Volume IX, Number 2

2006 NEW YORK TOY FAIR - Toy Car Report
by Dave Weber

My dealer friend and I had planned to attend this show on Sunday 2/12/06, but due to a major snowstorm, we were forced to postpone our visit until Wednesday 2/15. This was the last day for the show to be open. Attending on this day has its plus and minus features. We found a few of the larger manufacturers had closed early and departed for parts unknown. Two of these were RC2 Brands and Yat Ming . But some of the representatives that remained at the Javits Center were willing to sell their sample displays at a sizeable discount . Even though most of the remaining personnel were no doubt quite overtired, they still exhibited a friendly attitude to anyone interested in their products. We were advised by the Maisto representative that his company had recently acquired Bburago in Italy, but that it would take possibly up to a year to settle this new acquisition within the Maisto Group.We also learned that a fairly new toy firm and new to diecast, had recently purchased Tootsietoy and its former parent company Strombecker. J Lloyd International in Cedar Rapids Iowa is selling new 1:64 HARD BODY" models in blisters and packs. But I was disappointed to read the baseplates which stated they were Realtoy products. Maybe Tootsie will have their own castings in the future?

The same situation presented itself when we visited Jakks-Pacific. We were assured that new Road Champs in 1:64 scale were recently made. But again the baseplates read "Realtoy". Realtoy models are also used by Corgi in their new Corgi Wheelz series. We also met with a representative of a new company called Real Wheelz from Columbia Maryland. They expect to produce new small scale models for the consumer later this year.

We were also informed that Hongwell Cararama and Schuco had a major disagreement and are no longer affiliated in the production of 1:72 models for Simba - Dickie; the owners of Schuco. This explains why new models on the Schuco website resemble the new Yat Ming Road Signature series recently found at some Wal-Marts throughout the United States .

But, last but not least, we were given a personal tour by Jonathan Taylor, one of the owners of Model Power. This company is located in Long Island New York. They are basically a major producer of HO scale train sets. But they also have been providing model 1:87 scale diecast vehicle models. These are made by High Speed in Hong Kong.

Because a Wal-Mart affiliate Malibu International took over the distribution of these models late last year, Model Power was forced to provide new dies and casting tools for an entirely new and exclusive series of cars. Jonathan advised these new dies are owned by Model Power but are provided to High Speed to produce these new models. These are actually smaller versions of the same series of cars that were provided by High Speed to Readers Digest as 1:64 scale promotionals in the Book subscription department. There are eight cars which include the 1963 Thunderbird, 1955 Chevrolet Bel Air, 1964 1/2 Mustang, 1969 Camaro, 1969 Cutlass, 1956 Ford F-100 P/up, 1953 Eldorado and 1957 Corvette. But the Corvette has been deleted , due to child safety problems due to the small size. Also, Model Power is issuing a model of the Ford Police Interceptor Patrol Car with various logos. The above eight car models will be packaged in Model Power boxes and will only be available form Model Power distributors.

Mattel did have a small display at the Javits Center , but their main location was nearer to the 200 5th Avenue address and appointments were required to visit their facilities. Unfortunately, we were unable to visit their location.