Tony Kart vs CRG Advice

I would like to get some opinions on upgrading the frame on my current X30 kart which I have been driving for a couple of years, to either a Tony Kart 401R or a CRG KT2. I have seen some other posts here mentioning local support as being the main deciding point, however in my case local support is limited for both brands (and most of the brands I’m interested in for that matter). That means test driving a frame is also difficult, since I will be limited to trying out other driver’s karts, none of whom I’m comfortable with asking. Results in races also seem to be pretty even between the two.

Given that everything seems even between the two karts, I’m pretty undecided which to go with. Has any one ever switched from one frame to another and has some opinions?

I’ve never driven Tony kart, but I drive a KT2. Tony karts always seem to have the edge over CRG.

I do love the CRG though, if you’re as shallow as me it looks better hahaha

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I’m an OTK guy through and through, so that would be my recommendation, but I’m basing on that results and experience. The CRG seems to suit gearbox classes better, whereas the OTK stuff seems to work well on all classes, but especially seems suited to the X30 or similar engine packages.

Both are good karts in the end.

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Well the first big question is going to be where are you from. Since you mention local support not being super strong for either chassis where you are, what brands are supported in the area?

Regarding CRG versus OTK, I’ve run both chassis (CRG under the DR brand) in the past year. The DR/CRG will, generally, require more setup adjustments to get fast, and will likely need more changes when going to a new track. An OTK product is generally good starting at the baseline setup. With small changes for driver preference it’ll be fast right away.

TJ is correct that CRG tends to have more success in the Shifter categories, but I’ve seen drivers run up front in single speed classes as well on the CRG equipment. It just takes a bit more tuning knowledge and tricks to get working.

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I’d take into consideration what sort of spares you already have on hand, and whether they’ll be compatible with the brands you’re considering switching to. Biggest issue with CRG is the wheels and hubs are different than what most others use. The front wheel/hub bolt pattern on the CRG is the most obvious difference, but I also have some CRG real hubs that don’t fit any of my Freeline or OTK rims, as the bolt pattern is just slightly larger.

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Granted it’s been some time since I switched, but the narrow waist design of CRG certainly feels different to an OTK, but both worked well for me.

That said, take some time to ponder how much support you might need to get the most out of your own performance.

A locally supported brand may in fact be the best for you, even if you are seeing CRG and Tony at the front of the field… that doesn’t mean it’s necessarily going to get the best results for YOU.

If you go with CRG, worth considering swapping the hubs out for ones with “conventional” spacing.

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Thanks for all the replies, they have been of great help. Locally the biggest supplier is BRM, however from my impression the supplier isn’t very reliable and I don’t think I’ll get much support from them. They also run their own team which I don’t plan on joining, and I find it hard to believe that I will be able to tune the chassis better than the supplier themselves, given their experience and direct communication with the factory, so I was thinking that I’ll have better chances if I branch out with something different?

From my research, the CRG has the Sniper system going for it, as well as the adjustable wheelbase (not to mention that it looks better in my opinion, although that is not the most important factor for me of course). However as suggested, the OTK seems to have much better success worldwide with TAG classes, and online tuning help is much easier to find which might be helpful given the lack of local support. From what I’ve heard locally, the CRG tends to struggle when the track becomes very grippy on a race weekend, while the Tony Kart excels in these conditions; not sure if anyone else has observed this happening.

I will be tuning the kart myself as I have been doing for the last couple of years, so a wide tuning window is preferable over a chassis that is fast only with a particular setup (such as my current chassis). Seems like the Tony Kart is the better option for this? Other important aspects for me are the brake feel, although I understand that this can vary from person to person, as well as chassis longevity.

The OTK definitely has a wide tuning window, one of its main benefits.

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I’m switching from OTK to CRG this year - didn’t like the “Cadillac” feel of a Tony Kart and wanted something sharper and twitchier. I liked the 15-year-old CRG Kali I drove at the last two races last year, so with any luck the brand new one will be as good!

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That’s interesting, I always assumed that a Tony Kart would be sharp and responsive to inputs. My current kart (CRG from the same age) is very similar to the CRG you described, however a couple of years ago I drove a slightly more modern CRG and it had what I would also describe as a cadillac feel. Whereas in my kart I feel every little vibration and is very direct, this kart felt very numb, required more inputs and I didn’t particularly enjoy it. I always put this down to setup, however from your experience the OTK is less pointy and a bit more numb/comfortable than other frames?

The OTK stuff has more caster than many karts and it’s almost universally agreed that it has a heavy front end feel with lots of front grip in comparison.

Charles is the only person who I’ve heard say the front end wasn’t pointy enough. What kart did you drive Charles?

The newer CRG models, in my experience with the all 30mm model at least, have a very slow front end. I struggled with getting the kart to enter the corner well. What model CRG did you drive?

If you don’t absolutely nail the setup, the kart will either enter the corner well, but be really bound up on exit, or it’ll have a strong push on entry but stay free on the exit.

The Tony Kart had a lot more front end responsiveness and was able to stay free on exit, even on just a baseline setup. If I didn’t have a lot of tuning support in my local area, I’d definitely go with the OTK over the CRG personally.

You can’t really go too wrong with an OTK in the TAG classes.

This is coming from someone who has spent 25 years in an Arrow chassis, but the user friendliness of an OTK seems to suit most drivers.

CRG are a good product, but you don’t want to waste too much time finding your ideal setup compared to a stock standard OTK setup should have you in the window.

I had a 2016 TonyKart Racer 401 and drove a 2005 CRG Kali 32 in the last two races last fall.