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Tamiya Mobil 1 SC 2006

December 2007
Mobil 1 SC 2006
Tamiya No. 24294
Model Type: Injection-molded
Molded Colors: White, black, gray
Scale: 1/24
MSRP: $50.00
Pros: Disc brake detail; crisp panel lines in body
Cons: Lack of interior detail; no window mask for painting; expected more for price of the kit

The Mobil 1 SC is Tamiya's second version of the Lexus SC430 Super GT contender for the 2006 season. With the exception of the wheels, it appears to be a decal change only to the earlier Open Interface kit.

Body parts are molded in white; the rest is black, metallic gray or clear with a small tree of chrome. There is also a small sheet of metal transfers for the Lexus badge and mirror faces.

The brake disc detail is pretty good, and they supply small yellow AP Racing decals, although they are almost invisible on the gold calipers. The front wheels are steerable, but other than that, the suspension is basic.

The rear suspension builds into a small subframe, which is then mounted to the chassis pan. Tamiya has done away with the diecast chassis, but for some reason still insist on molding in a metal plate to add weight to the model.

The interior is a bit disappointing; there is almost no molded-in detail. All switch, knob and indicator light detail is done with a decal. There are separate parts for the shift lever, steering wheel, pedals, and seat. Seat belts are supplied as a decal.

Separate wheel nuts are supplied, and need to be painted blue for the right side wheels and red for the left. Dry-transfer- type lettering is supplied for the Bridgestone Potenza tire markings. They mount to the suspension with Tamiya's familiar soft nylon bushings.

The body is molded with Tamiya's typical crisp panel lines and precise-fitting pieces. I started by gluing the upper rear portion of the front fenders in place, filling the seam and sanding it smooth as my references showed it should be.

The lower part of the rear wing is made as an insert to the upper part, which creates a seam that needs to be filled and sanded smooth. But the lower portion of the wing has some strange contours that make it a little difficult. The exhaust pipes too need to be assembled from halves, but because only the tips show, the seam is not critical.

One of the nicest things to come from Tamiya in their later kits is the die-cut window mask. Imagine my surprise, when I came to use the mask supplied for this kit, that it was not diecut like their earlier ones. No, this is just printed on and needs to be cut out by the builder. I have a fairly steady hand, but some of the curves did not come out as neatly as I would have liked.

Decals are printed by Cartograf, and are up to their usual high standards. The large Mobil 1 decals for the sides and hood are a chromelike foil. They were much easier to work with than I feared. There was a little more color bleed-through in the number panels on the sides than I expected.

I used Future to clearcoat the body; I wasn't sure how the metallic decals would react to my normal clear. The rest of the body details were assembled without trouble. Nylon mesh is supplied for the front intake; there was plenty left over, so I used it for the rear grilles too, instead of the kit's decals.

The inner fenders do not extend up to the underside of the body, so in profile you can see through from one wheel to the other side.

Overall, I must say that I am disappointed with this latest offering. Not that there is anything wrong with the kit; it builds up wonderfully. But at $50, I would have expected a whole lot more.


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