Ferrari Formula 1 Cars in Miniature by Doug Breithaupt

Posted by: Doug in Member Blogs

The following Ferrari F1 models in small-scale represent a cross-section of the many toy race cars made over the years. In some cases it is possible to be sure of the exact year and model represented while in other cases the casting may be too generic to be sure. Toy car makers have never needed to be to careful with details where race cars are concerned. Kids are happy to use any reasonable likeness to represent their favorite red racers. F1 car design often changes slowly so one casting may last for 10 or more years, perhaps updated with some new graphics. Both Mattel and Majorette were able to do this with recent castings. I expect that some may wish to challenge my conclusions as to the year and car represented. You comments are as always, welcome.

 

1951 375F1 by Kyosho

Alberto Ascari won the F1 driver's championship in 1951 with this Ferrari. This model represents one of the earliest Ferrari F1 cars with classic lines from the 1950's. Kyosho has done 21 different Ferrari F1 models and all are excellent representations of the real race cars.

1961 156F1 by Hot Wheels

Phil Hill won the F1 driver's championship in 1961 with this Ferrari. While the metallic red is a bit over the top, the narrow rubber tires and wheels are a dramatic improvement over the regular line model. The detail and overall shape are excellent and more accurate than the classic Matchbox version.

1970 312BF1 by Matchbox

The model is a tough call. Matchbox did this somewhat generic F1 model and while the V12 and general shape are much like the 312B, it is not identified as a Ferrari. It did not appear in red but was offered in this groovy shade of purple.

1977 312T3F1 by Majorette

Majorette has offered a variety of Ferrari F1 models over the years and this 312T3 form 1977 is one of their best. Complete with driver and decent racing graphics, this model is getting hard to find today.

1983 126C3F1 by Polistil

This model represents the last series of small-scale F1 cars offered by Polistil. A Ferrari transporter was also available. The quality is not as high as earlier models but the shape is still correct.

1984 126C4 by Matchbox

Matchbox may have provided Ferrari graphics for this model but it is actually closer to an Indy Car than it is to an F1 racer. Still, if you step back and squint a bit, it could be considered a 1984 model, maybe.

1989 641/2F1 by Guisval

Guisval of Spain has produced a selection of F1 cars and this Ferrari model has been offered in a variety of graphics. The big Ferrari badge on the nose makes it clear what this car represents.

1992 F92AT by MiniChamps PMA

This accurate casting is everything one would expect of MiniChamps right down to Jean Alesi's name on the air box. Even the helmet is correct for the driver.

2000 F12000 by Siku

Siku could not resist celebrating the success of Michael Schumacher with a series of F1 models. While the models are excellent, it is clear that Siku balked at paying the high licensing fees. The result is an excellent Ferrari casting with generic tampos.

1961 156F1 by Matchbox

Phil Hill won the F1 driver's championship in 1961 with this Ferrari. Matchbox produced this classic model with a driver and lovely wire wheels. Sadly, none of the real 156 models have survived but several replicas exist.

1968 312F1 by Penny (Polistil)

Penny Toys offered a whole series of F1 cars from 1968 including this Ferrari. The rear tires seem a bit too large but there is no doubt about the V12. These models were later copied by other manufacturers in Asia.

1975 312TF1 by Yat Ming

Yat Ming copied a number of F1 models offered by Polistil. The air box has been altered a bit but that was likely to simplify the casting process. These appear to still be in production.

1978 312T4F1 by Tomica

The 312 was used by Ferrari throughout the 1970's and Tomica offered one of the last versions. The casting is accurate as one would expect from Tomica, but a variety of racing graphics were offered. Tomica also offered Lotus and McLaren models from this same period.

1986 F1 86 by Majorette

This casting is another rather generic F1 model but Majorette was determined to make it a Ferrari. It is closest to the 1996 model.

1988 F1/87/88 by Matchbox

While this Matchbox is clearly an F1 model, the casting was offered in colors other than Ferrari. It does appear to be a fairly close match to the Ferrari models of the late 1980's and the Ferrari racing graphics are period correct.

1989 641/2F1 by Guisval

Guisval changed the stickers to update their Ferrari F1 model but the casting is the same. The graphics are cleaner and may be more accurate.

1998 F300F1 by Hot Wheels

This model represents the first use of this Ferrari F1 casting by Hot Wheels. It carries Michael Schumacher's #3 and was offered with an F1 pit stop set. Hot Wheels has continued to change the graphics on this casting and offer it as a new model.

2001 F12001 by Hot Wheels

Just like Majorette, Hot Wheels added a #1 to their 1998 casting and voila, it became the 2001 Ferrari. They also added a driver and charged three times more than a regular issue model for their series of F1 cars. A 'Milestone Moments - Hall of Fame' version (left) featured better wheels and celebrated Schumacher's 2001 car.

Generic F1 toy cars in Ferrari red

There have been many generic F1 models that may or may not have been intended to be Ferrari race cars. The models shown here are all from companies with names like High Speed, Mega Speed and other racy brands. Some appear to be copies of more expensive models while other seem to be unique castings. They often come in multi-packs with cars in other racing colors.

1956 D50 by Kyosho

Juan Manual Fangio won the F1 driver's championship in 1956 with this Ferrari-Lancia. In 1955, these cars were campaigned by Lancia. When Lancia withdrew from F1 for 1956, they made them available to Ferrari. The side-pod fuel tanks give these cars a unique look.

1964 158F1 by Bestbox

John Surtees won the F1 driver's championship in 1964 with this Ferrari. These models may have been produced to take advantage of the success of the movie Grand Prix, staring James Garner.

1975 312TF1 by Polistil

Nicki Lauda won the F1 driver's championship in 1975 with this Ferrari. In the mid-1970's, Polistil continued to offer most of the models in the F1 grid. Once again, many were copied as with the Yat Ming model (left). Some are still in production after 30 years!

1977 312T3F1 by Polistil

Polistil's third F1 Ferrari is quite authentic. These models came in small boxes with pictures of the real car for box art.

1982 126C2 by Corgi

This Corgi Ferrari appears to be closest to a 126C2 but it is not very accurate. The graphics are nice and the inclusion of a driver makes this a fun model.

1987 F1/87 by Darda

Darda models are not diecast but they have offered some interesting models over the years. This Ferrari seems closest to the car that ran in 1987.

1990 641/2 by Tomica

This Tomica model is quite accurate for the new body style that ran in the early 1990's. It has been copied by a variety of generic manufacturers.

1996 F310F1 by Real Toy

Early Real Toy models used graphics that looked like real racing graphics but with the words altered to avoid licensing. This is the Ferrari look-alike.

2001 F12001 by Majorette

Carrying Schumacher's #1 from his third Driver's Championship win in 2000, Majorette re-released their 1986 model once again. Millions of children were happy to race it across the floor regardless.

Generic F1 toy cars in Ferrari red

There have been many generic F1 models that may or may not have been intended to be Ferrari race cars. The models shown here are all from companies with names like High Speed, Mega Speed and other racy brands. Some appear to be copies of more expensive models while other seem to be unique castings. They often come in multi-packs with cars in other racing colors.

Tags: Vehicles, Tales of Toy Cars

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