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First Peek with Joe Kelly Edition Date
9-03-03
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Exoto "Indianapolis Green" Standox GT40 MkII
CMC Auto Union Type C 1936
Ricko Alfa Romeo 147

 

Exoto Standox "Indianapolis Green" GT40 CMC Auto Union type C, 1936
 
     
 
Joe Kelly
Joe Kelly
 

I could go through the routine of finding a way out this week; say that my kid’s keeping me up at night, the job’s calling me to twelve- and fourteen-hour days, and that the "casual observer" – that would be my wife – is doing cutesy little things like putting on a surprised expression and chirping "I remember you… !" when she sees me in the morning.

And it’d all be true.

But, duty calls. A couple of really gorgeous cars have rolled in here in the past couple of days, and I think that they’re definitely worth a look. Besides, this time next week, I’ll be picking out shirts to pack for the big trip to Chi-town.

So, we’ll be light on text this installment, but we’ll let the pictures round out the debut of Exoto’s latest Standox color – Indianapolis Green – as worn on their already mind-bending GT40 MkII. Then we’ll soak in the vision that is the incredible CMC 1936 Auto Union Type C race car, a piece of diecast jewelry if ever there was one, and wrap up with the promised Ricko Alfa Romeo 147 – not a bad little ride for you Europhiles. You know who you are.
 

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  Exoto Standox "Indianapolis Green" GT40

How to describe a Standox paint job to the uninitiated? It ain’t easy. ‘Fifties lacquer slingers might call it a "flip flop" color; those of a more loquacious bent might describe the effect – for it is an effect – as iridescent, multi-timbred, or of axially variable luminescence.

You know – flip flop.

Because that’s what this paint job does; on this Indianapolis Green GT40 MkII, (first to wear the color) shades flip magically from fluorescent green to green-blue and beyond, while bajillions of dust-fine metal flakes crown every fold, curve, and crease of the car below, hitting on yellow and gold and running like liquid light. First time witnesses to the effect can be seen tempting serious muscle pulls, craning their necks trying to wring every possible hue out of the car – much the same way we all worked ourselves into migraines trying to find the hidden fish, planets, birds and desert islands woven into those three-dimensional wall hangings that were such a hoot a few years ago.

Yeah, it’s cool. And it’s become a bit of an addiction – sort of Exoto’s novel interpretation of a series’ chase car. As such, the models beneath the light show are no different than the liveried releases: the same incredible detailing, same number of parts (in fact, this GT40 seems to have some that the race version I have on the shelf doesn’t), and the same working features. That means that these are some of the hobby’s wildest models, but they aren’t discount pieces – in fact, the Standox treatment will cost you a couple of bucks more.

While the trophy-case crowd may consider these hot-to-trot colors a sacrilege, for the rest of us, these "serious" images stripped of their work clothes and decorated thusly carry the impact of a leggy, beloved teacher showing up for class in a miniskirt. And that sure works for me. Highly recommended.
 

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  CMC Auto Union type C, 1936

Summon up your best mental images of lab-coated men clutching and clucking at clipboards, and stand them alongside this astounding model from CMC. Because I get the feeling that fellows in white coats – long ones, mind you – had as much to do with this metal-intensive jewel of a model car as did the Ferdinand Porsche-designed, Bernd Rosemeyer-driven racer in its heyday.

It is, for lack of a better word, a perfect model car. Maybe that’s got a lot to do with the subject matter; Auto Unions were shaped in the wind tunnel and born ready to slip through the wind. Low slung and riding on hand spoked steel wheels, the sample model CMC sent along has that same, ideal shape… and not a single flaw. Really. After hours of cruising the model, I’ve yet to find something out of line, a kink in the paint, a skewed panel, or a rattling piece somewhere in the car’s bowels.

That’s amazing, because this model of the racing world’s first mid-engined car is also the first single 1:18 model to boast a content of over one thousand parts. To be accurate, 1,026. Like I said – lots of guys in white coats. Granted, the 70-piece-per-unit wheels go far to boost that number – but the figure was arrived at before CMC counted the ninety-six-odd real and simulated fasteners all over the car.

Plastic is at a premium here; most of the model (including those salami cut exhausts doing the halleluiah off the 520-horse V16 out back), is metal, whether copper, steel, stainless, or zamac. The result is as heavy as hell – and incredible to behold. I’ll let the photos tell the rest of the story. Very highly recommended.
 

Click thumbnails to see larger images
 

 

 

 

  Ricko Alfa Romeo 147

Alfa Romeo was always a big proponent of the potent three box sedan. In their new 147 hatchback, one of those boxes has been left by the roadside. Not that it matters to we Stateside folks; we’ll most likely never see the 147 (or the hotfoot V6 147 GTA variant) on our shores.

As middling as their 33.2 Daytona of last week was, Ricko’s model of this little Alfa – available only in base form, believe it or not – is surprisingly good, as inexpensive images go; even better if you like this kind of model to round out your shelves. Casting and shut lines are neat and straight, and the model’s metallic silver paint is clearcoated and smooth, even in the deepest recesses of the opening doors, hood, and hatch.

The interior is carpeted, and the dash is a multi-tampo’d affair offering a good level of detail and readable gauges. Road wheels and tires are nice, too, even if they roll on a lo-buck, pass-through metal rod axle out back. Glazing (including the defroster equipped backlight) and lensing are done in nicely etched plastic, and the engine is a clamshell, top and bottom.

Chassis detail is light, but the relief-cast lower engine and exhaust tunnel are picked out in silver, as is the separately cast exhaust itself. It would have been nice to see this car in GTA trim, but Ricko is still dancing to their own beat. Like Alfas? This one is definitely worth a look.

We’ll be sending the goods as soon as we can next week from Chicago, folks. In the meantime, have a great week. Happy Collecting. And, oh, yeah… get some rest, okay?
 

 
     

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