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List Price: $79.95
Your Price: $71.96
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(Worth 7,196 Funagain Points!)

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Ages Players
6+ 2-8

Designer(s): Jean du Poel

Manufacturer(s): Ferti

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Product Description

The tension mounts. It's just a few moments before the race begins! The drivers are held ready, their concentration is at maximum, their gestures are sure and precise. They are alone in their machines, and will emerge only after three laps at full speed. Finally, the starting signal lights up, and the race is on!

From the outset, you have to weave, jostle, accelerate, slow down, and choose the best trajectories. Only the most skillful will manage to avoid running off the track! Then, you're at the final straightaway. At the finish line is the checkered flag, synonymous with victory. Your hands tremble and become moist. There is no room for error -- victory is at hand for the future champion of PitchCar!

PitchCar is at the same time a game of dexterity and a game of racecars. Superbly manufactured, this wooden game -- made up of 16 portions of circuit: 10 curves and 6 straight lines -- lets you to construct ten different circuits over 12 feet long. Choose one of the 8 cars, build your circuit and flick your finger to propel your racing car. Follow the best trajectories by using the guardrails, but watch out because your opponents are gunning for you. Entertaining and family oriented, PitchCar will enchant players of all ages.

Important note to owners of Carabande: PitchCar is NOT compatible with Carabande. There is a slight difference in track thickness between the two; and contrary to popular belief, the jigsaw-cut ends of the PitchCar track segments which attach one track segment to the next do NOT match with those in Carabande.

Product Information

  • Designer(s): Jean du Poel

  • Manufacturer(s): Ferti

  • Year: 2003

  • Players: 2 - 8

  • Ages: 6 and up

  • Weight: 3,017 grams

  • Language Requirements: Game components are language-independent. Manufacturer's rules are printed in multiple languages (including English).


  • 8 racecars
  • 16 guard rails
  • 6 straightaways
  • 10 curves
  • 1 sticker for the starting line
PitchCar has the following expansions available:
PitchCar: 2 Long Straights
Limited Edition (Temporarily Out of Stock)
PitchCar Extension (Restocking)

Product Reviews


Average Rating: 3.7 in 26 reviews

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Fun for all ages
July 05, 2004

I waited a few months to write a review on this game, because I had purchased it originaly as a game option to play with my extended family at our reunion every 4th of July. When I pulled it out, it definately gathered attention, but most kept away from it at first until one young girl asked how to play. By the time I finished explaining it and showed her how it works, there were 2 guys who wanted to play it as well. After the first game was over, there was people playing the game at all times for the next 5 hours. Everyone loved it, and wanted to know how to get a copy for themselves.

Designing the tracks is incredibly fun itself, and the actual racing is even better. Worth the price and the wait.

by Ynnen
Fun, fast, frantic and fabulous
February 22, 2004

It's a shame that some people have had subpar experience with PitchCar. It happens to be one of the most enjoyable games I own. It's also a rare game that can easily accomodate up to 8 players with minimal downtime.

The interlocking jigsaw track pieces are incredibly well made, and I've had very little trouble with the guard rails. The pieces have held up very well to the constant wear and tear, as we play several games back-to-back a few times each month.

While not the game for an entire night, it is the perfect pre-game warmup as you wait for other players to arrive or cool down after a few people have had to leave early.

There is some strategy, there is a lot of luck, there are times when your pieces fly off the track. But there is more laughter, more congratulations (for shots well made), and more fretting during this game than any other I own.

The tag is a bit pricy, but PitchCar has returned that many times over in the quality of play and the great gaming experience.

More fun than it has any right to be.
January 28, 2004

I've been having more fun with this game than with most of the other 'serious' games in my collection. It's not everyone's cuppa tea: some of the hard core gamers in my group can't seem to flick to save their lives, but most of us just love it as a session opener (hint: don't 'snap' at the puck. Curl your finger back and flick without using your thumb.) The two flat sided pieces from the expansion should be placed together to make the jump. The take-off an landing pieces will have jig-sawed ends, but this does not affect puck movement as far as I can tell.

Most loved game...
September 15, 2003

I have a large collection of games, because I love the variety. One of the things I like best about this variety is the fact that I can almost always find the perfect game for the group Im currently with. But there is one game that I can pull out with any group, any time, anywhere, and its always a smash hit. This game is called Carabande (Goldsieber, 1996 Jean de Poel, recently republished as Pitchcar (Ferti, 2003).

I give Carabande/Pitchcar my highest rating and probably play it more than any other game. Its easy, accessible to all ages, and attractive to look at and play. If you dont have it, I seriously recommend getting it. As a teacher, it is definitely the most popular game I have ever pulled out. Working with youth, I have never had a game asked for more. Adults are constantly asking me where they too can buy a copy of this game. If only all my games where this popular!

So whats the craze all about? The game is extremely simple to explain:

The basic set for each of the releases comes with straight and curved track pieces. These thick wooden pieces connect together like a puzzle to form a race track. This race track can be any size and shape, according to the wants of the players. Each track has a groove in it, where a plastic rail is placed. Each player takes a thick wooden disk of their color. These disks are their cars. Play order is determined by each player flicking their disk along the track. The player who flicks their disk the farthest goes first. On future turns, the player whose car is furthest along the track goes first.

On a turn, a player flicks their car along the track. If their car goes off the track, they lose one turn, and return to the spot they where flicking the car from for their next shot.

If a player knocks off another players car, they must replace the knocked off car and lose a turn, starting back at the spot they shot the car from. If a players car flips over, on their next turn, all they can do is flip their car back to the correct side. The first player to cross the finish line is the winner! The amount of laps is determined before the race by the players. Once players get good, they can use the rails to flick their cars rather far.

Separate action sets are sold for both Carabande and Pitchcar. These sets add jumps, crossings and other strange track pieces. Multiple basic and action sets can be combined to make super large tracks.

Some comments about the games, with comparisons between them

1.) Compatibility: This is a really bad move on Fertis part. Considering that we had been screaming for an expansion to Carabande for a long time, I was stunningly happy to hear it was being remade. I was quite annoyed to find that the two games were not compatable. Pitchcar tracks are thinner and shorter, and do not connect properly with the Carabande tracks. The only way to connect them is to use the jumps from the action set. (or the track sections could be modified, but Im afraid to try that)

2.) Components: Both games have good components. The track pieces are wood, and therefore make the boxes fairly heavy. This does mean, however, that the track pieces are of the utmost quality. The Pitchcar pieces are finished on both sides, while Carabande tracks are only finished on the side the cars actually move on. (Im not sure why that would matter anyway.) The biggest difference in component quality is that of the rails. Carabande rails are much sturdier, and have to be really pushed to snap them into the track sections. They can also be a major pain to take out of the tracks. Pitchcar rails are of a much softer plastic, and pop in and out easily. This means, unfortunately, that they often pop out in the middle of a race. They can be glued in place, but this then makes the game harder to store. The racing car tokens are good for each game, but here we have to give the edge to Pitchcar, which has neater looking colors.

3.) Action sets: Both games are enhanced by their action sets so much, I find it hard to contemplate playing the game without them. The action sets are very different, however, with the Carabande one adding a jump and some strange straight track pieces. The Pitchcar set adds some weird curves, straight pieces, and pieces designed to allow track crossing. I think that a jump is possible with the Pitchcar action set, but its not the easiest thing in the world to set up. Maybe Pitchcar will make a future set for jumps? All I know is that a jump is by far the most popular thing in the game. I like the Carabande action set better, but with price tags ranging around $175, I think you might as well try to pick up the Pitchcar action set.

4.) Rules: One thing I like about the game is that people can easily learn the game in about 1 minute. Its easy to teach and learn, and people walking by the game can stop and join in. Sometimes we alter the rules a little. Our favorite nasty variant allows players to knock off other cars and receive no penalty. An even nastier variant allows a player who does such a thing to take an extra turn.

5.) Fun Factor: This game has a HUGE fun factor. There is some skill involved, with people who can flick better doing much better in the game. But when the person in last place makes an amazing shot, by accident, landing them far ahead on the track, the shouts and yells are immensely fun. When someone misses the jump the fifth time a row, the laughter is hilarious. Everyone who plays the game usually leaves wanting to play more. There is no right time to bring out this game, as it works well almost everywhere, but its the best game for large groups of people, especially at youth groups, schools, military recreation centers, churches, picnics, etc. Everyone loves it!

So I highly recommend this game. I like the Carabande version a little better, but as you need to sell your soul to get it, its probably in your best interests to get the Pitchcar version first. Either way, Id rather have this game than a ping-pong table or a billiards table (although both of those make the perfect table to put this game on). Its portable, and everyone loves it. If I had to get rid of all my games except a couple, Carabande and Pitchcar would be high on the list to keep.

Tom Vasel

by J R
Great fun and requires little time to learn
September 12, 2003

Simply a fun game. Someone brought this a few times to a weekly get together and I finally decided to play it. I wish I had tried it from the start. This is one of those games that's great fun to play and doesn't allow people to get hung up on strategy. Great for a party type atmosphere. I would certainly recommend this to anyone who has the table space required for it (and no fine China anywhere nearby)!

by David
Carabande is the best in its class!
June 11, 2002

Those who describe Carabande here describe it well. Please note those who don't give this game a 4 or 5 star rating do a very good job of pointing out that they don't like the dexterity based mechanics of Carabande or games similar in class. It is a shame they choose to under rate it based on personal taste in game mechanics.

I have a huge collection of games and there is a miriad of different gameplay/mechanics. And at no time would I rate Carabande in comparison to say a Carcassonne, Tikal, Bohnanaza, or Medieval Merchant game system. Carabande is so completely different to those games, it stands to be judged for what it is.

And it is at least a 4 star board game overall because of its replayability, player interaction, player modified board set up, adjustable difficulty, controlled game duration, Easy to add expansions, high quality components and its a real crowd draw.

I can't imagine my collection with out Carabande. After all that thinking you just need to play it.

Addictive Fun!
November 24, 2001

This game never disappoints--it is the most requested game by both my gamer and non-gamer friends, and everyone always has a great time with it! It's a great way to finish off an evening of gaming.

First-time players tend to want to blast their discs around the track as hard as they can, but that's not what this game is about. Sure, there are the occasional long distance beauty shots, which carom gracefully through a series of twists and turns, but overall, finesse is the key to winning.

Like billiards, it's not just your immediate shot that's important, but it's also the position you leave yourself with for your next shot.

To make the game more strategic, we always play in teams (both discs of each color are in play). This puts more discs on the track, making it tougher to get around with indiscriminate 'power flicking'.

Like most activities requiring physical dexterity, there are those who consistently excel, and those who don't. Practice helps, and so does balanced teaming of skilled and unskilled players.

Very highly recommended!

by Jae
Carroms for the Crokinol impaired.
August 07, 2001

First, I must say, while I love this game very much, it is NOT for everyone. My rating reflects my own enjoyment of the game.

While I am not a big fan of most carom games, Carabande has whittled its way into my heart as a delightful racing game. I especially like playing the game with children who show great enthusiasm in the game.

I don't happen to be very good at the game, but I really enjoy lining up shots to go around corners and get good distance, and when my car goes off the track, it's a spectacular crash. I didn't enjoy racing games before playing Carabande, but Carabande provided an excellent segue for me to try other racing games.

All in all, I find Carabande to be a delightful game that requires manual dexterity, and it helps if you know some physics. :) If you do not like dexterity games or racing games, you should probably avoid this game.

Also, with a high price point, you may want to try other 'action and skill' games to see if you like them first. I recommend Elchfest as a 'trial' carom game, as it is inexpensive. Be forewarned though, Elchfest is quite solidly a children's game and shares very little in common with most carom games, especially Carabande which relies on obstacles to redirect your carom to a goal point.

by Matt
Finger-flicking good!
January 04, 2001

When I first played this game at DragonCon I knew I had to have it! It cuts across all barriers to reach the non-gamers as well as die-hards.

Game play is very fast--and the learning curve is also fast, but difficult to master. Excellent play and little downtime with several people.


  1. Plays best with multiple sets. I have 2 plus the action set, which can get expensive.
  2. Requires lots of table space with multiple sets.

Why the 5 stars? Even though expensive, it's worth every penny.

Get rid of speed bumps!
November 16, 2000

Regarding the review below, here's how to make this game 5 stars. Take small stips of paper and fold them over once. This will be just thick enough to raise the board and eliminate the speed bumps. Place the folded strips of paper under the trailing edge of each board. We call this process 'Grooming the course'.

8 Deadly Fingers!
May 13, 2000

This game is amazing! I could play it over and over again. It's suited for anyone, young and old, gamer and non-gamer. The highest quality of game pieces ever, and the game looks so smooth when it's set up. I can't see how anyone can bash this game. Even people who are uncoordinated will enjoy this game. The fact that the board can be rearranged gives it unlimited replay. If you get this, the action set is a must by giving players more peices to work with and a jump! Good show, Goldsieber!

Quick... Simple... and Highly Addictive
December 26, 1999

I just had the opportunity to play Carabande over the Christmas break and now I can't wait to play again! Since there's little reason to review the rules here, let me just say that if you are interested in a fast-paced, group-oriented game, this one should be a no-brainer!

Essential dexterity game
January 11, 1999

The picture on the cover shows a funky wooden track with guard rails around one edge. Toss in some polished wooden disks, and you have a pretty appetizing package.

Inside, you find out that the track is composed of nicely done wooden sections coated with an MDF coating. (This is often used on Carrom boards as it has very little friction.) The pieces also allow you to design the track however you choose.

The game is extremely simple. On your turn, you flick your disc. Object is to be the first to finish 3 laps. If you knock yourself, or another player off the track, you reset the pieces and end your turn. If you manage to knock your piece upside down, you spend your next turn flipping it over.

Those are pretty much the rules. The skill required to play the game becomes much more apparent as you start playing. Each of those track sections only has a guard rail on ONE side. The other side is left open. In order to pass your opponents, you will often have to bank off the rails, other pieces-in a manner more familiar to people who have played bumper pool.

If you pick up Carabande, go the extra step and buy at least one Action Set. This adds a few more track pieces (including two straights with narrowing guard rails) and a jump ramp. The extra track offers a lot more flexibility to your layouts.

The response I've gotten from introducing this game to various gaming groups has been very enthusiastic. We get mixed games with anyone from young children to die-hard wargamers in a game together. And a good number of people I know have had to go out and buy copies for themselves.

(Side note: Since all of my friends own a set, we have constructed some large tracks. Take a look at a jumbo track we put together for a birthday party.)

What a GREAT game!
January 10, 2005
This reminds me of the types of games we used to make up with objects around the house when we were young. All you do, is flick a wooden piece around the board as if it were a race car. There is even strategy since you have to decide how hard to flick the piece. The only reason this is not a 5 is because it is too expensive for me to buy. If you are rich, then disregard my 4 stars and assume this is actually a 5 star game.
Note: this review refers to a different release of this product.
by Sean
Okay, it is not Carabande?
June 27, 2004

Though I have heard of and wanted Carabande, I never have actually played a set before. I was happy, though, to try Pitchcar despite the feeling that it might not be up to its predecessor.

The game is simple (you flick your car around a track) and is a fun play. Games with a small number of players are short and full of big shots. Games with a large group take longer but are more strategic as you try to separate yourself from the pack. There is also plenty of joy in trying to set up a new, challenging track for the race. The Expansion Set adds several cool options to this like a jump, a figure 8, and smaller paths. This is a game that is simpler than Crokinole or Subbuteo but as fun as either of those famous flickers.

My set (which included the Expansion Set) came is quite good condition. The pieces, which are lovely, were in good shape. I did need to sand two of the pieces to make their connections a better fit. There was a worry that the Pitchar pieces were not a very consistant width and this caused bumps in the road (which WOULD be very disruptive to the play). I did not notice this but do use index cards to slide under my track pieces to level out the racing surface. I believe most of my need for leveling was due to the tables I have been playing on.

The talk about the plastic guard rails that fit into the tracks is an issue. There is no question that the rails 'pop-out' during the play. While they are easily replaced, the process can be annoying. I have decided to not glue my rails, as others have suggested, because I suspect that, with the rails firmly glued, the more solid rails would become stiff walls that would allow all types of crazy shots. I enjoy that a very heavy shot into a rail might cause the rail to give way.

The high cost of the game should give you pause but the money is in the box. These are high quality pieces that create a simple game for the whole family.

Not so smooth, but still fun.
November 15, 2000

I think everyone here got the idea of the game across pretty clearly--'flick your piece good' sums it up nicely--and I think that most people can judge whether or not the concept appeals to them. Me, I like it. It's a great party game, has broad appeal, and is pretty much the only game I've bought here that's actually fun to play on one's own, much like darts. But perhaps I am just easily amused.

Two caveats, though, that prevent me from giving this five stars:

  1. As of this writing, the Action Set is out of print. Without it, the racetrack is fun, but not exactly thrilling. Given the sales of this game and its recent GAMES Magazine endorsement, hopefully this will change soon.
  2. Although the boards themselves are quite smooth, the jigsaw-ish connections between them are not perfect, and 'speed bumps' occasionally pop up around the board that send racing discs flying off the board or flipping over through little fault of their own.

This annoyed me at first, but you get used to the bumps and incorporate them into your strategy. And they do tend to reward finesse and skill, which makes them seem less arbitrary. Ultimately, bumps aside, this game is a good time for all, and when someone makes a great shot that caroms and skitters halfway around the track, it's as impressive as a trick pool shot.

Expensive but fun.
May 16, 2005
This game is a lot of fun to play once in a while. I would have given it 4 stars except that it is so expensive and you can play similar games with several quarters and making up your own obstacle course. The biggest problem I find with this game is that you don't want to wait for the others to flick their car. If only there was a way to have constant action! If you have the money though, this is a great game to play with kids because they can win pretty often and they get really excited about playing it.
...because it's fun!
February 12, 2004

Some games you like because they give you a good mental workout. Some because you take the time and effort to create something. Others are just about making trouble for everyone else at the table. Pitchcars you play because it's just plain FUN! It's the kind of game where everyone just has a big smile on their face as they play and people are up and moving about the table. It's not about strategy or endurance or resource management. Those are other race games. Nevertheless, Pitchcars is a hoot and should be treated as a medium weight experience done for the fun of it.

Rail problem ruins it.
February 08, 2004

The problem with the rails described earlier ruins the game. You simply never know when the rail is going to fall off and cause you to crash. That combined with the fact that the track pieces never match up and also cause random crashes makes this a game of luck rather than dexterity. And, by the way, if you glue the rails onto the track, you have no chance of everything fitting back into the box.

PitchCar isn't quite Carabande, alas
December 30, 2003

I own Carabande, love it, and rank it at 5 stars. The track usually requires a bunch of 'grooming', a trick I learned from reviews here: put little cut squares of notecard under whichever corners of track pieces needed to smooth out the joins. That just takes a minute or so with everyone helping -- once we're done the game flies on by!

I acquired PitchCar because I wanted a jump, and the Carabande expansion was beyond my reach. However I then learned the following unfortunate differences:

-PitchCar's rail grooves are shallower, as a result of which one must either glue the rails in, or suffer them popping out many times per game. With the rails glued in permanently it will not fit in its box. Carabande does not have this problem.

-PitchCar's expansion set doesn't have a jump! It features an intersection instead.

-PitchCar does not include an extra disc for use as a spacer, nor a special pad for recording lap standings, both of which Carabande has.

So, I am back to watching for an opportunity to get the Carabande expansion set.

(Note to readers: reviews for 'PitchCar' from 6/12/03 and earlier refer to Carabande, not PitchCar.)

If Joey jumped off a bridge, would you do it too?
July 30, 2001

Not everyone likes every type of game. I read the reviews for [page scan/se=0030/sf=category/fi=stockall.asc/ml=20]Carabande and thought I'd like it since everyone else did--it sounded like the kind of game everyone would like. I didn't clue in to the descriptions of the game as Caroms on steroids. If I had, I would have realized that from the very beginning I probably wouldn't like this game.

You see, no matter what you do to Caroms, I still dislike it immensely. I don't like finger flicking games. I am not particularily good or bad at them, I just dislike them. That's not to say this game isn't well done. The components are well made and look great, and some people seem to realy like this game. But all it is is a disk-flicking game. If you don't like games like that, you aren't going to magically like this one.

The rating seems low, but I think I'd better post this review so that anyone who feels the way I do about flicking games can save themselves $45. For the rest of you, I'm glad you enjoy it. No hard feelings. =)

by Aaron A
Only for kids or the inebriated...
May 12, 2000

I really wanted to enjoy this game, along with the extra action set. However it didn't happen.

The strategy was minimal (flick your piece good). Myself and my friend felt like idiots playing this game. This coming from a gamer who as long as a game is any good has no problems making a fool of himself. The only reason I gave it 2 stars is because I can see young children and people having a lot to drink thoroughly enjoying themsleves. In fact those 2 groups would probably rate the game a 5, however since I have neither in my household I must confess my disappointment.

I must say in defense of the game though that the quality of the game components are top notch.

Maybe I'm missing something here. If someone could let me know what makes this game so highly rated I would appreciate it. If not, I'm going to give it to a family with 3 boys in my congregation. Thank you.

by Roy L.
Not Much for the Price
June 07, 2004

Not much new to say here: I concur with other reviewers. There's very little game here, so what you are presumably paying for is the components, but these fit together poorly and are far less substantial than the weight of the box (it will crush your other games) or the steep price suggests. Worth owning if you have kids who don't have the patience for a real game and just want to knock things around on the table on a rainy day (even then there are better alternatives), but should be avoided if you are looking for more.

Poor Quality Ruins Experience
February 14, 2004

This had a chance of being a fun little game, but unfortunately defective pieces got in the way. One of the corner track pieces is not cut properly so it will not join--which further limits available track options. In addition, the rails won't stay attached and there is a lot of down time during the game reattaching the rails. If this were a $20 game perhaps I could forgive the junky construction, but at this price I say spend the money on something else.

What's the point?
February 05, 2004

If you look up 'lame' in the dictionary, there is a picture of a little black disk with a car printed on it.

This game is a waste of time and money. I suggest [page scan/se=1177/sf=category/fi=stockin.asc/ml=10]Crokinole if you want a fun, flick-the-disk game.

If you want a race-car game, Formula De kicks butt.

In PitchCar, the rails kept slipping off and it seemed like too much luck given the changing shape of the track each game. I couldn't wait for it to end.

Non Compatibility?? What a joke!
September 14, 2003

I was VERY excited as I heard that a new edition of Carabande was coming out. Carabande is a great game and is always a great crowd pleaser. Having two original main sets and two action sets, I was looking to add at least one more of each set so I could make some massive tracks like I get to play at the local gaming conventions on occasion. My anticipation level was quite high! Imagine my disappointment then when I see the new listing here at Funagain while reading the last line in the description:

Important note to owners of Carabande: PitchCar is NOT compatible with Carabande. There is a slight difference in track thickness between the two; and contrary to popular belief, the jigsaw-cut ends of the PitchCar track segments which attach one track segment to the next do NOT match with those in Carabande.

I sat there is total disbelief. WHOSE brilliant idea was that??? I'm sure there is some 'official' reason for why they aren't compatible, probably something like 'we couldnt get the same thickness stock for the tracks' or ' that material isnt available anymore.' Ok. Fine. I could have dealt with a slight difference in track heights even. A few shims here and there and it would have worked out fine.

But then I saw that 2nd part of the non-compatibilty sentence... THE SAW CUTS ARE DIFFERENT TOO! That is simply a blatent disregard for previous customers. I assumed it was a new manufacturer who didnt want to 'dilute' his market for the game, but it sure looks like the same one to me! (Goldsieber/Ferti for Carabande, Ferti for Pitch Car). Quite simply it looks like a cheesy marketing tactic to wring every dollar they can from the public. 'OOOHHH you cant use your OLD stuff with this here, so just toss that away and buy all this new stuff!' What a slap in the face!! Even more insulting is the lack of wedges in the new action set to make the jump - you have to provide you own!

Quite frankly, I wont buy the new set now and will be sure not to promote it friends and family. They most likely WOULD have bought a set or two as well so all of us could combine our sets together. They know a single set is pretty unexciting, so are unlikely to buy the new stuff knowing they'd have to buy 2 master sets and two expansions to just EQUAL what they have access to already in my sets. Ultimately, I think this was a huge mistake.

Oh and another thing...What is with the very lame track pieces in the expansion?? Compare to the old set to see what I mean!

If you dont have Carabande, you have no choice if you want to have a copy of this game. However, Carabande owners have NO reason to consider it. This is a TOTAL DISAPPOINTMENT from a marketing standpoint.

Other Resources for PitchCar:

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