It doesn't matter how old you are, remote-controlled cars are really fun. Once you have the controls in your hand and the car speeding around your feet, you feel like a kid again. But this Real Racer car from Kobotix goes one further by giving you a first-person view from inside the car while you drive it, using a VR headset.
The car itself is a pretty standard-looking 1:28 scale model, of no particular brand. It's more hot-hatch than a super car though. It's also got a big lens that looks like a Mohican on the roof.
The controller is your classic push-pull trigger and tyre-like wheel for steering. Also in the box though is an FPV headset. The car connects to your phone by WiFi and the app displays the view from the car in either a standard video view or a split screen. With the split screen selected you can place your phone inside the headset and get a pretty effective virtual reality view.
Where this gets really impressive though is that there's an app for the Meta Pro headset that gives you the same in-car view. From the Meta app you can look around inside the car, well the dash anyway, while the camera feed appears in the windscreen. It's a simple 2D video feed within a virtual space but it's effective and a step up from the provided FPV headset.
Driving the car with the headset and a first-person view is a different experience to driving when looking down at the car. Much like in arcade-style racing games where you have a choice of your point of view, the in-car view is a little trickier. However, it's often more rewarding.
That's certainly the case here. It took a few laps to get used to controlling the car with the FPV but once I had it, the driving was even more fun. I tried it on a small circuit set up on Kobotix's stand at the IFA show, but I bet it would be even better racing around the house, weaving between people's feet and chasing pets, like something from Honey I Shrunk The Kids.
The Kobotix Real Racer is available now from Amazon, priced £149 / $149.