Here's the revised review for the Lamborghini Murcielago
As you can see from the pictures, AUTOart's rendition of the Murcielago is available in four colours are available (Pearl Yellow, Miura Orange, Aztec Green and Diamond Black). The paint quality is outstanding as the paint is neatly applied without any unpainted areas and the application is consistent around the whole model. Also it is difficult to tell the difference between the painted metal parts from the painted plastic parts on the green, yellow and black models but you can tell on the orange model.
Although Maisto and Gate capture the stance of the Murcielago nicely, AUTOart is in a different league. The model is to scale and its proportions are correct. The panel gaps are much tighter and the lines are finer so the model looks of much higher quality (which you'd expect from a model costing twice as much as either Maisto's or Gate's version) The panel gap around the front compartment is so fine that you need an almost needle-thin flat object to prise it open. However the left door doesn't fit as well as the right door and I have seen this on every other AUTOart Murcielago so the fault isn't unique to my model. The lights are very well done - the headlights are separate pieces of plastic mounted in a large separate piece of black plastic and the tail lights are a simple affair of two separate coloured plastic pieces which still look very good. However the side repeaters and the tail light on the engine cover are both simulated by paint but this would have been rather difficult to have been done by a separate plastic piece given their positions. The carbon-fibre look mesh is very nice and it is semi-transparent so you can see the cooling fans in the engine bay from the rear of the model. A nice touch is that the small rear spoiler can be left flat or positioned as it would be if the Murcielago were travelling beyond 70mph. In addition the two air intakes that come out from the buttresses on the real car when the engine gets hot also come out on the model - although they need a delicate touch to keep them up (see below). These two features are unique to AUTOart's Murcielago although Hot Wheels' version has the opening air intakes.
One rather disappointing feature of the model's exterior is that it has a lot of plastic where metal should have been used. The whole engine cover is plastic as are the side skirts but it can be argued that the air intakes needed to be plastic in order for them to stay up. Despite the unnecessary use of plastic, the model still weighs a perfectly reasonable 670 grams.
The doors are opened by pressing a switch on each door and they open but not completely so you need to hold the doors up to get a decent look inside. Oddly and rather curiously the right-hand door has a loose piece of plastic that I've seen on other Murcielago models made by AUTOart. The interior is rather nice with carpeting on the floors and textured plastic for instruments and seats. The buckles on the seat belts are painted and the chrome gearstick has the 7-position H-Gate. AUTOart correctly took note of the fact that the throttle pedal is different in shape and in colour to the other two pedals and you can see this in the footwell. Also they correctly positioned pedals correctly as they are severely offset due to the size of the huge wheel arches.
The interior is virtually faultless.
WHEELS & BRAKES
The low profile tyres are well done and have "P-Zero" printed on them and the wheels are highly detailed. The brake discs rotate with the wheels but the discs aren't completely perforated but the "holes" are made by the mould. The brake calipers are accurately done and even the handbrake calipers are present on the rear brake discs.
ENGINE & UNDERCARRIAGE DETAIL
The engine cover raises (and remains raised) revealing a very detailed engine. The carbon-fibre effect is very well simulated and some wiring and plumbing are present. The exhausts are well replicated and you can clearly see the "V" formed by the two banks of cylinders. Correctly you can see the floor through the engine bay. This is some of AUTOart's best engine detail that you're likely to find. The undercarriage detail follows the detail of the engine. You can see much of the engine and gearbox (which is mounted in front of the engine, just like the Diablo) clearly as well as the driveshafts and two differentials that indicate that the Murcielago is 4WD. The exhausts and tailpipes are very well done and the tailpipes are hollow to an extent. The suspension is well simulated even though it is non-functional.
No fewer than five model manufacturers make the Murcielago in 1/18 scale: AUTOart, Gate, Hot Wheels, Bburago and Maisto. Unsurprisingly, AUTOart's effort is the by far the best (and the most expensive), Gate's (part of the Gateway Global Company like AUTOart) is a good effort but not as detailed as the AUTOart and half the price. Maisto's is comparable to Gate's effort. Hot Wheels' version is reasonably good but still inferior to AUTOart's rendition and Bburago's version is on the bottom rung of the ladder.
Despite being the most expensive of the five renditions of the Murcielago, AUTOart's version is by far the most popular model partly due to its being arguably the best model. It is not as easily available as the other four versions either.
AUTOart did a fantastic job of making the Murcielago despite the use of a sizable amount of plastic instead of metal and, in my opinion, it is worth paying the premium over either the other four versions of it if you adore the Murcielago (as I do) but if you prefer to buy budget models then either the Maisto or Gate version will do. The Murcielago model is a must have for supercar and Lamborghini collectors alike.
Total Score - 46/50
Thanks to http://www.DX Rocks.com[/URL] and http://www.diecast18.com for the use of their photos.
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