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Product Type: Toys
Age: Early Elementary School Years
Categories: Vehicles

 

 
Awards
Intelli-Train Deluxe Set
(Lego Systems, Inc. $99.99 Score:) The four drivers all have unique "driving ability" and when placed in the train, something new will happen. This is an update of one of our old favorites. This update has bigger train cars than the earlier version. Placing sensor bars on the track also changes the direction and/ or sound effects. There's a fuel hose with sound effects and a working crane plus vehicles that run on the "road". Comes with 92 pieces, but we suggest that you not wait too long to buy add-ons, since it's the kind of toy that comes and goes from the line. Great fun, but doesn't replace a wooden set. 4 & up.

Age: Preschool,Early School Years. Award Year: .

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Remote Control Bridge
(Brio $50 Score:) The 25" bridge is controlled by an infrared light. It also has lights and warning bells when the bridge goes up. Looked promising but wasn’t ready for testing. Still top rated, last year’s Remote Control Action Train (Brio $50 ), a sleek white train—very European looking, with lights at the front. (888) 274-6869.

Age: Preschool,Early School Years. Award Year: .

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2005 Award
Mgears Remote Control Racers
(Learning Resources $29.95 Score:) Our testers liked the speed they got with this 213 piece Grand Prix Racer. The base comes with the wheels already on (last year we had trouble getting the wheels on!). "The directions sometimes have too many steps in them—they should be more like Lego's." "It really works, the gears move when you make the car go." "Much better than last year’s tethered remote control; it goes much faster too." 7 & up. (888) 800-7893.

Age: Early School Years,Later School Years. Award Year: 2005.

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2006 Award
Morphibians
(Kid Galaxy $24.99 Score:) These snappy vehicles run on land and water! With two button full-function radio control, these are less complex than some of the larger RC’s and have the added fun of float-ablilty. Very cool.

Age: Early School Years. Award Year: 2006.

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2009 Award
Mini Automoblox Three Pack Sets
(Manhattan Toy $25 Score:)

For parents looking for "cool design" for the playroom, look no further. A set of three smaller versions of the PLATINUM AWARD-winning sleekly designed wooden cars. Part puzzle, part vehicle, these also got high marks from our testers who enjoyed taking the cars apart and putting them back together. The vehicles fronts and backs are interchangabel so kids can create original vehicles. 4 & up. The company has signed a verification form complying with our safety requirements. We did not independently test this toy in a lab.

Age: Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2009. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2008 Award
Plan Toys Road and Rail Play Set Railway Station
(Plan Toys $169.99 Score:)

We have always been huge fans of wooden train sets. Last year's safety scare with many of the wooden trains had to understandably put a chill on this category. Which is why we were really excited when we first saw this new set at toy fair. The container is the railway station-- it opens up (your child will need some help here) and then you have an amazing play setting complete with track, trains, and station. Will work with other train tracks you may have from Thomas the Tank or Brio. A memorable holiday gift for any preschoolers.

The company has signed a verification form complying with our safety requirements. We did not independently test this toy in a lab.

Age: Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2008. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2008 Award
Playskool Tonka Bounce Back Racer
(Hasbro $34.99 Score:)

Finding a remote control vehicle for the preschool set can be challenging. The controls can be too confusing and the vehicle can have too much power--which is why we were really happy when we tried out this new Tonka remote control vehicle. Much like the old Tyco remotes, this vehicle flips (once you get the hang of it, it's really fun to make happen). What's different? It's covered in squishy, soft plastic and comes with big soft rubber tires. In other words, no sharp edges or parts to hurt small hands. You do need to be close by for the remote to work. There are also three battery compartments (we'll admit it, we only saw two for awhile!). Other great remotes for this age group come from Kid Galaxy.

The company has signed a verification form complying with our safety requirements. We did not independently test this toy in a lab.

Age: Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2008. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2008 Award
Playmobil Recycling Truck
(Playmobil $28.95 Score:)

With energy conservation looming large, Playmobil has brought back their Recycling Truck. A perfect hands on prop for making recycling part of your child's world--both real and pretend! Truck comes with three bins and two play figures.

The company has signed a verification form complying with our safety requirements. We did not independently test this toy in a lab.

Age: Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2008.

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2008 Award
Shake n Go Flyers
(Fisher-Price $14.95 Score:)

We loved the original Shake n Go Cars and these Flyers are the airborne version for active fun. The hand held launcher does look a little like a gun, but it is really a docking place for the lightweight plane. YOu click it into place and then shake the launcher until the lights and plane sounds begin. Press the trigger and va, va, va, voom! It takes off! They say 3-7. We'd say more like 5-8 would be able to make this happen and enjoy it! Comes in four different designs. Players will love the orange and silver Hawk, the green Show Plane, the silver and blue Ghost Jet and the green Fighter Plane. It is soft enough to use indoors, but not anywhere near your delicate treasures. Has great sound effects! A good buy for the money.

The company has signed a verification form complying with our safety requirements. We did not independently test this toy in a lab.

Age: Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2008.

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2009 Award
Kid Galaxy Movin' Motors
(Kid Galaxy $35 Score:)

Our testers love the clever motorized “robot” that you plug into the body of these construction trucks to make them go forward. Turn the motor around and it powers the dump bed of the Dump ‘N’ Drive Dump Truck or the Pick ‘N’ Plow Backhoe with a digger and claw on the back. These two work better than the Lift ‘N’ Load Bulldozer. These have a whimsical look as the motors have see-through sides that allow you to see the working fans and pistons. Easy enough for pre-schoolers to operate. One tester needed some help learning to load the motor into the right slots. These take 4 AA batteries. 3 & up. The company has signed a verification form complying with our safety requirements. We did not independently test this toy in a lab.

Age: Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2009. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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