Friday, April 27, 2012


SMN report:
Radio control (RC) fans have a chance to go racing with the Tamiya electric Mini JCW Coupe, modelled on the car that took part in the 2011 24-Hour Nurburgring race.

Lightweight body
The RC Mini Coupe is to 1:10 scale, and comes with a pre-finished lightweight polycarbonate bodyshell. The car comes complete with racing extras, such as the front-mounted spoiler and big tail wing, both designed to keep the real thing glued to the ground when hurtling along for hour after hour flat-out around the twist and turns of Germany’s famed Nurburgring racing circuit.

Front-wheel drive
The big 1:10 scale means you get a decent-sized model, even if the Mini is not a large car in real life - the body is some 375 mm (14.8 in) long, with a wheelbase of 239 mm (9.4 in). The chassis and powertrain reproduce the Mini’s front-wheel drive system, so handling is not unlike the real thing. Accuracy is reasonable, and while not a patch on an equivalent injection kit, does capture the flavour of the two-seater car well - and that includes the somewhat bizarro backward-baseball-cap roofline. 

Injection kit alternatives
If you don’t want an RC model, then injection kits of the Coupe model have yet to be released, but the Airfix 1:32 scale Mini is a reasonable kit of the standard model, and the Tamiya 1:24 scale kit of the original Mini is an escellent kit of the old-timer that started off the whole genre.

The Tamiya RC Mini Coupe is on its way - meantime, Tamiya has other Minis on offer here.

Tamiya 1:24 kit of the original Austin Mini Cooper 1275S here.

Airfix and other Minis here.

These pix show the squat, but quite appealing lines of the real thing.

Instrument layout may be high-style, but it lacks ergonomic clarity.