The Metro Turbo Outlaw is a radio controlled Sprint Car, manufactured by Taiyo (Japan), and released into the Australian and New Zealand market by GTI Metro in 1987.
While many of the radio control models we’ve covered here are only generally based on real life vehicle concepts, the Turbo Outlaw is a realistic model of an actual racing vehicle, or class of vehicles, known as the Sprint Car.
Sprint Cars – the real deal
As a kid, my dad would take me to Nyora Raceway in country Victoria (Australia) to see the Sprint cars race around a red dirt track. In the pits I recall seeing a Sprint car up close, the violent bark from its straight-piped side exhaust, and those huge fat rear tires making it clear this thing was no regular vehicle.
If you’ve never seen Sprint Cars before, they’re custom built V8 dirt track race cars with a huge overhead wing, and a tubular frame chassis.
Perfectly engineered for their purpose, you’ll find them racing around oval tracks in tight groups at high speed, with the occasional spectacular crash, it’s a loud and fast sport and I have a deep respect for anyone who has the guts to do it.
It’s worth noting that many racing legends have found their calling as Sprint car drivers, such as famous Formula One, Indy 500, and Nascar drivers like Mario Andretti, Al Unser Jr, and Johnny Parsons.
Features and Performance
Unlike later race cars released by Taiyo / Tyco, the Metro Turbo Outlaw means business.
- Realistic Sprint Car Detail
Including driver, twin detachable wings, chrome plated exhaust and mid-engine, plus rear protection
- 8xAA Batteries providing 9.6V (NiCd/Rechargeable) or 12V (Alkaline)
- Top speed of 22km/h fully assembled or higher without the wing
- Front and Rear Shock Absorbers
- Rear Tires: Super Wide Off-Road
- Front Tires: Street Style (unique to Turbo Outlaw)
- Comes with a standard Chrome Handle boxed controller
Collectability and Availability
The market in Australia for genuine Metro versions of these Taiyo radio controlled cars is tight. It’s a popular model that represents actual race cars used locally in Australia.
Getting your hands on one is the issue – there simply aren’t many of the Metro variants remaining of any model, and the Turbo Outlaw in particular seems rare. I’ve only seen one myself, and its photos are on this page! If you’re willing to forego the Metro sticker, the Taiyo and Tyco variants are identical and relatively easy to get your hands on, though postage from overseas can be costly.
Unrelated to the Metro Turbo Outlaw, but I can’t mention Nyora Raceway and Sprint Cars without mentioning my favorite event of the whole day… the Demolition Derby! In the unlikely event you’re not familiar with this, see below. Basically a bunch of blokes in smashed up cars compete by smashing each others cars apart, with the goal to be the last man standing (or last engine running to be exact). It’s epic, especially watching it as a kid.
See the clip below from a 2019 Demo Derby at Nyora Raceway.
Special Thanks to M. Pursell for the photos of his glorious Metro Turbo Outlaw featured in this article.