Scale Cars

Tamiya Honda/Acura NSX (Second Gen)

This project was a long time coming – I had the idea and urge to build a Good Smile Racing race car ever since I saw the displays and custom cars with liveries featuring Racing Miku and all the pretty bright colors at Anime Expo last year. Itasha itself is crazy enough, but a full-on decked-out Super GT-Style Itasha supercar? It’s the otaku dream.

I got this kit right around when it came out at the tail end of last year – the actual production car has barely been out by this time. I like how the main boxart doesn’t actually say Honda or Acura – it just says NSX in big red lettering, but it’s not like the badge on the car’s nose is hard to distinguish.

I didn’t start on this kit until a few months after I bought it – at first I was fired up to build myself a Good Smile Racing car, but then the box size and complexity of the car itself put me off for a while. I think this thing has the largest parts count of any car model I’ve built to date.

You get a little informational sheet on what (I assume to be) the NSX’s history and design, but little good it does me when I’m not Japanese.

Masking stickers for the windows! Wait…since when did the NSX have so many tiny windows? Turns out a lot of it is for the engine cover, which comes in clear plastic but needs to be mostly painted black.

The parts count is so numerous and the build process so complex the manual actually comes as a booklet instead of the usual fold-out pamphlet.

Of course, to build a Good Smile Racing race car, the most important ingredient would be the GSR livery itself. I got lucky and found this sheet brand new on eBay right around when I was buying the kit – Good Smile actually made a lot of 1/24 water slide sheets for use on model cars (with varying characters and series like a particularly neat Black Rock Shooter set), but they’ve all long been discontinued. They tend to be unicorns and quite expensive when you do find some online, but thankfully I only paid $40 for this one.

I say thankfully, but the decal sheet has the original yen price on full display unabashed, meaning I paid around double the original release price. But that’s okay because it’s rare and discontinued, right?

From the get-go I knew that I didn’t want this to just be a stock NSX with some livery – a big park bench wing and of course a new set of wheels were a given. This is the only car I’ve built so far that’s actually had staggered diameter wheels front and rear. The rears were supposed to be 20 inches and the fronts 19.

I was shopping around at a discount store a while back and found this neat Hot Wheels electronic toy car that was right around 1/24 scale. It was only a few bucks and I liked the wheels so I picked it up and took it apart  – threw everything away except for what I needed it for – the rims.

I thought these crazy chrome deep dish wheels would be perfect for something as flashy as the NSX would be, but clearly I misjudged just how impossible it would be to work with wheels with basically no backspacing.

Technically it would be possible to run these and it would look pretty sick if I made it work, but I’d basically have to hack apart everything under the shell and completely rework the suspension to accommodate these stupidly negative offset wheels. Guess I’ll save them for another car.

It’s rather off-putting, working with such an exotic body shape when I’ve been building nothing but basic-bodied coupes this whole time. The rear quarter panel with the cut-out hollow section behind the doors really threw me for a loop in terms of car design – flying buttresses are too exotic for me.

It seems like Tamiya always likes to go big or go home with their Japanese supercars – apparently the Lexus LFA was even remarked on by Shunsaku Tamiya himself as being overkill.

Of course, I haven’t built the LFA (yet), but just from looking at the runner parts for the NSX’s engine and drivetrain here it seems no expense was spared.

There are a lot more clear parts here than on your average Honda – the taillights and headlights in particular seem to be made up of a lot of clear pieces layered on top of each other.

The clear engine cover was particularly interesting because I almost thought it was supposed to be left clear so the engine could be on full display.

Good on Tamiya for almost always providing left-hand drive options for their models – I’ll be damned if I build my cars with the steering wheels on the wrong side of the car unless I absolutely have to.

I already suspected from seeing those gigantic underbody plates that most of this car would probably be featureless from below.

Pretty incredible grille and honeycomb detail already molded into the parts without the need for separate mesh pieces.

These are the nicest chrome parts I’ve ever seen – mostly because they’re not the usual super ultra shiny chrome.

They actually have a bit of a restrained satin sheen instead of being mirror-like. I think this works especially well for interior car trim, since it looks a bit more realistic.

The wheel shown above is the standard chrome we see most often – see how the NSX’s parts look a bit smoother and less cheap?

Building this car had me rethinking everything I knew about car architecture. Mid engine supercar? Okay, I’ve dealt with one of those before. But wait, there’s an electric motor up front at the axles because it’s a…mid-engine hybrid supercar? Honda please, stick to lawnmowers.

Test fitting the unusually hollow chassis in the body frame.

Dry fitting the rear suspension before gluing it all together and separating them for paint – of course everything slots together quite nicely without any play in the parts – well expected from Tamiya.

Even two chrome versions of the dash were given – one for left-hand drive and the other for wrong-hand drive.

Of course it isn’t this simple – quite a bit of extra painting and detail is going to be needed to bring out the rest of the dash detail, but kudos to Tamiya for going out of their way to hide the chrome nub marks with the upper dash piece.

The floor-mounted pedal footrest is even molded on the left corner of both footwells, so it stays the same no matter which driver orientation you choose.

Starting to put the gas engine together – this mid-engine layout always confuses me because I’m so used to a simple transmission unit and tunnel connecting to the engine between the front wheels, but I’m not sure where the transmission ends and the motor begins here – does it even have a transmission?

Quite a large boosted V6. The amount of detail rendered here is very respectable and almost ridiculous when you consider that it’ll all never be seen again once the body shell is glued in place.

Because when you have two turbos, you need two intercoolers.

Gloss black detail added to the chrome via acrylics and hand brushes.

The body came in white so we…painted it white again. Gotta keep all the parts a consistent color with the same layers of paint after all.

On a whim I decided to make the interior Brilliant Blue, just because I thought it would look better this way instead of going out of my way to match the interior as Miku’s trademark pink or teal – I thought that would be too matchy.

I got this far with masking the first seat when I realized that I was masking the wrong section. They were painted blue first so I could mask the outside and paint the center strip gray. I drank my tears as punishment for wasting so much masking tape.

That mistake devastated me enough to just throw it all out the window and paint it by hand instead. This actually didn’t turn out badly, as I thinned my paints down to a very watery mix and built the layers up until it was solid.

I usually don’t go with more than two colors for my interiors but the NSX is a supercar deserving of a little more breakup and variation.

All the little details finished up; just needs a coat of flat to even out the finishes.

Steering wheel sprayed black and detailed by hand (or rather toothpick) with silver.

I love the inclusion of these little metal transfer stickers – they add a new sense of realism to the car. I wish models came with these more often. The tiny Honda and Acura badges are actually meant for the wheel center caps.

Calipers done in red because red makes you go stop faster.

The NSX’s water slide decal sheet consists mostly of mesh patterns for all the holes and vents it has.

Subtle decals added to the calipers. Tamiya was considerate enough to include both silver and black versions of these decals, should you choose to paint your brakes in a lighter color like white or gray the black decals would’ve come in handy.

The center stack navigation screen has one decal that slots into the recess, displaying front and center the name of the car in case the brakes, plates, and engine bay didn’t spoil the surprise.

Front suspension finished – that electric motor pales in comparison to the gas engine’s size and complexity.

I always like black roofs on my cars so I’d commonly do it as just a stylistic choice, but this time it was actually mandated by the manual that the NSX’s roof actually be black.

I’m drawing a lot of cues for this car’s design from Good Smile Racing’s 2011 BMW Z4 which featured the livery set I intend to use on this car, so naturally I decided to also pull the silver lines that ran down the body of that car and see what I could do with the NSX’s body lines.

Despite knowing that Testors paints are generally crap compared to the usual Tamiya sprays I use, I still can’t bring myself to throw away un-empty cans. I’ve had these Testors for probably several years now, and just never used them up. I tried the chrome on the NSX and remembered why I kept putting off using these.

Aside from taking days to dry and cure (Tamiya sprays are dry to the touch in a few hours), they go on super thick and just look bad. No smooth finishes here.

So that’s more masking tape wasted because I had to peel it all off and re-sand the body.

Re-sprayed the roof black, since the previous attempt had some leaks with the masking tape.

Masked the roof and re-sprayed the body white. Unfortunately all this sanding and re-coating as ended up melting away some of the body details, like the gas cap lines.

The rear bumper ended up being quite a nightmare when the new coat of white wasn’t leveling with the old coat because I sanded it unevenly. If I sanded it too much it would basically remove the parking sensor detail, if I sanded it too little the above happens. There’s no winning.

And the masking tape on the roof decides to pop again. You’d think this would be a simple and fool-proof area to mask; it’s not very complicated but somehow things always find a way to go wrong.

Re-masked the body to get some proper silver on this time.

And proper it was. I went out and specifically bought a can of Tamiya Gloss Aluminum – the difference between this and the old Testors paint is night and day.

Gauge decal is very finite and detailed; you’ll never see it this well ever again once it’s inside the car and under the gauge cover but I applaud Tamiya for how crisp it is.

Dash done and I’m loving the color breakup. There’s just the right amount of chrome to make it look luxurious.

Tub done. The speaker grille patterns behind the seats and on top of the dash were all decals.

Tub inserted into the chassis along with the main gas engine – adding the small details like the intercooler piping was a precision challenge. They line up to grooves at each end and are so small and thin the only real way to get them in is via tweezers.

Rather interesting seeing how a boosted mid-engine car gets its cold air – I suppose those flying buttresses are really there for a reason beyond style points.

Rear springs/shocks added in along with the fender liners and rear brace.

So because those gaudy Hot Wheels rims wouldn’t work, I decided to go with actual 1/24 model kit aftermarket parts – some 19 inch Advan RGIII’s from Aoshima.

Unfortunately no aftermarket wheel set that I know of actually offers staggered sets – so instead of the NSX’s stock 19″ front and 20″ rear setup it will now sport a 19″ square setup. The stock wheels aren’t even that bad – I really only went aftermarket here for the sake of not being stock. The factory tires are certainly a bit too thick for my tastes though – I like the thinner profile tires the Advans came with much more.

I like how these wheel and tire sets always come with a decal sheet with producer names – tuner cars love these sorts of things.

Even though Aoshima and Tamiya produce similar kits and on many occasions even the same car models, their aftermarket usually isn’t easily compatible. Tamiya likes to have their polycaps behind their rotors with pegs on the wheels, while Aoshima does the opposite and has their polycaps slot into their wheels.

Sigh…even these actual model kit car wheels don’t fit. I’m not about to craft my own widebody for this car so we can get the wheels underneath.

After some brainstorming I figured that I really didn’t want to chop the suspension apart and delete parts to get the hubs deeper in the body. I figured the better option was to actually cut the wheels themselves.

This wasn’t fun when you consider that I’d basically need a 90 degree knife to get in there and trim the hub connector down. I managed to do it with an exacto knife, but at the cost of digging into the inside lip. Not that it matters since you won’t be seeing that damage on the final car anyway.

Just a dry fit without any actual attachment anywhere – the passenger side is how far the wheels stick out normally, the driver side is how they are after some hub connector trimming. Still a bit too much poke for my liking, but this is about as good as it’s gonna get.

Now the issue is attaching the wheel to the hub, which is harder than it looks. There’s no flat or solid surface for the wheel to mount onto because of that little indent in the center of the rotors, so I had to come up with another way.

Luckily I had some spare plastic tube that ended up fitting as a perfect ring inside the rotor indent when cut. I just had to cut four rings, glue them to the wheels, and slot the wheel into the rotor with some glue to hold it together. Of course the car won’t be rolling, but that never really mattered to me anyway.

The NSX comes with a rather unique approach to getting all its required grilles in place – instead of the usual actual mesh webbing that we get with most kits, Tamiya decides to do it by giving us clear parts and decals to go over those parts, essentially creating the grille effect with solid plastic.

Many of those grille decals turned out to be ultra thin and long though, which means if they folded in on themselves it was nigh-impossible to unfold them properly and get them seated. In the case of the intercooler intake grille above I ended up doing just that and damaging the decal beyond repair or salvage. As such we’re falling back to more traditional methods.

Essentially the same thing, except instead of a decal it’s actual mesh. I cut it to the rough size of the clear piece and glued it on around the edges. A sharp knife around the shape of the plastic takes off the excess and we’re good to go.

Applying the included masking tape to the clear parts since most of them need some black.

Taillights painted clear red by hand.

I like how we get the choice of applying the traditional ambers at the end of the taillights or having them replaced with silver ones instead – this would be a common aftermarket modification a lot of owners do here in the U.S. since I’m pretty sure ambers are required on our headlights.

Interestingly, Tamiya includes decals for certain parts and areas that could’ve been painted at the builder’s discretion – no doubt decals make it easier, but for most kits they’re reserved for things we can’t paint, like lettering, model numbers, etc. In this case the ambers on the headlights and the tiny white strip below the LED bulbs both qualify as this – they could’ve been painted in but we get decals for them because Tamiya thinks we’re worth it.

The engine cover seriously bothered me for a while after I saw how the paint came out on it because I thought the textured surface was the result of the paint screwing up on me. Turns out it’s intentional, with the texture being a part of the mold, though I still think it would’ve looked better as a smooth surface.

Tiny masking stickers and tiny decals, all for the sake of some (admittedly cool) mesh shenanigans.

Finally getting into the definitive part of this build – the livery decals. I almost didn’t want to desecrate the sheet by cutting into it.



Finally got the body paint down to acceptable levels – the roof edges are still a tad messy but I’m hoping with the decals on it basically won’t be noticeable.

When they’re so much larger than the usual tiny decal markings I work with that I had to break out some kitchen Tupperware to soak the stuff. I usually just use a tiny paint mixing container.

Starting this process was extremely intimidating because I was essentially left on my own to determine the base teal/pink paint splatter placement. The decal sheet gives it to you as one big piece, and it’s up to you to lay it over and cut/place it where you see fit.

These decals are surprisingly hard and thick for what they are. I suppose since they’re larger they need to be stiffer, but this means that they have much more trouble going around ridges and bumps and conforming to not-flat surfaces compared to traditionally smaller decals that will wilt and bend around whatever they’re placed over.

Cutting these for placement over the car body also wasn’t the most elegant process – in fact, it was basically impossible to get a clean cut through the decal to split it after I had laid down the amount I wanted because it broke and flaked when you cut into it. Ironically this ended up being kind of okay because it’s supposed to look like paint splatter anyway, so I console myself by saying the uneven edges are just part of the design.

The design of the front bumper means that there’s not much room to add this base livery there, so I made up with it by adding some more the rear bumper. I’m glad the paint splatter (sort of) flows into itself throughout the car, so it looks like one brush of pink/one brush of teal instead of random blotches throughout.

It’s Miku time.

The top and bottom of the decal folded over the door sill and side skirts pretty well, but the area with Miku’s hair that had to fold around the end of the door and the body vents gave me nightmares. The thick decal didn’t like going over those sloped and weirdly shaped curves, and where it didn’t bend it crinkled, creating more headaches as I went along.

Cut off as much as I could, but the final placement is still far from perfect with some frayed edges from the uneven slices.

When Mikus on your doors aren’t enough, you need a Miku on your hood.

The decal is so large because it was originally meant for the Z4 – a front mid-engine car with a long inline 6 motor, which means it had a particularly long hood. The NSX is basically the opposite of that – a true mid-engine V6 placed behind the cabin, meaning there’s no need for a long front hood.

I was so sad that I had to cut so much of the main Miku decal from the hood that I half considered putting her lower half out back. Lots of wasted art here, but it’s hard to justify putting a Hatsune Miku lower half anywhere.

Getting the rest of the race and sponsor markings down. That FREEing one was particularly arduous – I nearly gave up and threw it out because it was so hard to get it properly aligned around the hood vents. In the end it’s still not perfect but good enough to make the cut.

I’m so glad a good amount of these decals came attached together; lining them up so it’s all perfectly straight is never any fun.

And of course, even though the sponsor decal sheet was originally meant for a BMW, the NSX is no bimmer. The BMW-specific markings were subsequently trashed.

These intercooler vents behind the doors are so foreign in their shape that I simply couldn’t imagine how they would fit into the body until I actually dry fitted them. To my surprise they actually continue the door line into the engine area, which means they needed the silver/white treatment that the rest of the car received.

Awkward. I should have attached these before I began the decaling process. Now it looks off since Miku’s hair ends before the panel. I can always add more random decals to fill the space later, but it looks slightly off without the door livery continuing into it.

Test fit with the body shell mostly done and the wheels adjusted. The fronts are basically fine, maybe I’ll dial some negative camber to get them a little more flush, but there was some atrocious wheel gap out in the rear. This is due to the stock suspension and body being set up for the original 20″ rear wheels, while my aftermarket Advans were 19″ all around.

At first I was ready to accept the poor fitment and tried every manner of convincing myself that the gap wasn’t too bad. It didn’t work.

I really didn’t want to edit suspension that was this complex, especially on such a detailed model, but I overcame my initial fear and cut right into the strut/spring assembly.

There are five or six connections from the wheel hub to the chassis; it’s times like this I wished it just had a simple axle I could bend upwards.

I cut the spring and used a set of metal pliers to bend the rest of the assembly upwards, one at a time. On a real car these would all be adjustable linkages, but they’re all static pieces on a model kit, though that’s not to say they aren’t adjustable if you just pull on them really hard before their breaking point.

Unf now that’s fitment. That strut/spring top in the foreground will be put back in the car, I promise.

The rear hub assembly is now considerably higher.

My original idea for this car drew a lot of influence from infamous Japanese car building agency Liberty Walk – that is, I wanted the roots of an expensive, ostentatious, crazy luxury race car. While I didn’t plan to add a widebody that is their usual M.O., I figured a swan neck GT wing would get me one step closer to that look.

This particular resin piece is a replica of the Voltex Type 7 wing, from aftermarket model car manufacturer Factory81. There are surprisingly few custom aftermarket model car products out there, with Factory81 producing quite a good chunk of the popular parts and transkits.

This is my absolute first time working with any resin model parts. I’ve always stayed away from them because I’ve heard horror stories about how toxic the stuff is, as though just touching it would burn the skin off my fingertips and turn my bones into makeshift torches.

I figured a tiny accessory like a wing would be a good place to start dabbling in the stuff – it’s small and didn’t require much work cleaning up. There’s just a small nub on the end of the wing and some bits on the bottom of the pedestals that needed to be trimmed and sanded off.

Apparently a rule of thumb is to always sand resin under water or at least wet, so the water traps the resin particles and doesn’t end up clogging your lungs. A couple minutes of trimming and sanding later and it comes together easily with some glue. Fitment is solid and flush.

Factory81 even includes some white water slide decals for the wing. In this case it’s hard to make out, but it’s just differently sized Voltex markings, because it would be criminal if everybody didn’t know what kind of aero you were running.

I test fit the Voltex wing on the car and found that it actually looks a little off – the car looked too stock, with just a lowered suspension and a big ‘ol wang. As such, I decided to go ahead and add a little more aero – in the form of a front lip that I stole right off my old R32 GT-R. That car is basically its own salvage yard – I’ve pulled multiple parts off it for various models.

I liked the shape and look of the lip, but it was unfortunately too short to fit the wide chin of the NSX. So it went under the knife and got split in half – then some pla-plate was added in between to widen it out.

The thin plates on the top and bottom are glued there to keep the piece’s rigidity, then sanded down so it’s smooth and flows with the rest of the piece while putty is then added to fill the gaps.

First coat of primer to see if there are any surface issues. Sure enough, there were some cracks in the front from the pla-plate jutting up.

Re-sanded, re-puttied.

Aero bits primed.

Painted metallic black.

In keeping with the Super GT style, I decided to add some small red pinstriping trim on the lip – inspired directly by the NSX GT3‘s lip style. Done with thick red acrylic paint and a toothpick.

The original giant Good Smile Racing decal was always meant for a wing, but because the swan neck spoiler was inverted upside down, the decal ended up going on the bottom. The top half of the smiley also had to be cut, but that’s what happens when your wang is too small.

Getting the hood vents in. They’re supposed to be mesh/grille, but again Tamiya does its thing by using actual plastic clear pieces with mesh pattern decal over them.

Layered and rather delicate construction for the headlights, with the clear lenses going in first, followed by the chrome/black housings and the clear LED bulb assembly plugging into that. I’m always proud to get these together without a mess.

Basically the same story with the taillights, though with the addition of a clear center bar painted red.

Getting the windows in on this kit was a lot harder than I imagined – mostly because everything needs to be layered and won’t stay together until the cement/glue dries. A slight shift in the rear window will cause fitment problems for the rear deck lid, and a problem with that will then cause an issue with the side intakes.

I struggled with getting it all together for a while and at one point the rear window slipped off with adhesive still on it, brushing the side window on its way down and leaving glue on it. It wasn’t coming out with alcohol or paint thinner, so I had to sand and polish it out, which was an experience given I’d never actually tried to sand away imperfections on clear plastic before.

These are my favorite looking side view mirrors on any kit I’ve built so far. Instead of chrome plastic, Tamiya makes creative use of metal transfer decals that drop right into the housings and look more realistic than any sort of scale mirror I’ve ever seen.

One last comprehensive look at that beautifully over-detailed chassis before it’s all locked away forever.

As much as it lends the car a cleaner clam-shell look and probably actually improves aerodynamics, it’s still a shame to see all that detail sealed away under those broad and boring underbody panels.

I was actually rather shocked and annoyed that the fitment on the rear diffuser/underpanel wasn’t quite flush. It flexed upwards and didn’t mate evenly with the rear bumper even after I held it together with cement in between for a few minutes. As such I resorted to more drastic measures by rubber-banding the assembly together and leaving it overnight for the cement to cure and bond the pieces properly.

The rear wheels still proved troublesome even after I thought I had it all figured out. The glued connection between the wheel and the hub was extremely precarious, and after they fell out they didn’t seem to want to go back on. I ended up trying to glue a piece of cut toothpick to the inside of the wheel to act as a makeshift peg so it can insert into the hub.

Rubber band trick was used again to keep the wheels on while the glue set overnight, as well as add some negative camber by using the elastic to push the wheels inwards a bit.

I wanted to add the main Honda badges at the end on the front and rear, but to my surprise I found that the main badge decals weren’t actually decals. I tried for the longest time to get them to work and adhere, but it turns out they were just standard metallic stickers, with the clear top film attached to the markings themselves. As a result I ended up screwing up both badges and wasn’t about to badge the car with the leftover Acura emblems when I had already used a Honda one for the steering wheel, so I just left it all off.

Ready to run in the Super GT circuit.

I’m surprisingly satisfied with how cohesive the kit ended up looking. I was afraid for a while that it would just look like a stock NSX with some crazy livery but I think the change in wheels and the addition of the wing and lip flesh it out well enough without going modification-crazy.

I mentioned earlier that the little vent panel that goes behind the doors and makes up the side intake assembly was a bit of an afterthought – I only put it in after all the other livery was done, so it doesn’t quite flow as well as it should, with Miku’s hair kind of awkwardly stopping at the end of the door when it should flow into that panel. Remedied with a flamin’ Good Smile on both sides. It was just about the most I could add without making it look too cluttered.

The livery/decals itself turned out merely okay in my opinion. As I mentioned earlier, these decals were thick, and I didn’t use any mark softener to soften them up and blend into the plastic better, so many areas still have the clear decal borders showing up pretty predominantly.

I’ll point out now that this specific concept of a Good Smile Racing NSX actually existed in the form of a GTA Texture Mod before I ever dreamed it up. Granted, that GTA mod was on a car merely based on the NSX and not the actual NSX and the livery is significantly more watered down, I found it interesting that someone else had the same idea and made it happen in some shape or form.

The biggest problem with this build that I’m rather ashamed of is on the rear window hatch. The build process for getting the rear deck, side intakes, and rear window together was so arduous that I eventually got frustrated enough to just drown all the parts with a thick layer of glue to just get it together.

That backfired horribly – up until now I’ve always been very conscious to only use clear-drying cement around windows and clear parts because regular super glue will fog up after drying. Unfortunately I was tilted enough when working with the rear windshield that I ended up forgetting that principle and using too much super glue, meaning after it dried we got the classic problem of it fogging up on the inside and being extremely conspicuous at the end.

UPDATE: Everything is daijoubu. Because I wanted to feature this kit at SCGMC 2017, I had to clean it up and make it more presentable in a competition, which means taking the jump and fixing the most glaring flaw – that frosted rear window.

Tearing the body off of the chassis was a terrifying experience, but it went smoothly enough that nothing broke (permanently). Cementing it back together was more of a challenge – recall that I had to use rubber bands the first time when I was getting the body on – the second round, things weren’t nearly as smooth so I took some risks with hot glue.

After getting access to the chassis and motor again, I decided to completely pull off and omit the engine cover – I never liked the crinkle texture of it anyway and it obscures too much of the detail that went into the motor build.

Cleaned up with some fresh paint – the fogged rear windshield was fixed with some lacquer thinner, which took the hazing right off, thankfully.

Cleaned up. I like this kit a lot more now.

As much as Tamiya does include the engineering for a moving front axle, my wheel modifications ended up causing the wheels themselves to stick out a little farther than they would on the stock car, so the steering angle is subsequently reduced. Above is basically the maximum turn I can get out of the front wheels now.

While I was working on the wheel fitment I also almost considered going with the classic slammed -11 degrees of camber look, balls to the ground with the wheels more horizontal than vertical, since that seems to be all the rage on the scene these days. In the end I couldn’t bring myself to desecrate the car like that though (and before you say it, Miku-izing is the exact opposite of desecration – the highest honor any car can receive).

After final assembly I noticed that the top of the taillights don’t actually line up flush with the rear fenders. There’s a nearly imperceptible gap there and I nearly forced the panels together with glue before I realized that it was actually intentional.

Apparently the new NSX is so devoted to aerodynamic design that they actually worked in a tiny vent there so air that would be built up in the fender well could have a release and flow through the car. It almost feels blasphemous now to put a giant swan neck wing on this thing when the designers went through that much unsung effort to get its airflow down.

At the end of the day the hood ended up being so small and the main Miku decal so large that it ended up having little more than just her head on there. Even her upper torso is mostly covered by the GSR logo.

The “344 Personal Sponsors” on the roof is actually a reference to the NSX’s model kit number. Tamiya assigns this kit as no. 344, so I thought that be appropriate, especially since the decal sheet included two sets of all numbers, meaning you could basically put whatever number you wanted together. The actual Good Smile Racing Z4 has 16056 Personal Sponsors on its roof, though I don’t actually know what that means. I somehow doubt it actually means they have 16,056 personal sponsors, but I suppose it’s possible.

Confirmed the most boring undercarriage ever.

I do really like how the interior turned out – one of my favorites so far because it’s much more detailed and has more color separation in the cabin than most other cars I’ve seen.

Most clean and realistically reflective mirrors I’ve ever seen on a model.

How can I build a Miku-mobile without an actual Miku to go along with it? Thank you Good Smile Company for pumping out boatloads of Racing Miku merch for me to choose from.

This technically isn’t the right Racing Miku to go with the car – the livery uses her 2011 mascot costume, while the Figma shown is the 2013 version.

A 2011 version of the Figma is available, but I didn’t quite like it as much as the 2013 version, even though the former would actually match the car. At the end of the day it’s still Racing Miku, so it doesn’t bother me much.

I’ve lowkey always wanted a Racing Miku in some shape or form if only because I like the GSR color palette and design, but it’s always been hard to justify having something like this on display.

Now I have a good excuse though – I don’t have Miku just for the sake of having Miku – she’s a companion piece to the car of course!

I went for the Figma because of the versatility for posing her with the car, and while the sizing between the two is close enough not to be particularly egregious in scale difference, Miku is still roughly twice as large as she should be to be in proper scale with the car. (Figmas are understood to be around 1/12 scale, while the NSX is in 1/24 scale.)

Posing her with the car was actually a lot harder than I initially expected. The figure design of having the jacket tied around her waist and being generally inflexible behind her means it’s hard to get a natural sitting pose on or around the car because she can’t really sit flat on anything.

I’m clearly not cut out to photograph girls and cars.

Turns out I might’ve bitten off a little more than I could chew with this project – ironically not really in the form of the decals and livery because those are passable but more to do with the NSX itself. That rear window assembly is going to bother me forever and I basically have no way to fix it. I suppose that’s what I get for diving head-first into such a complex supercar kit before I’ve racked up enough appropriate experience, which means I should probably put off the Lexus LFA I’ve had my eyes on for a little while longer.

All the same I think it turned out as a wildly unique piece though – hey Good Smile, just shoot me a word if you want this in your display cases this year at Anime Expo yeah?




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