The Violet has never been a terribly popular subject for model manufacturers and this is no exception in the world of plastic model kits. Whilst on the surface it might seem there is a reasonable number of kits of both the 710 Violet and later A10 in both Violet and Auster form, there really are very few. Most kits are simply reissues of previous kits and as such the quality of the later version has become somewhat diminished. Here we’ll take a look at what is available, starting with the 710 model. With the 710, like so many other Nissan’s, only the hardtop coupe version ever seems to be the subject of models. There are only a couple of kits of the KP710 currently available.
The most common of these is probably the 1/24 Violet SSS-E by Doyusha, part of their Nostalgic Heroes series. This kit, as with so many older Japanese kits, features a motor and battery compartment, making for an interior that is a simple flat pancake with little detail. The body is moulded in white, the interior in grey and the chassis in black. The grill. bumpers, tail lights and pillar emblems are all chrome plated parts and the standard of plating is quite good. The chassis is a little ill-fitting and securing it to the body is not easy. The wheels are also very poor, being too wide and far too small to look right. In all honesty, I would say they are actually unusable, so if you get this kit, it would be wise to buy a set of nice wheels to accompany it. The body isn’t terribly accurate with mildly flared wheel arches and a fair bit of flash from the moulding process but even with all the failings, with a little care and some effort, it is possible to make it into a nice model. The Doyusha kit is a re-issue of a much older kit by Yamada. Most of the components are the same, although the the Yamada kit features a neat little clockwork motor wound by a metal key. The chassis is different and fits a lot better and it does have usable wheels and tyres. The Yamada kit comes as a stock road car or a rally car, the latter coming with a sheet of decals to match the box illustration (the Doyusha kit has none). I only have the rally car version and although the moulding quality is better there isn’t a great advantage in seeking out this kit over the Doyusha version, unless you’re a die hard KP710 fan. The Yamada kits are pretty rare now and may attract a premium should one come up for sale.
The other kit which can currently be found is the Turbo Violet made by Nichimo in 1/24 scale. Like the Doyusha kit, this is a re-issue of a much older kit, although one which has appeared in several incarnations as bit a custom road car and a race car. The kits is actually based on the real turbo KP710 which won the Malaysian Grand Prix in 1974 (more on this soon!) and the livery shown on the latest box art is actually that of the real car, however dissapointingly the kit doesn’t contain all the decals to recreate it. In fact the kit has a sheet of stickers in place of the more usual water-slide decals. The kit itself is well moulded with the body in white and all other parts in black (there’s no chrome on the real race car anyway). This kit is also motorised with a shallow interior to allow room for the batteries, although not quite as shallow as in the Doyusha kit. The detail is quite good and the wheels are excellent, being miniatures of the original, works style four spokes as fitted to the real car.
As I said, this kit has appeared from Nichimo several times in different guises with various optional parts. Below are the various different kits all based on this same moulding…
I have only found one other KP710 kit and that is made by Otaki, also in 1/24 scale. This kit is the most accurate and doesn’t have the flared wheel arches of the Doyusha kit, although it is still motorised. The body is moulded in green and the rest in black with chrome parts for the usual bumpers, grille and lights. The kit comes with a selection of period “tuner” decals to use. This is quite an old kit, and is long out of production, so it tends to attract fairly high prices when it does come up for sale. This means it can be somewhat difficult to get hold of for a reasonable price. Although, like the kits above it will take some effort to build it into an accurate model, it’s most likely the best starting point for a good model.
One way to build these kits into a fully accurate model, although only for the skilled modeller, would be to use parts from Hasegawa’s Bluebird 1600 SSS kit. The suspension from this kit is virtually the same as that which 710 hardtops have in real life so it may be possible with a little scratch building to make a fully detailed KP710.
Finally, if you have a steady hand and sharp eyesight, you may like to try your hand at making one of the KP710 hardtop kits of works rally cars offered by Mini Racing in 1/43 scale. Working in such a small scale can be very challenging! The Mini Racing kits are multi media kits, with resin, plastic and white metal parts and they are quite expensive to buy. The series comes in three liveries as shown below…
Soon, in part two, I’ll cover what’s available in the way of models of the A10 Violet, Auster and Stanza.