Aoshima's Beetle falls into that category. It falls well short of Tamiya's '66 in terms of detail and parts breakdown... heck, it falls short of Gunze Sangyo's '56 in those areas, as well! If the GS '56 is a 'curbside', this one is a 'sunk a foot into soft soil side'. What little engine and suspension detail there is a tad less than adequate. The engine bottom detail is decent, but seems a tick or two underscale.
The real car is depicted on the box art (usually a red flag for me with an older kit or reissue), and the disclaimer that the product contained within may not match the photo. That's the case here- you'll get no stock wheels or tires, only aftermarket style mags (not sure if they're Empi products, but I'm pretty sure they aren't a Porsche item), and the inexplicable presence of what appears to be a set of four "Lancer" style wheel covers, which would look more at home on a lead sled than a bug! The tires look more like the mud & snow tires Uncle Dave ran on the back of his old diesel Chevette than anything I've ever seen on a Beetle.
Since this was a motorized kit, the chassis and interior are, shall we say, heavily compromised. You do get a choice of left or right hand drive, and both dashes feature pretty good engraved detail. Shame there are no inner door panels!
The body is 'acceptable' overall- to me the fenders look a bit too chunky, especially the rears. The lamp reflectors aren't great, and the glass unit is not only all one piece, it's not great as far as clarity is concerned.
Then, there's the price. I paid just under $40 for mine- quite a bit for a crude old curbside kit. Granted, I've paid a lot more money for much worse kits (usually resin), and this will build into nothing more than a nice shelf model unless you're into some big-time plastic surgery. I guess I'll leave the answer of the 'is it worth it' question up to you. Kind of depends on what you want as a finished product.
Could I reccomend the kit? Truthfully, I don't think I could. I think it has more than enough issues to keep most modelers far, far away from it. You don't need to be a rivet counter to see it has its faults! The price is a big factor, if I could find one for less, then I might be a bit more inclinded to reccomend it to someone. But if you are like me, and have absolutely no intention of building it box stock but more as a source of building parts, it might make a bit more sense. There's plenty here to make a decent Volksrod (wink-wink), so overall I'm pretty happy, even though I wish I'd paid just a bit less!
Edited by Chuck Most, 17 September 2010 - 09:04 AM.