Friday, January 23, 2015

チョロQ - T A K A R A C H O R O - Q

For about the past year or two, I've gathered a small collection of Japanese toy cars known as Choro-Q.  Long story short, Choro-Q are little pull-back cars about 3-4cm in length, which is how they got their name - Choro is an abbreviation of a Japanese word "dash", and in Japan, anything abbreviated with a "Q" indicates that it's cute.  Therefore, Cute Dash?  Something like that.

But these little cars are too hilarious to look at, and seeing as how some of them get pretty serious, I thought it would a fun little collection to start.  The cars range from company-to-company, but just like many other toys in Japan, most are made by Takara Tomy.  Above is my Calsonic/Impul R32 GT-R.  Good ol' #12!

They can range from extremely simplistic and cartoonish, to incredibly detailed and high-end.  Even D1GP has their own series of Choro-Q, with several well-known cars, drivers, and aftermarket companies backing the series.  This Altia Falken R32 actually comes in it's own display case within the box, and has a few extra details and features.

Then, I happened to come across these Wonda Coffee Choro-Q. . . Tiger Woods says you should drink Wonda Coffee and drive drag cars, so why are you just sitting there. . .?

In Japan, Wonda Coffee (an Asahi Group company - yes they make more than just beer) comes in little cans, similar to RedBull here.  They'll do runs of product that when you purchase the coffee, a Choro-Q is included atop the can, in a sealed tiny display case.

And so came-about a whole new series of even more mini Choro-Q, at about 2.5cm long.  To my knowledge, Wonda has actually done several different runs and series of Choro that were included with their product, all officially licensed.  One of the series I was most interested in is their GT-R line-up, where they had released almost all of the different chassis generations of Nissan GT-R.

It ranges from Hakosuka KPGC-10, to R32/33/34/35.  Really, all that's about missing from this series is the Kenmeri KPGC-110 and an R31.  Maybe an R30 Paul Newman version too. . .Each chassis came in two different colors.

But there's also other series dedicated to manufacturer-aftermarket releases - Nismo, Mazdaspeed, TRD, STi, etc. .  So I snagged the two Nismo R35's, the two Subaru Legacy STi's, and one of the Mazdaspeed RX-7's.  Still missing from this series is the other RX-7, two RalliArt Lancers, and two Mugen S2000's.  Why can't iced coffee come with cool prizes like this here in the states???

Then, there are some of the more, I suppose you'd call them, 'collector-grade' series, like this Super GT series (still made by Takara Co.)  This set has some pretty awesome JGTC/Super GT themed cars, like this GT500 Calsonic/Impul Z.  Another one I have not pictured, is the GT500 Yellow Hat Z.  
Super Realistic Circuit Choro Q Series, with Collectible Box.  Super Awesomes #1 Fun Time!

Can't leave out Tomica cars. . .The REAL HotWheels!  My dad brought me back two from a business-trip to Kamakura a few years ago: #40 - Nissan Skyline Racing(R34) and #50 - Nissan Fairlady Z Racing Type(Z33).  These are pretty cool because they come with a sticker sheet and you actually get to apply all the decals yourself.  I've left mine alone in the boxes, where they'll probably sit dormant for the remainder of their lives.  As I continue to come across other Choro's and Tomy toy cars in general that catch my attention, I'm sure the collection will continue to grow.  I just think it's cool to hold onto little trinkety shit like this, that people tend to overlook, when in reality they're really cool, and will be even cooler in 50 years to show your grandchildren the type of stuff you were into (or are maybe still into).  What types of things do you guys collect, and why?!
武士道 - B U S H I D O!

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