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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Well, you may have already read the write-up on the Gaugemaster site, but I thought an independent report may be in order. Sorry about the lack of pictures, but you can see them on the Gaugemater site - I'm not very good with that side of things - I tend to cut heads off, you know what I mean.

This was to be my first experience of a Spirit model. I had seen them before on many websites and wondered but another car had always beaten the Spirit to my wallet. Straight out of the box, it ran somewhat noisily but after quite a short while it quietened down. It seems well constructed and is well detailed, the tampo printing is very good, well defined and considering it is a matt finish (which I have often found becomes a semi-gloss after handling the model for a while) the overall finish is excellent. It has the motor in a seperate 'mini-chassis' which you can change for different sizes of motors. The one that come with it is the standard size, but the larger frame would allow a Fly Racing motor. Also, there is one magnet already fitted which can be removed easily or alternatively you can add another so that there is a magnet each end of the motor. For the purpose of the testing, we left the car as it was supplied but it should also be noted that you can upgrade this model to a 'racing' model with the upgraded lightweight cockpit area and the lightweight chassis and wheels, all available as additional extras. The tyres are somewhat 'sticky' like the Fly Racing tyres, but certainly an improvement on the standard tyres on the normal Fly cars.

Up until now, the fastest cars that Connor (my 9 year old son) and I possess have been any of the Fly Vipers and a recent addition was one of the Fly Lola B98 with the racing motor. The Lola seemed the nearest candidate to race against and so the track was duly laid, and an evening of testing and racing was ahead of us.

Readers of this forum will know that it is a very rare occasion when I actually manage to beat Connor - he seems to have that annoying trait of children to be able to pick up anything and master it within seconds, whereas it takes us oldies a great deal longer. However, the Dallara was to be my secret weapon.

Our track is variable, depending on how much of the lounge furniture we can be bothered to clear away, so track times are pretty irrelevant. It also should be said that the longer you play with a model the faster you will get, so I thought a comparison with a model that I was very familiar with would be a real test for it. However, the Spirit offering was noteably faster than the Lola, much to Connors disgust and my pleasure. The Dallara holds the track perfectly, and almost glides round the corners with no attempt at deslotting or flipping. In fact, the Lola came off the track before the Spirit did every time. Top speed was about the same between the two models, but I am sure it must be the balance and road-holding of the Spirit that gave it the edge. Indeed, when Connor eventually convinced me to let him have a go, he thrashed me by a long way.

The range includes only four models: Ferrari 512, Lola, Reynard and Dallara although the Reynard is available in a 'Racing' version. I have to admit that I was somewhat sceptical on how it would perform - I have always seen the Spirit cars as the poor mans Fly cars, but I have to admit that I cannot wait to get hold of one of the Reynards to race against this Dallara. If you have not tried one of these, you really must because after all the noise about the Fly racing Lola, I think this would be a very worthwhile competitor. I will be buying the upgrade parts to make it into the race version, but probably not the cockpit as I like to see the proper detailing and not just a plastic bubble-mould representing a driver as they tend to be. However, even as it is I found it to be a fast, easy to drive model with the varying magnet options so that it has appeal to all levels of driver, and also lets you experiment as you get used to the car.


Kevin with his able assistant Connor
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