ARC R11 2017 Touring Car Upgrade Kit Review

Touring cars are getting expensive!! The average high end race car is now around the £450 mark in the UK and that is before you start to buy hopups and spares and a lot of manufacturers are bringing out a new car each year… so another £450 gets spent.

One company who recognised that this is not sustainable is ARC.  So each time they bring out a new car they also bring out an update kit so you can bring your previous year kit bang up to date.

I had an ARC R11 2016 that I have run on and off between review cars over the year so I decided that I would order the update kit from Zen Racing.  The full retail on the update kit is £114.99 and you get a lot for your money to convert your 2016 ARC R11 to the 2017 model;

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Part# R100014

  • Chassis
  • Top Deck
  • A full set of lower bulkheads
  • New motor mount
  • Full R11 2017 manual
  • 2 x decal sheets

The new bulkheads have had the alignment keys removed from the bottom of them. The keys on the previous model slotted into holes in the chassis. ARC say that removing the keys increases flex the full length of the chassis, reduces the possibility of chassis tweak and will provide more predictable handling especially for high grip conditions. As we run with Sorex 28 tyres on the black ETS carpet I was looking forward to trying this theory!

The chassis and top deck are all new and, according to ARC, are aimed at providing not only higher strength and stiffness but also better balance especially at the front end of the chassis.

Gone from the 2016 chassis is the one piece motor mount and the new two piece mounts provide additional flex towards the rear of the chassis providing more rear traction and hopefully on-power steering.

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The new mount in place;

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At the same time that I ordered the update kit I also ordered the R119010 centre chassis brace;

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This is effectively a turnbuckle that is designed to attach to the motor motor mount towards the servo mount;

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A number of cars, including the Xray T4 2017 and the VBC D09 have similar offerings and the idea is that it stops the car flexing under acceleration.

The new brace fitted to my new ‘2017’ car;

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I ran the updated kit for the first time at the UMCC’s indoor track at Wellington College in Belfast.  As I said this we use ETS black carpet and the track is a mixture of open and technical sections with plenty of grip.  I ran the car at first with my old 2016 setup and no centre brace.  Right away the car felt very safe to drive and very consistent.  I put the chassis brace in and the car felt faster, seemed to accelerate better but to be honest this could be my imagination or the grip was just coming up.  But the times were faster on the time sheet!  I made a few more changes as the day went on including going to 2.5 degrees rear toe and the car just got better with the consistency remaining.  On one of my qualifiers I did 27 laps and every single one of them was in the 11 second range.

Really pleased with the updates and also with the fact that I have ended up with the newest car for under £115!!  Good job ARC and thanks to Dave Spashett at Zen for providing the parts.