A more recent trend in the toy making industry is ride-on cars, slightly bigger toy vehicles that can support the weight of a small child and move along at low speeds, giving them a taste of what they can have when they grow older.
There is no official report as to how much the ride-on car segment of the toy industry is worth globally, but in the U.S. alone it amounted to a total of $408 million in 2015. A simple Google search will return so many results from so many manufacturers that it becomes obvious there’s a lot of money to be earned here.
Because there are so many ride-on car makers, finding the best toy in an ocean of colorful and vibrant products is a daunting task. But with a little bit of patience, and with enough info coming from other buyers in online reviews, it can be done.
As summer is in full swing and a ride-on car could be the perfect gift for a kid, we thought to give a head start by selecting 5 of the most appreciated ride-on toys available online. And they are all based on American-made machines.
Jeep Wrangler – The Jeep Wrangler is one of the iconic American automobiles, and kids seem to grow into loving the nameplate from a young age.
Power Wheels, one of the largest American producers of ride-on cars, has a number of Wrangler replicas on sale, including the red one we chose for our list (ad).
The car is recommended for kids aged between 36 months and 7 years and it costs from $279.99.
John Deere Tractor – farming equipment, especially that produced by John Deere, is vastly appreciated in vast areas across the United States. And so are the toys made to match the allure of the green monster machines.
Produced by specialized Italian company Peg Perego, the John Deere Ground Force tractor (ad) comes complete with trailer and even a working FM radio.
The toy is powered by a 12-volt rechargeable battery and comes with a gearbox that allows two forward speeds (2-1/4 or 4-1/2 miles per hour) and one reverse. There’s even a lockout feature to make sure beginners are not in way over their heads.
Despite the company being Italian, the tractor is assembled in Fort Wayne, Indiana. Aimed for kids aged 3 to 7 years old, the John Deere Ground Force tractor is priced from $249.
Chopper Trike – Choppers are, by definition, an American creation. Born in California at the end of the 1950s, this type of motorcycle is the most extreme and personalized type of bike ever made, so it was only natural toy makers would attack this segment with their own interpretation of the vehicle.
Unlike a Harley though, this bike does not only move forward but also backward.And it comes complete with buttons for sound effects and a headlight that actually works so that kids aged 2 to 4 can enjoy properly.
On Amazon, the Lil' Rider chopper trike is priced from $101.14 and there are literally hundreds of reviews on it to get some more info.
Police SUV – of the vehicles currently on public roads, few actually match the hold cars with lights and sirens have on kids of all ages. Of them all, police cars seem to be really magical for kids, so making a ride-on police car is not something we didn’t expect.
There are plenty of choices in this category too, and one of the appealing ones is the Chevrolet Tahoe police SUV (ad), a replica of one of the most widespread police cars in the U.S.
Manufactured by Rollplay, a company that mostly deals with making ride-on cars, the Chevy comes complete with a working loudspeaker, flashing lights and a dashboard that shows the battery levels.
Recommended for kids aged 3 years and above, the Chevrolet Tahoe police SUV sells from $217.65 on Amazon.
For many pickup truck buyers, the Ford F-150 is the ultimate choice, and there are many variations of this truck in ride-on form as well.
Power Wheels has a number of F-150 inspired ride-ons available, including the Lil' F-150 (ad). Capable of moving at speeds of 3.5 mph, the toy car comes with an electronic braking system, a hood that lifts to reveal a truck’s mockup engine and even side-view mirrors.
On Amazon, the Lil' F-150 sells from $170.99.