Reviews, pictures, hints, and links 1/24, 1/25 car kits
’66 Ford Fairlane GT/GTA
This is a review of the AMT ’66 Ford Fairlane #6926 (from the Muscle Cars three-pack)
One of my favorite classic/muscle cars is the 1965 Galaxie 500. I owned one for almost 6 years and loved it. I especially loved the lines/style – to me it just looks fantastic. The Fairlane received similar upgrade looks the next year and I think it is almost as good. It, unfortunately, is kind of a hit-and-miss kit, but I’ll explain more later. I purchased the Muscle Cars kit as the other 2 cars are great as well and it makes for a great deal.
These are the typical kits you’ll find for the Fairlane and, save for the “427”, are all very similar. They are all molded in white/off-white grey, have a good amount of pieces and not a truckload of flash. The “427” is a very dramatic car and is getting very rare. I can’t say the fit and finish is any better, and I think the others are a more true representation of what was readily available for sale than the 427 drag car.
CAR BACKGROUND :: The ’66 Fairlane was shaped with the ’65 Galaxie in mind. See, for ’65, the Fairlane had the side-by-side front lights, but in ’66, they were stacked like the Galaxie. Rear lights were tall and thin like the luxo-cruiser as well. Unlike ’65 too, the ’66 (and subsequent ’67) Fairlanes were given a major power upgrade. The base engine was still the venerable 289ci, but for more oomph, the 390 4-barrel was a box you could now check off. Rated at 335 horsepower, the Fairlane went from a growl-y coupe to a tire-shredding muscle car. Mind you, high 14sec quarter times aren’t the fastest you’ll find, but you’d still hold your own with all but the craziest drag cars.
BUILD NOTES : Like I mentioned before, this kit is a bit of a troublemaker. It shares most its parts with the ’67 Cyclone I reviewed recently (which had its own issues) and then it adds its own bit of tedium. Make no mistake, the kit is VERY do-able even on your first try. Biggest things to look for are the fit and finish issues and I’ll mention them as I go.
Easily one of the bright spots to the car, this 390 is an easy engine to build, looks good when done, and has a fully optioned bay to boot. Only things I did for this one is a chrome air-cleaner and added wires. The rest remains a very nice display and can be made further with some extra wiring and decals.
So, I have made this car a few times and I’ve always gone with a blue color scheme. I hate it in blue. It is a shame too, since I love it in blue. WTF? Lemme explain… I love the actual car in blue. It looks utterly as good as it gets. I have just never made a blue Fairlane model car I’ve liked. This one is done in Model Master Turn Signal Red and I think it is my favorite look to date on this car. I also decided to go with the Cragar mag wheels instead of stock because my Comet has stock wheels. Problem areas worse than the Comet?… The front bumper has little area to glue (which can lead to damaging the paint if not careful); the rear bumper is never really as straight as you’d like; the hood louvers need to be trimmed well before you try to insert them into the hood; and the rear lights can be a bear to fit into the chrome inserts. SIGH.
This is really a cute story of blunder-meets-innovation. When I purchased this kit – as part of the threesome – I realized that when I kept pieces aside, I must have missed the interior of this car. Thankfully, I had the interior of a ’67 Comet just sitting around. So, the interior, engine, underside, and exhaust are all from a ’67 AMT Comet kit! To add insult to this injury, the exhaust ends are from a ’67 Charger, and the wheels are off a different kit too! I also had to add a shifter (because the one in the Comet was an auto) and the side mirror (as the Fairlane doesn’t come with one). 1966 Mercury Fairlane??
The good side is that the Comet/Fairlane kits have a great underside. The pieces are tight, fit well, and have a immense amount of detail (especially for an AMT). You wont need a lot of effort to make this one right.
So does adding to the Comet’s idiosyncrasies make for a scary build? No. The car is still easier than a lot I’ve done. This kit just requires some fore-thought, careful handling, and a small bit of your parts-drawer. That said, the car is plentiful (with a recent reissue) and an be bought for very little ($20+) unless you opt for the 427. The three pack is a good option as well and with a little looking around, you’d get three cars for around $65. Not half-bad. As far as investments, well, you’d be ahead to get a GOOD three-pack or the 427 version as both are getting more rare by the day. The others aren’t really great investments yet because of the reissue. I’d get one anyways!