Published Jun 10, 2022 8:00 AM
All-terrain vehicles, or ATVs, can be a great source of fun for kids. While they’re not ready for the gnarly, gas-powered vehicles just yet, there are safer models that meet the needs of smaller children. The best ATVs for kids come in a variety of sizes and capabilities. Kids as young as toddlers can ride and drive (even before they take their first steps), while older kids can ride fast laps for an age-appropriate and fulfilling thrill. No matter how you swing it, they can be a great way to learn driving skills and enjoy time outdoors. Some models are even appropriate for adult use, allowing the entire family to get in on the fun. Whether you’re a newbie to the world of ATVs or are looking to upgrade your current model, consider the options that are available for kids and how to choose the best one for their age, size, and driving capabilities. Before you make your next purchase, take a look at this comprehensive list to help you find the best kids’ ATVs.
How we chose the best kids’ ATVs
When searching for the best kids’ ATV, look at these models and research aspects in order to find your best fit. When looking at bang for buck, we recommend the Razor Dirt Quad for its ability to toe the line between a child’s toy and a real ATV. It’s pricier than smaller models but offers more power, capabilities, and storage options.
We took several factors into account when researching the best electric ATVs for kids, including price, speed, battery life, reviews, safety features, terrain, size, and material. By looking at durability and how long (and fast) an ATV can move, we were able to decipher which ones are better suited for kids.
We also included a range of styles to cover kids of different ages, sizes, and driving capabilities. Take a look at the above factors when searching for your child’s ATV and which one is best suited for your family’s needs.
Before purchasing an ATV for kids, you should look into a few specific things. This will help you get the right style for your family, whether you have one child or multiple that will share the electric kids’ ATV. Use these factors to find your best fit.
Gas vs. electric kids’ ATVs
First, ask yourself this important question: do you want to run a gas engine or a model that’s battery-operated? It’s worth noting that for this article, we focused on battery-operated ATVs for kids, which are more environmentally friendly.
Gas ATVs have far more power and can be used for long trips and bigger thrills. This is usually what experienced riders and adults ride, simply due to their advanced options and ability to carry larger riders. However, it’s worth noting that gas models come with additional expenses than their battery-powered counterparts. Aside from the fuel itself, you’ll need to keep the engine running properly with oil, filters, and a clean carburetor. There is the upkeep of tires, wheels, etc., in addition to the battery. But if that’s the thrill you’re after, it’s likely worth the extra expense and maintenance.
For this article, we’re focusing on electric ATVs, which are best for young, small, and inexperienced riders. They are more eco-friendly, more affordable, and still offer plenty of speed and movement for their size.
Safety features of ATVs for kids
Next, consider the safety features of each ATV. Obviously, helmets are essential, but depending on age and skill level (as well as the power of the vehicle), you may want to opt for extended safety capabilities. For instance, do you need a roll cage added? Do you want your child to drive on two wheels or four? The former is best for skilled or older riders. You should also look at potential speed and tire type. While toddlers will be great with plastic wheels, kids who will drive on rougher terrain will need real rubber tires of varying degrees of thickness.
In this article, we’re reviewing four-wheeled vehicles that sit higher up off the ground, most commonly referred to as four-wheelers. Usually, low-ground options, like go-carts, need a roll cage.
Product dimensions of your kids’ ATV
Now it’s time to consider the size of the ATV itself. Where will you store it? In most cases, you won’t want the ATV exposed to the elements, so you’ll need a shed or garage of some kind where it can be parked. Its weight and measurements can also come into play. For instance, a heavier ATV could be more dangerous, require more battery power to charge, and more. This is one more area to research before making your final ATV purchase.
Best kids’ ATVs: Reviews & Recommendations
Best for toddlers: Power Wheels Trail Racer ATV
Why it made the cut: The Power Wheels Trail Racer ATV is a great quad option for young drivers, whether or not they have steering experience.
- Weight: 25 lbs.
- Dimensions: 45.75x30x31.58 inches
- Two speed settings: 3 and 6 mph
- Drives on hard surfaces and wet grass
- Parent-controlled, high-speed lockout
- Power-lock brakes
- Short battery life
- Max weight 65 lbs.
This basic quad setup allows young toddlers (and kids up to 65 lbs.) to cruise a variety of surfaces, including wet grass. Choose from two speed settings (3 mph and 6 mph) depending on the child’s capabilities and preferences. You can also switch to parental controls to keep your ATV under control. Ideal for kids too young to drive, or for when they are getting too brave with the ATV.
With a low frame and plenty of buttons to push, this ATV is a great toy for kids who are learning to drive, steer, and avoid obstacles in the yard. It’s also complete with smooth steering to avoid jarring or jerking movements by novice riders who are prone to jerking the handlebars when they get overwhelmed. That can lead to epic wipeouts on some other models.
Overall, it’s a great starting ATV and ideal for young riders.
Best for beginners: Best Choice Products 12V Ride On Electric ATV
Why it made the cut: The Best Choice Products 12V Ride On Electric ATV is a great first-time ATV for young grade-schoolers or young kids learning to maneuver.
- Weight: 46.3 lbs.
- Dimensions: 39.5x26x29.5 inches
- Materials: Metal and plastic components
- Bluetooth capabilities
- Includes LED headlight
- Plush backrest
- Max speed of 3.7 mph
- Max rider capacity of 66 lbs.
The Best Choice Products 12V ATV is ideal for kids learning to ride, including preschoolers and young grade-schoolers. With a more authentic feel than “kiddie” riders, this version will help them get their feet wet with its realistic rider design. It also hosts large trade wheels and a comfortable backrest so young riders can relax and take a break.
With a LED headlight and real working horn, kids can also ride at night, or alert others they are coming through! Features like a foot pedal and a low speed help keep it safer for younger kids. Battery life is slated to last up to 90 minutes, allowing for plenty of ride time before it needs to recharge.
With this ATV, you can also hook up any Bluetooth device so kids can enjoy music as they cruise across surfaces like gravel, dirt, grass, concrete, and even light mud (avoid the sticky stuff). Though its tires are wide and made for many terrains, they’re plastic and won’t hold up to extreme terrain or weather conditions.
Check this ATV out for riders ages 5-10, including first-time riders.
Best electric: Razor Dirt Quad
Why it made the cut: The Razor Dirt Quad straddles the line between kids’ toys and real ATVs so closely that kids won’t know it’s not the real thing.
- Weight: 75 lbs.
- Dimensions: 43x24x31 inches
- Materials: Alloy steel
- Made of steel, has real rubber tires
- Speeds up to 8 mph
- Max rider weight: 120 lbs.
- 40 minutes of ride time
- No speed limiter
When it comes to a more advanced rider, the Razor Dirt Quad is where it’s at. Suitable for small kids who know how to ride, it toes the line right up to being a real gas-powered vehicle. The quad hauls at 8 mph and will carry riders up to 120 lbs.
Advanced features include lights and buttons that make revving noises and shatterproof plastic fenders. Meanwhile, the frame is made of real alloy steel that glides up and down even rough terrain. Knobby rubber tires help round out the rugged look and feel of this kid’s ATV.
With a 24-volt battery, parents can rest assured the vehicle has plenty of get-up-and-go (so much so that there’s no speed limiter). Ride for up to 40 minutes before needing a recharge. Hand-operated brakes rely on twisting grips, so it feels like the real thing. As an added bonus, metal hooks are provided for vertical storage, helping you save space in the off-season, or whenever you need to tuck it away.
Even experienced riders will need to ease into this model before parents can let them safely ride off on their own. Because this vehicle moves faster than the rest of the rides on this list, it makes safety equipment absolutely essential.
Best small ATV: Blitzshark 24V Kids Ride on ATV
Why it made the cut: This space-saving model offers plenty of ATV perks for kids without the storage commitment (or huge price tag).
- Weight: 48.5 lbs.
- Dimensions: 42.5×27.6×29.1 lbs.
- Materials: Metal suspension
- Comes with protective gear
- Metal suspension
- Working lights and radio
- Additional shipping fee
- 2-wheel drive
When looking for a smaller model ATV, look no further than the Blitzshark 24V Kids Ride On. With metal suspension, you can get elements of a higher-level ATV, without the price tag that comes with them. At nearly half the price of rugged models, Blitzshark cuts down on weight with plastic framing and wheels. Its size also fits its lowered price, with a 12V model that hauls its smaller model to and fro with ease.
Its lighter weight also adds battery time, lasting up to three hours, based on speed, rider weight, and terrain. This model is suitable for grass, gravel, and light ground. Real lights and a working radio round out the big kid experience.
Suitable for riders up to 80 pounds, it comes complete with safety gear (be sure it fits properly, as a wide range of riders can use this ATV). The Blitzshark travels up to 6.5 mph and hosts soft-breaking technology to avoid jarring stops for riders.
If you’re looking for a mid-model ATV for younger kids that won’t break the bank, but is also suitable to store in a small area, this is your pick. The Blitzshark is ideal for kids under 10 or smaller kids up to 13.
Q: Which is the best ATV for kids?
There is much to consider when looking at the best ATV for the little ones in your life. Some of the most important factors include the child’s size, age, and skill level, as well as the safety features you are looking to be included. For instance, low models, like a four-wheeled go-cart may need an attached metal roll cage in order to be as safe as possible. However, quad ATVs, like traditional 4-wheelers, may need hand brakes so they can stop quickly. In any case, kids should wear helmets and perhaps shin/elbow pads, etc.
Q: How much does a kid’s ATV cost?
Gas-model ATVs for kids will run near $1,000 and often well over. Consider not only the initial cost of the ATV, but potential upkeep, such as oil, filters, and fuel to keep it running. Tires can also be an extra expense, especially when riding on rough terrain, which can cause more damage to even the toughest of tires.
In contrast, battery-operated models can be far more affordable. Toddler versions of kids’ ATVs start around $180 and can go up from there. Keep in mind that these budget models are likely to need replacement batteries after a few years. Frequent use can also lower the lifespan of a battery. Though easily replaceable, ATV batteries can be pricey when you have to make repeat purchases.
More sophisticated battery-operated kids’ ATVs go up in price accordingly with their abilities. Ranging from a few hundred up to $600-$700 for models that are metal, fast, and use real rubber tires. Again, keep potential expenses of upkeep in mind, such as replacement tires and batteries. However, 12V batteries, for example, have a longer shelf life than lesser-powered models.
Q: What is a good size ATV for an 8-year-old? What size ATV is good for a 6-year-old?
Based on your child’s age and driving skill level, you will likely want a larger ATV model for those aged 6 and up. Consider models like the Razor Dirt Quad for 8-year-olds or 6-year-olds. They also have a larger model that’s best for growing kids or those who want more of a challenge while driving.
The Blitzshark is also good for older kids, including 6-year-olds or 8-year-olds who are smaller. Kids who have grown quickly might not move as fast on the Blitzshark or become bored with its small size.
Does your child already know how to ride an ATV? If not, this may be a great example of outdoor skills you can teach your kids. If they aren’t already a skilled driver, the Blitzshark or Best Choice Products will be a great model on which they can learn.
Remember to keep your child’s size and skill level in mind when choosing the right ATV for them to maneuver.
Final thoughts about the best kids’ ATVs
While your little one may not be ready for full-fledged four-wheelers, there are fun, safe options out there if you’re looking for the best kids’ ATVs for children of almost any age.