Tameo 1/43 Ferrari 156/85

KIT #: TMK 019
PRICE: $21.00 including shipping from an auction
DECALS: Two options
REVIEWER: Scott Van Aken
NOTES: Metal kit with rubber tires and p.e. bits


The Ferrari 156/85 was a Formula One car designed by Mauro Forghieri and Harvey Postlethwaite and manufactured by Scuderia Ferrari for use in the 1985 Formula One season. Michele Alboreto drove the car to second place in the 1985 World Drivers' Championship. It was also driven by René Arnoux and Stefan Johansson. Arnoux was to drive for the season but was mysteriously sacked after the opening Brazilian Grand Prix in which he finished a fine 4th. Johansson was hired to drive in his place for the rest of the season.

The exhaust systems were set outside of the vee, opposite to the preceding 126C4. The turbocharger for each bank was located at the outside of the vee. Thus the intake chambers were located inside the vee. The Ferrari Tipo 031/2 V6 Turbo produced around 900 bhp (671 kW; 912 PS) during the 1985 season.

The 156/85 proved to be fast and reliable in the early part of 1985 but as the season wore on, the Ferraris became increasingly fragile in both qualifying and race trim with numerous engine and turbo failures throughout the season. It was this unreliability that ultimately would cost Alboreto, who actually led the points standings for most of the season, the drivers' championship. Alboreto retired from four of the last five races in 1985 and retired but was classified as 13th due to completing 90% of the race in the other (Spa) allowing McLaren's Alain Prost to come from behind and win his first championship.

Alboreto famously drove half a lap of the Brands Hatch circuit on lap 13 of the European Grand Prix with the rear of his car on fire following another turbo failure. He drove the on-fire car into the pits and straight to his Ferrari pit, many observers seeing this as his way of showing that the Ferrari's unreliability had cost him the World Championship which Prost won by finishing 4th at Brands. While Alboreto had unreliability, his team mate Johansson finished 5th twice and 4th once with only two retirements in the last five races. The Constructors Championship had the same story as Alboreto's. Ferrari's (Alboreto's) unreliability had allowed McLaren to overtake them in the points leaving the Maranello outfit as runners up.


 This  kit comes from mid/late 1985 and is in cast metal with rubber tires and photo etch details. Now days, these kits are almost exclusively in resin, but the the early days of 1/43 kits, metal was much more common as the sort of quality one could get from the resin of the time wasn't exactly the best. Of course, things are quite different today and resin is the standard.

One is provided with a flat pan chassis and a complete upper body. Both have seams that will need to be removed and one can use files, hobby knives and sand paper to do this. The metal is pliable where the parts are thin so one has to take a bit of care. There is little in the interior aside from a steering wheel, gear shift and seat.

The front and rear wing are separate items with some additional bits that need to be attached to both of them. Super glue is the adhesive of choice for these kits, but some like to use epoxy as well. The most complex parts of the kit are the suspension pieces. While the rear axle simply slides through the rear suspension assembly (which includes springs), the front has stub axles on the brake assemblies. For some reason, the kit includes two sets of metal wheels.

Photo etch is used for the side radiators, as well as the inside and outside detail on the wheels. Small outer wheel nuts are also photo etch. Two lengths of copper or brass wire are provided as these will have to be used for the steering arm and for part of the wing support. A stick on red tail light is also provided.

Instructions consist of an exploded view on one side with color information provided. The other side of the sheet is a markings placement guide. My decals are as old as the kit and I'm not sure they are still viable. There are places who do alternate decals for these kits and I'm hoping that there are some for this car if the kit markings prove to be useless. The kit is modeled after the cars that ran during the first race of 1985, the Brazilian GP.


I'm not sure just how many of you are into 1/43 cars. Judging from what I get in terms of build articles, not many, but I like them and have amassed a small collection of over a dozen of various types. Tameo is a company of which I've not yet built any cars, but this one looks very much like what I've gotten from FDS and some others so I anticipate no difficulties aside from markings. Fortunately, replacements are available and I've asked Tameo for a new set so let's see how this turns out.  



March 2016

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