58007 - Lamborghini Cheetah
Comments/Reviews left by our members. Please feel free to submit your own comment/review.

By Brat Attacks 26/04/2007 18:25:11

Tamiya's second off-roader using the un-trusted XR311 mechanicals. It would be another 8 new releases and 17 months until Tamiya would launch another off-roader with the Rough Rider and from then on they got it right.

The Cheetah isn't that bad a car and in all honesty is probably thee most realistic RC off road model they have ever produced, and this from a car made in 1978. The body moulding is out of this world and correct almost down to the finest detail. And you don't have to look hard to see that there are no body mounts to ruin the good looks of the car.

The only sad thing about the body is that it's weak and not up to what you would expect from an off-roader. But used as a scale car in a scale environment it would exceed all expectations. It's just that we never did and took it to the back and beyond of its limits resulting in broken bits and orders to Japan.

The chassis is a mix of racing car simplicity with moving up and down parts suspending the wheels. The suspension set up is reminiscent of Renault's torsion bar system they used on almost every car in the 70's to suspend the front wheels. Tamiya just took it a bit further and used it front and back.

And with this set up there shouldn't have been a problem but the use of plastic torsion bars was just silly. They snapped and once again a parts order to Japan was needed. A simple modification l have seen is to use copper tubing. Not the best set up but far more reliable that plastic.

The bit about this car l get most excited about is the gearbox. It was simple and yet looked complicated with a north/south facing motor running the east/west running wheels. This again reminded me of how Renault placed the engines in their FWD cars. And the Cheetah even came with 3 choices of gearing and to change it was all done in a matter of seconds with minimal disassembly. It should also be mentioned here that it used proper dog bone drive shafts.

Again a feat in design that Tamiya wouldn't use in an off road car until the launch of the Brat some 5 years later. For those picky and demanding proper dog bones (the Brat used a hex drive end) the next car to have dog bones was the 1985 Hot Shot.

So the Cheetah and XR311 soon became over shadowed by the SRB range of cars and would soon be a forgotten attempt made by Tamiya to make a move into the yet untapped off road market, but one can't help feeling some what protective about these cars. For all their flaws they were some 5 to 7 years ahead of themselves and Tamiya has yet to produce an off-roader as realistic as one of these.


By Moosey 04/01/2007 21:32:43

Same chassis as the XR311, with a different front bumper so it shares all the same problems, like the gears and the plastic torsion bars. Very highly detailed and very weak for using and abusing.
Prices are higher than the XR311, nice ones are very hard to find especially with ALL the body parts intact.

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