losi night crawler motor upgrade

Losi Night Crawler Motor Upgrade [Guide]

The Losi Nightcrawler is an amazing RC truck held back by its mediocre stock motor. That’s still probably a marketing strategy by Losi to sell more products like a better motor. 

However, this marketing strategy worked really well since the Nightcrawler is a beast with a better motor. So how should you go about the Losi night crawler motor upgrade? 

First, upgrade the Nightcrawler motor to a brushless one instead of the stock brushed one. For drag races, get a motor with the least turns for speed. For normal races, get a motor with moderate turns for the best speed and control. Bashing and Climbing upgrades are also included in the article. 

Let’s first talk about why upgrading the Losi Nightcrawler motor is absolutely worth it. 

The Value in Upgrading Losi Nightcrawler Motor

Losi Nightcrawler
Source: Losi

Upgrading the Losi Nightcrawler wouldn’t make much sense if there weren’t any reasons to. However, there are three major drawbacks that make the experience worse. 

However, worry not, the nightcrawler motor is upgradeable just like the traxxas slash 4×4 motor. It will definitely improve your experience with the Losi Nightcrawler. 

The Three Major Drawbacks

The reason why upgrading the Losi Nightcrawler motor is even considered is because of the three major drawbacks. They are-

The three major drawbacks of the stock Losi nightcrawler motor are- Heating Problem, durability problem and the brushed motor it comes with. The brushed motor causes most of these major issues. These drawbacks ruin the experience for a lot of users. The consequences are detailed below. 

Let’s get right into the drawbacks. 

Heating Problem

The motor from Losi Nightcrawler heats up in a relatively short amount of time. This takes away a lot from the experience. It leaves the hobbyists with mere minutes instead of hours before they have to stop using it. 

Durability Problem

The Motor on Losi NightCrawler is less durable compared to most motors. They’re much more prone to breaking down to multiple user reports. That greatly hampers the user experience. This is one of the major drawbacks of the Losi Nightcrawler Motor. 

Brushed Motor

This is by far one of the worst drawbacks of the stock motor on the Losi Nightcrawler. Brushed motors don’t include sensors nor are they efficient. This kind of motor is less durable and is much more prone to heating. This is the root of almost all the drawbacks of the stock motor. 

These three drawbacks make upgrading the stock motor of Losi Nightcrawler a must. However, before just upgrading it willy-nilly, first make sure these compatibility factors are met.

Compatibility Factors for Upgrading Losi Nightcrawler Motor

There are few very precise compatibility factors when it comes to upgrading any RC motor. Some of them are- 

Number of Turns

Number of turns for a motor means the number of times armatures are wrapped with copper wire. It is signified by a Capital ‘T’. For example, the Losi Nightcrawler stock motor is 35T. That means it’s a 35T motor.

The number of turns denote another way to measure how powerful a motor is. However, the less the turns, the more the speed the motor is capable of. Because more turns mean more resistance and thus, less speed. 

KV Rating

The KV rating of an RC car is the Horsepower equivalent of a car. It basically also denotes how strong the motor is. However, higher KV rating does not always mean more speed. 

The KV does mean higher top speed but at the cost of torque. The KV means revolutions per volt. The KV is proportional to Top speed and disproportional to Torque. Similarly, The higher the torque, the lower the KV and top speed. 

So, you should also keep this in your mind before picking the motor.  

Sensored Brushless

This is the most important compatibility factor. The most important factor is that you have to convert the losi nightcrawler from brushed to brushless. This is rather a must than a need.

Furthermore, A sensored brushless motor would be best. However, you would need a different kind of ESC for that. Brushless Sensored ESCs cost around $20-30 more than the sensorless counterparts. If you did get the new ESC, Actually making the ESC brushless motor connection is easy. 

There’s also the size and dimensions to look out for. 

Size and Dimensions

If this wasn’t obvious enough, you need to be able to fit the motor. The dimensions you’ll need to look out for are: Length, Diameter, Shaft width. These sizes need to match otherwise the motor will not fit. 

For example: the pinion gear relies on the shaft width of the motor. Furthermore, the large gear relies on that very pinion gear. Now the wrong width would throw the entire setup off. 

Furthermore, make sure your new motor is compatible with how far apart the old mounting holes are. 


The Electronic Speed Control is the component that controls how fast the motor turns. If you change to a brushless sensored motor, change the ESC accordingly. 

ESC has to be able to control the motor turns as well. So, the power of the ESC is proportional to that of the motor. That must be maintained for your RC to work as it should. 

This concludes the list of compatibilities. Let’s now move on to the upgrades themselves. 

Recommended Losi Nightcrawler Motor Upgrades

Here’s a short list of what upgrades you will need in which aspect for three categories.

AspectFor Climbing For Racing For Bashing 
Sensor (Brushless)
Turns Less Turns Less Turns/More TurnsLess Turns

The three categories I’ve divided the upgrades into are: Racing, Bashing, Climbing. The aspects for these upgrades are: Sensor in the brushless motor, ESC, Turns and the KV rating. 

Upgrading Losi Nightcrawler Motor for Racing

There are two kinds of races that I will consider the upgrade for in this case. They are-

Drag Racing

For drag racing, You have to optimize your choice for most speed. That leaves us with lower torque, higher number of turns. 

So, to delve deeper into it, You’ll lose control because of the higher speed the motor will put out. However, drag racing does not require control, simply speed. 

So for drag racing- you need to upgrade to the lowest turns motor you can get with the highest KV rating. 


For racing normally you would best go for a balanced torque and speed. That is because you need both speed and control in case of normal racing. 

So, you’re better off with a higher turn, lower kv motor for the higher control it offers. Then you’ll get the best racing experience you can possibly get without your nightcrawler going wild. 

In both cases you’ll need to fit a compatible ESC respectively. ESC heavily depends on the motor.

Upgrading Losi Nightcrawler Motor for Climbing

For climbing, the losi nightcrawler would need a lot of raw power.  Speed or control does not matter for this use. 

However, you do need lots of power. Basically lower turns and higher KV rating, that’s the kind of motor you should go for. In that way you can push for more power and make the higher climbs. You could not do these with the stock motor. 

Furthermore you may change your tires for better grip as well. That helps with climbing, 

Now all that’s left is bashing. 

Upgrading Losi Nightcrawler Motor for Bashing

Bashing simply requires two things: torque and power. A lower turn motor like this one will do the job just fine. 

So I will suggest you get a lower turn, high power motor for bashing. It will be effective and effortlessly smooth. 

Now that you’re done with the upgrades, I’ll answer some frequently asked questions before concluding the article. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Is Losi Nightcrawler upgradeable?

Yes, The Losi Nightcrawler is upgradeable. It is lauded for its vast options of customizations and upgradeability. 

Do I have to Change the ESC if I Change the Motor?

Yes, you have to change the ESC if you change the motor. Unless of course, you decide to get the same motor. That is because you have to get ESC according to the specifications of the motor.

Is Losi Nightcrawler Waterproof?

Yes, the losi nightcrawler is waterproof. All of its components are sealed and waterproofed so you can use it on any terrain. Wet places really don’t do anything to it. 


That’s about it! Now you know how important and relevant the Losi Nightcrawler motor upgrade is. 

What about it? Did you decide to get the upgrade? If so, what did you upgrade your losi nightcrawler for? Let me know in the comments below. 

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