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Revell 1/24 scale 1970 Plymouth Road Runner plastic model kit review

Revell updates an older model car kit with new box art and decals
Kit:14531 // Scale:1/24 // Price:$30.99
Revell (Sample courtesy of mfr.)
Minimal mold lines on the body; new decals with proper dust stripes; quick build
No name tires; simplified suspension and engine bay parts molded in place make detail painting tedious
Injection-molded plastic (white, clear, chrome-plated); 77 parts (4 vinyl tires); decals
The newly updated decal sheet provides some nice new decals. This includes proper Dust trail stripes with Roadrunner bird at the fronts. The added detail decals like the rear “PLYMOUTH “ letters are a very nice addition along with side marker lights. The decals go down very nicely with little fuss.
The 440 six-barrel engine details nicely once the chrome plating is removed from the valve covers, alternator, carburetors, and air cleaner. A little detail painting on the molded-on starter and fuel pump adds to the look. The kit also provides a Mopar oil filter, which is a nice touch.
The platform style helps with detailing. Note the rear seat is molded in place, which makes a two-tone interior a little more involved but doable with masking.
I chose to paint the chassis in the “over-restored” look. With this kit’s open transmission tunnel and phantom lower firewall, it felt like the natural approach instead of primer and overspray.
The 1970 Plymouth Road Runner was the last of the first-generation Road Runner, and part of the Plymouth Rapid Transit System — a special line devoted to its performance cars available in “high impact” colors like Lemon Twist, Vitamin C, and In Violet. The 440 six-barrel engine became a regular option, and the fresh air or “Air Grabber” system was changed to a vacuum-activated hood scoop, operable by the driver.

The Revell 1/24 scale 1970 Plymouth Road Runner plastic model kit was first released in 2000 but dates back to a Monogram 1970 Plymouth GTX kit from 1982. This offering includes dual quad carburetors and velocity stacks added to the Monogram kit in 1986. However, this release features new box art and an updated decal sheet with new dust-trail side stripes featuring the Looney Toons Roadrunner. Wheel options include Magnum 500 or police car steel with dog dish, and the tires lack branding.

The kit provides a 440 engine with a six-barrel option. Fairly basic compared to current kits, the starter comes molded on, and the engine is split down the middle. This leaves a large seam line on the oil pan and transmission that you’ll want to eliminate.

The instructions say to put the valve cover with the oil filler cap (Part 50) onto the driver’s side of the engine. This would be correct for the oil filler cap but means the valve cover would be upside down. Swap positions with the other valve cover (Part 55). This will put the oil filler can on the wrong side of the engine, but the valve covers will be right-side up.

The distributor post looked too long, so I trimmed off about 1/8 inch before installing it.

When I think of a Road Runner, I see a bench seat and a four-speed. That is exactly what Revell did in this kit. The interior is built platform-style with separate door panels adorned with raised trim, door handles, and window cranks that make Bare-Metal Foil a detailing option.

The bench seat’s halves are tricky to assemble without locators, and the bottom parts don’t fit particularly well. However, once installed, you can’t see them. The seats hide the ejector marks on the floor. The door panels don’t have locators either but fit pretty well regardless.

The new decal sheet carries gauge faces for the speedometer and tic-toc-tach, but nothing for the four little auxiliary gauges.

A simple chassis points to its origins in the early ‘80s. Both the front and rear suspensions are consolidated into single parts, with all of the surrounding components attached. This makes for ease of assembly but makes detail painting more tedious. Watch for sink marks in the middle of the exhaust tips that may require filler. Both suspensions require cleanup and attach to the main chassis pan with positive locators.

For a factory-stock look, the Magnum 500 wheels make the grade. While I liked the look of the steels, they’re not the correct style. The 500’s detail nicely with black paint. The no-name tires are a downer. They miss the ‘70s muscle appearance because they lack the raised white letters.

Watch for a mold seam from the drip rail to the quarter panel on an otherwise cleanly molded body. The window trim is well-pronounced, as are the door handles. You can model the “Air Grabber” scoop open or closed with a shark’s teeth decal provided for the open position.

The engine bay features a molded battery, wires, a radiator overflow tank, a windshield washer tank, and wires and hoses. The battery and windshield washer tank have no break line to distinguish them as separate from the inner fenders. Fix this by using a tape line while painting them. The radiator and support fit neatly in front. However, pay attention when painting because they’re molded as a single part.

All of the finishing pieces like the grille and bumpers fit into place with no issues, leading up to a nice finishing out of the build.

When the instructions tell you to choose between the Hemi decal or 440 for the hood rear, choose the 440, because it’s correct. That being said, I kind of wish Revell would have dipped into the 1/24 scale ’71 Cuda for the Hemi engine and the Rallye wheels. That would have added more than new decals and box art.

All in all, if you’re looking for a cool Mopar or ’70s muscle car kit that builds easily, the 1/24 scale Revell 1970 Plymouth Road Runner is the kit for you. A reboxing of older tooling with new decals, it can build into a nice-looking replica with a little effort.
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