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Saturday, April 15, 2017

Maisto 1:24 ProRodz 1957 Chevrolet Corvette




Maisto has been making notice for about a decade now with the ProRodz line, muscle cars with more extreme muscle and detailing that was aimed at Jada Toys Big Time Muscle line.  The line has since then been toned down but you can still find these wild castings every once in a while.  I remember one of my first was the 1967 Ford Mustang GT that was built to resemble the Shelby GT500E Eleanor that no one else offered back then (before replica's of the car started to appear later on).  Otherwise I mostly passed on these cars, but when I saw this Corvette I knew it was too good to pass up.  Another advantage: it was purchased on the same day the Kmart mail-in offer of the 1955 Corvette started.  This Maisto was clearly better.






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Before I start it's interesting to note that there are two different versions of the ProRodz cars in 1:24:  The premium one that has all of the details in a fancy box for a few bucks more, or the lower-end models, like the one you see here, in a typical 1:24 Maisto box and sold at retail stores like Wal-greens with a few missing detail areas.  Here I added Sharpie detailing to return those missing areas found on the higher-end versions.  The Corvette was Chevrolet's first sports car that was made out of fiberglass and one of the Motorrama's show gems that made it into production.  However, it was more of a roadster than a sports car with a blue flame I-6 and mechanicals that look like they came off the truck line.  Enter Zora Arkus-Duntov and his need for speed transformed the Corvette into a proper sports car with V8 power and better handling in 1955.  1957 edged it further with a fuel-injected V8 (instead of using a carburetor) and more expressive styling.






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This Maisto, however, is a different beast all-together.  It starts life as the stock 1957 Corvette casting itself a retool of a Bburago casting.  Flip the hood to show the fuel-injected V8 only to see a LS1 5.7L V8 from a C5 Corvette to produce well over 400 horsepower.  Now the engine bay is loaded with chrome so to help break that up I added red to the valve covers, black to the intake, and red to the various connectors across the engine bay.  Did I mention this engine better covers the bay than the stock '57 does?  The base shows off the stock frame with X-brace and drivetrain that I detailed with a custom exhaust system that ends just right after the rear axle.  The wheels are upgraded to dark gray 5-spoke wheels with very thin sidewall tires with brake calipers in red that float over the moving rotors.  Sure the steering front wheels are lost but then again they never worked on any modern 1:24 Maisto's.






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The biggest draw is the exterior where the classic lines of the 1957 Corvette remain and then painted in satin blue with dark gray side scallops (they are plastic inserts separate from the metal body) and chrome trim.  The front has round headlights with chrome trim, chrome signal lights, chrome wing bumpers, chrome grille, Corvette badge, and Maisto All-Stars front plate.  The hood has dual bulges with vents on the outer fender and a windshield that wraps around with chrome outer trim and being a separate piece allows the upper portion of the dashboard to still be metal.  The side profile is simply beautiful with the color, the scoops with Fuel Injection in them, and the wheels really tying this car together.  Out back is where the real magic happens:  As the paint wraps around the trunklid the shine off the paint is incredible near the Fuel Injection and Corvette badge.  The rear fenders peak off with comet taillights, chrome bumper ends, and a chrome bumper with the same plate design as the front.



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The tonneau cover for the top is a nice hard cover with chrome trim for the front edge and rear top latch point.  Inside the bucket seats get an enhance with blue Sharpie details (though the color doesn't pop out against the black).  A custom 3-spoke steering wheel replaces the stock unit and a fire extinguisher sits between the front seats.  The shifter is a custom handle and signals a straight-drive automatic than a standard manual like the stock version.  The twin-pod dashboard with metal top has a nice assortment of chrome switchgear in the middle with detailed gauges below and behind the steering wheel.  A nice touch is the radio speaker in the passenger pod.  Things get out-of-hand when the large door speakers in the doors look out-of-place on an otherwise fantastic interior.



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This is one wild Corvette that also has a sleek look with that gorgeous satin blue paint mating with the chrome and gray accents.

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