Hot Wheels: Battle Force 5



Lots of action but no injuries in toy-based cartoon.

What parents need to know

Educational value

There are a few lessons about things like teamwork, but the show's intent isn't to educate.

Positive messages

Teamwork is critical -- the members of the Battle Force 5 squad must work together to save the world from alien invaders. They each have specialized abilities and can't succeed unless they function effectively as a team. That said, violence ends up being the main form of conflict resolution.

Positive role models

Team leader Wheeler is daring and brave, but he also has a long-running feud with the local sheriff, who's always trying to catch Wheeler breaking the law. Wheeler likes to drive, usually fast, but he's careful to confine his fastest driving to the local salt flats (where there's no speed limit) and the inter-dimensional battle zones, where the sheriff can’t go.

Violence & scariness

Lots of fighting, including martial arts brawls, sword fights, and blaster fire. But most of the action involves high-speed car chases involving ultra-high-tech vehicles that have their own weapons systems. Expect plenty of car crashes -- but like most cartoons, injuries are extremely rare.

Sexy stuff
Not applicable

Some trash talking, but nothing more serious than “Hey, Roachboy!”


The entire series is based on the classic line of Hot Wheels toy cars -- and you can expect plenty of new, show-inspired merchandise, too.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this animated series inspired by Hot Wheels toys has plenty of high-speed automotive action and cartoon violence. The Battle Force 5 team's ultra-high-tech cars have computerized weapons systems -- which come in handy when they visit other dimensions to do battle with aliens. Expect plenty of racing scenes and car-to-car combat, as well as standard fistfights and other forms of cartoon clashes -- but no blood or injuries. There’s some mild trash-talking, but no swearing. And because the series stems from a line of toys, expect young fans to clamor for merchandise tie-ins.

What's the story?

Racing across the salt flats, expert driver Vert Wheeler (voiced by Mark Hildreth) comes upon a mysterious storm that transports him to another dimension, where he rescues the powerful Sage (Kira Tozer) from a band of dangerous aliens. Sage explains that the violent creatures are trying to conquer the universe and have set their sights on Earth. Once she helps Wheeler return home, Sage transforms his car into an ultra-high-tech wonder complete with computers, sensors, and weapons. After recruiting the rest of the Battle Force 5 team, Sage gives them all incredible vehicles -- and the dangerous task of protecting the planet from the inter-dimensional invaders.

Is it any good?


For a series based on a line of toys, HOT WHEELS: BATTLE FORCE 5 does a decent job of coming up with an actual story unrelated to the original products. Sure, the inter-dimensional conflict is pretty unbelievable, but so are most animated series aimed at young kids, and the plot offers plenty of potential for high-stakes auto action with no actual violence or danger. The team teleports through the portal, accomplishes the mission du jour, and then zaps back home in time for a round of burgers at the local malt shop.

The show also deserves some credit for promoting teamwork and cooperation. The Battle Force 5 team is comprised of five cars and six drivers (one has a two-man crew), all with their own specialties and abilities. Yes, that will make it easier to market five different car products, but the storylines also take pains to show how the group must work together to defeat the villains. The show doesn’t really stand apart from some Saturday morning cartoon classics, but it doesn’t sink to the bottom of the pile, either.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the show's violence. Does it have less impact because it's animated? Can you think of other ways the characters could solve their problems?

  • Why do you think networks make shows based on toys? Do you think some toys are better suited to TV shows than others?

  • Will this show appeal to people who don’t like Hot Wheels cars? Does watching this show make you want to get the toys?

  • What do you think about Wheeler’s driving habits? Is he a good driver? Is he a safe driver? Do you think it’s OK for him to drive so fast?

This review of Hot Wheels: Battle Force 5 was written by

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are conducted by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.


Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

Find out more

Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

Find out more

About our buy links

When you use our links to make a purchase, Common Sense Media earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes. As a nonprofit organization, these funds help us continue providing independent, ad-free services for educators, families, and kids while the price you pay remains the same. Thank you for your support.
Read more

See more about how we rate and review.

About Our Rating System

The age displayed for each title is the minimum one for which it's developmentally appropriate. We recently updated all of our reviews to show only this age, rather than the multi-color "slider." Get more information about our ratings.

Great handpicked alternatives

What parents and kids say

See all user reviews

Share your thoughts with other parents and kids Write a user review

A safe community is important to us. Please observe our guidelines

Parent of a 4 year old Written byshoe22 April 12, 2011

Too violent for my Little Man

If I had known how violent it was, I would never have gotten it from Netflix for my four-year-old. He received a couple of Battle Force 5 toys in McDonalds Hapy Meals, and has been wanting to see the show. One episode in particular, "My Man Zug," shows an alien robot tearing other alien robots' heads off and drilling through their torsos with his drill-bit hand. My son chooses not to watch one or two of the episodes because, he says, "All they do is lots of fighting." Had I watched it by myself the first time instead of with him, I would have waited until he was a few years older.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Kid, 9 years old October 28, 2013

It's ok

I used to love this show And I'm a girl it was a good show it was a little bit violent I'm not a fan of it no more
What other families should know
Great messages
Too much violence
Too much swearing
Too much consumerism
Teen, 14 years old Written bycarano September 28, 2012

hot wheels bf 5

this cartoon is amasign. it shows you can do everything with team work
What other families should know
Educational value
Great messages
Great role models


Did our review help you make an informed decision about this product?
Thanks – we appreciate your feedback!

Star Wars Guide