Reviews, pictures, hints, and links 1/24, 1/25 car kits
’71 Mercury Cyclone Spoiler
This is a review of the MPC 1971 Mercury Cyclone Spoiler Kit#7124
I finally got one! I had been wanting one of these since I knew they made the kit (maybe 3 years now). These baddies are RARE, but they are of a muscle car that I think is cool as heck and fast enough for the track. The kit to the right is the only other one I know they have made and from what I’ve seen, it is molded in a horrific maroon. Either way it is expensive.
CAR BACKGROUND :: The “Spoiler”. Sounds like something that will ruin your day! Honestly, if you saw this big lummox drive up beside you at a stoplight, you may not realize that it just might! Even with the side stripes, the car is somewhat sedate looking compared to the utter ferocity that it can bring to bear. No, not the dreaded 351ci in the pic left, but the ultimate in Ford performance – the 429. At top trim level, this engine churned out 370hp and a whopping 450lb-ft. Enough brawn to make Mustangs run and hide to mama. Low 14 second times were a thing of ease and it did so with a comfort level not seen in the typical Roadrunner. The Cyclone also had a style that was as far out of the norm as the first set of bell-bottom jeans. That amazing nose-cone with the built-in reticle in front?! All it needed was a fighter helmet and a set of M-16s on the hood! It was a style that didn’t last long, and by 1973, the Cyclone was all but a memory.
SO PSYCHED to get this one done. And SO GLADto be done with this one as well. Painted in Tamiya Camel Yellow (a close facsimile to the Competition Gold of that year), the Cyclone was a BEAR to make, but finally came out just how I need it to be. I scrapped the tires that came with it in favor of the red-line ones I had on hand and used the stock rims. I also scrapped the chrome garbage that MPC called side mirrors for the ’69 Cougar ones I had lying about. I created a stripe kit to match the one for 1971 and I think it works nicely. There were no stock decals with this kit – only race ones – which I thought was a pity. I can, however, recreate these if someone needs them as well.
MPC did a decent job here, though I think it a recreation of a 1970 Torino/Fairlane more than that of a Cyclone. It is fairly detailed and comes with I nice console insert. The kit needed a rear-view mirror and a directional stalk, but the remainder of the interior was good. One big note: the glass, which was ruined due to a horrible tire mark, was also a bit long and made the joining of the body to the chassis a little impossible. You may need to trim the bottom of the windshield carefully to get the interior tray to sit correctly. BTW – I believe a ’69 Olds 442 windshield fit perfectly as a replacement.
The engine/engine bay is a bit garbage, unfortunately. The brake boost was a TINY spec on the firewall, so it was cut and replaced. The air cleaner – though stock ram-air in nature – looked badly molded and had to be trashed. The headers were replaced with ones from a 428CJ because they were giant and didn’t match the smaller stock dual exhaust. AND, finally, there was no radiator hose. You WILL NOT get the look to the left from the stock kit.. not by a long shot! ALSO, the radiator is poorly detailed, the firewall has almost nothing on it, and there are no engine braces running from the fenders to the firewall. This came out as good as I could make it, but it is a poor offering by MPC nonetheless.
The underside is nothing to right home about, but fortunately isn’t a fiasco either. I can say that the exhaust is good for how half-baked the rest of the kit is. There is just enough detail to make it worth while too. Another issue with the chassis is that it is one of the MPC/AMT kits that kind of “floats” underneath and never sits completely evenly without some coaxing. I cannot imagine why they couldn’t make a groove or two for everything to sit in for a tighter fit. Again…very half-assed.
I cannot stress what a terrible deal this kit is and how you should run screaming the other way. A dozen or so parts, fixes, and issues later and it still could use some extras. I also didn’t want this for a track car and in that fashion, this car may have excelled more than the stock variety, but that isn’t the point of the review. I can say that IF you need this car in your stable – like I did – it WILL work. However, just be aware of the hair-pulling days ahead to get to this point… and spending some $150 for the privilege!