When I was little, powered ride-ons were all the rage. You were king of the neighbourhood rolling down the block in one. Whether playing with friends or mimicking adults driving, these electric toy cars offered me hours of outdoor play. If you are looking for a unique way to play, a powered ride-on definitely packs major “wow!” factor.
As a dad, I have assembled and played with many different models of powered wheels over the years. Let’s step into the miniature world of powered ride-on toys and find the best option for your family.
What is a powered ride-on toy?
If you are new to the world of ride-on toys, they are essentially miniaturized electric toy vehicles that children can sit in and drive around. They are powered by rechargeable batteries, so there is no need to worry about constantly swapping out a power source (just don’t forget to charge them after use). They are also a fun way to introduce more fun in the sun, as they are designed for outdoor use. Many power wheels are not designed for cold weather, but they are ready to roll out in spring, summer and certain fall temperatures, with the potential to provide hours of fun.
First and foremost, be sure to adhere to the manufacturer’s safety instructions with all vehicles. Make sure you always buckle up your little riders and stay within the recommended weight and age range. Additionally, never let your child use a power riding toy alone and avoid busy streets. Finally, make sure your little riders are wearing the required protective gear, such as a helmet.
Why choose a power ride-on for outdoor play?
A powered ride-on toy can give your child a real sense of empowerment. They can move around with a feeling of control and freedom. They are a great way to get your kids outside and active when the weather is nice. With so many different options available, there is sure to be a model that is perfect for your family.
They are also great for imaginative play with themed models that kids can use to pretend they are crime-fighting police officers, hard-working farmers, or sports car owners zooming down the highway.
Choosing your ride
Be sure to check the age range, weight limit, maximum speed, battery life, and warranty before making your purchase to ensure the safety and quality of your new ride. Motorized ride-on toys fall under a few different categories that depend on the rider’s age, the speed of the vehicle, and the number of riders. One of the more interesting developments in power wheels is their likeness to full-sized cars, trucks, and other vehicles.
Luxury power ride-on options
The likeness is especially true when it comes to performance and luxury brands like BMW, Mercedes Benz, McLaren, Maserati, Range Rover, and more. Little drivers now have some extremely high-end options when it comes to choosing their powered ride-on.
There are also classic options like ATVs, jeeps, tractors, police cars, fire trucks, and even dirt bikes! The amount of choice in vehicle style has quadrupled since I was a kid, and there are so many options to choose from now. There are high-end luxury cars, tractors, emergency vehicles, motorcycles, and more! You can check out the full selection here.
How old should my child be?
Powered ride-on options generally come in two age limit categories—one for kids 2–4, and one for kids 5-9+ years old. The “younger riders” category tend to be smaller, slower, and have fewer functions for more streamlined use. The ones for older kids have the ability to hit higher speeds, and they also have more functions like lights, sounds, and accessories.
The main thing to keep in mind is the weight limit of the vehicle, as this will ensure a child’s safety while riding. With that being said, many powered ride-ons have a pretty wide age range when it comes to who can ride them. It is imperative to always follow age requirements on these products to avoid injury.
What is the maximum speed?
The maximum speed of a powered ride-on is usually between 2 and 12 mph (3-19 km/h). There are, however, some models that can reach speeds up to 20 mph (32 km/h). It is important to check the maximum speed before making your purchase, as this will ensure the safety of your child while riding.
The standard battery life for most power wheels ranges from one to two hours, depending on usage. This varies depending of the battery ride-on toys come with a 6v, 12v or 24v rechargeable batteries. Charging can take around 8-10 hours, but be prepared to give the battery roughly a day on its first charge.
It is important to check the battery life before making your purchase so you have an idea on if it will fit your needs. If you are buying for a household with more than one child, you might want to opt for a powered ride-on with a larger battery. This way you won’t get caught needing to charge multiple times per session.
Also, be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions on battery temperature and safe storage. Be careful not to store the vehicles in areas that have extremely high temperatures (too hot or too cold) which could adversely affect battery life.
Amount of passengers
The number of children in the household you are buying the ride-on for should be a key deciding factor. Some powered ride-ons come in single, double, or even quad seat options. If you are purchasing for a family with more than one child, pick an option with more seats.
This will give every child a chance to experience the fun of the powered ride-on, and prevent arguments from happening down the line. This way, even when kids are not driving, they will still get in on the action.
Get Ready to Ride!
When choosing the best powered ride-on toy for your child, consider the factors outlined above for the most enjoyable and safest play. Powered ride-ons are a great way to keep kids entertained while also getting fresh air and some exercise. They come in a wide variety of shapes, sizes, and colours, so there is sure to be one that your child will love.
With so many options, it is important to consider the age of your child, the maximum speed, battery life, and number of passengers when making your purchase. Be sure to follow all safety guidelines and the manufacturer’s instructions to get the most fun and enjoyment out of your mini vehicle. Be safe, and have fun!
Best Buy offers a wide variety of power wheels vehicles, with enough options to rival a large auto show, start your shopping here.