Building the F1TENTH Car

In this build guidelines we are focusing on the hardware setup of our F1TENTH vehicle based on the Traxxas Slash 4x4 Premium Chassis and the NVIDIA Jetson Xavier NX. At the end of this build guidelines, you will have a fully functioning F1TENTH Autonomous Vehicle.

There are three main sections to the car.

[1] will be referred to as the Lower Level Chassis
[2] will be referred to as the Autonomy Elements
[3] will be referred to as the Upper Level Chassis
  1. First, we start off by setting up the Lower Level Chassis , which serves as the foundation of the vehicle.

  2. Then, we put together all of the Autonomy Elements.

  3. Next, all of the Autonomy Elements will be mounted on the Upper Level Chassis.

  4. Finally, the Upper Level Chassis will be connected with the Lower Level Chassis.



The F1TENTH Autonomous Vehicle uses lithium polymer batteries. LiPO batteries allow your car to run for a long time, but they are not something to play with or joke about. They store a large amount of energy in a small space and can damage your car and cause a fire if used improperly. With this in mind, here are some safety tips for using them with the car.

  • When charging batteries, always monitor them and place them in a fireproof bag on a non-flammable surface clear of any other objects.

  • Do not leave a LIPO battery connected to the car when you’re not using it. The battery will discharge and its voltage will drop to a level too low to charge it safely again.

  • Unplug the battery from the car immediately if you notice any popping sounds, bloating of the battery, burning smell, or smoke.

  • Never short the battery leads.

  • Do not plug the battery in backwards. This will damage the VESC and power board (and likely the Jetson as well) and could cause a short circuit.

  • See ​this video for an example of what might happen if you don’t take care of your batteries. Be safe and don’t let these happen to you!

Difficulty Level: Intermediate

Approximate Time Investment: 1.5 hours


If you have any build and/or setup questions, post to the forum.