Thursday, February 10, 2011

MAISTO 1/18 1971 DATSUN 240Z

For the price this is a pretty decent die cast. It's my first Z car scale model and I'm happy with it. I bought mine while they were available for a great price at Costco.

The general dimensions seem to be spot on from the outside. The model itself does have some very fine details and decals too. The scuff plate decal in the door frame looks like metal and has the tiny word DATSUN on it. There's even a minuscule VIN plate on the dash with legible numbers and the month that the California plate would be set to expire is almost discernible. The headlights, front turn signals and taillights are each separate plastic pieces and look very convincing. The side marker lights are painted on though. The tires are appropriately skinny with early style "D" hubcaps. Inside, there is period correct diamond pattern where it would have been on the original vinyl, the tiny three spoke wheel had the right indentations as well as a painted on wood rim and the door panels even have pulls and knobs molded onto them.

Both doors open, as well as the hatch and hood. The front wheels turn in conjunction with the steering wheel and it has independent suspension with coil springs all the way around, just like the real car. The underside of the body is comprised of 3-4 big slabs-o-plastic that have molded in details like the IRS, engine, transmission, splash pan and gas tank. There is a correct looking exhaust system complete with dual pipes that merge into one collector and route properly to the rear and out through a single muffler.

There are only a couple of disappointments. The biggest being the engine bay, which is one solid piece of plastic with a few parts painted (valve cover, air cleaner, spark plug wires and fluid reservoir caps). Under the rear hatch the metal of the body juts out at the bottom, quite unlike the real deal, and on the plastic window frames for both front doors, at the leading edge they get too thick right by where the rearview mirror is. It is accurate in only having a rearview mirror on the driver side however.

All in all, for the price, I'm happy with this model. So much so that I bought four of them. --W. Wilhelm  Shop here

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