In the 11th episode in season one of Bob’s Burgers (it’s called Weekend at Mort’s), Bob has a weekend off from work and his only idea of how to pass the time is by making a model car. Not just any model car, but the bus from Speed. Obviously, the joke is focussed on why there would ever be a model of the bus that, according to Homer Simpson, “had to speed around the city, keeping its speed over fifty, and if its speed dropped, it would explode! I think it was called The Bus That Couldn’t Slow Down.”
Now, this is just one example, but you’ll be surprised to know that there are models and toys of many more vehicles from movies than you’d expect.
In fact, I’m going to show you by highlighting some unique examples of model cars that arguably wouldn’t be as famous as the likes of the Batmobile or DeLorean but are out there for you to buy and build at your own leisure. It all starts with making sure you don’t “blow the bloody doors off”.
Mini Cooper S from the Italian Job
This first choice is a bit of a cheat. Some of the models in this post will be very specific, and a little hard to find in some cases. Luckily that isn’t the case with the Mini Cooper S as you’ll only have to search for a 1967 Austin Mini Cooper S. You’ll find a lot of diecast models you can build, and there are even some very cheap RC cars if you feel like pulling off movie-style stunts on the kitchen floor.
Dodge Charger R/T from Fast & Furious
Are you like Dominic Toretto and prefer to live your life a quarter-mile at a time? Then you’ll want to get your hands on the 1:8 scale replica of the Dodge Charger R/T from the Fast & Furious Saga.
At the time of writing the latest instalment in the franchise hasn’t been released yet, and even though I’m amazed that John Cena is playing Dominic’s brother AND SOMEHOW Han is back, I suppose the best way to wait for the movie to come out is by building the replica from ModelSpace.
The Simpsons Pink Sedan (Plymouth Valiant)
Here’s something fun to know if you’re ever asked at Trivia night: The Simpsons have TWO cars. It might be oblivious to realise you see them both in the opening credits, but most people would never remember that Marge drives an orange station wagon.
Why isn’t it easy to remember? Well, the family famously has a garish pink sedan as their primary car. And while it has never had the front left bumper fixed, you can make your own model out of Lego. You might be surprised to know that of the thousands of licensed Simpson’s toys and models, the car has never officially been one.
The only way to make one has been using LEGO; either with your collection of pink bricks or by hunting down the now out of circulation LEGO set of the Simpsons home which came with a garage and car. It’s Set 71006 if you’re curious and can hunt one down for a bargain on eBay.
Oh, and for any sticklers out there who would argue this is a TV car, don’t forget The Simpsons Movie!
Bumblebee (Volkswagen Beetle) from Transformers
Love model cars but don’t have the time to make them? You can cheat a little by buying a replica Bumblebee and having a transformer that will flip from car to robot in one click. I can’t imagine how difficult it would be to build your own Transformer that also has to be a car.
Greased Lightning (1948 Ford Convertible) from Grease
I can’t promise the car will be automatic, systematic or hydromatic, but I was surprised to find that there are a lot of replica model kits online for the car from Grease.
You’ll find official kits from original manufacturer Revell online for less than $40 (£30). These come with 141 parts and are 1:25 scale, so if you have an afternoon free, it’s an ideal model to pass the time.
The Grease car is listed as a level 5 kind of model, so those without any prior experience might see themselves getting frustrated for underestimated how intricate you need to be putting everything together.
Get to making
Those are just a handful of famous movie cars you can have a go at making at home. There were a few like the furry dog van from Dumb & Dumber and Garth’s car from Wayne’s World, which rather unsurprisingly there aren’t replica models of, but there’s always hope we’ll see them one day.
Published by Shahbaz Ahmed