Well, from the looks of it, I'd say consider the AE TC3 or the Losi XXX-S. They seem to be the ones who are causing the biggest uproar on the racing scene. Look at the standings in most major events and they're right there. I've seen a lot of reviews of the TC3 that are very positive. I have owned a few AE cars in the past and have had very good luck with them.
The 3 most popular electric TC's at my track are the TC3, Losi Triple X-S, and Schumacher Mission. The occasional 4-Tec can be found. I am the only guy running a Tamiya, but I just got a TC3 a couple of weeks ago. I traded some old computer equipment for it with one of the guys at the track. Getting used stuff from the "hardcore" guys at the track is a great way to save money. TC3 "team" versions have sold for a little over $100 (rolling chassis). Radios and ESC's can be had for a fraction of their original cost. And the racers take care of their stuff, so it's just as good as new, and not as risky as eBay because you can see it b4 you buy it.
Now i am taking the TC3 into consideration, but if i dont wanna spend that amount of money on a car, is the HPI "dash" worth thinking about? I know its only a cheapy kinda thing but I'm not bothered as i only wanna drive out the front of my house and around the house. Any good or not?
If you don't wanna spend a lot of green, the 4-Tec would be a good choice. Most LHS's have a ton of Traxxas parts. The HPI Dash has a lot of features for $100 (like the proportional radio system), but I think it has a rather wimpy RS380 motor. You will soon get tired with it, IMO - especially if you have a Nitro 4-Tec.
A better car will allow you to upgrade to a nice mod motor for some speeeeed!
Gee, I didn't notice that you were in the UK. I keep on forgetting that this is such a small world, thanks to the internet. I should always end my price quotes with USD. I'm sure you'll enjoy the 4-Tec, and your neighbors will like the fact that it is whisper quiet!