Anyone who is a fan of Initial D will surely recognize this drift body. For those who don’t know about Initial D it is manga and has been adapted into a long running anime series. The story of Initial D focuses on drifting within the Japanese prefecture of Gunma, mainly in mountain passes of the Kanto region. Drift King himself Keiichi Tshuchiya helps with editorial supervision. The series follows Takumi Fujiwara, an eighteen year old who helps his father run a tofu shop by making deliveries every morning to Akina with his father’s Toyota Sprinter Trueno GT-APEX (AE86). It is revealed that Takumi has been driving on Mt. Akina every morning to deliver tofu to the summit five years before he even had his license. As a result his skills in mountain racing were honed, as was his ability to drive under adverse weather conditions. When we saw this body was released from R2 Hobbies for only $10USD we were skeptical. As you will see below our initial reactions were correct, R2 seems to be very selective in where they enforce trademark/copyright enforcement.
This body shell is 190mm and is made from very thin lexan, almost as thin as light weight Tamiya cases. The case comes with no additional accessories such as mirrors, spoiler, light buckets. The details on the body are painted in and it would seem R2 has poor quality control. The lines and text were completely out of line, and as you can see in the pictures below the lines are wavy and the text is completely skewed out of alignment. Atleast the Carbon Fiber hood looks really good; however the overall attention to detail is poor, but keep in mind it is only a $10 body. The car it is trying to replicate is a Toyota Sprinter Trueno GT-APEX (AE86). If you look closely at the pictures below you will see this body is a Levin that suffers from a Trueno complex. The result is quite ugly, and what is with the red on the front lights?
As we have seen quite a few different bodies from a number of manufacturers this one ranks at the bottom when it comes to overall quality and detailing. We have received other 190mm bodies from R2 hobbies that don’t seem to suffer all of the problems this body does. However once again the overall attention to selectively enforcing trademarks and copyrights tends to ruin everything. If you are looking to recreate the Tofu 86 this is not the way to go. You would be much better off getting a true Trueno from Yokomo or HPI, and painting it yourself. You can always get the decals from R2 Hobbies to complete the project.
Considering the case is only $10USD it is hard to knock its overall value, however with the points listed above we feel there are better options. R2 Hobbies is known for providing extreme value to customers but the lack of quality here says a lot. As you can see in the pictures below the only nice feature of the case is the carbon fiber style hood. This actually looks quite good apart from the rest of the car.
This was the second case ordered from R2 Hobbies, the first case we ordered was the 2010 Chevrolet Camaro 190mm for the California Highway Patrol RC Drift Car. The Camaro case is made from higher quality lexan, however once again R2 was afraid to provide real Chevrolet decals even though they are shown in pictures. So if you are looking for a Trueno, this is not the way to go.
The ride was so whack, the only solution we had was to matte black the shell in the hopes of saving it!