To the Moon and back: the Schuco x Tarmac Mooneyes Japan Volkswagen T1

I love these Schuco x Tarmac collaborations. The two brands have now developed a seriously impressive back catalogue with more must haves on the way. The foundation of the brand collaboration was based on classic Volkswagens, being as they are the bread and butter of the Schuco 1/64 range. We’ve had Jagermeister and Mean Streets Mob T1 panel vans, a gorgeous Mooneyes livery and Gulf-esque colours on a Beetle. And now the Mooneyes Beetle has a very cool partner in the shape of perhaps my favourite form of the Panel Van “lowrider” casting; the Mooneyes Japan version.

Mooneyes stuff always gets me excited, and you’ll know by now I’ve a thing for air cooled Volkswagens among my other vehicular obsessions, so this was always going to be a favourite of mine.

It’s a replica of an actual T1 used by the Japanese arm of Mooneyes which sports one of the coolest liveries out there.

Image from

Probably down to tooling costs, the Schuco version lacks the Moondiscs of the real van but retains everything else including the “9-68” Japanese license plate on the rear.

The roof rack with surfboards is a slightly erroneous addition but it fits in well, especially with the red surfboards, and just adds more cool to an already desirable casting.

The attention to detail is, as you would expect from Schuco and Tarmac, brilliant. There’s the ever present and reassuring weighty feel of a Schuco casting, which comes from quality metal forming the body and base. There’s a faithfully replicated interior visible through the windows, the paint is great, the decals sharp and it rolls beautifully on nicely formed steel wheels shod with treaded rubber tyres.

There’s just one slight bugbear from me. It’s one I’ve picked up on before but one that has become more apparent since the release of the Conintental Motors T1 in Schuco’s new resin ProR64 line. The nose of the diecast T1 is slightly…. off. And it becomes more apparent when painted in lighter colours. It’s a wee bit flat and the split screen pillar and B-pillar are a touch too thick in width and depth. Looked at from some angles, it’s not even apparent, which is why I can mostly ignore it (especially with such a cool livery) but from others it just… grates a little! Regardless, this is a very popular casting and with liveries like this it’s not hard to see why.

Perhaps now with new tooling now present from the ProR64 line, there may be an updated T1 panel casting in the future. But even if there isn’t, I’m still very much attached to this one, and indeed all the other Schuco T1s in my collection. Now, about that ProR version….

Instagram: @alex_the_hoarder


(Find the Schuco x Tarmac Works Mooneyes T1 at the Tarmac webstore and on Ebay)

2 Replies to “To the Moon and back: the Schuco x Tarmac Mooneyes Japan Volkswagen T1”

  1. This casting is uncomfortable for me to look at.

    You ever heard of uncanny valley? Does that apply to diecast replicas or just robots?

    1. Hahahaha, I suppose it applies to artificial things so maybe with diecast?! It’s a shame because the rest of the model is bang on. In my opinion it shows more when the model is painted in lighter colours.

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