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A Model of Forward Thinking: The Pininfarina 1800


While I was in Brighton recently I took the time to visit the Sussex Toy Museum, a must-visit if, like me, every day you fight your inner child to avoid filling your beautifully decorated and partner-friendly living room with bits of LEGO and old Hot-Wheels.

Seeking a souvenir, I was pleased to notice a glass-fronted cabinet in which some of the displayed articles bore price tags. On the bottom row, on the left was something that caught my eye. I bought it for £3.95 and put it in my pocket, where I couldn’t resist jiggling it between my fingers in that tactile way that you might a pocket knife or set of keys.

Finding it was a double-win. Not only is it a lovely little model, but it also represents one of the most fascinating footnotes of motoring history. It gives me an excuse to write about the Pininfarina 1800, Leyland’s would-be worldbeater.

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Diecast Delights: GAZ-24-02 Volga in 1:43 scale


Comrades, I ask you to wipe aside the tears as we bid a fond farewell to this current series of Diecast Delights, but not before taking one long, lingering last look at another saucy Soviet.

Last week we looked at the GAZ-21, forerunner of this car. That car, now legendary, is all well and good, but for me, for some reason it’s this one that will always be the Volga for me. No idea why. Anyway, it’s mine in glorious 1:43 scale.

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Diecast Delights – A Millennial Reminisce


The year 2000 was a very good year for me. I had just turned 18, about to graduate from high school, and generally feeling on top of the world. 14 years and many miles later, I’m sitting here thinking about grad school and the future. A lot has happened since that summer, and I’ve moved halfway across the country, but a couple of things have made the journey with me. One of them is my Mark Martin diecast. I thought I would share a few pictures of it with you and tell you a little about how it came my way. … Continue Reading

Diecast Delights: GAZ 21 in 1:43 Scale


Welcome to Diecast Delights, which continues, I’m afraid, with the Soviet theme that it’s carried for the last several weeks, months; you probably think it feels like years.

There’s no way, though, that we could possibly let the strand fade away without properly documenting the Volga series. We’ve seen a later car in the guise of this taxi, and there may well be another one coming up soon, you never know.

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Modern Art Monday: Automodello Ford Mustang I Concept In 1/43 Scale
Mini Mustang is a diecast delight

Automodello Ford Mustang I Concept-12

If you’ve been wandering around the Hooniverse for some time now, you know that we’re fans of the lovely scale beauties put out by the team at Automodello. We’ve examined the Griffith Series 200 and a Bricklin SV-1. We also got up close with the larger 1:24 scale Phantom Corsair, which is quite simply an absolute stunner.

Now it’s time to examine a piece of Ford history because Automodello has recently released it’s 1:43 scale version of the Mustang I Concept car.

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Diecast Delights: ГАЗ-М20 “Pobeda” in 1:43 scale.


The current. somewhat Soviet-slanted series of Diecast Delights has been running for a little while now, and I thought I might save the worst ’til last. I know the photography used thus far has divided people, but in this particular case I genuinely do believe that blurry, badly lit, poorly composed images show this model to its best advantage.

It looks even better if you squint, so please screw your eyes up so tight you can’t really read what I’m typing, and I’ll tell you everything there is to know about satisfying your partner and giving them exactly what they want, when they want it.

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Diecast Delights: УАЗ-469 in 1:43 Scale


It’s Monday, which means another chunk bitten out of the Hooniverse daily schedule to take a look at the world of miniature models of marvellous, mostly military motors.

This time we’re looking at another one of those vehicles that you’ve seen on numerous cold war movie thrillers but possibly struggled to identify. Let’s face it, behind the Iron Curtain there were countless mysterious beasts, all with immemorable alphanumeric names, but somehow the 469, with its split grille, always stood out

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Diecast Delights: The RAF-2203 Latvija, in 1:43 Scale


I’ve been accumulating (Collecting is what connoisseurs and people with selective tastes do, and I’m nowhere near as discriminating as I should be) Diecast model cars since just before I learnt that putting them in my mouth was a bad idea. Like anybody else I have owned countless dozen models and toys over the years, and among all the Ferraris and Porsches sometimes one will turn up that genuinely adds to my education.

A  Matchbox Superkings toy was the first I ever knew of the ’74 Mustang II, for example; although this particular red and white car with COBRA written down the side had such mangled proportions it made the car look altogether a more muscular machine than it turned out to be. I was about seven, and easily impressed. Anyway, I’m now 32, and that sensation has returned. This is a model of the Riga Autobus Factory 2203, Latvija, a vehicle I had never heard of until about a month ago.

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Diecast Delights: VAZ-2112 in 1:43 Scale


So far throughout the current series of Diecast Delights postings, I’ve been called out on the fact that all the cars I’m posting appear to be of Russian origin. Well, yes, you’re right. And it’s all because, until recently, none of my model cars at all represented this region and, though there’s a high risk of overdose, I’m quite enjoying my current addiction.

Today we wind forward to, as near as dammit, the current day, with a 1:43 rendition of the AvtoGAZ 2112, in Police INTERCEPTOR (or something) trim.

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Diecast Delights: Izh 2715 in 1:43 Scale.


As sure as the feeling of bloatedness at the end of a KFC Bargain Bucket and as inevitable as the release of a Cliff Richards Greatest Hits album around Christmas time, it’s high time for our weekly inspection of a 1:43 scale model of a Russian vehicle.

This series has been a real eye-opener to me; the machines featured have all been either extremely rare or completely non-existent on British roads, and I know very little about them. We continue in this vein with the Moskvitch derived Izh 2175.

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