Tag Archives: Corvair

Die-cast: Automodello Mustang I

Automodello cranks out a rare Mustang I in 1:24th

OK, I get it, not all you plastic modelers are diecast nuts like me. But how about a resin Mustang I Concept car, and in 1:24 scale no less.Mustang1

That’s what the folks over at Automodello have cranked out for you, and only a limited number will be made – 499 to be exact. There’s also a limited run 1:43 model too. But let’s get to the history and the model here.

The History:

Sports and sporty cars had been the rage throughout the 1950s among the racing set. Chevrolet had responded with its Corvette and Ford went a bit more luxury touring oriented with its Thunderbird.

Next up was Chevrolet’s lower cost sports coupe, the Corvair, with its rear-mounted engine. Ford needed an answer.

So in 1962 Ford tried something different, an open 2-seater that was quick and light and independently sprung at all four wheels. Ford’s new baby was the Mustang I, a concept that noted Formula 1 racer Dan Gurney showed off during an F1 race weekend at Watkins Glen (N.Y.) in October of 1962, setting times that were nearly competitive with the open-wheeled racers running in that weekend’s F1 race.

The white hand-hammered aluminum bodied concept car was petite, with a 90-inch wheelbase, an 89-horse V4 and tipping the scales at just 1,148 lbs. and with a top speed of 100 mph. Folks at the Watkins Glen race weekend were eager to get their hands on the car. But in its concept design, the Mustang was not to be. However, two years later the iconic Mustang sports coupe would debut, also in New York, this time at the World’s Fair.

The historic Mustang I Concept got the ball rolling and lent its name to what would become Ford’s iconic pony car. Now Automodello out of Buffalo Grove, Ill., releases a sharp 1:24 re-creation, along with a 1:43 scale model, both in finely detailed resin. The company says just 499 will be made in the larger scale, while 150 Tribute Editions are planned. Those will all be signed by Gurney, its first on-track driver, and cost $150 more. We reviewed the standard 1:24 version. Continue reading Die-cast: Automodello Mustang I

Die-cast: Maisto 2014 Corvette Stingray

New Maisto Corvette Stingray easy on the eyes, good value

My first hands-on, up-close-and-personal experience with a Corvette came in the early 1960s at a local Chevy dealer’s lot. My uncle had a white Corvair and I’m pretty sure my dad was jealous, so we were walking the lot, window shopping.Filename: MOD-PS1013_Stingray04.psd

There sat a white and red Vette, all busted up, its nose caved in with shards of fiberglass jutting from the fenders. I was still oohing and aahing though. I’d seen Vettes in magazines, but not up close. Dad said they weren’t safe because of their fiberglass bodies. I didn’t care, they made our old green ’55 Chevy look like a dinosaur.

No doubt some kids today are thinking the same thing when they see the 2014 Corvette Stingray, and aren’t we glad THAT name is back.

Maisto comes to market quickly with many diecast models, and now beats even Chevrolet to stores with its 1:18 scale C7 version of the Corvette. Maisto’s model came out mid-summer, while the real production C7s didn’t start rolling off the assembly line in Bowling Green, Ky., until late summer. Pre-pros, of course, were out earlier! Continue reading Die-cast: Maisto 2014 Corvette Stingray

Promo Model: Chevy Corvair

1962 Chevrolet Corvair Monza Coupe
1962 Chevrolet Corvair Monza Coupe (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This is one of my favorite cars, the Chevy Corvair. The compact automobile was produced by the Chevrolet division of General Motors for the 1960–1969 model years. It was the only American-made,mass-produced passenger car to feature a rear-mounted air-cooled engine.

It was General Motors’ response to the growing popularity of small, lightweight imported cars such as the original VW Beetle, as well as to compete with domestic-built compact cars, the Rambler American and Studebaker Lark. The “compact” term was coined by George W. Romney as a euphemism for small cars with a wheelbase of 110 inches (2,794 mm) or less. You didn’t think I’d leave that out, would you?

Chevrolet Corvair
Chevrolet Corvair (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Corvair variants  included a two-door coupe and a convertible, a four-door sedan, and four-door station wagon configurations, and also the more powerful Monza model; and a passenger van, commercial van, and pickup derivatives. My favorite, if I could only have one would be a Monza convertible. The best thing about collecting these cars is that they have to cost a ton of money to acquire on. I found plenty of decent ones for around $10K.

corvair promo model, chevy corvair, general motors, chevy, rear engine cars, compact cars
Photo courtesy Wheat’s Nostalgia

The promo models are also reasonably prices. I found this 60 on Joe Wheat’s site for $70 keeping in mind it is not perfect but not in bad shape for being over 50 years old.

corvair promo model, chevy corvair, general motors, chevy, rear engine cars, compact cars
Photo courtesy Wheat’s Nostalgia

I really like this convertible but to acquire this one costs quite a bit more at $275. Again, like the real cars, the more you pay, the better shape the car is in. I had a promo model a long time ago and writing this blog entry reminds me I should start looking at getting another one.

Do you have a promo model or the real deal to share? We would love to see them.