Mini Jets by Norev

Posted by: Doug in Member Blogs

Additional images courtesy of Christian Falkensteiner, Mark Foster, Remco Natrop, Kimmo Sahakangas, Graham West

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The Norev story begins in 1945 and it takes 30 years for the Mini Jet line of 1:64 cars to be introduced. It appears that Norev had an opportunity to use 1:66 scale Schuco castings in 1975 and selected an assortment of models from the Schuco line that they thought would continue to sell under the Mini-Jet name. In addition, Norev created their own original castings to introduce with the ex-Schuco models. In 1976, Norev selected additional Schuco castings to add to the Mini-Jet line. By 1978 Norev was only producing new castings of Mini-Jet models. New castings continued on a periodic basis through 1984 after which, no new models were produced in the Mini-Jet line. Mini-Jet models were sold by Norev until 1994 when it seems that all production of small-scale Norev models ceased. Fortunately, the story does not end there as new Norev models are now being produced in 1:55 scale. In the last several years the Norev name has re-appeared on small-scale vehicles and even the Mini Jet name has re-appeared. These models are of Peugeot, Renault, Citroen, Lancia, Fiat, Audi, Porsche and Mercedes-Benz vehicles and are sold through auto dealerships and other retail locations. The scale is 1:55 and detail is excellent. A story on new Norev models will be offered in future.

Mini-Jet models are simple diecast vehicles but with realistic colors and shapes and include cars seldom if ever done in small-scale. Early models are much like the ex-Schuco castings that Norev was able to use. On some models, the base and interior are one casting. The earlier models have opening features but on some models, these were not continued into the 1980's. For example, doors on later versions of the Ligier JS2 are cast shut. Since Mini-Jet doors were never spring loaded and tended to swing open on their own, this may not be considered a loss. Early models continued Schuco-style wheels but Norev's own wheels were used later on all models. Dates below reflect when Norev first produced the model and not model years. The source for the model list was 'Classic Miniature Vehicles made in France' by Dr. Edward Force (1991).

Special thanks are due to Jeff Koch who provided the table-top display (right) that would look right at home in any French hobby store of the 1980's. Best of all, it came with many of the models used in this story and when combined with my existing collection, allowed for the representative selection seen here.

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ORIGINAL MINI JET
(ex Schuco 800 numbers)

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1975 BMW 2002 #809

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1975 Porsche 911S #813

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1975 Ford Capri 1700GT #816


1975 Opel Manta #839

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1975 Porsche 917 #854

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1975 Renault 17 Coupe #861

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1975 Renault 5 #871

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1975 Citroƒ«n DS21 #883


1975 Porsche 914 #unknown

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MINI JET 400 SERIES

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1984 Citroƒ«n BX #400

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1975 Ligier JS2 #401

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1975 Matra Bagheera #402

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1975 Citroƒ«n GS #404

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1975 Peugeot 504 #405

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1975 Citroƒ«n CX #406

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1975 Renault 12 #407

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1976 Citroƒ«n Dyane #408

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1976 Renault 4L #409

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1976 Mercedes-Benz Ambulance #410

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1976 Maserati Boomerang #411

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1976 (NSU) Bertone Trapeze #412

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1976 Renault 30TS #413

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1976 Peugeot 604 #414

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1978 Simca 1308GT/Talbot 1510SX

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1978 BMW 633 CSI #416

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1978 Fiat 131S #417


1978 Porsche Turbo #418

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1978 Renault 14 #419

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1978 Peugeot 305SR #420

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1978 Simca Talbot Horizon #421

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1982 Renault 18GTS #422

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1982 Volvo 264 #423

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1982 Ford Mustang #424

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1982 Mercedes-Benz 280SE #425

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1982 Citroƒ«n Visa #428

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1982 VW Golf #429

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1982 Alfa Romeo 6 #430

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1982 Peugeot 505 #431

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1982 Fiat Ritmo #432


assorted Volvo trucks #433-436

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1982 Renault Fuego #437

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1982 Ford Escort #438

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1982 Talbot Solara #439


assorted Volvo trucks #440-443


assorted Renault trucks #445-449

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1982 Renault 9 #450


assorted trucks and motorcycle #452-468

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Tags: Vehicles, Tales of Toy Cars

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