When the folks at giffgaff got in touch to ask me to review an iPhone accessory for their Christmas gift guide, I imagined they would send me a case, or a speaker, or something similar. I certainly didn’t imagine a remote controlled car. It pushes the definition of “accessory” a little, but both the geekdaddy and I were rather delighted to receive the Silverlit Bluetooth Enzo Ferrari to test.
The Silverlit Bluetooth Enzo Ferrari is a 1:16 scale model, and it’s probably the most realistic remote controlled car I have ever played with. It has working headlights, indicators and brake lights, and feels chunky and well-made. It requires 4 AA batteries to run (these are supplied in the box with it, which is always good to see), and also requires a (free to download) iOS app to be loaded onto your iPhone or iPad in order to control it (there is no handheld controller included in the box).
I found the initial setup a little tricky – you have to connect your device to the car using the Bluetooth menu in the settings app, and initially my iPhone kept telling me the accessory was not compatible with my device. A full power off and on of the phone resolved that and I was then able to connect successfully. Once connected I could load up the app and control the car. It’s worth pointing out that even when the car is paired with your phone it doesn’t connect automatically like so many Bluetooth accessories do, so you have to manually connect it each time you want to play.
The app offers two different ways to control the car – the more traditional “joystick” method where you are given two on screen joysticks, one to drive the car forwards and backwards and one to steer it left and right. The other control method is “gesture”, and when this option is selected the car responds to each small movement of your device – tilt forwards to drive forwards, backwards to drive backwards and tilt left and right to steer. I found the joystick method the easiest to use – the gesture method didn’t feel entirely intuitive to me. Ideally I’d have liked a more “blended” control mechanism, with perhaps a joystick for forwards and backwards but tilt controls for steering.
I also found that the default configuration was very sensitive indeed and I crashed the car several times in the lounge before I found I could adjust the sensitivity and acceleration through the app. Once I’d got it set up the way I liked it I found it easy to drive, and was impressed with the range of the Bluetooth connection. I could drive the car all around the lounge from the comfort of the sofa. Well until the batteries ran out anyway – this car does go through batteries quite quickly (especially the way I drive it!)
The Silverlit Bluetooth remote control Ferrari has a recommended retail price of £79.99, which, whilst on the high side, I feel reflects the quality of the car fairly. That said, it is worth shopping around because you can find it cheaper at some retailers. I noticed whilst researching this review that Amazon currently have it on sale for just £42.97 (affiliate link), which is a much more palatable price for this car!
So in summary I really like the Silverlit Bluetooth remote control Ferrari. It is well made and full-featured. It’s not really a suitable toy for young kids, with the complications of the Bluetooth connection and the control mechanisms, but for older kids (and even older grown ups!) it’s a great buy. Just make sure your intended recipient has a suitable iOS device with which to control it.
Disclosure: I was sent the Silverlit Bluetooth Enzo Ferarri remote control car for review purposes. All words and opinions are my own. All prices quoted are correct at time of publication. The Amazon link within the post contains my affiliate information – if you make a purchase after clicking I receive a small payment (at no additional cost to you)