Search Results for -
Product Type: Toys
Age: Preschoolers
Categories: Vehicles

 


2009 Award
Tonka Racin' Fleet
(Hasbro $7.99 Score:)

Five little rubbery vehicles with faces on the front are a good fit for toddlers small hands. These can be used flat out on the floor or with the Tonka Fold ‘n Go Garage or the Round About Railway. A fleet of rescue trucks can be added to the action. These are designed for the youngest players. The company has signed a verification form complying with our safety requirements. We did not independently test this toy in a lab. 12 months & up.

Age: Toddlers, Preschool. Award Year: 2009.

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2009 Awards
Sprig Eco-Trucks
(Sprig $14.99 Score:)

Choose from a loader, dump truck or an excavator, ready for serious action in the playground sandbox or at the beach (they also function with snow). These construction trucks have working parts, are paint-free, and lightweight enough to take along with ease. Our tester, liked how easily they could be carried up and down steps for use indoors and out. Made from recycled milk jugs and sawdust, this company has focused on eco-centric toys from the start. 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. Award Year: 2009. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2009 Awards
Kid Galaxy Press n Gogo School Bus or Fire Engine
(Kid Galaxy $30 Score:)

Instead of a remote, these two soft bodied vehicles are activated with big buttons on top. One activates the horn or siren, another moves the vehicle forward and another backwards. Two other buttons move the chassis from left to right or right to left.  A lot of actions for toddlers to remember. But there will be plenty of trial and error and easy to activate motion. A better choice for 3's & up.
The company has signed a verification form complying with our safety requirements. We did not independently test this toy in a lab.

 

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

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2009 Awards
Hot Wheels Color Shifters Blaster
(Mattel $22.99 Score:)

Hands down one of our favorite toys of the year.  If you have a child in the Hot Wheels zone, this is a must have toy.  Because the play experience involves water (and more the better!) we'd say this is a better choice for outdoors...or parents that don't mind water all over the counter.  The cars react to cold and hot water - and will turn a different color when put into either temperature. Seriously cool.  Best yet, it comes with a squirt bottle so you can change the cars by squirting them.  If you don't want to buy the whole set - we'd suggest buying one of the cars - you can use your own squirt bottle and have the same experience.   The car that turns from blue to yellow is much more dramatic than some of the other color changes (yellow/orange).  The company has signed a verification form complying with our safety requirements. We did not independently test this toy in  a lab.

We waited with great anticipation for the bigger and more tricked out Custom Color Shop ($37.99)...it includes a launcher that sends the car either through a waterfall at the top of the toy or down a ramp.  Here's the deal, we found the launcher somewhat hard to do (to get it to hit the waterfall point consistently was challenging to say this least)...and the water at the top and bottom will need more adult intervention than the Color Shifter Blaster.  It looked like it would be really great, but our testers preferred the less expensive version -- that they could handle more independently. Nice when the less expensive toy comes out on top.

SNAP IDEAS: Quite apart from the "magic" of changing the colors of the little cars, this is a great toy for working on developing hand stregnth. Squirting the water calls for sqeezing the spray bottle and if you want to add to the fun, how about counting to see how many squirts it takes to abra-ca-dabra the change of color. Buy the whole set up or look for the color changer cars that are sold separately. Any clean sqqirt bottle will do the trick!

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

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2001 Awards
Select'n'Go R/C Car
(Little Tikes $29.99 Score:) This snappy race car has a futuristic look with bright red knobby textured wheels. Controller is easy to operate with well-marked buttons. Our testers liked the monster truck look of the 2-in-1 R/C Truck (Fisher-Price $34.99), but report that Little Tikes Car corners better. 3 & up.

Age: Preschool. Award Year: 2001.

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2001 Award
Stacking Track Supports
(Brio $15 Score:) Use these supports to build tunnels, bridges, and two-story layouts for advanced builders. Somewhat simpler elevations can be built with Super Supports ($16) that have grooves to keep tracks from slipping.

Age: Preschool. Award Year: 2001.

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2001 Awards
Thomas the Tank Engine Arched Viaduct
(RC2 Learning Curve $24.99 Score:) Two curved arches which connect to two pieces of ascending track provide a simple way to give trains a lift.

Age: Preschool. Award Year: 2001.

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Awards
Construction Truck with Hard Hat
(Little Tikes $20 Score:) If you're looking for a showy gift at a reasonable price, you won't do better than this set. These vehicles are articulated for easy action and made to withstand sand and water. Choose a working dump truck or loader.

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

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Award
Country Crossing Play Set
(Brio $100 Score:) Set includes a raised girder, farm animals, train, and engineer. The Track & Stack City Set ($130/38 pieces) with elevator, stacking supports, signs, and figures was not ready for testing, but looks more complex to assemble.

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

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Award
Thomas the Tank Engine Drawbridge
(RC2 Learning Curve $30 Score:) Cleverly designed, this totally assembled bridge/tunnel has a lever that lifts the low bridge so tall trains can pass. The Firehouse ($30) has a fire truck that pops out when you ring the bell. Also new are Thomas or Percy Express Packs ($30 each). These sets include a battery-powered train.

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

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