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Has Tamiya killed any hope of AE making another On road car?

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Has Tamiya killed any hope of AE making another On road car?

Old 12-16-2020, 03:47 PM
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I don't believe that Tamiya or any other manufacturer had anything to do with the decision by Team Associated (Thunder Tiger) to stop producing high-end on road race cars. Thunder Tiger bought into Associated many years ago and was the driving force in the background producing all the Associated RTR kits. These were all sold under the Associated name for brand recognition and marketing purposes. The high-end on road business was not a big revenue ticket and it's really not a surprise they shut down production. The TC3 sedan was a delight, but the TC4 and later the TC5 were both flops and the company likely lost money on these designs. The TC6.X was an improvement and the TC7.X better still, but they were always playing catch-up and with declining revenue from on road cars it was only a matter of time before someone pulled the plug.
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Old 12-16-2020, 03:54 PM
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Originally Posted by SteveM View Post
I don't believe that Tamiya or any other manufacturer had anything to do with the decision by Team Associated (Thunder Tiger) to stop producing high-end on road race cars. Thunder Tiger bought into Associated many years ago and was the driving force in the background producing all the Associated RTR kits. These were all sold under the Associated name for brand recognition and marketing purposes. The high-end on road business was not a big revenue ticket and it's really not a surprise they shut down production. The TC3 sedan was a delight, but the TC4 and later the TC5 were both flops and the company likely lost money on these designs. The TC6.X was an improvement and the TC7.X better still, but they were always playing catch-up and with declining revenue from on road cars it was only a matter of time before someone pulled the plug.
Very good point. It seemed just two years ago, they were all in on development of on-road platforms and then just....stopped. Just odd to think those guys are not in that particular racing scene anymore. Much like Novak some years ago, you hate to see brands like that leave or downsize their arsenals.
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Old 12-16-2020, 04:05 PM
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Originally Posted by Metalsoft View Post
Yes that would be the difference I suppose, but it is not just stuck to my region. I know out in Cali they have a great following, and here in TN you see more and more hit the track. Heck even Hobbytown ( Which is like a Traxxas warehouse ) is stocking them now. Also the TCS series is very much alive and well, maybe just not at the track anymore.
I got the impression that after Tamiya closed their track in California, things were changing. The 2 Hobbytown in Chicagoland do not stock any Tamiya other then a Euro truck kit. Since that class does run at one store

Iíve got nothing against them. I donít get the appeal of most of their kits. The Tc01 was the first kit of theirs was really interested in. But until I see some interest in the area. Iíve decided to hold off. Nearest track that was really trying to get the class going is a 4+ hour drive.

Tamiya does seem to have a loyal following. Unfortunately, they only seem to show for Tamiya specific events.
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Old 12-16-2020, 04:36 PM
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On RCTech, the perception of Tamiya is line Appleís pre 2000. Always doom and gloom.

Tamiya has the deepest pockets of any brand in RC. They simply decided they donít need the extra expense, salary of sponsored drivers. When Tamiya dropped its sponsored racers all rumoured the death of TRF cars.

When new TRF cars were announced, oh but itís 3 years behind. Then there is the group that Tamiya doesnít innovate anymore, yet we have M07 / M08, TA07, TB05, TC01.. all new style tub cars... while everyone elseís copies each other twin carbon deck belt cars.

What innovation did the other brands do.. they went to mid motor... all the way back to mid 2000s and TA05.. which I still run. A year later, it was FWD...

Meanwhile Xray changes their car 0.001% each year and everyone dumps their prior year to rush and buy their new ďluxury RC carĒ 😂

The only other innovators are Awesomatic and Schumacher.

You can no longer judge a brand by the shelves of an LHS. They canít afford to keep inventory anymore. So they keep cheap RTRs.

As for AEís exit from on road, they decided to focus on their strength, which is off-road. I think itís a smart move as the double deck belt drive TC market is flooded with competitors.
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Old 12-16-2020, 04:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Metalsoft View Post
I would have to respectfully disagree, Between the high models Don't forget they produce not only the TRF chassis like the 420 but also the PRO versions and the TB evo versions which you could honestly say going all the way back to the EVO 5 and 6 they were already ahead of AE in terms of quality and reliability. None of those chassis you mention are " far superior " in any form or fashion. If you want to close it off and say the latest compared to a TT-02 I would agree, but Tamiya has been nailing high end kits, for decades. <---- notice the "S"

Of course when you factor in the educational kits, Mini 4WD, and 1/24th scale models, yeah that is apple and oranges. Tamiya is a much much larger company.

TA07 PRO, TC-01, off road kits ( Their high kits are very comparable to any crawler and come with fun upgrade paths as well ) Lately Tamiya has been at the front of the pack. Most hobby shops that would not even give a second thought to Tamiya 2 years ago, now have TT-02 kits and TC-01 kits all over the place. They are selling like hotcakes.

I do wonder if Thunder Tiger is really behind AE's change. I just hope that they don't start trading Quality for quantity
Hardly anyone runs the TRF420 compared to X-Ray and Awesomatix. When released, the rest of the competition had already moved over to mid motor/long arm setups. It is becoming increasingly rare to see a Tamiya TRF at a track. Usually if there is one, it is a Tamiya loyalist. Tamiya had some success from the 414 to the 417. Then it went all downhill from there.

I don't see how any of Tamiya's offroad race kits or crawlers even compete with the market today. They sell on realism, not performance. Not sure where you are getting at with Tamiya being at the front of the pack in anything in the US RC market.

Sorry, I'm one of the biggest Tamiya fans too and have a number of vintage kits and a few cars exclusively setup for TCS. But you're living in a Tamiya bubble. The US market is is RTR bashers, crawlers, and a small high end racing market. Tamiya fills a very small gap for people who generally want to build their kit/look realistic, and TCS racers.

2 years has hardly changed for Tamiya. You have Eurotrucks which kind of revived a small, fun segment, but thats about it as far as having any real impact. I've been following Tamiya for over 20 years. Tamiya was HUGE back then. AE and Tamiya are not even on each other's radar today.
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Old 12-16-2020, 04:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Billy Kelly View Post
I got the impression that after Tamiya closed their track in California, things were changing. The 2 Hobbytown in Chicagoland do not stock any Tamiya other then a Euro truck kit. Since that class does run at one store

Iíve got nothing against them. I donít get the appeal of most of their kits. The Tc01 was the first kit of theirs was really interested in. But until I see some interest in the area. Iíve decided to hold off. Nearest track that was really trying to get the class going is a 4+ hour drive.

Tamiya does seem to have a loyal following. Unfortunately, they only seem to show for Tamiya specific events.
I am a bit biased by Tamiya and TCS. The track closing in Cali was based on how that area and expense changed in the past 25 years. They built a huge "factory" with track, which ended up being not as profitable to own, as area costs increased, so they downsized the operation. They sold the factory and could not sell the track, because the piece of land was not very builder friendly. Think the track land was for sale for 15ish years past the sale of the factory.

Tamiya does make nice kits but I do not see their TRF cars as top tier. I would go Awesomatix - X-ray - Tamiya, followed by the rest. Usually the guys running their 420s at TCS races will shelve them until the next TCS race. Funny thing is I do not own Awesomatix/xray/latest TRF car. I am cheap and satisfied by their TA05/TA07, M07, TT01, TT02 for racing. Which is one thing I like about VTA or USGT. A budget TA07 can be competitive against top tier cars on a local level

Has been my experience that Hobbytowns do not carry Tamiya cars. I usually have my own stockpile of Tamiya parts so their lack of support does not effect me. Usually they do carry if they are previous TCS host sites like Omaha or Memphis or have a specific popular class like Euro Truck. If you are looking for a cool on road or off road track, Hobbyplex in Omaha is really nice.
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Old 12-16-2020, 05:12 PM
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Originally Posted by A-Ko View Post
I am a bit biased by Tamiya and TCS. The track closing in Cali was based on how that area and expense changed in the past 25 years. They built a huge "factory" with track, which ended up being not as profitable to own, as area costs increased, so they downsized the operation. They sold the factory and could not sell the track, because the piece of land was not very builder friendly. Think the track land was for sale for 15ish years past the sale of the factory.

Tamiya does make nice kits but I do not see their TRF cars as top tier. I would go Awesomatix - X-ray - Tamiya, followed by the rest. Usually the guys running their 420s at TCS races will shelve them until the next TCS race. Funny thing is I do not own Awesomatix/xray/latest TRF car. I am cheap and satisfied by their TA05/TA07, M07, TT01, TT02 for racing. Which is one thing I like about VTA or USGT. A budget TA07 can be competitive against top tier cars on a local level

Has been my experience that Hobbytowns do not carry Tamiya cars. I usually have my own stockpile of Tamiya parts so their lack of support does not effect me. Usually they do carry if they are previous TCS host sites like Omaha or Memphis or have a specific popular class like Euro Truck. If you are looking for a cool on road or off road track, Hobbyplex in Omaha is really nice.
Omaha is far outside my range. Getting to Wisconsin or Indiana would be a giant next step for me Iíve got a good clay off road track in the area. On road is another situation. Weíve got a small indoor track. The area didnít support a large indoor facility.

I figured the was cost that lead them them closing the track. I wasnít aware they there was more then a track. I used to know online a few that ran there. I did wonder if the ďTamiya onlyĒ rule there was a good thing. I knew one that was allowed to run other brands but wasnít supposed to post pictures.

Outside of mini and Euro truck. I think Iíve only raced with one Tamiya in USGT. I donít know which model. But as with most places, the top car/driver were the Usual. Awesomatix, Xray and Serpent.

Iím still hoping to try the mini class before the year ends.
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Old 12-16-2020, 05:28 PM
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All you have to look at, is who owns AE...
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Old 12-16-2020, 05:51 PM
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I agree with Dan.. Iím a Tamiya loyalist and run their cars in every class I race except F1..

Also what is run at the tracks matters as well.. X Ray and AE dominated ours. majority want to copy the fast guys set up and donít want to bother figuring out the car on their own.

Once AE left onroad most went to Xray still. There are still some stragglers of Yok, Schumacher.. but Xray dominates
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Old 12-16-2020, 07:54 PM
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Of many things I like about Tamiya, probably my biggest like is their catalogs. The US catalogs are nice, but the Japanese ones are massive in comparison.
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Old 12-16-2020, 09:10 PM
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Tamiya and AE are two completely types of company. It's hardly Tamiya is beating down on AE but AE withdraw from competitive on road due to the segement it used to focus on being not profitable.

Tamiya is not a model company that focus solely on racing products. It makes plastic models, paints educational products. Its rc offering is also more versatile. Not many companies offer chassis like grasshopper and tt02 while also making TRF420. These are on the two ends of rc market, yet the former ones generate a lot of profit for Tamiya to keep on develping new high end racing chassis.

Associated, from my understanding, is a hard core racing company. All the stuff it developed is for racing or derived from their racing platform. No offense, but in pure volume, i dont think AE is on the scale of Tamiya. So when facing a market that is highly saturated, needs a lot of R&D cost and promotional money but slow in return, and a market where they are established, popular and already profitable. The choice is obvious. On road racing program has to go. And the money can be spent in RTR market where is the market heading.
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Old 12-16-2020, 09:46 PM
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this is a weird thread...but let me ask

where do you race and whats your local hobby shop

and also why would anyone assume that AE cant compete against the current crop of cars like Xray AMX or Yoko with the TC7.2 or TC7.2M?....are we not still winning region ROAR titles and podium National races?... in 2020?...and also FYI...anybody every known AE to drop a new TC or 12th scale every year?... except once since the TC3?..anybody?

I am curious
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Old 12-16-2020, 10:09 PM
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Always baffled by the Tamiya hate. They sell more stuff worldwide than pretty much all the US brands combined. I recently got into their semi trucks and that segment is absolutely massive and they have no competition. I was surprised how insanely popular they are and they're not cheap.

I found out recently that there is a local club that races parking lot once a month and their turnout is pretty good. Euro truck has a big turnout and the rest of the classes 70% or more is filled with Tamiya cars. They can't make enough of the new TC-01 it seems.

Element is red hot right now for AE.

​​​​​
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Old 12-17-2020, 01:16 AM
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There is no hate for tamiya... just decades-long with desperation about people with tamiya blinders, like for the Tesla- or Apple-apostles.

Tamiya's onroad lineup is made of 99.9% of plastic-fantastic cars that sell on looks alone, be they amazing licensed bodies, or crazy mechanical architectures a la TC01. Performance is not at the core of their value proposition, looks sure are, so is nostalgia, and they are the best in the business on that front. 9/10th of shizuoka's RC cars will NEVER make it to a track. Then the remaining 0.5% is TRF, which is in zombie mode as we all know, which is a shame because they WERE the best DTM platorms just 10years ago, 415 and 416's were masterpieces.

AE's onroad lineup was 99.5% racecars. Pancars are pure racecars that serve a niche of racers, the market for this is gone. On the DTM scene, the issue as described above is that AE got onto the scene with a bang with the TC3 back then. that lasted a couple of years then from then on it kept playing catchup with the other brands, and internally the money kept competing with their electric offroad program which was and likely still is the best in the world. Then people in the domestic market started realizing that there were other brands as AE lost some of its muricanness, like being acquired by TT, or losing the SAE hardware and going metric. Then tracks started closing, so the local historical ties with key LHS got lost too. Then there were parts availability issues in the past decade which took the last few customers away from their onroad program. And this was it for the brand that gave us some of the most amazing onroad RC racecars ever, in 12th scale (how many gens of the RC12? How many world titles? ), 10th scale (same question on the RC10L...), 8th scale (granted, this was a few decades ago but still these were AE's first world titles) and THE Touring Car of the century, the TC3 - keep in mind that the TC3 suspension cinematics have been the gold standard until the longer arms became popular last year... Everyone has copied the TC3's suspension design for almost 20yrs...

There is no cross-shopping as Dan said between Tamiya and AE's modern onroad cars. Just like there is no cross shopping between Tamiya's DT03/DF03 and the B6/B74. Different target customers. AE pulled the plug regardless of whether Tamiya exists at all. This thread is odd.

just to say it once more - I am not a Tamiya hater. I have dozens of their cars at home. Fantastic bits of plastic. Also have dozens of AE cars. Fantastic racecars. Different scope.
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Last edited by Lonestar; 12-17-2020 at 01:41 AM.
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Old 12-17-2020, 06:28 AM
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Everything valid has already been said.....Only thing I can add is in jest by saying - Comparing Tamiya to AE is like comparing Traxxas to Schumacher.
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