New Model Review: Terrific Toyota MR2 MkI by Jotus is an absolute treat

27 October 2014
imports_CCGB_rs-76505-a_83166.jpg New Model Review: Terrific Toyota MR2 MkI by Jotus is an absolute treat
Delightful model of the popular Japanese budget sportscar. ...
New Model Review: Terrific Toyota MR2 MkI by Jotus is an absolute treat Images
Manufacturer: Jotus
Model: Toyota MR2 AW11 1984 Metallic Blue
Scale: 1/43
Price: £67.99
Ref: RS-76505
Limit: 500

The Toyota MR2 is a two-seat, mid-engined, rear-wheel-drive sports car produced from 1984 until July 2007. There are three distinct generations of the car: the version we see modelled here from 1984–1989, with angular, origami-like lines, then 1990–1999, which had more rounded styling similar to Ferrari‘s sports cars of that time, and a completely different roadster design from 2000–2007, which was more like the Porsche Boxster.

It was designed to be small, with an economical and reliable powerplant, but sporty in style and handling. Basic design elements, such as MacPherson strut front and rear suspension plus a transverse mounted straight-four engine are common to all three generations of the MR2.

In 1976 Toyota launched a design project with the goal of producing a car which would be enjoyable to drive, yet still provide good economy. The original idea was not meant to be a sports car though! Design work officially began during 1979.

The small and light MR2 was something no one had expected from Toyota, known for its economical and practical family cars. The two-seat MR2 was definitely not practical as a family car, nor was it intended to be.

The first of the MkIs, introduced in 1984, was designated “W10” by the factory. When an improved 1.5 litre engine was fitted, that changed
to AW10, then a 1.6 litre powerplant was used, becoming the AW11. This is the model replicated here.

The model
Jotus is already well-known for its fabulously detailed bus models here in the UK, so I was not surprised to see the same levels of finish and attention to detail on the pretty MR2. The model is officially authorised by Toyota and is available in several colours but this beautifully deep metallic blue is my favourite. Coverage is perfect, allowing the fine panel lines to be clearly visible, and the shape is spot on. I love the opening rear engine cover, which reveals the neat installation in good detail.

Wheels and tyres are excellent and a really nice touch is the heated rear screen (non-working of course!). All in all, it’s enough to make me want to buy a real one too!

The base doubles as a 1/43 scale display plinth, complete with etched plaque.

Pretty from the front ...

... and the rear!

At thirty years old, the MR2 MkI has stood the test of time but the angular body shape gives away its 1980s origins.

Incredibly fine rear engine cover lifts to reveal good detail.

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