While looking around on my usual hunt for Lamborghini news and scale models I came accross a listing for a new model on the market, the 1/18 Lamborghini Aventador made by Mondo Motors ... again in the new Arancio Argos shade, but this didn't keep me from ordering it ... this is a Lamborghini scale model after all and I just have to add it to my collection.
A few days later the box was nicely sitting on my desk when I came home, I opened it and was immediately surprised ... the shop had padded the box so well it actually dented the plastic window of the box ... not a problem as I managed to put it right quick enough, but I should have known it was a sign of things to come.
The first thing you notice when seeing the Mondo Motors box is the fact it looks a lot less impressive compared to the Bburago box, flimsy could better describe it perhaps, and that tacky yellow shade on the inside isn't helping either ... but that's my personal opinion and shouldn't reflect on the model in any way.
So I cut the tape holding the flaps and carefully opened the box to pull the model out, came out like a breeze, no problem yet. But then I continued to unscrew the model from it's plate ... and this prooved to be a bit difficult, afterward I noticed one of the black screws was actually fitted straight through the plastic band holding the doors closed, hence it required a bit more power to unscrew, but I'm a big boy, so I managed getting my brand new Raging Bull model free on the photo booth.
Now before I photograph these diecast models I put some wax on them and buff them to a nice shine, you just have to be careful on the tires and in this case the black parts, don't put too much wax on it or you'll be rubbing for ages to get it all removed again. An extra incentive for me to buff my models is the fact you tend to notice all the small faults and paint chips while cleaning the car ... and here the first issue came up :
On the corner of the front bumper the paint was already gone ... just out of the box ! On the rear bumper I found a small smear of black paint, opening the front hood I again saw several small spots missing their paint, same thing on the inside of the doors and underneath the engine cover ... this can happen, but at numerous spots like this one makes me think about quality control to be honest.
But at least it was shining like a star now, so into the cube, lights on, camera on ... action ... and I can honestly say the photos speak more than words in this case, the 1/18 Lamborghini Aventador LP700-4 model from Mondo Motors isn't their best effort to be honest.
I will go over the exterior first : the headlights aren't impressing anyone I'm afraid, just a silver stripe, now that's a bit too Eighties in my opinion, and the taillights aren't much better either, sure there is some red in them, but they are just looking strange. The exhaust could have gained a lot with a small touch of black paint on the inside, but I'm going to let that get past me, however take a look at the large side air intake ... it is red !? At least put some black paint on that one, how can you miss this when looking at the real car ... I do guess they at least have some photographs to base a scale model on ?
While looking at the side of the model you also notice the front wheels are a lot smaller compared to the rear wheels, now on the real car there is a difference too, the front rolls on 19 inch while the rear rolls larger 20 inch monoblock rims, so in 1/18 there should be a difference of 0.055 inch in size ... I think Mondo Motors got the measurements wrong somewhere.
So is this model all bad ? No, of course not, take a look at the front hood, in front of it you have the beautiful Raging Bull crest which is nicely inset on the Mondo Motors, just like on the real car, a detail Bburago completely ignored on their model version.
And more importantly ... this is a real 1/18 scale model of the Lamborghini Aventador, as nice and detailed the Bburago version may be, in the end it isn't a 1/18 model but more a 1/19 scale, which is too bad actually, I understand they want to keep it fitting in the usual box, but let's face it, 1/18 is 1/18 and not 1/19, sorry.
Also this scale model features brake rotors and calipers ... only small detail, the calipers on the front axle are in the wrong position ... but that could be an error on my sample only, I'm not sure, so I'm not going to whine about this.
And we have side windows ... well half of them, I for one have no problem with this, but I know many collectors out there either want full side windows or none at all, so please keep this in mind for next time Mondo Motors.
So let's go inside ... a bit rough around the edges here, I think the orange used on the seats is way too glossy and too dark, but at least Mondo Motors took the effort of putting a two tone interior inside the model, so no comment there. The gear shift levers on the steering wheel column look a bit out of scale too, but look at the script on the passenger side ... is it me or is it dropping at the right ? Ok, this isn't an AutoArt model, so I'm not complaining too much about this, but the central console is just a bit too 'toy' like, sorry, also a small 'Aventador' decal on the doorsill would make thing much better ... it's details like this that put the Mondo Motors version of the Aventador down a bit.
Things don't improve in the engine compartment either, the details on the engine are not going to get your blood pumping any faster, the innovative suspension setup from the Aventador is there, but you have to use some imagination ... and if doglegs on the engine cover make you shiver, don't even open the front hood ... you might sit down first.
I bought this model because it is still a Lamborghini model, so I just have to add it to my collection, but I must be honest here, after the photo shoot I've put it back into the box and stored it with my older models ... I don't have unlimited space to display my collection, and I'm sad to admit I won't be showing this one in my office or living room.
It is a real 1/18 scale model, and some of the details are really nice, but there are so many other details that just pull it down to a 'toy' level, I've posted it on a diecast forum after receiving it : 'if this model was built in the Eighties I would have loved it, but come on, we are living in 2011 now, diecast scale car production has come a long way, I'm sure Mondo Motors can do better, just look at their 1/18 Reventon model, it is really nice, also their 1/18 Super Trofeo models aren't that bad, sure AutoArt is looking better, but their models are also four times as expensive compared to Mondo Motors.
The thing that really bothers me is the fact Bburago managed to create a very nice looking scale model of the Lamborghini Aventador, sure it is 1/19 in scale, but being sold at the same price as this 1/18 Mondo Motors model it sure looks a lot better on it's own. I have a shelve with the Bburago models in black, grey and orange positioned like the Geneva stand, and it is just looking great.
Bottom line : I know Mondo Motors can do a great job on a 1/18 scale model, the Reventon is ample proof of that, but sometimes they just don't seem to get it right, look at their Concept S and Estoque ... neither one is really impressive to view, but as they are the only one producing these two Lamborghini prototypes in 1/18 scale you don't have a choice ... however with the Aventador you do, if you are collecting diecast models and you put them on display I would recommend the Bburago version, even if it's scale isn't perfect, if you want to buy a nice gift for a kid the Mondo Motors 1/18 Aventador might be a good idea, but from a collector's point of view I can't recommend it, sorry Mondo Motors, this model car just isn't up to specs for a 2011 diecast release.
Photos © LAMBOdiecast