Out of the box its pretty good on carpet. The only suspension tuning you might consider is the 2.5 degree toe in. The 6 degree caster might help depending on your driving style.
ESC: Well it sounds like you don't need reverse so this should open the field more. Any small esc for 1/10th would work including some of the LRP, KO-Propo, and Futuba lines (even Novaks higher end). There is only one forward micro size esc meant for minis other than those from a company called IPD (http://www.ipdracing.com
), the r18. The Novak Spy is vastly overrated as many racers here will attest to.
Motor: Well your first official upgrade will be (when you buy the kit) a 300 size aluminum motor mount. Even if you stick with 180 size motor, at least having this will help keep the motor cooler as there is no airflow. I have had great luck on a 1/10th carpet (ozite) with just a plain jane 6v speed 300 (really 370 size motors). You can get tuned 300s that are faster, but wont last as long. The higher end 280's (MiniT size) are another choice. Someone keeps giving high praise to the ponies the Trinity Monster "Wild" version. The say its more powerful than the 300.
On the other hand, you could bypass both of these and get a Mamba 54 brushless setup. But this will be a larger initial investment. In the long run it would be cheaper as you wont have to worry about the motor wearing out as easily. Then though you face the pondering question if the class ever got big enough at your track, would they illegalize brushless?
Servo: 90% of the racers use the Hitec 81 series. In fact the powerpack servo is just a relabeled 81mg. If you go with the Hitec, get the 81s (plastic gears). Believe it or not its more durable in this situation than the MG. The MGs plastic insert for its main gear warps and you start to loose your center point easily. I also discovered recently one of GWS park servos has some killer specs (under .8 sec and with 40ounces at 4.8 volts). But finding a horn to fit it may be a problem. Which is another thing you will want to pick up with the kit. A micro RS4 servo saver kit. The xray doesn't include one, and one good brush with the wall could result in stripped gears. The new Mini t servo savers could potentially work also. But with that spring sticking out, I'm not sure it might not hit the front steering.
The real idea is look at the specs of a 81s as far as size, and find something in that same size if nothing else. Usually under "micro" servos. Since we are in on road you will want very fast response. So I wouldn't go above .14 for speed at 4.8volts.
Batteries: Bar none if your sticking to ni-mh.. Kans. Any 2/3 A cell listed at 1050mah is a KAN. You get around 15-20 minutes of runtime even with a speed 300 on these. Don't let the higher MAH packs fool you. They lack the voltage the Kan gives. Since you are doing 1/10th track, you should be able to go with a 6 cell setup. Though realize you will have to solder them inline versus side to side to fit. Unless you get Kan 650mah 2/3aa cells. These can fit side to side right in the chassis. They however lack the runtime, and will drop off further than the full size kans. If you plan to stick to 180 size motors this could be an option. Elsewise get the 2/3A.
With inline soldering, for best results you will need a hammerhead tip. This gentleman sells them for well sp-40 (and 80) irons. http://members.cox.net/charliewhite/
As far as sources, if you want to make your own packs with cells..
(take advantage of the free zapping!)
(The URC 1050HR+)
If you want high quality premade packs
(he also zaps them)
If you want to go "all the way" and used matched packs
(The MiniT series are the same size and are red labeled Kans) - He also has some of the "factory" green labeled that he can sell if contacted.
*Yea, note I haven't listed Trinities MiniT matched. They aren't Kans and lack the punch and are over priced.
Tires: The stock tires are useless on carpet. You can probably get at least some rounds with them with traction compound. If you want to stick with rubbers, I have had decent luck with ratzas holes series tires Medium fronts and soft rears http://www.ratzas.net/
. Another option (haven't tried) is Medium HPI fronts, and their rear carpet tires (#4719).
With foams, you have a large selection. This will vary greatly. Some say TRC orange fronts with magenta rear. Intelligentsia is using Orion rear softs, and TRC Magenta up front. Others are using (and these are the cheapest BTW) Ellegi ELLJ03C 45 shore front, with ELLJ33B 40 shore rear.
I guess it more you will have to play around to see what works, Though most agree a harder compound up front to help from traction rolling.
Spare Parts: I haven't broken anything yet (knocks on wood). It really depends on how much driving experience you have. If your a little unsure, the only area I have seen broken (twice) is the front body posts breaking from the front bumper.
Right when you buy the kit:
Aluminum Motor Mount
2.5 degree toe in rear links (or adjustable kit)
42 tooth spur if you decide to go with a 280 or 370. Along with this the lower tooth pinion kit.
Things that may help depending on your driving style:
6 degree caster blocks
Bling Bling helpers:
-Ball Diff (especially with foams to allow some slippage)
-One Way front for higher speed tracks (IE 1.10th)*You will have to buy the aluminum universals with this as Intel notes above.
-Upper stiff graphite deck (helps with consistency on carpet).
-Hpi Micro Servo Saver
-Lead tape (has some from 1/10th?) as the car is really unbalanced with 6 cell 2/3a.
-Associated mini fan. You plug into your BEC.. I'd almost consider this a must for longer motor life
-Motor heatsink (a variety are offered depending on the size you choose). Look at some of the helicopter ones as alternatives.