Volume VII, Number6

O F F - T H E - S H E L F

The following editorial reflects the personal thoughts of Doug Breithaupt relating to our common hobby of miniature cars. It is intended to generate discussion
relating to 'Tales of Toy Cars'. Your letters are welcome and may be submitted via e-mail.

Most Popular Toy Cars on the Planet

Do the most popular toy cars mirror the most popular real cars? If we define popular as the car most people would want to own as opposed to those they actually own, the answer might be yes. As a test, I decided to review all the major automotive marques, still in production and see which toy car model in 1:64 scale has most often been reproduced representing each company. Here are my results:
Mercedes-Benz - 500SL (4th generation)
BMW - 850i
Volkswagen - original Beetle
Audi - Quattro
Opel - GT
Porsche - 930/911 Turbo
Ford (Europe) - Capri

Ferrari - Testarossa
Fiat - 124
Alfa Romeo - Carabo concept
Maserati - Bora
Lamborghini - Countach
Lancia - Stratos

Citroen - 2CV
Peugeot - 205
Renault - 5/Le Car
Bugatti - Royale
Jaguar - 'E' type
Rolls Royce - Silver Shadow/Corniche
Bentley - 4.5 litre
Lotus - Esprit
Aston Martin - DB-7/Vanquish
Morgan - Plus 4
Mini - original Mini
Land Rover - original Range Rover
Ford (UK) - Capri

Cadillac - 1959 models
Buick - Grand National
Pontiac - Firebird (3rd generation)
Chevrolet - Corvette C4
Ford - original Mustang
Mercury - original Cougar
Lincoln - Continental Mk. III
Chrysler - PT Cruiser
Dodge - Viper
Jeep - CJ5
Toyota - 2000GT
Lexus - SC430/Soarer
Nissan - 280Z
Honda - Civic (current)
Acura - NSX
Mazda - Miata MX-5
Mitsubishi - Eclipse (generation 2)
Subaru - Impreza
Isuzu - Rodeo
Suzuki - Samuri

Ford - Falcon (current)
Holden - Commodore (current)

Saab - Sonnet
Volvo - 760

Hundai - Tiberon
Kia - name unknown

I expect that as you count the models in your collection for each marque, your results may differ from mine. In some cases like the original Beetle or the Jeep CJ5 the results are obvious. The new Beetle may someday challenge the old one for the most toy car examples but not yet. Other results are a surprise like the Carabo concept for Alfa Romeo. Matchbox, Playart, Marx, Corgi, Wheeler and perhaps others did the Carabo making it the most reproduced Alfa toy car. Is the 2000GT still Toyota's most famous car? Playart, Johnny Lightning, Impy, Yat Ming, Tomica, Zylmex, Siku and Wheeler all did examples. Chrysler adopted the orphaned PT Cruiser when Plymouth was killed and it becomes the favorite as a result. The Prowler was really more Plymouth than Chrysler. Bentley, Kia and Hundai only have one example of a production car to select.
Let me know
what your results are.