Our latest review is from a newcomer to the scale model scene, Soul Models from Spain. Their initial effort is the unique 1:18 scale piece, the Ariel Atom V8, a limited edition of 1500 pieces. A little about Soul Models:their venture started a little over two years ago, an idea, a dream, a passion. Their goal is to release unique, high-quality pieces and be first to market with scale replicas that us collectors have not seen before. Let’s face the facts, these are pieces other manufacturers choose to ignore because of lack of popularity or potential low sales figures. Each will be a limited edition of 1000 – 1500 pieces.
Since this is our very first review from Soul Models, I’m going to begin with the packaging. The exterior box is larger than the typical brand, measuring just shy of 14.5 inches – maybe a hint of larger things to come? At first, the box seems very light, I questioned if there was an actual model inside (LOL). Inside the exterior box you find the model encompassed within a Styrofoam shell.
The model itself sits on a plastic base with Ariel Atom V8 name and Soul Models logo on the opposite end. Three screws to remove and the model is set free. Unfortunately for me, my model arrived with some damage. Front shock, rear drive shaft, and some other bits fell off during transport. No worries, a little CA Glue and the model was back up to speed. Soul Models,I’m going to offer some advice, true collectors don’t have the space for this elaborate or over sized base. They take up too much space, and we all know space comes at a premium for all collectors. To possibly lower the costs and the overall price point, I suggest you remove them!
The Ariel Atom V8 has a suggested retail of 159.95 Euro. Not cheap. The model is composed of plastic, resin, and metal bits. The overall shape is captured well by Soul Models. I like the carbon fibre look material, paint work, and addition of metal photo-etched bits. The essence of the 1:1 is here for sure. The model is very light and rightly so, it’s an Ariel Atom for Christ’s sake, the car is based on a tubular chassis.
The suspension on the model is static. Also, the wheels do not steer. Not a big issue for me. All the suspension components are made of plastic, front and rear. Nice work on the shock absorbers. They are all static and painted. Could you imagine metal components here? Just a thought Soul Models.
Moving to the heart of the beast, the Ariel Atom V8 is powered by bespoke 3.0L flat-plane crank 32-valve V8. It is developed in America by Hartley and produces 500bhp and 284lb of torque. Unfortunately for us, the rear carbon cover isn’t removable, so accessing or seeing the eight trumpets below is not possible. Overall the motor detail is good. The layers and definition are here, but a little more refinement would have gone a long way.
The wheels are crafted nicely too. The essence of the 1:1 is here. Rotors feature the same cooling cuts as the original. Nice work Soul Models! Calipers are painted red too, matching the exterior red accents.
Moving to the cockpit. One area of love on the model is housing for the driver and passenger. The bottom lining of the tub has the grainy unfinished texture you know well if you have been exposed to unfinished carbon fibre. Jeez I take pleasure in the littlest of things! Other elements done well are the carbon fibre backing on the seats, and real fabric and metal components for the seat-belt harness. Well done guys!
As the photos will illustrate, the Soul Models Ariel Atom V8 is a solid effort. The uniqueness of the subject matter is one that appeals to me. Definitely kudos to Soul Models for having the balls to take a scale replica into production. Working on some of the smaller details will help future projects, and cutting cost by removing the plastic base will hopefully reduce the opening price point – well that’s my recommendation. Overall this is two thumbs up effort! Congratulations Soul Models, and welcome to the scale model arena. I’m looking for to future projects. Enjoy the pics!