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Extra! Extra! Read All About Car History!

Sep 15, 2008
Model cars have been around for quite some time. Even I have to admit going through the phase of putting them together. Even as I write this, I can think of a few of the boxed sets that I would love to pick up from the shelves at the local store and piece together bit by bit. I also have to admit that my patience was never good. But, as with any other thing I have ever collected, there was one thing I always did. I always sought to learn the origin of that item. What's its history? When did people start collecting them? Maybe I wanted to see if my elders were collecting some of the same things, or sometimes I might just have been looking to see how old a hobby mine was. Never the less, everything has a history and the model cars and the collection of them is no different. So where did it begin? Keep reading!

Birth of Model Cars

In the early 1900s not so long after the first real car was introduced, Germany started producing what would become noted as the first model car. Back then, since it was around the time of war, the only people who could really afford these toys were the sons of rich businessmen. These cars were called tin plate models. The first Die cast ones though, did not come about until the late 1920s or the early 1930s. By 1950 toy companies in Japan were producing these goods.

Model Cars Go Mainstream

The model car making companies went through a dry spell in the 1960s as it cost too much to produce these things. It wasn't the products that were costing so much; it was the cost of employment that brought the slow down of producing these models. Today everyone loves to collect these old models more than when they first came out. Many companies closed down, while some switched to newer products that were either made of plastic or they later switched to the newer radio controlled cars. By the end of the craze, there were only four countries still producing the kits. They were United Kingdom, Germany, France, and Italy. As time went on, each company added more and more details to their models.

Transitioning to the Modern Era

Then in 1970, Italy burst onto the model scene with a bang. They lowered their prices, but still produced luxurious cars. They added more detail. Everyone was flocking to this brand. This brought more adults into the scene as it became more complicated to put the models together. By the 1980's and the 1990s, these manufacturers went out west where it was cheaper to produce. More markets were set up. And now, with the progression of the World Wide Web, you can even buy these babies online!

The model car has come a long way. It has helped some kids bond with fathers as the boom of adding more detail to each models was implemented. Cars can be painted any color you want them to be. And recently, the United States created companies to produce these collectable toys as well. Making them a great trademark that continues to be some people's favorite past times. Young and old and male and female are taking pride in the time and dedication it takes to put them together.
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