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How Much Does It Cost to Build a Go Kart?

Cost to Build Go Kart

Do you want to know how much it cost to build a Go Kart from scratch? If YES, here is an estimated cost breakdown for building a Go Kart.

Simply put, a go-kart business provides indoor racing opportunities for go – kart enthusiasts. These racing opportunities include go – kart rentals, track use, and other race – related activities. Go – kart businesses grant drivers the safe platform to engage in low, medium, or high-speed races on indoor race tracks.

Services include go – kart rental, safety gear rental, custom race options, and by-the-hour track use. This business can be a standalone entity or exist as part of a larger entertainment centre, park, or public attraction. Since go – kart racing can be incredibly dangerous, ideal clients are individuals who abide by location rules and who don’t drive recklessly.

Understandably, go – karting caters to younger crowds. For this reason, family units are great customer types—if only to enhance a younger rider’s safety. Go – kart tracks are more or less found within arcade complexes, so consistent memberships, on average, are more profitable than single – use riders.

A go – kart track profits from ongoing bulk service packages, as they provide consistent services and a constant stream of revenue. Go – kart business owners are expected to take care of insurance plans, kart maintenance, track timing systems, part sourcing, safety gear sourcing, barrier setup, and day-to-day racing governance.

Successful go-kart business owners are also expected to handle finances, marketing, management, and location maintenance. Successful tracks are managed by personnel who are experienced with driver safety, since it is crucial to monitor every race.

To succeed in this business, you have to first develop a firm understanding of driver safety, insurance, and premises maintenance.

Go – karting is incredibly dangerous, and many go – kart businesses must stand strong against legal scrutiny for their sake and for the sake of their customers. Go – kart business owners also need to understand the fundamentals of motor vehicle management, safe driving procedures, mechanics, racing procedures, warehouse operation, and general business planning.

How Do Go Karts Make Money?

A standalone go – kart business generates revenue from either individual rides or monthly memberships. Additionally, successful tracks leverage ongoing payment “packages” to ensure visitors return. Basic go – kart tracks make money from races, but some may charge extra for site – provided safety equipment. Small amenities, like food and drinks, can also help a go – kart track generate money.

However, if a go – kart track is part of a larger complex, it will either be treated as the part complex or as its own entity serving under the complex.

If the latter is true, money is earned after the overarching complex makes revenue. In a go – kart business, clients can be charged, on average, about $5 per ride. Safety gears are rented for between $5 and $10 as their use limits overall track usage.

If you want to make more money, consider offering yearly memberships for between $100 and $200, or you can offer special memberships for quick – access riding. Fortunately, go – kart pricing is incredibly variable. Since you’re dealing with kart depreciation, gasoline, and maintenance as expenses, you needn’t worry too much about each kart’s value compared to its use.

The Cost Of Building A Go Kart In The United States

Go karts can be of many different sizes, shapes, and designs. These vehicles are amenable to any design elements you want to throw into it. However, the size of the go – kart will depend on the age and size of the driver. Always ensure you plan the go – kart accurately and using specific measurements.

If you’re short on cash, visit a scrap yard and see if you can pick up any low – cost parts. Or, you may be able to salvage parts from an old riding lawnmower or a junk go kart found at a yard sale.

Generally speaking, building your own go – kart will cost you around $400 to $860 depending on whether you are going to buy used or brand new parts. Either way, spending $400 to build your own go – kart is an affordable price range for pretty much any type of budget. Here is a quick summary of each part cost, as well as the overall total price.

  1. Go-Kart Frame

Note that the frame functions as the foundation of your go – kart. Almost every other component will interact with the frame in one way or the other. You can choose to buy a new go – kart frame which will cost you about $200.

As these frames are made specifically for go – karts, they will usually also come with the required mounts, brackets and hoops. But if you choose to buy a used frame on craigslist or eBay, you should be able to get them for around $75.  You can also find steel bars and plates if you are on a shoestring budget and weld them together yourself.

Note that this method only really works if you know what you’re doing. If you are relatively new to building go – karts, it is advisable you obtain a used or new go – kart frame.

  • Used Frame: $75
  • New Frame: $200
  1. Steering Kit

Assuming you acquired a go – kart frame with a steering hoop already welded into place, it simply means that you need to account for the cost of tie rods, a steering rack, an adjustable shaft and a steering wheel.

Indeed, you can either get these separately, but it is advisable you obtain a kit that has all the steering components included. For a brand new set, you will be able to get this for around $90, whereas a used set usually goes for about $35. You can find good ones on eBay and Amazon.

  • Used Steering Kit: $35
  • New Steering Kit: $90
  1. Engine

Engines for go – karts come in different specifications. If you’re looking to buy a brand new entry-level go – kart engine, it will cost around $150 upwards. If you are looking for a high performance go – kart engine, they can easily cost around $300 or more.

Entry – level used engines start at about $100. You may find them discounted at scrap dealers or yard sales. Note that you can also use an old lawn mower engine to power your go – kart. Depending on the type of go – kart you are trying to build, you may want to spend a little more for the right engine.

  • Used Engine: $100
  • New Engine: $150
  1. Wheels

These wheels come in variety of shapes, sizes and types. They’re actually relatively inexpensive and you can pick them up for about $15 each brand new ($60 for four). But don’t forget that you will need 4 of them, two for the front and two for the back.

Used go – kart wheels are available on the internet for as low as $25 for a set of four. If you are on a budget, you can get them on eBay or craigslist.

  • Used Wheels: $25
  • New Wheels: $60
  1. Tires

Have it in mind that tire prices vary between brand new go – kart tires and second hand or used go – kart tires. This is because used kart tires often have less profile on them and won’t last as long as new ones.

If you’re building your own kart on a budget, you may not require go – kart racing tires as they are usually more expensive. You can opt for non – racing or off – road tires if they are more affordable. A set of 4 used go – kart tires start around $30, whereas new ones start at around $100 for a set of 4.

  • Used Tires: $30
  • New Tires: $100
  1. Spindles

Note that a pair of go – kart spindles will cost you about $10 on eBay or craigslist. Craigslist had more available than on eBay, but you’re able to get them on either site. However, new ones cost around $25 a pair. Don’t forget to get one for the left side, and the other for the right side.

  • Used Spindles: $15
  • New Spindles: $35
  1. Sprocket

Go – kart sprockets are fairly cheap and you should be able to pick one up a brand new one for about $20 to $30. Used sprockets are around half the price and can be bought online or on Craigslist. Just ensure you understand what sprocket size you are looking for and ensure that the chain matches it. Sometimes, it may be best to get a set that comes with a sprocket and the corresponding chain.

  • Used Sprocket: $12
  • New Sprocket: $20
  1. Chain

If you bought a sprocket without a chain, you will have to get one separately. A brand new chain starts at about $12, whereas a used or second hand chain will cost about $5 to $8. Remember that your chain must fit your sprocket. Getting a go – kart chain that is wrong is size will damage your go – kart.

  • Used Chain: $5
  • New Chain: $15
  1. Brake Kit

A brake kit for a go – kart should consist of a master cylinder, callipers, a fluid reservoir and a brake line hose. You can decide to purchase each component separately, but due to easier compatibility and convenience it is recommended to purchase them in a set. Meanwhile, a set of new brake kit cost around $70. You will probably be able to get a used brake set at about $40 – $50.

  • Used Brake Kit: $40
  • New Brake Kit: $80
  1. Live Axle

Once you decide to buy a brake kit, you also need to get a live axle. There are live axles that also come with brake kit parts. Meanwhile, a live axle on its own will cost about $25 new. If you decide to opt for a second – hand unit, you will be able to get one for about $15. Keep your eyes open for garage sales or used parts sellers.

  • Used Live Axle: $15
  • New Live Axle: $25
  1. Bearings

Axle or wheel bearings are very cheap to buy. Ensure that you get a set of four for your go – kart. If you decide to go for brand new sets, you can expect to pay upwards of $6. However, there are also higher quality bearings that start at about $20 per set of four.

  • Used Bearings: $2
  • New Bearings: $6
  1. Pedals

Also note that used pedals are more or less very easy to purchase and there are a lot of used ones on eBay. They go for as little as $10 a pair. One for the left side (braking pedal) and the other for the right side (gas pedal). A new pair of pedals isn’t much more costly than used ones and you can get a basic set for around $15.

  • Used Pedals: $10
  • New Pedals: $15
  1. Seat

One amazing thing about finding a good seat for your self – made kart is that it doesn’t have to be specifically made for go – karting. It just has to be mountable, and then you can use it to build your go – kart. Nonetheless, used seats go for about $35, which you will probably have to refurbish a little. A new seat will start at about $60 and can all the way up to about $100 for a high – quality one.

  • Used Seat: $35
  • New Seat: $60
  1. Throttle Cable

Have it in mind that there are various lengths of throttle cables that you can use for go – karts. Just make sure your measurements are correct so that you can get the right length. But Irrespective of the length, throttle cables are priced equally. You will be able to pick some up brand new for just about $3 or about $1 used at a garage sale.

  • Used Throttle Cable: $1
  • New Throttle Cable: $4


When it comes to purchasing go – kart parts, there are many options for you. However, note that sourcing parts locally is much cheaper as people usually want to get rid of these parts and you also don’t have to pay for delivery to your doorstep.

Although it will take longer to source parts at a yard sale or scrap dealer, but you will save a couple of dollars. There are other components you need to build your go – kart. These items would include tools, equipment and accessories that will not be calculated into the total price. That’s because these tools can sometimes be found in our garage and you will be able to use them again.