Americana in True 1:64 Scale: The Fun of Die-Cast Collecting with Auto World
With fall and winter fast approaching, for many auto enthusiasts this means the end of driving season. With fewer events to go to, and less than ideal weather conditions for many, this is a time when gearheads go inside to wrench on their cars or perhaps take part in other car-related hobbies.
Collecting die-cast cars is one of those hobbies that can be done year round, but the dark, cold months always seem to be the time that we're reminded how much fun it can be. These days, there are more ways to get your scale automobile kicks than ever.
If you collect and enjoy and Hot Wheels and Matchbox cars as we do, you’ve likely noticed that for as cool as they are, they don’t quite deliver the precision and detail of other more expensive die-cast cars.
This is perhaps most noticeable when it comes to scale. Most Hot Wheels are cast to be roughly the same size, so a Volkswagen Beetle will be equal in size to a jacked-up 4x4 pickup—and this holds true even for the more collector-oriented Hot Wheels cars on the market.
Typically if you want highly detailed and true to scale die-cast vehicles, you need to step up to at least 1/43 scale or larger vehicles, and those are usually a lot more expensive than their smaller counterparts. Fortunately, that’s not the case with the ever-expanding line of die-casts from Auto World.
With their “True 1:64 Scale” line of die-cast cars, Auto World has brought high end detail and accurate scaling to cars that are both affordable and able to fit in the palm of your hand. We had the chance to open up and “play” with some of these cars and came away very impressed.
At the moment the True 1:64 scale line includes a large variety of American cars representing both the past and present, and the lineup is more unusual than you might expect at first.
Sure, you’ve got your Mustang fastbacks, Pontiac Firebirds and Corvettes—but there’s a lot of love for the more unusual models as well, like ‘64 Pontiac Grand Prix or the '76 Cadillac Coupe DeVille in all of its luxury extravagance.
Speaking of unusual, we especially dig the addition of a few classic American station wagons to the lineup, including the Ford Country Squire, Chevrolet Impala and the early 1970s Buick Estate Wagon.
Looking at one of the cars in your hand, it’s easy to get a sense of the detail and accuracy that goes into these with their real color choices, vinyl tops and authentic trim. Unlike most 1:64 scale vehicles, the hoods open to reveal fully detailed engine bays complete with correct engine colors.
The same goes for the wheels and tires, which are not only modeled to correct scale but also feature authentic designs and tire types, including whitewalls, redlined and raised white letter tires along with a variety of both factory and aftermarket wheel styles.
Among the group of cars we examined we found everything from the classic Magnum 500 rally wheel to Cadillac wires, Mopar steelies with dogdish hubcaps and even the unique Pontiac eight-lug wheel and drum setup.
While the detail that goes into each of these cars is readily apparent when you see one, it’s not until you put a few of them next to each other that you really see the greatness of true 1:64 scale.
Just as you do when looking at real cars, you really get a sense of how big one car is compared to another, and that’s something that’s usually not possible when you are talking about die-cast cars at this size and price level.
To illustrate this, just take a look at the svelte 1:64 scale ‘66 Ford GT40 parked next to the gigantic Buck Estate Wagon, which of course in real life is a massive, heavy car. If these were another brand, they’d most likely be modeled in the same general size rather than correct scale.
More than anything, these Auto World 1:64 scale die-cast cars feel more much substantial than the size suggests. With the combination of the accurate details and colors, the weight of them in your hand and the totally correct scaling, these feel more like larger, more expensive models.
After talking with the team of collectors and car lovers at Auto World, the future of 1:64 scale collecting seems very bright. We are certainly looking forward to seeing what they do next.
In the meantime, anyone looking for some cool and inexpensive stocking stuffers that are more than just toys should certainly give these a look, because big or small, you can never go wrong with the gift of cool cars.