There has been a deluge of cheap rip off versions of the ever popular T-MAXX R/C monster truck by Traxxas. They are (used to be) sold at a huge "discount" by sellers such as shoeaddict23 in his/her eBay store . They make claims such as a "top speed of 45-55 mph", and "90% compatible with T-MAXX and other brands". Both claims are false. EDIT - The knockoff T-Maxx is no longer sold by this seller and my guide has been altered to reflect the change in inventory.
The Traxxas T-MAXX is equipped with three different engines - the TRX 2.5, TRX 2.5R, and TRX 3.3. The 2.5 (R) are both .15 cu in engines - the same displacement as the engine in the fake - and the 2.5(R) equipped T-MAXX's top speed is a proven 45 mph with the right gear set. With a 3.3 the speed only increases to 50 mph with the right gear set. But since the fake engine is only a .15 (and a cheap one at that) it is doubtful that a buyer will see more than 30-40 mph from this garbage fake!
Secondly, the only brand this fake is compatible with is Traxxas, and the only models it is compatible with is the MAXX line. Why? Because these models are illegal copies! If you compare the photos in the auction with photos of a genuine T-MAXX you'll find the similarities obvious (they're almost identical!). But don't be fooled!
These models are made of inferior materials and equipped with a no-name garbage engine. They use no-name servos, no-name radio gear, and none of the reliability and customer support that comes with the genuine article. Also, they are sold as 1/8 scale models when in fact, they are 1/10 scale (same scale as the T-MAXX which is smaller than 1/8). They don't have the EZ Start (though that will probably be ripped off soon).
To top it all off, shipping is $45! At towerhobbies.com, standard shipping for a REAL T-MAXX 2.5R is $7.99 standard, $29.99 Piority and 2 day express, $42.99 1 day express, $55.49 1 day express Saturday delivery! Doesn't $45 for standard shipping by shoeaddict23 compared to $7.99 at towerhobbies.com seem suspicious? Understandably, this seller isn't a big hobby store, but $45? Really, now.
And a 3 day money back guarantee? And the item has to be unused? How can someone be unsatisfied with the item unless they use it first? This policy is clearly designed to stick the unfortunate buyer with a completely inferior product, as its true quality and performance will become evident only once it's driven! (as if the physical appearance and the fact that it's a rip-off aren't blatant enough!) Yet more evidence of how BAD these items really are! And even if someone sees it is a fake and sends it back unused, guess what? They are still out the $45 for shipping! So this crooked seller still profits from the sale because as I already pointed out, ACTUAL shipping will cost them about $15-$20. That means a $25-$30 profit AND the item to sell to another unfortunate buyer! (see a pattern here?)
Do not support these sellers or the manufacturers of the illegal copies they peddle. Traxxas has worked very hard to create a high quality, high performance product that consumers can rely on. Don't be fooled into purchasing a garbage knock-off made in Taiwan by some sweat shop company riding on Traxxas' success! The real T-MAXX is unmistakable and there is no comparison. Purchasing one of these fakes will be a huge waste of money not only in replaced parts (not to mention that cruddy engine) but in the fact that a USED T-MAXX in excellent condition can be had for about the same price (sometimes cheaper!)!
Please, should you come across these fakes, immediately report them to eBay as a fake, counterfeit, or copy. Also report them for inflated shipping and handling. Only by repeatedly reporting these items can we get them removed.