If you’re an automotive enthusiast and have never owned an radio controlled (RC) car before, there are plenty of reasons to start. Thanks to the efforts of legendary modelling company Tamiya, generations of youth have engaged in the building, racing, and modifying of off-road buggies and on-road real world replicas.
Tamiya started in 1946 in Shizuoka Japan through the passion of Yoshio Tamiya and is today loved by modellers and enthusiasts the world over. Classic off road buggies like the Frog, Hornet, and Fox captures the imagination of all who laid their eyes on the box art with the promise of speed, dirt, jumps, and slides.
I could talk all day about the classic Tamiya off-road buggies, but its the real world road-going replicas which should be of interest to any classic car enthusiast.
In fact, the first Tamiya RC car was actually a Porsche 934 Turbo RSR. Tamiya weren’t mucking around back then and actually purchased a Porsche 911 to better understand its construction. Over the years their RC Porsches have included the Paris-Dakar 959 complete with Rothmans livery as well as the similarly dressed 962C Group C Le Mans winning racer.
Tamiya are known for their incredibly detailed model kits and the RC variants come fairly close as well with a few exceptions to cater for the nature of the car being driven and controlled. The current catalogue has kits such as the Porsche RSR, Lancia Delta Integrale, and Mercedes Benz 190E EVO II but if you search online you may be able to find previous releases such as the Alfa 105 and BMW E30 M3 for sale.
Just check the detail on this BMW E30 M3 RC car.
The way the parts are packaged and waiting to be filed, painted, and put into place makes for an engaging weekend filled with anticipation for the final product. Patience is your best friend if you want the best outcome but that’s hard to maintain much like the build of a real world car.
What better way to own an experiment with a Porsche RSR and then race friends without consequence, apart from a dew body scratches and bruised egos of course.
This guy has taken it upon himself to modify his Porsche RSR for a street look:
And if you’re unsure of the passion and enthusiasm RC fans have for their hobby, all you need to do is hop onto YouTube and have a look at some videos with the aforementioned cars. Most stay true to the box rendering and sticker sets, representing their car in racing livery but some take it upon themselves to modify or create road going versions of famous racers.
This exhibition drift race is simply amazing, right down to the way the competitors treat their cars as though they were life-size versions respecting barriers and the like.
I still haven’t seen anyone attempt a Singer RC car but surely that’s a challenge someone is willing to take on.
With so much discussion about an electric future, perhaps this is one we can all get on board with for now.