About Model Car Collecting - Scale and Brand Overview

Diecast and Plastic Model Car Collecting


Diecast and plastic model car collecting is a growing hobby that can be pursued by young and old. Collectors can start small and grow their hobby as time and budget permit. Favorite scales to collect are 1:64, 1:43, 1:18, and 1:87, although many more scale formats can be found. Below is a list that describes the most popular scale formats and brands that produce (or have produced) in these scales.

Scales and Overview of Brands:

Average pricing legend:
$ = From $1 to $5
$$ = From $5 to $20
$$$ = From $20 to $50
$$$$ = From $50 to $100
$$$$$ = $100 and up

1:87: Also known as HO scale this miniature car format is very popular with railroad hobbyists and diorama builders. Average cars are about 3 to 5cm in length. Pricing level: $$ to $$$. There are many brands to pick from in this category and some of the more popular ones are:

1:64: The most popular scale for collectors of all ages. This scale is often referred to as the typical Hot Wheels or Matchbox class and can included inexpensive toy vehicles all the way up to highly detailed collector's vehicles. The following quote from an Autoblog article by The Car Hobby Connection[1] provides a good introduction:

"Most young collectors start out with cars in the 1:64 scale range. Cars in this scale by Hot Wheels and Matchbox, for example, are inexpensive, durable enough for play, and quite detailed. From a true size perspective a generic 1:64 scale car is about 3 inches in length (about 7 to 8 centimeters). When looking at a typical Matchbox car, bus, or truck, it can range in actual scale of 1:50 to 1:125, but due to its 3 inch size will be generally marketed as a 1:64 scale vehicle. Some brands will list the actual scale of the car on its chassis."

The following brands provide collectors with a broad range of diecast car offerings. Pricing levels can range from $ to $$$ (not in alphabetical order):

Slightly larger cars are sold in scale 1:55 by brands such as Siku. This is also the size for the popular Mattel Disney Pixar Cars series.

1:43: Often considered the collector's scale of choice by many enthusiasts, this scale has a large variety of choices. Between 10 to 14cm in length this miniature car scale is still relatively easy to display and many come with a display box for dust protection. Another Autoblog article[2] can provide additional information. Pricing can range from $$ to $$$$$ and these are not to be mistake for toys. Brands to consider are (not in alphabetical order):

1:24: A scale that offers opportunity for both play and collecting, 1:24 model cars generally feature opening doors and rubber tires. A great scale for those that still want these features but do not have the room or budget for the larger 1:18 scale. Pricing ranges from $$ to $$$$. Brands that are noteworthy (not in alphabetical order):

1:18: A large collectible scale with great opportunity for detailing. Opening features are often available for doors, hoods, and trunks. Suspension and rubber tires are also often available. The size of average vehicles can range from 20cm to 30cm. The linked Autoblog[3] article offers detail and pictures. Pricing can range from $$$ to $$$$$. Popular brands are (not in alphabetical order):

Larger model car scale sizes are 1:12 and 1:8. These are generally very expensive and super-detailed. Pricing can range from $$$$ to $$$$$. Often the 1:8 scale cars are via mail order subscription only and have to be assembled in stages as portions of the cars are released along with accessories such as mounting bases and special documentation.

  1. ^https://www.autoblog.com/2016/02/09/model-car-collecting-introduction-1-64-scale/
  2. ^https://www.autoblog.com/2016/02/16/model-car-collecting-1-43-collector-scale/
  3. ^https://www.autoblog.com/2016/02/29/model-car-collecting-collector-scale-1-18/
Posted by R.A. Broekman Wednesday, July 29, 2020 0 Comments
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