Best Ride on Toys for Toddlers and Kids – Our Top Picks by Age

When you’re looking for the best gifts for toddlers and kids, you will, without a doubt, stumble upon a number of different ride on toys. What is it that makes these the best toys for children of pretty much all ages? Children as old as one can enjoy their little trikes but even as they age, the love they feel for these toys and the joy they experience while playing with them only seem to grow. If you were hoping to get a great gift for your child, we give you a brief list of the best ride on toys for toddlers and kids of different age.

Best Ride on Toys for 1 Year Old

Little Tikes Cozy Coupe

little tikes classic kids toy

Parents usually feel sad for not being able to let their children experience some of the great things from their own childhoods. Well, with Little Tikes Cozy Coupe they can! This is one of the best kids ride on cars on the market and it’s been around for more than 30 years, proving over and over again that simplicity and quality in design will outlast different trends.

Still, even though it resembles the cars which the previous generations loved, it’s upgraded and now has a handle in the back that makes it easier to push the car forward. Its floorboard can also be removed which will allow the child to use their feet to push themselves forward as fast as they like. What is more, there is also a cup holder in the back right above the sturdy seat that offers back support for one year olds who still struggle to maintain their balance.  

Pros:
  • Removable floorboard
  • Gas cap and the door open and close
  • Wheels rotate 360 degrees

Cons:
  • It’s difficult to push it if you’re tall
  • Takes a lot of time to assemble

Little Tikes Go and Grow lil' Rollin' Giraffe Ride-On

Little tikes go grow lil rollin giraffe ride on toy

There is something about animals that draws and fascinates children, and they are avid zoo and farm fans before they can even walk properly. The little rolling giraffe is a wonderful pre-bicycle gift that allows kids who are just learning how to walk. Parents who are worried about their child’s safety can relax because the tires on the three wheels are dependable and sturdy and handlebars are big and wide enough for children to grab them with their little hands.

As this is not a battery operated toy, your child will kick their legs to move thus strengthening their leg muscles in the process. The seat is wide enough for the child to be seated comfortably and not slide off even as they move around, and the back wheel is thick enough to ensure additional stability.

Pros:
  • Big handlebars perfect for little hands
  • Affordable

Cons:
  • It’s a bit harder to steer

Prince Lionheart Wheely Bug

Prince Lionheart Wheely Bug Lady kids toy

This is an amazing kids’ ride on toy that’s attractive, comfortable, and safe. Children love the simple and colorful design of the toy and they’ll fall for it immediately. Because it has four wheels it’s very stable and won’t tip over easily. What is more, the wheels are chair-type casters that can rotate fully (360 degrees) so the toy will be able to spin in a circle, go forward, backward, and sideways without any trouble. This means that the child won’t find themselves stuck in a corner and call you to help them.

The wheels are great for pretty much any surface, and they glide freely and smoothly on carpets as well as hardwood floors. Their unique shape makes it easy for children to climb up and come down from the toy on their own, and the soft coat of foam makes it more comfortable.

Pros:
  • No PVC
  • Sturdy and durable
  • Simple and colorful
  • Easy to maneuver

Cons:
  • It might be difficult to get the right size without measuring the inseam of your child’s legs

Best Ride on Toys for 2 Year Old

Pewi Y bike

pewi y bike ride on

Unlike traditional walkers that help the child learn to find their balance and strengthen their leg muscles, this ride on bike is a bit of a challenge and it’s best for toddlers. This is a choice for children who can already maintain their balance but who need more leg space. Pewi Y Bike strengthens their leg but also trunk muscles since there’s no back support. This is also a good foundation for a balance bike for toddlers which they’ll use later on.

This is also a great balance bike for toddlers because it allows them to move around freely thanks to four multi-direction caster wheels that are attached to a sturdy aluminum frame. This means they will not have any problems to steer the toy in any direction without your help. The best thing about the wheels is that they’re made of rubber so they won’t leave any markings on hardwood floors whatsoever.

Pros:
  • Soft foam seat
  • Sturdy aluminum frame
  • Plenty of space for leg movement

Cons:
  • Because it’s a bit high, it can flip over easily until the child’s balance improves

Little Tikes Princess Cozy Truck Ride-On

Little Tikes’ famous truck design has been improved a bit and today parents can get a lovely princess-themed ride on truck for their girls. This distinctive truck comes with a fully functioning steering wheel with a working electronic horn, a gas cap that can open and close just like driver’s door, as well as a flatbed with a drop-down tailgate. In order to make it easier for parents to push the truck, a push handle has been added to the roof. Still, keep in mind that it’s a bit low so you would still need to bend down slightly if you’re tall.

The floorboard can be removed and the child can use their legs to move forward, but you can always put the floorboard back when you intend to push the truck around so that their feet can be protected. The wheels on this ride on toy are ‘rugged’ which makes this a perfect outdoor toy.

Pros:
  • ‘Rugged’ wheels are great for outdoor play
  • It can grow with your child
  • Durable and sturdy

Cons:
  • The door might not latch well

Fisher-Price Little People Music Parade Ride-On

little people music parade ride on photo

Sometimes it takes a bit more than just running around on a ride on toy to keep the children entertained. This is where a bright and cheery Music Parade Ride on steps in – it an interactive and educational toy that has a lot of different sounds which the children will love.

Not only is it good for developing their gross motor skills and leg muscles, but also helps them understand cause-and-effect: by pressing a button the toy plays five different tunes. What is more, the keys can be used to compose a new tune with the sound of drums, tuba, saxophone, and trumpet.

This is a simple non motorized ride on toy for toddlers which will keep them interested and occupied by allowing them to move around freely but also by inspiring them to discover music on their own. By learning to press buttons and play music, they will develop their cognitive skills too.

Pros:
  • Batteries included
  • Additional storage under the seat
  • Can be used as an indoor or outdoor toy

Cons:
  • No ‘off’ button or any sort of volume control

Best Ride on Toys for 3 Year Olds

Power Wheels Lil Quad

Power Wheels Lil Quad Ride on Toy Photo

ATVs are amazing, and you’ve probably daydreamed about having one of your own and riding it around. Getting a toy quad for your child might not seem like a wise idea, but there is no need to worry. With an attractive sporty design, it looks like one of the real dirt bikes for kids, but it’s far less powerful than a real ATV.

It might take some time for your toddler to understand how to start their little ride on car, but since it only takes a simple push on the button that’s placed on the handlebars, we’re sure it won’t take them long. What is more, the footrests are placed rather low which makes it easy for kids to climb on and get off the toy on their own. The toy is meant to be used outdoors because there won’t be a lot of traction if you use it on hardwood floors.

Pros:
  • Easy to use
  • Durable
  • Comes with a rechargeable battery

Cons:
  • Difficult to reach the battery

Fisher Price Harley Davidson

fisher price harley davidson trike photo

Parents are always looking for realistic-looking, sturdy toys, and this adorable Harley Davidson ride on trike is an excellent gift for an adventurous toddler. They will feel like they’re adults with their ‘real’ Harley, and they’ll be cruising around with ease. This is a very stable ride on toy because its rear end is rather wide and the wheels are big, so it won’t trip over easily even when the kids start fidgeting.

Since the toy has pedals, those who are a bit bigger or older can ride it around freely, especially since the pedals are big. On the other hand, even if the pedals are too far for their short legs, they will still be able to push themselves forward with their feet, thus strengthening their leg muscles further. A convenient hidden storage area under the seat allows them to store their favorite toys and bring them along when they go for a ride with their parents.

Pros:
  • Very easy to assemble
  • Convenient hidden storage area under the seat

Cons:
  • Pedals might be too far

Radio Flyer Scoot-About

radio flyer scoot about photo

Kids who still haven’t figured how to paddle (or haven’t grown enough to do so) will love playing with this sturdy little bike. The Scoot About ride on toy is a great gift for any child because it can be used both indoor and outdoor. Toddlers will ride in style and enjoy the real ringing bell as well as soft streamers. The frame of the bike is very sturdy, made of red steel, and it features a front bumper that helps protect the child from bumping into furniture and walls.

The front wheels are set wide apart which means that the toy is very stable and safe, but the back wheels are set rather close which does make the bike front-heavy but leaves the child with plenty of leg space. The seat is adjustable and you can lift it as the child grows which means that they will be able to play with this toy for many years.

Pros:
  • Sturdy steel frame
  • Adjustable seat
  • Working steering wheel

Cons:
  •  Putting the toy together will require extra tools

Best Ride on Toys for 4 Year Olds

Step2 Whisper Ride II Ride On

Step2 Whisper Ride II Ride On Car photo

This Whisper Ride II ride on toy shaped like a real sports car will be the joy of every toddler and child without parents having to worry about their safety. It’s designed to be ridden on different terrains, but if you intend to use it outdoors, fully retractable caster wheel will ensure that the ride is smooth even on the roughest terrain. It also swivels easily and is able to do a full 360-degrees turn.

The steering wheel is the perfect size for their little hands and it features a working horn which the children will love. There are also cup holders so the child can bring a bottle of water of their favorite juice when they go for a ride, and they can also bring some of their toys in a handy storage located under the hood.

Pros:
  • Safety belt included
  • Additional storage under the hood
  • Handle has a cup holder for parents

Cons:
  • Tires are soft which can cause little rocks to get into them easily

Step 2 Roller Coaster

roller coaster kids ride on toy photo

Is there a child who doesn’t like amusement parks and roller coasters? They probably can’t wait to be old and big enough to go for a ride and experience the thrill of hairpin turns and loop-de-loops. Parents probably want that moment to come as late as possible, but there is an easy way to let them enjoy the thrill of roller coasters without actually jeopardizing their safety. This amazing 10-foot-long roller coaster will be the source of great joy and fun for them, just as the amusement park version is for grownups.

It’s made of brightly colored plastic, sturdy and durable, and it’s built to last for years either in the playroom or the backyard. The four pieces fit in perfectly: 2 small steps won’t be slippery and they will fit perfectly into 10-foot-long 3-piece riding track. This way they will have a nice downhill ride they can enjoy while riding a bright yellow car which is sturdy enough to be used around the house too.

Pros:
  • Steps are non-slip and allow access from both sides
  • Car can be used separately
  • Easy to assemble and disassemble

Cons:
  • It takes up a lot of space if you decide to use it indoors

Mega Bloks Jeep Ride On

mega blocks ride on caterpillar photo

Oftentimes ride of toys are just that – toys your child can use to ride around the house or the yard, but with this Mega Bloks Jeep there will be so much more that they can do. It’s a very versatile ride on toy that allows children to zoom around on the excavator truck, but they can also use the 360-degrees pivoting excavator to play with blocks that are included in the package. There is also an additional under-the-seat storage space that the child can use to pack their favorite toys and bring them along.

Additional buttons on the steering wheel play realistic trucks sounds and the scoop on the excavator arm is fully functional so that the child can use the ride on toy for pretend play too. Because it has electronics, it’s best to keep the toy indoors when you’re not using it in order to protect the buttons on the steering wheel.

Pros:
  • Versatile and durable
  • Additional controls on the steering wheels with realistic sounds

Cons:
  • The wheels don’t turn along with the steering wheel

Ride on Toys for Kids over 5 Years Old

PlasmaCar

plasma car ride on toy

While the design of this toy car seems far too simple for a ride on toy for 5 year olds, this adorable Plasma Car is incredibly smooth and has one the most unique set of handlebars on the market – they can even turn to make a complete circle! The car also features a unique way of moving – the child will have to move the steering wheel to get going in the first place. It’s one of the simplest ride on cars too: there aren’t any batteries, pedals, or gears included which means that the children will be inspired to use their own strength and skills to move around.

Even though it’s a manually operated ride on toy it can pick up a lot of speed from turning the steering wheel, and it can also go in reverse. Still, it has to be said that rough surfaces such as grass, gravel, and carpet slightly diminish the ability to propel the car forward.

Pros:
  • Very sharp steering wheel for rounded turns
  • Incredibly stable
  •  It can hold up to 220lbs

Cons:
  • The steering wheel can wear out after a lot of use

Step2 Hot Wheels Extreme Thrill Coaster

step2 hot wheels coaster ride on photo

Parents know how difficult it can be to ‘lure’ a child outside to play, as all they want to do is play video games and watch TV. With this ride on car with accompanying 14-feet-track, however, the children will be begging you to go outside and play. The best thing about this ride on is that it can easily be pushed up the ramp because there are non-slip steps leading to the platform.

Even though the race track itself is 30 inches high there are safety hand-grips on the coaster car as well as high back safety seat which means that the child will be safe while going down the track. Because this is a big toy and you can’t disassemble it afterwards, you might want to consider protecting it from rain or cold temperatures by covering it or dragging it to the garage when you’re not using it.

Pros:
  • Safety hand-grips
  • Kids can push the car to the ramp on their own

Cons:
  • Rather pricey
  • You will need additional tools to assemble the coaster

Peg Perego Tractor

Peg Perego Force Tractor photo

Children of all ages are fascinated with farms, farm animals, and farming, and it seems like tractors have a special place in their hearts. This is why they’ll love playing with this electric tractor with a trailer while learning about farm equipment. Unlike other electric cars for kids, this one comes with accelerator pedals as well as fully automatic brakes, and it can go in reverse.

Not only will the child be able to improve their balance while playing with this toy, they will also learn about control and improve their coordination while driving over grass, gravel, and other uneven terrains. There are 2 speeds; 2,25 & 4,5 mph but if you’re not sure whether the second one is too fast for beginners, there is 4,5 mph lockout. The toy also comes with its own rechargeable battery as well as its own charger.

Pros:
  • Easy to assemble and control
  • Comes with replacement parts

Cons:
  • Very pricey
  • Bulky
  • Trailer tips over easily

How to Choose the Best Ride on Toy for Your Kid

To be honest, there isn’t really an easy way to pick the best ride on toy for a child; you need to know your child well and to be ready to do quite a bit of research before you make a purchase. It’s a widely established belief (and practically a rule of thumb) that the younger the child is, the simpler the toy you get them should be.

Safety

It practically goes without saying that your child’s safety should be your number one priority, and it was also ours while we were researching these toys on your behalf. Sadly, there is no toy on the market that is 100% safe, as with all of them there is some sort of risk; whether your child tripping over or falling down from them. On the other hand, as your child grows and becomes stronger, and their balance and strength improve, the risk of them getting hurt by using a ride on toy goes down.  

While non-motorized toys are mostly stationary and require no brakes, motorized toys and battery operated ones more much faster and usually feature brakes (pedal or hand brakes) as well as seat belts.

Size

It doesn’t matter how attractive or colorful a toy is, if your child can’t reach the pedals or the floor while using it, they won’t find it interesting. If they’re able to reach the floor comfortably, they will be able to use it without your help and they’ll feel safe enough to ride it everywhere on their own, which is the point. They should be able to get on and off on their own, and if they’re using battery powered ones, their knees shouldn’t touch the steering wheel.

Balance

Only the toys that don’t have any risk of tipping over the child are safe enough to be used by them, and as a responsible parent, you should check the balance of the toy before you allow your child to play with it. Slightly and gently push the toy from side to side to see if it’ll stay upright, and make sure the wheels (or the rockers) are wide enough to support your child’s weight.

Important Things to Look Out For

Even though it’s practically impossible to buy a toy for growing children that will last for years, you can still choose wisely and make a good investment. There are many different types of ride on toys available on the market today, and it will be easy for you to find the perfect one for your child if you know what you’re looking for.

When looking for the best ride on toy, try to find the one that will be able to ‘grow’ with your child; extendable handles and/or seats are always a good choice because children grow up sooner than you’d expect. If they are able to reach the pedals or the floor without difficulties, it means that the toy is the right size and that they’ll be able to maintain their balance better without falling down. In addition, a back support feature is perfect for smaller kids who might fall backward.

Always consider the age of your child first and try to buy them a toy that’s appropriate for them. If they aren’t able to sit up without assistance, a scooter will be of no use until much later. Also, if they’re able to walk and run on their own, a small trike without pedals might be too boring for them.

Benefits of Kids Ride on Toys

It doesn’t matter if they’re in their living room or out in the garden, children of all ages will love the freedom of movement and the speed that ride on toys offer them. Still, any parent knows that there’s more to toys than just distraction and harmless fun – there are educational toys for children as well as toys that can play an important role in child’s development, and good ride on toys are just that. In addition to being a great source of fun and excitement, these toys will help your child develop important life skills.

First things first: ride on toys will provide your child with recreation and they will encourage them to use their muscles more. They will greatly improve your child’s gross motor skills and balance by allowing them to propel themselves forward using their own energy. They will be able to stay active and exercise gently, thus feeling that exercise isn’t something bad but rather fun. What is more, children who spend a lot of time riding around the house, backyard, or the street will be more likely to fall asleep easier.

benefits of ride on toys photo

What is more, these toys will allow your child to be more mobile: toddlers will learn how to walk with the additional support and older children will develop their leg muscles by pushing themselves forward and their arm muscles by controlling the steering wheel. There are different kinds of ride on toys but pretty much all of them promote balance, strength, and coordination.

Another good thing about ride on toys is that a lot of them can grow along with the child: little rocking animals which are perfect for toddlers can easily be replaced will small trikes and bikes that have adaptable seats, and later on, children will be ready to play with scooters and small motorized vehicles too. No matter how old your child is, a good ride on toy is always the best gift idea.

Conclusion

These toys offer a lot of benefits for growing kids and they will greatly enjoy using them and playing with them, but it is up to you to be thorough and pick the ones that are best for your child depending on their age and ability. While it may not be difficult to decide to buy your toddler or your kid a ride on toy, when it comes to choosing the best one it may be a bit overwhelming if you don’t know what you’re looking for, so take your time to make sure you’ve found the right one.