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Tamiya Toyota 86

Toyota 86
Tamiya No. 24323
Model Type: Injection-molded styrene
Molded Colors: White, black, clear
Scale: 1/24
MSRP: $65.00
Pros: Great appearance; typical Tamiya quality; easy assembly, with good parts fit; fully detailed suspension
Cons: Purchase price; non-prototypical engine and transmission
It’s not often that a new lightweight rear-drive sports coupe comes along, and when it happens, enthusiasts take notice.

Toyota’s new 86 evokes the spirit of the vintage AE-86 Toyota – the car that basically started the drifting craze in Japan.

With the 1:1 car getting so much attention, it was no surprise that Tamiya had its all-new kit ready almost as soon as the 86 hit the showroom floors.
This first new Tamiya car kit since the Lexus LFA is arguably full-detail, but engine and chassis detail are simplified.

The engine block and transmission is molded with the inner front fender liners, to which a front cover, upper intake, and a few other items are added. What is visible is nicely done, but is still somewhat simplified.

Detail freaks may want to add hoses, wiring, or perhaps a turbo unit and intercooler.

There is a separate two-piece brake booster and master cylinder unit, and a nice two-piece battery that attach to the separate firewall. A metal wire is included to prop open the hood to display the engine.
The underside of the hood is molded smooth without any indication of bracing.

The chassis features a separate exhaust, with separate muffler and chrome tips. The suspension is fully detailed, and features steerable wheels. Brake discs/calipers trap polycaps inside the hubs to attach the wheel pins.

Because the basic chassis pan has fewer parts than usual, a good bit of masking is required to paint the various black panels and the aluminum pan that is under the engine. The chassis shows the cover panels on the Japanese home market 86; the US Scion does not have those separate panels.

The tires are reconstituted from earlier models, and the wheels are chrome-plated. If you paint the wheels with Tamiya acrylics, you can wipe away the raised bright spoke details with a cotton swab soaked with Tamiya X-20 thinner. Tamiya demonstrates this trick on the Toyota 86 page of the its Japanese Web site.

There is only a right-hand-drive setup with this model, and although there are separate headrest backs for the seats, the rest of the seatback area is left open, though this isn’t visible inside the finished model.

There are decals for the various speakers, as well as the instruments and navigation unit, pedals, third brake light, and steering wheel emblem.

Assembly of all parts is straightforward, in typical Tamiya fashion. There was a grand total of one part that didn’t want to fit without trimming: the pin on the small antenna was oversized for the rectangular receptor hole molded in the roof.

Everything was molded with precision; in fact, the body had just two tiny mold lines at the base of the A- pillars.

There are chrome metal transfers for emblems and mirror faces.

The underhood detail is just a bit sparse, but the extra detail of hoses and wires on the real car don’t make it more attractive – just more stuffed with hoses and wires. The 1:1 car doesn’t have a design theme to the top end of the engine, because the boxer engine is mounted so low in the chassis.

It will be fun to see how these models get built and modified, for this car that has somewhat rejuvenated the tuner market.


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