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This review can now also be found in full on my website, along with the rest of my collection and reviews. Just click my signature banner to take a look!

My next review is for the legendary McLaren F1. This version is the short tail 1995 Le Mans winning car, number 59. As a Le Mans winner, this was an essential addition to my collection.

Exterior
The exterior of this car can best be described as average. This is perhaps a little harsh, but judged by current standards this model does show it's age. Importantly, the overall stance and appearance are good. Some openings are at least partially perforated, and panel gaps are ok. Doors are not a perfect fit but the gaps on this car are disguised by the dark colour of the car. The headlights are one of the more disappointing aspects of the exterior. The outer lenses are a nice fit, but the 'bulbs' behind are simple flat silver discs which are made quite crudely. The small front lights and indicators are also just painted on, as are the side indicators, and as a result they lack depth and realism. Also, the front orange indicators should be on the inside of the clear lights rather than as they are here. The four round rear lights are all separate pieces, but their appearance is spoiled a little by attachment stubs. Exhausts are not at all perforated. The rear wing is nicely made, and on my first addition it is a true replica of the real car, but on the later edition, the incorrect rear wing was fitted.

Score: 6/10

Paint
Paint is reasonably smoothly applied with no obvious flaws. It is not the best paint job by today's standards but it is still difficult to see any real problems. The plastic engine cover is not a perfect match, but once again on a black car this is not too obvious. The biggest fault with the paint is that the lighter parts of the car replicating the unpainted caron fibre of the real car are not quite the right colour. The paint is a little bit too light. Again, this is only really nitpicking when the car is sat on display.

Score: 7/10

Tampo and Decals
As an older model all sponsors and markings are decals, and this is one of the weak points of the model given it's age. They become very fragile and prone to cracking and coming away from the body, as some on my car have done. However, if you are lucky enough to find a 'new' car this may not be a problem for a while at least. On the positive side, all the decals seem to be accurate and correctly positioned, and the alignment on the decals that are split by the door gaps is quite good.

Score: 7/10





Tyres and Wheels
This model has racing slick tyres, which have a very slight moulding line visible along the middle of them. The tyres have a rubber and not at all plastic appearance and the sidewalls are marked with Michelin. The wheels are nicely formed, with no real criticisms, and are also marked with OZ. Wheel nuts are reasonably replicated.

Score: 7/10

Brakes
A weak point of this model as with many UT models. The discs are a grey colour and look like the plastic they are made of. 'Grooves' are not actually cut into the disc, but simply painted on lines. The discs spin with the wheels but there are no calipers at all.

Score: 4/10



Engine
The engine cover is plastic and the hinges are very flimsy, but the cover is still very fiddly to open. There is not that much engine detail to be seen, and so little to comment on. The big air intake/filter dominates the engine bay. Below you can see the main block of the engine with nicely done McLaren and BMW Power logos. Other than that there are a few moulded black components and the exhaust outlets in silver. Not awful, but not outstanding either.

Score: 5/10



Interior
Doors swing upwards on neat but fragile looking hinges, and only one of my doors will stay open on its own. The interior is almost all black plastic with detail simply moulded and/or painted in. The hard seat has belts moulded in, although buckles are highlighted in silver. Buttons on the dashboard are painted on to raised pieces of the black plastic, and the digital display is a nicely detailed sticker. Pedals are niecly done, with detailed seperate pedals and silver and yellow parts. Overall though, another sign of the model's age.

Score: 4/10



Overall, this model shows its age, and mine in particular as a second hand buy needs some care taken for moving and photographing. In relation to modern models, this car lacks detail, but despite this these cars demand high prices due to the subject matter and lack of competition - no other racing McLarens are available in this scale. Objectively though, this is not a great model, and a lot more is available for this money nowadays. Nevertheless, this model is not so bad as to be avoided if the subject matter appeals.

Overall Score: 5.7/10

Added to DX Model Review Database v2.0
 

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Excellent review, Dave and in my opinion right on the mark as well :cheers

These cars were ok for the time, nothing special and a lot of them went unsold for many years. Once folks saw that they were not going to be available and as new collectors came on the scene wanting to fill out their collections, the price went up on these.

I just wonder what the price would drop to if there was some (better) competion.
I always figure that you are paying $35-$40 for the model and anything over that is for the rarity :giggle
I am just glad I got mine (single wing) for $23 because I doubt i would have paid much more, not when I can get a Maisto GT for less money.

Congrats on finally filling this hole in your collection :cheers
 
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An honest review Dave :nicejob

Its about time people stopped looking at these Macs as something theyre not .

They are not a fantastic model , I wouldnt say they are that rare either and they definately arent worth the money the are fetching .

They have their fair share of bad points too , crappy hinges , flaky decals and melting wheels to name but 3 .

Sure , they look sexy as <no profanity>. but $150 - $200s worth ...No way . :cheers
 

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<{POST_SNAPBACK}>[/post][/right]
:iagree :iagree I could not have said it better myself Gary!

Dave, congrats on filling this gap and thanks for the frank and truthful review. :cheers

I got this model several months ago shortly after joining this forum and my first impresssion was one of disappointment. The model felt flimsy, looked delicate, had far too much plastic and lacked detail. :pullhair Even the early AUTOart 917s were better. However, like the 917, the Macs won Le Mans and hold a very notable place in history. And unlike the 917, the road version is almost legendary. So even with its faults I don't regret getting it and it is an important part of my collection.

And Dave, thanks for noting the two different wings, I guess I was lucky in that mine has the proper one.
 

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Good review, Dave! I don't have a Mac F1, and all I know about them is what I've read here, but it seems you've cut through the hype and presented the facts as they are.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Cheers guys. I always think that a review is not the place for personal feelings to interfere with letting people know exactly what they're getting. The model means a lot more to me because of its significance, but that doesn't make it a better diecast.

Sir Gary, I might disagree that these cars are not rare! Or if not rare, they are very HTF!

They do go for silly money often. I'm glad really that I picked up a not perfect one because I only paid $55 which isn't bad considering the market for these things.

Bob, the rear wing was a bit of a thing for me, hence it took so long to find one. But you have Ronan to thank for orignally alerting me to the difference between this edition and the later one.
 
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If I am understanding this question correctly................The first release with the split rear wing is packaged as PMA, whereas the second release with the single plane rear wing is packaged as UT. Therefore, this model is the PMA version.
 

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The 1:12 McLarens are of a completely different quality! They are really good with heavy, nicely crafted die cast parts. Quality of build is very good, details are on a respective level and they are more worth their prices than their younger brothers in 1:18.
Here's a pic of my dark metallic red one


In my opinion these are between the Tamiya F50 and Kyosho F40 in quality. They are haaard to find without any kind of flaw however. I bought over 30 different ones before I got all 7 of them in perfect condition in each colour. :hot
 
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