Last weekend, I attended Proline by the Fire in Apple Valley, CA, which is a scaler and crawler event. The event had hundreds of people there (ranging from 500-900, depending on who was asked) and as usual, I had the only Tamiya off roader. Sure there were a couple CC01’s on the rally stage but out of every single car there, I had the only High Lift and the only Bruiser (technically it was the P407). I am used to this disappointment but what I am not used to is seeing a Tamiya booth there! Surely they would have some beauties there like the ridiculously overpriced Mountain Rider or the Tundra, the F350, CR01 or even a selection of the scale bodies that Tamiya has created!
They had some rally cars.
Anyway, I have largely forgotten Tamiya as I am over them creating nonsense anymore but this time something happened. One of the Tamiya Reps came running over when they saw project Lunchbox.
“This! They need to see this! They need to make this!” Paraphrasing of course, I don’t have a photographic memory. Basically, he was explaining to me how Tamiya USA is begging Tamiya Japan to make something to enter the scaler market. Tamiya Japan simply has zero desire to take such a leap. As someone who has designed and overseen mass production of dozens of products, I am aware of the financial burden of an endeavor like this has on the company and I have seen some die with the launch of a misguided product. There is no room for Tamiya to make a mistake so the fear (I hope) that management has is valid though I do not think that fear is a problem. I strongly believe that it is a lack of desire. They are doing well in the domestic market and see no reason to invest hundreds of thousands of dollars in R&D and manufacturing of something that is not popular in Japan. Never the less, the rep begged me to let him borrow Project Lunchbox and Project “why hasn’t Tamiya bothered to do this and why do I have to do everything”, also known as Project Ted, to take to Tamiya USA for a presentation to Japan. Personally, I think this will go nowhere but I am willing to try.
Good luck old friends, if anyone can remind Tamiya how its done, you two can.
Please, no questions here on how I made these cars as this section is not appropriate for that and I do not want this post moved. I will cover that on my youtube channel.