While less well-known to most backyard R/C drivers than Tamiya, Kyosho was another Japanese icon of 1980s R/C modelling who created a range of stunning, high-end, kit-based vehicles in their heyday – often with a race-winning edge.
Like Tamiya, original examples of their early R/C models are now highly sought after by collectors.
Some of those kits are now being remade as well, and the new models are different. So if you’re nostalgic for the original Kyosho models, here are some quick buying tips to help identify them.
When I first began buying things online in the late 1990s, I was amazed at how much ‘old stock’ there was in the world. Prior to eBay, I hadn’t imagined that any unbuilt vintage R/C car kits from the 1980s (or earlier) still existed, let alone that anyone would be able to find them.
Nearly 20 years later, the Internet is still a great source of vintage toy treasures. But inevitably the supply of unused ‘old stock’ out there, is in decline. And it’s only going to get harder to find things in the years ahead.
Many of the popular Tamiya R/C models we knew in the 1980s have been remade in recent years. But the remakes are quite different to the original ones.
If you are looking for an introduction to this subject, please see my earlier article A quick guide to Vintage vs Remake Tamiya R/C kits.
However, if you need some more detailed information about actual parts differences between vintage vs remake Tamiya R/C cars, this is the article for you.
When it comes to vintage kit-based R/C models from companies with a past history in plastic models, many people think only of the red and blue stars of Tamiya.
But rival Japanese plastic kit maker Marui made the same transition from plastic model kits to R/C buggies in the 1980s. Their models, while less well known, were just as detailed and beautiful as those from Tamiya. And around their peak in 1986 they even had their own promotional videos for playing in hobby stores…