10 Best Wooden Toy Cars for Kids (2021)
Wooden toy cars are a classic, and every child should have one. They foster creativity, dramatic play, and allow children to pretend without lights, sounds, songs, or talking interrupting.
Wooden toy cars provide quality playtime for children, and we’ve got a list that’s perfect for you. These toy cars offer all the benefits of a handmade, gorgeous wooden toy along with safe features and durability. We’ve also answered some questions you may have about the world of wooden toy cars. Let’s take a look.
- The Best Wooden Toy Cars – The List
- Best for Infants – Hape Minivan Wooden Toy
- Great for Toddler Gifts – Melissa and Doug Car Carrier
- Best For Multiple Children – EverEarth Jr Ramp Racer
- Excellent for Older Children – Candie Lab Woodie Car
- Perfect to Entertain Older Kids – Roseart Speedway Racer Cars
- Good For Non-Battery Powered Action – Imagine Generation Pull Back Toys 3-Pack
- Top Pick For Motor Skills – Kidzzy Toys Stacking Cars and Garage
- Great Stem Activity – Pica Toys Wooden Solar Car
- Cool Mix and Match Set – Mindware Babu Collection
- Good For Collection Building – Melissa and Doug Wooden Vehicles and Traffic Signs
- Why Wooden Toys?
- Wooden toys inspire learning
- Wooden Toys Are Often Safer
- Wooden Toys Are Environmentally Friendly
- Wooden Toys Are Cheaper
- How To Choose Wooden Toys
- How Old Is Your Child?
- How Many Children Are There?
- What’s Your Budget?
- Investing in Wooden Car Toys
The Best Wooden Toy Cars – The List
These wooden toy cars are beautifully made and offer your child the chance for flexible dramatic play while satisfying the love all children have of moving vehicles. Let’s take a look.
Best for Infants – Hape Minivan Wooden Toy
This basic wooden toy car is perfect for infants and toddlers in your life. It’s large enough for little hands to grip comfortably and allows children to practice simple motions like pushing and pulling. There are no small pieces that could become choking hazards, and bright colors are engaging.
Hape uses only nontoxic paints and materials for their toys so that you won’t worry about your child exploring and playing. Hape’s cars are solid wood and sourced exclusively from sustainable and ethical suppliers, and each vehicle is designed to last for a long time.
- Ethically sourced solid wood
- Nontoxic paints
- No choking pieces
- Too simple for older children
- The finish isn’t durable on some of the cars
Great for Toddler Gifts – Melissa and Doug Car Carrier
For something more involved, the Melissa and Doug car carrier is a wooden truck that comes with four simple wooden cars in fun colors to load onto the back to move around. It includes fun details like a double-decker trailer and slots to help the cars stay in place while on the move.
Melissa and Doug also use only non-toxic paints and ethically sourced materials. These safe materials provide not only durability but allow these toys to age beautifully as your child continues to play with them.
- Includes five different pieces
- All non-toxic, durable materials
- Suitable for gifts or play with multiple children
- The deck doesn’t always slide easily
- Cars are still prone to falling off with enthusiastic play
Best For Multiple Children – EverEarth Jr Ramp Racer
For a fun setup, the ramp racer allows multiple children to get in on the action. The toy comes with a multideck ramp that shoots cars down and four wooden cars designed to fit just right. The materials are durable and non-toxic, so you don’t have to worry about your child playing.
The cars are designed to roll in any direction, allowing them to roll forward and backward down the ramp without interruption. They’re a little bit smaller but should still work well for younger children.
- Cars roll forward and backward
- Includes ramp and four toy cars
- Compact footprint doesn’t take up much space
- Not suitable for babies – potential choking hazard with wheels
- The sides of the track could pinch little fingers
Excellent for Older Children – Candie Lab Woodie Car
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If your child is past the toddler phase and you’re ready for a wooden car upgrade, it’s time for a Woodie car. This delightfully vintage wooden car gives your children something a little more special to play with. It uses safe, non-toxic materials for paint and decorations and includes little details like a wooden surfboard mounted to the top.
It uses a minimalist design and measures seven inches long, making it a nice upgrade from the minimalist toddler cars. Wheels are ABS plastic, and the finish will wear nicely as your child plays.
- Beautiful details including a surfboard
- Suitable for older children
- Makes a great gift
- More expensive than some wooden car sets
- Includes plastic and metal components on the wheels
Perfect to Entertain Older Kids – Roseart Speedway Racer Cars
Wooden cars can be excellent for kids who need something to create. This wooden car kit includes an unfinished car and the paints that allow the kids to make the cars their own. The kit comes with two cars and two sets of paint and brushes, plus stickers to add little details.
Older children should be able to decorate and put the car together themselves, but younger elementary children may need some supervision. The set provides all the materials you need in one place and is excellent for gifts.
- Provides older children with a fun project
- Includes everything you need for two cars
- Suitable for younger children with supervision
- Paints can be messy
- Stickers can eventually fall off
Good For Non-Battery Powered Action – Imagine Generation Pull Back Toys 3-Pack
Imagine Generation’s pull-back toys are a fun option for kids. A spring on the wheels allows kids to build up resistance by pulling the cars back on a flat surface. When the child lets go, it shoots forward. The design is a vintage speed racer in three different colors.
The cars are made of safe, non-toxic paints and simple wood. There aren’t any tiny pieces, but the racers are suitable for ages three and up. They can help with coordination and problem-solving. Plus, they make great social toys.
- Fun, pull-back action
- Three pack is good for multiple children
- Easy to use and never needs batteries
- Springs can break eventually
- Includes rubber tires (might be a dealbreaker if you want all wood)
Top Pick For Motor Skills – Kidzzy Toys Stacking Cars and Garage
Kidzzy Toys is a set of cars and matching garage blocks. Each one nestles into the other or stacks, allowing children to pretend and play. There are five different types of common cars, including a school bus, police car, and fire truck.
It’s compatible with a variety of wooden tracks and can help children build little playscapes for imagination. The paints are safe, and the cars themselves are durable. However, the garages are a little thin for toddler play, so you may want to save these for three and up.
- Multiple stacking configurations make play fun
- The cars are easily recognizable for children
- Multiple options for children to manipulate
- Garage pieces are thin and may crush under enthusiastic play
- Some wheels may come off
Great Stem Activity – Pica Toys Wooden Solar Car
For something a little more involved, this wooden car has components for a solar-powered engine. This kit includes everything an older child needs to put together a science experiment about solar power.
It’s a Scholastic approved educational kit for kids ages six and over. With detailed instructions, even beginners are able to put the kit together and power the car. The remote control is sensitive enough to perform well but easy for small fingers.
- Excellent stem activity
- Nontoxic wood parts
- The kit is suitable for beginners
- Requires adult supervision
- Electronic pieces aren’t suitable for young children
Cool Mix and Match Set – Mindware Babu Collection
The Mindware Babu collection is a simple set of toys that allows children to build little vehicles of their own. The set includes pieces that can be stacked together to form vehicles on top of wooden bases. Children can mix the pieces together to create new vehicles each time.
The pieces are painted with safe, non-toxic paints and use sustainable, single pieces of wood for safe play. They’re durable and large enough to play safely without causing a choking hazard. There’s enough variety that the children can be creative about their car designs.
- Mix and match pieces allow kids to imagine and play
- Safe wood and non-toxic paints
- Includes enough bases that multiple children can play
- Different pieces may get lost
- Pieces don’t stick together which may cause some frustration
Good For Collection Building – Melissa and Doug Wooden Vehicles and Traffic Signs
This wooden toy collection with accessories makes a great gift to help kids build up their wooden toy collections. It uses safe paints and whole woods for the vehicles, and the accessories mimic real-life signs.
The pieces are perfect for adding to a collection of real wooden toys and the pieces store in a simple wooden box so you can keep up with everything. It’s also scaled to fit most standard wooden tracks.
- Compatible with standard wooden train track sets
- Perfect for helping build collections
- Multiple components for social play
- A storage box may be too small for your child to fit pieces properly
- Some of the pieces are somewhat fragile
Why Wooden Toys?
There are quite a few reasons to bring wooden toys into your child’s life. Let’s take a look at a few of the most important ones.
Wooden toys inspire learning
Wooden toys inspire imaginative play because they are self-directed. There are no batteries, sounds, or voices that direct children to play in a certain way. Instead, the silent toys give children time and space for dramatic play.
In dramatic play, children use their imaginations. This is a vital part of learning about the world. Children can try on different roles and practice critical social skills using these toys. Imaginative play is vital for a child’s cognitive development.
Children can also refine their gross and fine motor skills through the use of toys without the interference of electronics. Plus, sets of wooden toys can be useful for a child’s early math and problem-solving skills.
Wooden Toys Are Often Safer
Wooden toys are more environmentally friendly than plastic, provided they’re made from sustainable materials. Wooden toys don’t degrade as fast as plastic, and you aren’t in danger of toxic materials like BPA.
Children put everything in their mouths, so do your research about the paints and decorations. However, wooden toys are less likely to crack or shatter as well, especially when faced with the enthusiastic play of toddlers.
Wooden Toys Are Environmentally Friendly
Many sustainably sourced wooden toys use materials that have a smaller environmental footprint. The manufacturing of plastics takes a significant toll on the environment. Wooden toys instead are safer and easier overall.
Wooden toys last longer as well, so you can pass them down to successive children or even grandchildren. This ability reduces the amount of toys children use and then discard, also easing the footprint of the earth.
Wooden Toys Are Cheaper
While the wooden toys are more expensive sometimes upfront, they last longer. Investing in wooden toys reduces the cost over the long term view. If you consider how quickly your child can break plastic toys, the cost of wooden toys becomes readily apparent after a quick cost assessment.
Wooden toys can last for decades, but that’s not the only thing. Wooden toys also have a timeless quality. Whether the toy is just a few months old or a few decades, it often still looks current and interesting. And unlike toys with batteries, lights, or sounds, there’s nothing to fail.
How To Choose Wooden Toys
When you’re deciding on a wooden toy, you should consider a few angles before you’re choosing. Ask yourself a few questions.
How Old Is Your Child?
If you have a baby or toddler, a simple wooden toy with no removable parts is a good option. Bigger cars with holes or curved edges allow little fingers to grip them comfortably and practice grasping plus other fine motor skills.
Older children can have more complex toys or ones that they can design and decorate. These wooden kits give them not just a chance for dynamic play, but also a creative outlet suitable for relieving stress.
How Many Children Are There?
If you have several children who want to play, sets of toys can provide multiple children with the chance to play. These sets offer multiple avenues for children to practice both imaginative, dramatic play, and social skills.
Bigger sets — such as ramps or garages — give children the chance to play from multiple angles, so everyone can get a turn. And with four or more cars included in sets, plus bright and distinct colors, allow children to play and learn to share.
What’s Your Budget?
Wooden toys are a more significant upfront investment overall, but there are ways to find affordable options. The size of your budget is a determining factor, however.
If you’re on a tight budget, consider the lifespan of wooden toys. Once you’ve made the purchase, you won’t have to replace that wooden toy for a long time.
Look for sets with lots of additional kits and pieces that allow you to add on overtime. Melissa and Doug, for example, makes compatible sets with mix and match pieces. You can add to the sets over time.
Investing in Wooden Car Toys
Wooden toys are a beautiful addition to your child’s toy collection. Wooden toys are not only durable and safe, but they help your child build vital skills in both cognitive and social areas. They encourage these skills through imaginative, dramatic play that provides children with creative ways to express themselves and try on different roles.
Compared to plastic, the wooden toys may seem more expensive at first, but they do stand up better to enthusiastic play. Over the long run, plastic toys break down easier so you’ll end up spending more money, in the long run, in replacing them.
Once you’ve begun to switch to wooden toys, you’ll realize the power they have for helping children build expressive lives with plenty of chances to imagine and dream. Do yourself and your child a favor and start building their collection of wooden toy cars.