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      Your path: Home >> Wall-E's World >> Model Cars >> 1956 Chrysler 300B
1956 Chrysler 300B
Manufacturer: Maisto
Release dates: 2002 - Current
Catalog number: 02027
Date Purchased: August 2008
Date Completed February 2010
Number in collection: 30

Chrysler introduced the 300 series as part of an all-new line-up in 1955. It was a limited production, high performance car with NASCAR racing in mind. The 300 name was a reference to the amount of horse power produced by its 331 CID (5.4l) "Hemi" V8 engine. Although structurally based in the shortest wheelbase hardtop of that year, it featured less body trim than the rest of the Chrysler line, in addition to front sheetmetal borrowed from the more expensive Imperial. For 1956, the name was changed to 300B, starting a system where the last letter would change to the next letter of the alphabet for each remaining of its production life. It also received the revised rear end sheetmetal from other Chrysler models, but the front remained unchanged. The 'Hemi' engine was enlarged to 354 CID (5.8l), and was offered in two levels of horsepower. The more powerful of these gave the 300 a top speed that approached near 140 MPH (225 km/h).

This replica of the 300B scale model is made by Maisto, as part of their Fresh Metal series. Like most other cars in this series, it's clear that these are intended to be toys rather than collectables. Body detail is decent, but not always completely accurate. Chassis detailing is minimal, and the wheel style is 'generic', and doesn't match a style used on the accurate car. While open-top cars have an interior, hardtops have a very dark tinted piece of clear plastic.

I originally worked on this car long before I started photographing them. The 'before' pictures are not of my car, but ones I found on-line of cars that are in original condition. The 'after' pictures were of my car, but taken while I was originally writing this page.

Click to zoom Click to zoom
What I started with. Actual car I used for reference.

Pictures of car before any changes were made (click to enlarge)
Disassembly was done by drilling out the two body-to-chassis rivets. The parts breakdown is as follows:
  • A black plastic chassis with moulded-in detail for the drive train and suspension.
  • front and rear tire/wheel/axle assemblies. These fit loosely between the chassis and interior pieces. The wheels are chrome-plated, and have a generic custom design.
  • A single piece clear window assembly, which has a very heavy smoke tint.
  • The die-cast body, painted black with tampo-printed markings.

Although the overall detail level of this car isn't very good, especially with no interior, I made my usual changes to the body with paint and foil.

The following is a summary of the changes I made:
  • Wheels and tires: Sanded the tread surface with 220 grit sandpaper to simulate wear.
  • Chassis: Painted entire piece Testors acrylic flat black. Engine, transmission, frame and suspension details were highlighted with Testors red and Tamiya semi-gloss black.
  • Windows: Applied Bare-Metal foil to trim moulded into the side windows.
  • Body: Painted entire underside of body Testors acrylic flat black. Applied Bare-Metal foil to window trim, front grilles and lights, bumpers, tail lights, and door handles. Painted grill openings with Testors flat black, then rubbed paint from grill bars after it dried. Painted tail lights with Tamiya transparent red. Painted back-up lights, head lights, and front park/turn lights Testors flat white.
Disassembled parts, before reassembly To the left is the car prior to re-assembly.

Assembly was completed by pressing the parts together, filling the old rivet holes with epoxy putty, and touching up the filled holes with paint to match the chassis plate.

Pictures of completed car (click to enlarge)

The proportions of the completed car look good when compared to the actual car. The table below shows how close they are.

Actual car 
(mm / in)
(mm / in)
Dimensions of actual car based on model scale
(mm / in)
Calculated scale based on model to actual car
Length 5558 / 218.8 78 / 3.07 4992 / 196.3 1:71
Wheelbase 3200 / 126.0 46 / 1.82 2944 / 116.5 1:69
Width 2009 / 79.1 28 / 1.12 1792 / 71.6 1:71
Height 1501 / 59.1 22 / .85 1408 / 54.6 1:69

Maisto doesn't indicate a scale anywhere on the car or the packaging sample I found. I assumed 1:64 was the target, since this car is sold with similar cars from other manufacturers. My calculations, however, find that the scale averages out at about 1:70. My guess for the small scale was that the car had to fit within a pre-determined packaging size.

I normally don't collect smaller scale cars from Maisto, such as this one. The main reason is the lack of an interior. I have found that they are useful for combining with similar cars from other manufacturers that have an interior, but a less realistic body. I hope to find something compatible with this replica someday, as that is the primary reason I even bothered to add this one to my collection. The secondary reason is purely sentimental. My wife gave it to me many years ago not long after we first met. She doesn't remember how she got it, but admitted that it may have seen service as a cat toy. That might explain why the cats started giving me the 'stink-eye'.

Liked what you saw? More cars can be found HERE .

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