Monday, July 06, 2009

Rare die cast M3s

Many Ebay sellers offering 1/18 E30 M3 DTM die cast are quick to advertise that a particular model is "rare". Since most of these have been out of production for a few years, there is some truth to the claim -- but not much.

In any 60-90 day period nearly every model becomes available at a reasonable price on Ebay. There are a few that are a little less common (the BMW dealer-only cars are among these) but nearly all of them of them are readily available if you are patient.

There is a micro-industry modifying the stock kits to make the car into something else. Most commonly the stickers are removed, the car disassembled and repainted, and larger wheels are added to mimic the "Tuner" look. Although "rare" these have never appealed to me.

I recently found a "rare" modified car that does appeal to me. It is a replica of the Demon Tweeks sponsored BTCC M3 as driven by Roland Ratzenburger and later shown at the Goodwood festival.

It appears to be a really high quality job. The owner claims that it is one of three commissioned by Demon Tweeks to celebrate running the real car at Goodwood. That would meet my definition of "rare".

So I broke my $100 rule and bought it for 102 British Pounds. This is the most I have spent on a car so far but given the unique nature of the car I think it was worth it. Here is a picture of the real car at Goodwood and a picture of the car from the e-bay auction. I'll be interested to learn which model was sacrificed to build this replica. The only visible difference between the real car and the replica appears to be the side on which the driver sits. As far as I know there has never been a RHD die cast E30 M3.

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