By on August 30, 2011

After I started getting weird diecast toy cars as LeMons Supreme Court baksheesh, my office has become crowded with stuff like a 1:43 scale Leyland P76 and a 1:40 Nissan Prairie. Yesterday, as I pondered the diecast custom vans that got away, I wondered: is it possible to get a diecast toy version of my very first car?
Sure enough, it is! Thing is, the toy version costs $49.99 shipped, or exactly one cent less than I paid for my ’69 Corona sedan back in 1982. There’s no way in hell I’m paying that much for a toy version of a car that was so ill-handling, underpowered, and shoddily built that the Toyoda family would be wise to buy every last survivor and crush it, for the sake of what’s left of the company’s good name… well, except for the fact that it’s impossible for a car freak not to love his or her very first car, no matter how terrible. So, how about you? If your first car was a Volkswagen Beetle or Ford Mustang, you’re in good shape. If it was a Matra Bagheera, on the other hand— hey, you’re still covered!

Get the latest TTAC e-Newsletter!

68 Comments on “Question of the Day: Can You Find a Diecast Replica of Your First Car?...”

  • avatar

    Ertl 1982 Ford EXP, blue #3425G

    Pretty darn close – I had an ’85 so I think it’s OK to say, yes, yes I can. OK fine, it doesn’t have the bubble back the rest is spot on.

  • avatar

    I had a 1980 Dodge Maxivan which makes it tough. I have a micro machine of the earlier generation, short wheel base model but never seen a long wheel base with the later grill and headlights.

  • avatar

    Yep. Sure, it’s the wrong colour (rather than a light blue) and trim level (though that GL has the DL’s hubcaps rather than alloy wheels), but they’re out there. Mine’s an ’89, currently in project status.

    My first Hell Project is also available, even in the correct colour, albeit six years older and non-turbo.

  • avatar

    I highly doubt it. Renault 12.

    actually when googleing it, it says that the replica was a Dacia, so i guess i can get a non decent 1:1 replica….oh well….

    Good news….Dacia makes a replica!

  • avatar

    Models are not a problem for the humble BMW 2002–I already own several. The family hand-me-down Quantum wagon I also drove when I was 16 is trickier, although I’d bet that searching in Europe where the car was marketed as the Passat (and was also somehow unrecognized for being an atrocious car), would generate some leads.

  • avatar
    Why Schabak Modell of Germany would make a model of such a boring car is beyond me. My first car was a 1995 Escort 2 door in white (which I can’t find an exact model of, this is the closest). I’ve owned 3 of this model of Ford Escort (and one of the previous generation and a US model) and they were all crap.

  • avatar

    2003 Focus estate bought new, still driving it*. Looks like there’s at least one model available, the quality of the model also looks pretty realistic…

    *Well actually it’s been standing for a year waiting to get the engine fixed, almost no compression in cyl 1 & 2. Also rusty and the A/C leaks. I definitely do not love it, i like my “temporary” Volvo 740 more than the Focus.

  • avatar

    Hand-me-down 1966 Impala SS:
    Mine had a 283 2bbl and a 2 speed Powerglide but it was still an Impala SS. That’s what the badge said.

  • avatar

    Lotus Elan:
    First car I bought with my own money.

    Here’s the more collectible, Emma Peel version

  • avatar

    Plus modern die cast

  • avatar

    83 Mercury Lynx? No.
    80 Pontiac Grand Prix? Nope..
    73 Chevelle SS? Nada..
    86 Ford Taurus? Bingo!

  • avatar

    I have a 1:43 diecast of my first car (MK IV Triumph Spitfire).

    I also have a 1:43 diecast of my second car (AW11 MR2). I have a 1:43 diecast of my fifth car (another AW11, but blue, and with T-tops). I have a 1:43 diecast of my sixth car (Nissan Maxima). I have a 1:43 diecast of my seventh car (Jeep Cherokee). I have a 1:64 diecast of my eighth car (Checker Marathon…I’ll buy a 1:43 some day). I have a 1:43 of my thirteenth car (XJ-S).

    I also have a 1:18 diecast of my first and third motorcycles (both Triumph Daytonas)

    Out of sixteen cars, and 4 motorcycles, I have 7 and 2 diecasts, respectively.

    I’d be greatly appreciative of anyone with a source for a 1:43 diecast of the following:

    1963 Corvette Convertible (can you believe that no one makes a ’63 convertible? Damned split window taking all the thunder)
    first-gen S10 extended cab
    1987 (ish) F150
    First-gen S10 standard cab, Baja package
    1998 Buick Skylark (as if anyone would ever make a diecast of a rental-only Skylark)
    1988-98 K1500 extended cab
    ’84 Fiero
    ’87 Fiero Notchback
    ’86 Fiero GT

    I know that they made a diecast of my Husqvarna 610 (supermoto), but I haven’t seen one for sale in quite some time, and my CB750 is too customized to hope for a diecast, but i might someday modify an existing diecast.

  • avatar

    I wouldn’t have thought it possible, but there it is, a 1972 Gran Torino in all of its “glory”.

  • avatar

    Wow. It didn’t take long to find a 1963 Rambler Classic 770 sedan online. I can get one from the Franklin Mint with doors, hood, and trunk that open, though mine was blue with a white top, not sickly orange. Only $40, which was more than I paid for the original – nothing, since I inherited it from an older sister who got married in ’68. When I got it from her, the owner’s manual was still in the glove compartment, and there was a coupon in it for a shop manual for five bucks. I sent it in (in 1968!) and got the shop manual. I no longer have the car or owner’s manual, but I still have the shop manual.

  • avatar

    Since the first vehicle titled in my name was a ’65 VW Beetle, I expect that it would be hard to find a model format it which it is NOT available.

    However, the first that I DROVE (1970 Pontiac Grand Prix) seems to be a different story.

  • avatar

    The first car that was really mine was an ’89 Toyota 4Runner SR5 (V6! Power windows! Removable top! 5 Speed! Gray market Canadian import!). I got it for the price of a clutch job, essentially. It had fist sized rust holes in each fender, was absolutely terrifying above 55mph, and the engine spectacularly grenaded within four months, but I loved it dearly, and I’d have another one if the opportunity presented itself.

    About 15 seconds of googling turned up a new Matchbox 4Runner SR5:

    Mine was black, but I won’t argue.

  • avatar

    Here’s mine:

    Except it was red and had dog-dish hubcaps, and the red ran down over the rusty rocker panels.

  • avatar

    Uh, no. No Z-24 hatch (was to be), Corsica (shared), or Intrigue (first moneypit).

    But there is one of my drivers-ed car, that car of high power and style, the Dodge Aries!

  • avatar
    Joe McKinney

    My first car was a 1962 Studebaker GT Hawk. You would think this would be a popular subject for diescast, but it isn’t. As far as I know, the only currently available diecast GT Hawk replica is a 1/43 scale 1963 model made by MiniMarques.

  • avatar

    I doubt there is a diecast of my first car, the legendary ’75 Buick Skyhawk, but I still have a 1/25th scale model that I built of it using a Monza kit, complete with my cheesy attempt at race car graphics and the heavy steel Cragar SS/T wheels.

  • avatar

    Motor Trends 1983 COTY – an AMC Renault Alliance? I don’t think so.

  • avatar

    Too easy. There are lots of 1965 Mustang convertible diecasts. They are even available in maroon like my car.

  • avatar
    Educator(of teachers)Dan

    Of course no one makes a 1982 Chevrolet Celebrity sedan die cast or model.

  • avatar
    bumpy ii

    I’m sure I could find a diecast Chevy Citation, but why would I want to? The first car I remember was a Plymouth Horizon; no love there either. I came home from the hospital in an old IH Travelall that my parents nicknamed the B.U.M.F. for good reason.

    • 0 avatar
      Joe McKinney

      Motor Max makes a 1/24 scale diecast Horizon.

      Motor Max also makes the Pinto, Vega, Gremlin and K-Car in 1/24 scale diecast.

  • avatar

    They made a number of die cast copies of my 1st, a 1979 Mustang. When it is a Indy pace car that happens.

    I doubt I’ll get one though, even with the 3.3L I6 it wasn’t the best car I ever had.

  • avatar

    For a car as widely produced as a 1975 Mark 1 Golf (Rabbit in my case, since I’m American), the selection I could find with a brief Google search was surprisingly small – best I could do was this red four-door (mine was green and two doors):

    While the Rabbit was the first titled in my name, my first daily driver was much harder – 1972 Toyota Hi-Lux yielded no results. Same with my second daily driver – 1967 Mercedes 230. Guess not many folks are nostalgic for those cars.

    • 0 avatar

      Somewhere, I have a metallic green Rabbit made by Matchbox…
      As for my first car, there are precious few models, and those that are exist only for the Mitsubishi Plymouth Arrow variant (okay…so there isn’t much difference)…and I think I have the Don Prudhomme funny car version of the Arrow in Matchbox (or Hot Wheels…whichever)…

  • avatar

    Can’t find a model of my first car (’82 Subaru GL 4dr), but I did pickup a 1/18 scale model of my newest car (’11 BMW 328i Touring) at BMW Welt when I took delivery of my car last month. Very nice too, even has fuzzy carpets, and it is almost the right shade of green. The model is of a pre-LCI 2007 or so, but close enough!

    • 0 avatar

      It looks like there was one at one time – I did a Google search of “Subaru Leone die cast” to find this page:

      Unfortunately the photo of the four-door won’t load, but there is a Leone hardtop model picture.

  • avatar

    1971 Ford Pinto: $12.44

    Sweet! [Mine was orange.]

  • avatar

    So far I’ve not seen my very first car, a 1968 Chrysler Newport, let alone the ’68 300 but found PT Cruisers, vintage Chargers and other models from the 40’s to the present though.

  • avatar

    Yes, but not exactly the same color or engine.

  • avatar

    Let’s see.

    Vehicle I learned to drive in – Orange Mist 1983 Nissan 720 king cab – No
    First vehicle with my name (partially) on the title – Metallic mint green 1992 Geo Metro XFI – No
    First vehicle totally in my name – White 1995 Dodge Neon base Sedan – Closest I could find, but wrong number of doors
    First vehicle I bought with my own money – Yellow 2000 Turbo Beetle – I think we have a winner

    Then prospects get worse again with a 99 Neon RT and an 05 Saabaru (non turbo). I am a bit surprised that there are turbo Saabaru diecasts.

  • avatar

    61 Triumph Herald total crap but it was mine

  • avatar

    Yup, I have 3 models of my first car (in different scales)and windup!

    1967 Mini with 998cc->1098cc->1275cc
    Drum->Disc, 10″->12″ wheels

    12 glorious years of driving ended with a sleepy 3 series driver changing into my lane, at 60km/hr, Caught me on the rear quarter and ripped the back open.

  • avatar

    If anyoe can find a model of a 1954 Chrysler New Yorker DeLux, I’d sure like to know.

    FWIW, teh New Yorker Delux had a 4 barrel carb and dual exhausts. Regular New Yorkers limped along with on a 2 barrel carb and a single exhaust. Delux models also had a chrome gas cap, plain ones a painted gas cap.

    These were such terrible cars that the Buick dealer, where I bought mine in 1962, had 2 of them. It was $35 for the Delux, but only $25 for BOTH the New Yorker and an Imperial of the same vintage. I had visions of my parents going beserk when I brought home 2 dead Chryslers, so I settled for one.

    That was a long time ago.


  • avatar

    1985 Mazda RX-7 – closest they have is the ’79 – same body style. I collect 1:18s and since I was a kid it was always a goal to own cars they made diecasts of. I achieved that with a 96 Impala SS, and have been on a roll since with a few Trans Ams, Mustangs, a Corvette and Plymouth GTX (they only make the ’69 – mine’s a ’68).

  • avatar
    Athos Nobile

    I don’t think so. There are Tamiya scale models of the 1st gen Isuzu Impulse, but so far I haven’t seen any of the second (and last) gen.

    The closest I’ve seen on ebay are Geo Storm promos.

    I can tell you that I saw a Samand die cast car (couldn’t get one :( ) and what seemed to be a custom made die cast replica of the Saipa 141. The latter is a bit ugly, but the model was beautifully crafted.

  • avatar
    Sammy B

    first car: 1984 Toyota Van LE (5speed…we still have it!)

    Majorette made a version of the 1980s Toyota Lite Ace, so that’s close enough. There were 4-5 different paint schemes I think….all weird & with wacky colors (my favorite: white w/ a red screaming chicken!)

    here’s one:

    Would love a larger scale version (these are all hot wheels size, so close to 1:64)

    next car w/ daily driver duty was 1991 Sentra SE-R. Haven’t been able to find a good one of those!

  • avatar

    Found it…

  • avatar

    My first car was a ’95 Chrysler Intrepid, and I’ve still got the dealer promo model of a ’93 Intrepid ES I made sure to track down (something like this:

    Since then, the only other car I’ve owned which I’ve had a scale version of is my Jeep YJ – as a child of the early 90’s, I’ve got a couple tiny square headlight’d Jeeps kicking around. I know my Civic is out there, sort of, but they all seem to be Japanese-spec Type Rs (which are physically closer to the Acura CSX).

    • 0 avatar
      Joe McKinney

      I have Brookfield’s 1/24 scale diecast promo for the 1993 Chrysler Concorde. This is a really nice model. All four doors open as do the trunk and hood. The engine compartment and interior are very detailed. And, the dark green paint is very close to what I have seen on real first generation Concordes.

      I have read that Brookfield intended to make a full line of dealer promos. Unfortunately the quality and detail of their models made them too expensive.

  • avatar

    For the cars listed here that aren’t easily found in diecast form, you can almost guarantee that dealer promo models were made of your car. A quick scan of eBay uncovered dealer promo models of an ’89 Buick Regal and a ’91 Geo Storm.

    • 0 avatar

      I have a plastic promo ’92 Storm, an exact match for my second car except the promo is a GSi.

      The closest I’ve come to my first car, a 1984 Plymouth Turismo, is an AMT model for a 1985 Shelby Charger. If only. Sigh…

  • avatar

    Brookfield Collector’s Guild made an absolutely gorgeous 1/24 reproduction of my Aurora. I have one of each color they made, including my very own Silver Teal metallic.

  • avatar

    My first car was a Volvo V70, so I highly dou…. well I’ll be damned. Yes, yes you can.

  • avatar

    Yes, but does the diecast of your first car come with Ms. Emma Peel?

  • avatar

    But I don’t know why.

  • avatar

    1:43 1975 Peugeot 504, absolutely no problem, go figure

  • avatar

    Nope, not that I’ve found yet. ~1959 Mercedes 180a, bought for $65 in 1969! The out-of-production diecast models I’ve found so far, sold for 38% more than the car cost me originally.

  • avatar

    A 1959 Ford Custom 300 four-door sedan?

    Apparently yes, at least in HO scale.

  • avatar

    1946 Pontiac Coupe? No
    1957 Ford 3/4 Ton shortbox pick-up? No luck.
    1956 Pontiac Ambulance conversion? Not on your life.
    1975 Mazda RX3? As if.

    • 0 avatar
      Joe McKinney

      Monty, Tomica makes a 1/59 scale RX3 coupe. I still have one of these I bought in the 1970’s when this model was part of their Pocket Cars line.

      • 0 avatar

        Cool! Mine was blue with black accents, but who cares at this point.

        It was a fun car, with lots of “go-fast”, but it was a pig on gas. My next car was a ’64 Oldsmobile 88 with the 394 V8, and it got better mileage than the Mazda!

  • avatar

    Crap – posted before I was finished, and now it won’t let me edit.

    It wasn’t until car #5 that I struck paydirt. 1962 Pontiac Catalina convertible. Mine was red, however. And didn’t look as good. And cost less than the diecast model!

    Thanks, Murilee. I’ve now just wasted almost my entire lunch hour trying to find diecast models.

  • avatar

    Not my exact year (1983 Chevette Scooter, Navy Blue, 5sp), but it’s the closest I could find:

  • avatar

    My first car was a 2005 Subaru WRX STi. I’m sure someone makes one…..I’ve also seen them as RC cars, on the cover of video games, etc..

  • avatar

    Surprisingly Matchbox made a 1975 Chevy Laguna race car, and it’s close enough to my ’76 Chevelle that it works for me, even though its painted up in Pepsi Challenge colors and I played with it… a lot!

  • avatar

    Hillman Hunter – Corgi model 302

  • avatar

    First car, yep.. 1971 Datsun 240Z. I have one, though there’s not nearly enough rust on it.

    My first car to actually get a set of (legal) plates? Not so much… The Dodge Polara 2dr hard top die cast is impossible to find. I’ve found a 1965 Monaco in plastic, though the trim is all wrong. And my Dodge (which i still own) is the Canadian variant so it has a Fury dash. And a bench seat. Could be an interesting project to piece a few 40$ plastic models together and cobble together some proper aluminum strips to match.

  • avatar

    Sadly, there is no diecast version of the 1983 Ford Tempo in any scale.

  • avatar

    While it was far from my first vehicle, I’m trying to locate a die cast or other replica model of my 2007 Toyota 4runner. I’ve searched online for over a year now, and have yet been able to locate one. Any suggestions????

Read all comments

Recent Comments

  • Master Baiter: You might be able to cheat the government for a while by purchasing an EV, but rest assured, even if...
  • zerofoo: Near as makes no difference 80 grand for an old engine in a vehicle that doesn’t benefit much from it....
  • WalterRohrl: Haha, yeah, just…no. People here have figured you out, most just won’t waste the time on you...
  • EBFlex: Imagine a company with such a poor track record with quality, especially with electronics, making an electric...
  • EBFlex: “ And I’m the one that gets called out for snark. Ha!” As you should

New Car Research

Get a Free Dealer Quote

Who We Are

  • Adam Tonge
  • Bozi Tatarevic
  • Corey Lewis
  • Jo Borras
  • Mark Baruth
  • Ronnie Schreiber