At the end of 2018 MAR Online will celebrate its fifth anniversary. We hope to see a continuing increase in the number of visitors and contributors to the site, so that we can share our passion for our hobby with even more like-minded collectors.
So what do I expect to see in 2018? I expect that there will be continued growth in sales of 1:76 and 1:144 scale models in the UK. These sectors have grown hugely over MAR Online’s lifetime. They seem to be drawing in whole new groups of collectors from children through to lorry drivers intent on owning a model of everything they have ever driven. Over in the USA I expect a similar growth in 1:64 scale models, as Walmart and hobby stores carry more special editions, and the premium producers make models designed to attract everyone from kids to grandparents. All around the world 1:18 scale seems to be growing at a spectacular rate and now offers models priced from the same as a 1:43 scale model up to thousands of GB pounds. 1:43 scale collecting seems to be at a crossroads at the moment. The collectors market seems to be able to support a range of firms selling premium-priced models and several new entrants have arrived this year, including Goldvarg. At the budget end of the market, however, there are fewer firms producing models, and even successful companies like Greenlight have used Ixo moulds originally made for partworks, Oxford Diecast have made some lovely Rolls-Royce models in this scale, but there has been no expansion in production of 1:43 scale models this year, as Oxford have chosen to put the effort elsewhere. If partworks and subscription series had not ordered models in such huge quantities, budget 1:43 scale models would be rather less common. One wonders how many of those folk who start collecting partwork models ever go on to buy more expensive 1:43 collectors models? If that number is small, then how will 1:43 scale remain vibrant in the future?
MAR Online would like to thank everyone who supplied articles and information in 2017 and looks forwards to lots of readers writing for us next year. Our special thanks to Hans-Georg, our German Editor, who finished his last set of articles despite having been rushed to hospital for emergency treatment. I am sure we all wish him well for a speedy full recovery to health.
All of the MAR Online team wish you a happy new year.
We welcome your comments and questions. Please go to our Model Auto Review Facebook page or email the Editors at maronlineeditor at gmail.com.