Every once in a while I enjoy building one of these Japanese car kits, especially those by Tamiya and Aoshima. They’ve always been five miles ahead of anything else and they do detail like no other has ever done. Fujimi runs a close third and even Hasegawa ranks highly up there, all of ’em just do top stuff when it comes to whatever you get your hands on. I mean, I’m forever one of those dipshits that is infatuated with all things American, especially the good ol’ lead laced gasoline powered V8’s that literally drank away the world’s supply gasoline one boat ride to a Texaco at a time – but that doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy the other side of the planet’s offerings. And uh, forgive the jab at old Americana life there, I love American V8 powered muscle cars and I will forever but boy they do deserve the slap every now and again.
Of all the Japanese cars out there, my favorites are easily the legendary R33 and R34 Nissan Skylines, the Mitshubishi Lancer IV through X line and the Nissan Silvia, which unfortunately just like the Skyline rarely ever showed itself outside the Japanese domestic market, hell the only cousin I ever seen in real life as a regular ordinary car was it’s 200SX cousin which was a European spec version of the discontinued-yet-continued-for-export 180SX and even then they only shared a chassis for the most part.
But when it comes to drifting, generally I don’t really care. Actually, I should correct myself and say that I don’t care at all. Which I suppose is a shame, cause the cars not only look amazing, they’re wondrous pieces of tech themselves too. Plus it’s a feat of strength in itself when you can control a car so well you can turn it on a dime and cause its ass to come within millimeters of a wall and look stylish doing so. Now Aoshima’s been doing a line of drift cars for God knows how long now, you name a company or a tuning shop with a car under their wing and chances are they got a kit of it one way or another. Rasty, a small car maintenance and tuning company a few kilometers outside of Tokyo in a suburb called Shiroi, happened to have such a car ready for kitting.
It’s a rather unique take on the Silvia S13 with this gargantuan body kit and a wing so large it could just about take off but despite the fact that this kit has no engine(and oddly enough it does have a moving hood, but I suppose that’s likely cause Aoshima also does proper detailed engines for the Silvia kits, though sadly they only packaged it with one kit so far), it does have a ton of legacy parts from the earlier S13 releases such as the S13 Turbo I mentioned before that does come with the proper SR20DET I4 engine, it has both early and late headlight frames and lamps, it has normal interior pieces and steering wheels, plus a nice addition I always love from Aoshima – left hand drive set-up.
Though I should mention, two of these kits exist and I apparently got a re-release which is far nicer to deal with all in all(one’s from 2013 and this one’s from 2016). The original is molded in white and whatnot, this one is cast in the colors of the car and the interior, plus the wheels are pre-painted, so bonus!
But what I truly love about this kit and by God, I do mean, love; the wheels. It has separate high quality chrome rings that you simply glue onto the rims proper and it makes for such a clean, good look. No hassle with paint, nothing. It’s simple, it’s elegant and fuck me sideways do I wish more kit companies would take this approach with wheels, especially if they’re deep and chrome ringed like these.
So what else can be said? Well, sadly no engine though I am definitely gonna buy the S13 kit with the SR20DET engine in it, cause I do want a stock Silvia at one point or another for funsies. The whole thing goes together like a friggin’ dream, plus it all sits right at the end and doesn’t feel like the slightest nudge might make everything snap off. Though, the wheels are turnable and have this nasty habit of going crooked under their own weight a bit, but whatever man, small print I guess. If slightly on-the-piss wheels is what needs to happen for a kit that goes together this well to be able to exist, then so be it!
It’s such a lovely, simplistic yet complicated build. But then again, that is more or less the trademark of Japanese model kits. Authentic as all sin, beautiful, but simple in most places. And believe me, that is no complaint at all. I seriously enjoy these types of kits every now and again cause it’s not only different, but they are also damn near stress free. It’s a nice solid fun build from start to finish.
’91 Nissan Silvia Turbo K’s RASTY S13 specifications:
Kit: “The Tuned Car” series, No. 6
Skill Level: N/A
Molded in: Black, Gray