We recently got our hands on a sample model of the new Diecast Masters 1:18 Ford Mustang GT. The model is based on the 2019 Mustang platform and features a diecast metal exterior with a twist or two, along with a bonus item. Suggested retail $249 CND. Diecast Masters goes above and beyond a typical scale model replica here, this piece has the ability to remove exterior panels, remove engine components and adjust suspension stance and camber points. We haven’t seen the likes of this level of tunability in the hobby since the likes of Hot Works. Remember them? You may be asking why do I want to remove panels? Well, Diecast Masters plans to introduce a series of upgrades kits. We not sure what the kits themselves with entail at this point in time, but we suspect a variety of options from tuner and OEM based parts are too come!
Before we get to the model, we want to provide a little history of Diecast Masters. The team has been around for more than 30 plus years. Their primary theme or core values lean towards the industrial vehicle’s side of scale model replicas. Diecast Masters is well known for its high-level of execution in 1:50, 1:87, 1:125 scale. So, the expectation was quite high with us in regards to their venture into popular cars, that being the first, 1:18 Ford Mustang GT.
It is customary for us to provide some package insight for any manufacturer going under the microscope for the first time. As you can see the exterior portion of the box is mincing the look of a shipping container. Quite effective! Inside the model is housed in a styrofoam shell.
There is an added bonus, Diecast Masters provides a cool backdrop which is quite substantial in size. It is cleverly tucked within the model’s box. It arrives equipped with two plastic clips that allow the back section to remain upright. One can use it as a mini diorama or photography backdrop. We like the outside the box thinking!
Three colours are available for the Mustang GT, they include Orange Fury, Kona Blue and Matt Black. We suggest Matt Black as it will hide the panel gap sins best. More on this later. From an exterior perspective, the overall design of the Mustang GT is captured well. The exterior paint is very good and consistent throughout. This is especially important due to the complexity of the removable parts and the variance or metal and plastic elements.
As for panel gaps, this is where the model starts to fall short. We all know Ford assembly isn’t German grade but it is definitely is better than what is presented here. Yes, we’ll give some slack to the removable items, but we still think the model falls short. No matter how we tried to massage the panels there was no way of getting it perfectly seated. As for shutline they are more acceptable. Also, the 5.0 badge on the front side panels is not to scale. Slightly too large in relation to the 1:1.
The front side is fitted with perforated metal grilles throughout, even the opening in the upper hood follows suit. Headlight detail is decent, we also love the Ford 3D, metal emblem in the centre. As for detachable parts, the front bumper and both side panels are fully removable here.
Access is available to the motor. There is a prop-rod that is authentic to the original (why Ford still does not provide struts support in 2019 is laughable). Nice execution on the hood hinge apparatus. On the flip side, the motor detail is good at best. Nice attention to detail with the OEM informational decals throughout the underside of the hood too. The motor cover with appliable strut bar support is one piece and removable. Underneath each strut tower, one will find the screws to access the suspension modification aspect. More on this topic later…
The rear features quad tips and upper spoiler. If we’re not mistaken isn’t this spoiler from the 2018 Mustang GT, not 2019? Getting back to the exhaust the chrome work is poor, reminiscent of opening price point Bburago brand. However, the remaining underside of the exhaust is far better and more effective. The rear bumper is fully removable; you can see within the image above the poor fitment. Finally, access to the rear storage is available. This area is flocked in Black fabric throughout.
The underside of the Mustang GT is quite detailed. As you can see the exhaust is far better detailed than the unfortunate rear tips from the top view. Also, here is where most of the science is housed in the suspension adjustment aspect of the model. It is quite specific to adjust, so we provided a link to a video to help those with questions. Diecast Masters doesn’t provide any direction or manual within the box. This is definitely one area the team needs to improve on.
As for modifying the suspension, it was more challenging for us than how seamless it looks in the accompanying video. For one, removing the side screw on the rear suspension required two drivers to accomplish the task. We needed one to unscrew and a second flathead screwdriver to pull the screw back. Also, on the opposite side, we ended up stripping the screw head. This basically ended any attempt in changing the look of the stance or camber. One may suggest we used a poor-quality screwdriver. Nope, we have a precision driver set with many sizes from Milwaukee hand tools on hand. Diecast Master, if the goal here is to allow the end-user to modify the car to their hearts desires you should use better quality screws.
Wheels are painted Black as well as brake calipers. Rotors are solid steel units too. We found the overall width of the rim too thin. Also, each wheel is provided with a centre decal. None are glued into place. This proves challenging as one is required to handle the model is various positions and removing the centre cap is an option for future wheelsets. Once we discovered this issue it was too late, we already lost two out of the four. So, the photo-shoot moved forward with us removing the remaining two decals. Diecast Masters, you need to glue these into place or provide replacements and direction within the box.
The interior of the model is quite good in terms of detail. The dash, doors, centre console and seating are nicely executed. We love the use of paint, decals to provide definition. The dash separation from Black to metal-look Silver is beautifully done as well. The interior is completely flocked and seats can move forward and back as well as the upper area tilts forward for back seat access. Very cool! What we can’t figure out is the texture used within the overall interior, it seems out of scale and somewhat overwhelming on the interior side as a whole.
We had much enthusiasm prior to production for the Diecast Master Ford Mustang GT. Their unique spin with removable panels and future upgrade accessories seems like a great concept. We feel the model here was rushed to market and many cries from collectors and fans did go unchecked. Noticeably the 5.0 badge and overall definition on panel gaps. We guess enthusiasts of diecast metal replicas and those not willing to move to resin and sealed may make an exception. But the issues are more than just these. If you develop a platform for collectors to touch, open and repeatedly update bits they need to work and keep working… As we expressed above, we couldn’t get out of the starting gate the first time… We think, in theory, the concept is great, however, there is some more work to do here. Enjoy the pics!
Like the fact that you can easily take wheels off and adjust the ridehight, but my word how stupid they have solved it.
The details of the engine are too simple
Honestly, I do not understand the point of this model, it seems like they are trying to emulate Exoto instead of Hot Works, Exoto does much better job in creating separation of parts and still it receives little endorsement due ot its astronomical price. I feel like they have overdone it and shoot themselves in the foot with this Mustang
Excessive functionality. It would be advisable if you could make a tuning version (remember Hot works), but it makes no many sense to disassemble it to see the components of the model and adjust them a bit.
It does fit the tuner bill and then some!. As discussed in the review, the plan is to release aftermarket and OEM accessories. What exactly this entails we’re not sure at the moment.
Thanks for the info, I accidentally missed the last paragraph.
Needs aftermarket coilovers mod! :P
A great concept. The noted shortcomings can be overcome and improved, and why not provide free factory exchange for defective and ill-fitting parts?
We don’t think getting replacement would really help. We tried to massage them into better form, zero success. We believe the model the rushed, a little more finesse and time would have gone along way…
A big NO for me.
It promises so much but fails to deliver in my opinion, looks too much like a toy, it’s a shame as I’m sure many diecast collectors with dioramas would love a model with removable parts.
The plastic texture of the interior door panels is so large, it looks like they actually used the peel of an orange, and then painted it black.
I’ll probably get one because I just bought a real 2021 Mustang GT, but the model is not really up to the quality of other $200 models. The blue one is advertised as Kona Blue, but it seems much closer to the lighter Velocity Blue. The interior finish is sad! Seems to be more of a toy than a museum quality model, but it’s the only game in town so far. Some of us collectors prefer accuracy over gimmicks!