Posted November 2, 2013 by f1nut in Diecast models

Removable cowling 1:43 F1 diecasts: Part 2 – Minichamps

Minichamps M23 and FW07
Minichamps M23 and FW07

Part 1 of this series looked at the Brumm 1:43 Villeneuve 126CK model in a display case with an exposed chassis. In Part 2, we’ll take a look at the various Minichamps 1:43 diecasts that have removable engine covers – the most well known being the early Williams Ford FW07 & FW07B and the mid-1970’s McLaren M23’s diecasts.

The Williams Ford FW07 and FW07B models are unique within the Minichamps collection and are probably one of my favorite diecast models. They are presented in the highbox display cases and the whole upper chassis panel is mounted on a plastic mould suspended at the rear while the rest of the car is exposed under the skin. The aero detailing of the chassis cover is fantastic and you can really appreciate the differences between the FW07 and FW07B.  Unlike the Brumm, the chassis cover can be clicked into place over the driver figure for a complete look. Both FW07’s (Jones, Reutemann) and FW07B (Jones, Regazzoni) are hard to find nowadays and sell for high amounts on trading posts and ebay. The Jones FW07B in particular is the most valuable considering its also Williams’ first world championship car. Minichamps are supposed to be re-releasing these models in the future (hopefully including the FW07C) so that will be a good opportunity for collectors to access some new supply.

Looking at the McLaren M23 1:43 scale, you would think that Minichamps would have taken a short-cut and simply used the same mould with modified decals and paintwork for the different seasons and drivers:

  • 1973 Hulme, 1973 Season, Ed 43 No. 36
  • 1973 Ickx, 1973 German GP, Limited 1386 pcs, Ed 43, No. 120
  • 1973 Revson, 1973 Season, Ed 43 No. 37
  • 1973 Scheckter, 1973 British GP, Limited 1296 pcs, Ed 43 No.101
  • 1974 Fittipaldi, 1974 Season,
  • 1976 Mass, 1976 Season, Ed 43 No. 39
  • 1977 Hunt, US GP West, Limited 2304 pcs, Ed 40 No. 70
  • 1977 Mass, US GP West, Limited 1518 pcs, Ed 40, No. 71
  • 1977 Villeneuve, Bristish GP, Ed 43 No.41

For the M23, the cockpit panel and the airbox cowling can be removed and kept separate under the clear plastic mould cover at the rear. Between the 1973 and 1974 season diecasts, the engine block mould and chassis look almost identical (apart from the livery) but there are some small visible differences:

  • The ’74 rearwing endplates are larger
  • The ’74 has rear rainlight

The Fittipaldi ’74 M23 is one of the rarer Minichamps 1:43 diecasts so it usually commands a high premium price in the collectors’ market. It’s also a beautiful model too.


Minichamps FW07B and FW07

FW07 and FW07B under the skin










Minichamps FW07B

The Reutemann FW07B










Minichamps FW07

Note the differences in aero features on the chassis cover









Minichamps M23 1973

An earlier model Hulme M23









Minichamps M23 1974

One of Minichamps’ best…









Minichamps M23 1976

Due to Rush, this one seems popular again…
















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