Analysis of individual cars
The M1024 Hummer (58154)
The M1024 Hummer was kit number 154 from Tamiya. A 1/12 4WD off-road car, it is a realistic replica of the famous military vehicle.
- 1/12 scale off-road vehicle
- 4 wheel drive (shaft driven)
- Plastic tub-chassis design
- Independent front and rear suspension
- fully independent coil spring in front & rear with oil filled dampers
- RS-540 Mabuchi motor
- Treaded realistic off-road tires
- Detailed abs plastic body
The Hummer by Tamiya was a perfect marriage between their military modeling expertise and their R/C experience. The vehicle is at once simplistic as it is realistic in every aspect. Those with a keen eye will notice that this car is rated as a 1/12 scale and not the normal 1/10. This is only because of the sheer size of the real Hummer. The chassis and wheelbase length on this vehicle is the same as all of the other TA-01 cars.
The Hummer was built on the tried and true TA-01 chassis with some minor modifications. A shaft driven 4 wheel drive system first found in the Manta Ray, the chassis is easy to construct and reliable to run. The design also provides fairly high levels of performance with the added advantage of instant aftermarket parts.
Changes to the ’01 chassis was limited to longer travel shocks and modified suspension arms to better handle the "rallying" nature of the Hummer. The kit also features oil-filled shocks which really helps in controlling its ride over rough surfaces. It is disappointing that Tamiya has been substituting friction damped units for most of its newer chassis (TL-01, M-04L etc.) and reserving oil filled units as a "hop up" part. Oil filled dampers are – in my opinion – mandatory for all vehicles.
The Hummer body is where Tamiya really excelled in realism. Constructed from injection molded plastic as opposed to the normal lexan, the body is very highly detailed and can be given a paint finish that’s fitting with its military tone. Even the wheels for this R/C unit are accurate representations, no surprise to anyone that’s familiar with Tamiya’s reputation for realism.
Handling wise, the Hummer holds its own as a "rally" type vehicle. Not really having the suspension travel of a true off-road vehicle, it’s forte is really on smooth dirt roads. In fact, you could probably keep up with most on-road cars in this vehicle, albeit turn-in is slightly compromised.
It’s really too early to say how significant this vehicle will be with collectors. Certainly the car carries a lot of cross-collector interest as it is a very scale military vehicle. Unfortunately though, history has shown that R/C military vehicles simply don’t have the strength of collectibilty as their production road-going counterparts. Witness the lack of interest in the XR311 and the Fast Attack Vehicle.
But the Hummer may be the exception to the rule, as road-going versions are popular now and this spillover could result in some collector interest down the road. Kits are still available from most vendors. Prices range from $120 to $150. Better prices can be found at online auctions where typical prices are around $100 for a brand new kit.
The TA-01 chassis has been around for a number of years, as such spare parts and indeed performance parts are still easily found. Take care to choose the right molding colors for the parts you’re after. Tamiya molded the gearboxes – for example – in black, grey and red.
Generally robust vehicles, prospective buyers of used versions should exercise due diligence when inspecting the rear ball differential to ensure that it has been constructed properly and is working. As well, the ABS plastic body is less flexible than its lexan counterpart and is subject to stress cracks. Ensure that the body is in good shape because replacement bodies can cost as much as halft the vehicle's cost.
- Collectibility – 6 out of 10
- Fun to drive – 8 out of 10
- Parts availability – 10 out of 10