Model cars have long been a popular hobby for both kids and adults. NASCAR model cars, in particular, have attracted a devoted following since NASCAR’s founding in 1948.
As with model cars in general, collectors have two primary options for NASCAR models—diecast cars or model kits. Diecast cars are preassembled, factory-produced miniatures made out of metal, most prized in mint condition in their original boxes.
Kits, on the other hand, contain molded plastic pieces that must be carefully assembled and decorated with decals over many hours. Collectors value unassembled kits in their original sealed boxes, but they also enjoy sharing the models they have built, whether the model is “out of the box” (exactly as the kit intended) or modified. Some even build NASCAR models out of non-NASCAR kits using separate decals and other extra parts.
The first NASCAR model kits were produced right after World War II, back when race cars were fairly similar to their street relatives. In 1982, Monogram released the first modern NASCAR car kits, which launched the product into even wider popularity. Ertl followed in 1984 with kits and radio-controlled diecast models, and companies like Revell, Action, Team Caliber, Aluminum Model Toys (AMT), Tamiya, and, later, Hot Wheels also joined the market.
Unlike other types of model car collecting, in which the maker and year of the car itself are paramount, NASCAR model car collectors are most loyal to the drivers, like Jimmie Johnson and Brett Bodine. As model car collector and builder Les Smirle says, “People don’t build Chevrolet NASCARs, they build Dale Earnhardt NASCARs…. With NASCAR, the loyalty to the driver is far stronger than the loyalty to individual brands of cars.” Thus, the value of any NASCAR model is tied to the popularity of its driver.
In recent years, the landscape of NASCAR model cars has changed due to the licensing costs that NASCAR imposes on model-car manufacturers. Naturally these costs have risen with NASCAR’s popularity, which has made model kits more expensive to produce relative to diecast cars. This has caused a shift on the part of manufacturers away from kits and toward diecast models. For example, Revell—one of the main manufacturers of NASCAR model kits—recently discontinued its line of NASCAR models because of prohibitive licensing fees, though it still sells NASCAR slot cars.
Today, collectors tend to favor drivers from the 1950s, ’60s, and ’70s, but some younger collectors have also taken a liking to models derived from the movie franchise “The Fast and the Furious.” The most common scale for NASCAR models is 1/24, but many other sizes are also popular.
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Refuel with wings at Quaker Steak & LubeAllentown Morning Call, August 26th
2 Kurt Busch NASCAR vehicle hanging overhead. ... Owner Gerard Stezelberger began the venture years ago as an online business, supplying World War II collectors and museums in Normandy and other parts of Europe with period pieces of the era...Read more
NASCAR And ESPN Collaborate To Rally Fans For The 2014 Chase For The ...Daily Ardmoreite, August 26th
NASCAR today will unveil the biggest, most engaging marketing campaign in the history of the sport to promote the all new Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup™. At the heart of the effort is a collaboration with ESPN that features five original television...Read more
NASCAR, ESPN rally fans behind Chase driversYahoo Sports, August 23rd
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- NASCAR today will unveil the biggest, most engaging marketing campaign in the history of the sport to promote the all new Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup™. At the heart of the effort is a collaboration with ESPN that features...Read more
UPS donates NASCAR, PGA, NFL and NBA collectibles for United Way auctionPR Newswire (press release), August 20th
UPS donates NASCAR, PGA, NFL, NBA collectibles, including round of golf with Lee Westwood, for United Way auctionBid on autographed, exclusive sports items â€“ including round of golf with Lee Westwood â€“ to benefit United Way (PRNewsFoto/United ...Read more
Amid NASCAR driver memorabilia, slivers of West African culture for saleThe Jackson Citizen Patriot, August 16th
"I've watched this on the TV, and today I'm here," Bouda said with a smile. Bouda hopes more fans will pass through her tent during the rest of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race weekend, which includes the Pure Michigan 400 on Sunday, Aug. 16...Read more
NASCAR fan has 20k worth of memorabilia stolen from his houseFOXSports.com, July 31st
According to police, he was in the process of moving and discovered that his prized possessions were missing after returning to load up more stuff. Moving is already an unpleasant process ... but to also have $20,000 worth of NASCAR merchandise stolen?...Read more
Deputies investigating theft of $20K worth of NASCAR memorabiliaOpelika Auburn News, July 29th
Jackson said the victim told law enforcement that among other things, a number of collectibles commemorating the NASCAR driver Dale Earnhardt were taken, totaling over $20,000. Jackson said it wasn't specified whether it was Earhardt Sr., who died...Read more