‘New Look’ Guy Arab IV set to light up 1:76 model bus market


A Birmingham City Transport “New Look” Guy Arab IV will be the first UK spec 1:76 modelled by award-winning Canadian model train and bus manufacturer Rapido Trains Inc, and, Rapido promises, it will include details and features never before seen on a model bus in this scale.

Rapido is working from 3-D scans of JOJ 976, a preserved vehicle that now resides in Wythall Transport Museum’s collection. This Metro-Cammell bodied bus was one of 200 delivered between 1952 and 1954 (JOJ 901-999, LOG 300 and MOF 3-102), all of which featured one-piece body construction, a seating capacity of 55 (30 upper and 25 lower) and a tough Gardner 6LW engine.

The model, however, is to see various route/destination outings in both Birmingham City Transport and West Midlands PTE liveries. Also planned is an undecorated version supplied with a choice of transfers.

Constructed from metal and injection moulded plastic, Rapido assures us all of the proportions of the real thing, especially the complex curves of the front and rear domes and the 'New Look' bonnet, will be accurately captured. There will also be steerable front wheels with rubber tyres; flush-fitting windows; separate metal wire handrails and rear platform grab pole and etched-metal interior grab poles.

Particularly exciting, and certainly a real first for 1:76 bus collectors, is that Deluxe versions will feature working headlamps, interior lighting and illuminated destination blinds, powered by (although, we should point out, not included with the model) a 12V 500mA DC power supply. Reservations for both the standard issues, at £39.95, and the Deluxe versions, at £49.95, are now being taken. Tooling and production progress will be reported regularly on Rapido’s website, Facebook page, YouTube channel and Twitter. The first models are expected to be delivered to customers next autumn (2018).

See ads in this magazine or contact Rapido’s UK distributor, Rails of Sheffield on 0114 2551436 for stockist advice. Alternatively visit www.RapidoUK.com

LEFT - In development from 1948 and making their debut in 1950, the Birmingham City Transport “New Look” buses gained their nickname from fashion designer Christian Dior’s “New Look” dresses of the late 1940s. They were to have a radical impact on PSV development, with variations of the “New Look” front appearing all over the country in subsequent years. Image courtesy of Malcolm Keeley. RIGHT - Rapido’s Jason Shron at the Wythall Transport Museums getting some hands on experience of the BCT 'New Look' Guy Arab IV – the first British spec bus the Canadian company plan to release in 1:76 scale. 

Read more of the latest model news in Model Collector September 2017

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