineering a slower, shorter range version with fewer batteries and less power shouldn’t be too tricky.

LCC Wild One Max digital dash

Although the latest press release makes no mention of it, we’re hoping the plan to offer Tamiya-style ‘Hop Up’ parts for lesser models goes ahead. Racing brakes and harnesses were previously mentioned, but the idea of changing motors, battery packs and coilovers just like the RC car fills us with glee.

Do I have to build this one myself?

Launch Edition models will come fully built, but there was talk of offering a kit version as well. We’d best start looking for a larger Christmas tree…

Tamiya Wild One Max - box

By Alan Taylor-Jones

New cars editor, seasoned road tester and automotive encyclopaedia.