Not-in-Stock, Available to Order - ReStocking Summer 2015
Exterior Color: White
Feature: Removable black hardtop with side windows
Automodello collaborated with Hemmings Muscle Machines, the Hemmings blog and Hemmings Sports & Exoticar Car to help Automodello identify its next car to model. The overwhelming suggestion by a margin of 7 to 1 was the Sunbeam Tiger.
Keeping with the standards set by Automodello with their previous releases, the Sunbeam Tiger is shipped with the removable hardtop. The exterior will be white. And the steering wheel will be on the side where most North Americans are most likely never to see it. Production is limited to a build up to 499 units.
Automodello is a manufacturer specializing in overlooked, neglected and interesting as well as new models from British, European, North American and other marques. Automodello's inagural 1/43 model was the 1964 Griffith Series 200 and 1/24 is the 1938 Phantom Corsair. The Sunbeam Tiger keeps with Automodello's tradition of releasing "hybrid" automobiles where American V8 power is mated to a sexy British and European bodies. Automodello has engaged another dream for Hemmings' readers!
When enthusiasts speak of a British-designed sportscar re-engineered by Carroll Shelby, powered by a Ford V-8, and boasting an enviable racing record throughout the 1960’s, most have visions of a certain serpent-themed roadster. But there’s a feline-monikered machine that also fits that descriptor—the Sunbeam Tiger. The 4-cylinder Sunbeam Alpine, launched in 1959, quickly earned a solid performance reputation on and off the track for its handling and braking, but within just a few years it fell behind class competitors in the horsepower department. Shelby’s Cobra was tearing up racecourses and grabbing headlines, and so Sunbeam parent company Rootes reached out to Shelby to work similar magic on the Alpine. Shelby did the engineering and built the official prototype.
The main components in the conversion consisted of the Ford 260ci engine and Toploader 4-speed transmission, a Salisbury rear axle, a switch to rack-and-pinion steering, and an upgraded cooling system. Mk I cars (1964-65) had removable metal hardtops and round body panel corners with lead-filled seams. Mk IA cars (late’65-66) were mechanically identical, but switched to square-edged panels without lead, and added a folding vinyl convertible top in place of the hardtop. For the final year of 1967, Mk II Tigers upgraded to a 289ci V-8 and can be visually distinguished by an egg crate grille design.
The Tiger was just as ferocious in competition. Shelby campaigned it in SCCA Class B in 1964, and for 1965 factory support was thrown behind the Hollywood Sportscar team with driver Jim Adams. Adams won its class in its very first outing, and continued winning throughout 1965. Had it not been wrecked out of the season-ending race in Daytona, the Tiger likely would have won the Class B championship in 1965. Fans of the TV spy-comedy series “Get Smart” will fondly recognize a red Tiger as Maxwell Smart’s ride of choice in the opening credits.
In the spirit of small-volume British-American hybrid sportscars, Automodello™ brings the Sunbeam Tiger to collectors in precision 1:43 with a removable hardtop for maximum display versatility.
Diecasm Payment Plan:
This model is eligible for Diecasm's exclusive Automodello 1:24 for 3 payment plan. Please see details here.