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Old 06-18-22, 06:29 PM   #1
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Icon10 A review of the elusive Platz Porsche 935.

You may have seen a build video on YouTube, you may have seen one of these kits on display at a model show, you've probably never seen the box the kit comes in. So, why is it a big deal?

Mostly, it comes down to rarity. Platz models is located in Shizuoka, Japan. Their 1/24th scale cars are usually sold under the NUNU or Beemax brands ( there are more brands, believe it or not ) in Asia and Europe.

This particular kit is of a late 1970's early 1980's Porsche 935 K3 that was produced, modified, and tuned by Kremer (Porsche) Racing based off the Porsche 911. Kremer wasn't the official Porsche team, but they were located very close to Porsche's HQ. The kit comes in two flavors, the Numero Reserve car that won LeMans, outright, in 1979 driven by Klaus Ludwig and the Whittington brothers (which is a WHOLE 'nother story )

(US links are below if you're interested in building the beast)

and the "Kanji" white and pink 935 that raced at LeMans in 1980.

Both kits are slightly different besides painting and decals. There is also a "detail up" set of photo etch and seat belts available, but I wouldn't get too excited about it. Its over-priced for what it is.
BTW, the "K" in "K3" stands for "Kurtz", or "short" in German.
A Porsche that ends in "L" stands for a "Lange" or "Long" body kit.

Both kits also give you the option of building "short skirt" rear fenders and a "LeMans" low drag rear wing OR the longer rear fenders and a more traditional "road course" rear wing. With the "dog dish" wheel covers, you have a lot of options. Depending on where the cars ran, you can omit the covers, run them on all four wheels, run then just on the front wheels, or run them just on the rears.

So, which of the two kits is better? It depends, if you want the 1979 LeMans winner (only) build the Numero Reserve kit. It has the correct factory wheels and BBS "turbo dishes" for 1979 plus the decals for the winning car.

For any other version of the 935 K3, you want the "Kanji" kit. Besides the decals, you'll also get a REALLY nice set of chromed BBS "modular" wheels, the stock "factory" wheels, and the dog dishes. After that, raid another kit or find a set of conversion decals and a couple of fog lights for the hood.
The chromed BBS wheels in the "Kanji" kit are REALLY nice. Look carefully at the inner wheel "web" and you'll notice not only great detail but the webs are open backed, just clean out any chrome "flash" in the holes and you're done.

The kits themselves are nicely molded and fit somewhere between the Tamiya and Aoshima "silhouette" type models. You get working steering and poly caps for the wheels and good underbody details, but only half an engine molded into the floor pan. There are some minor seam lines on the body which need to get sanded smooth and while it isn't one of the dreaded Fujimi Porsches with over 100 tiny parts for the engine (which you'll never see), you get enough detail for a nice kit. Both kits feature an engine cover and rear wing which could be posed open. You'll just need to scratch build an air box and some bracing above the engine. One building I tip I can share has to do with the tires. They are molded either in rubber or something a lot closer to rubber than vinyl. In all of the videos I've seen and in both of my kits, there is some flash inside each tire. DON'T reach for an Xacto knife, just turn each tire inside out and use a nipper with a curved blade (finger nail and toe nail clippers work really well) to remove the flash.

OK, you still haven't said why this kit is so special.. What's the big deal?

Many kit makers offered flat-nosed Porsches. Tamiya had one in several scales (1/24th, 1/20th, and 1/12th) for many years as did Revell, Monogram, (probably) AMT, Fujimi, probably Matchbox/Airfix, etc., etc. The problem was that NO one ever produced the late 70's 935 K3, and this particular car kicked a LOT of @$$ in endurance and GT racing across Europe, North America, and Asia. One of its most (in) famous wins came at the 1980 Rolex 24 at Daytona when Ted Field entered his black "00" Interscope K3. The team had built a fairly dominating lead by driving the car flat-out for most of the day and night. There was a "minor" problem, however. In driving "flat out" during an endurance race, they had hopelessly trashed at least one of the turbos, the transmission, and the engine was making ominous grinding and thumping sounds by the 23rd hour.

There was a catch in Daytona's rule book. The car which completed the most laps in 24 hours ALSO had to be running under its own power when the checkered flag flew in order to win. This could be thought of as the "Close, but you missed it by that much.." rule. To be fair, by this point the top NASCAR teams could blow up an engine or transmission and change them out in about 15 minutes and "Big Bill" was trying to curb that stuff so the smaller teams didn't suffer as much.

The team of drivers for the "00" was led by none other than Danny Ongais, who was given the honor of driving the last stint. He was also given orders by Field to drive it as far as he could, but it was critically important that if the car was getting ready to die (which it was) that Danny needed to park it just in front of the finish line.

Roughly 15 minutes before the flag waved, Ongais heard the engine making a death rattle and parked the car in the infield, about ten yards short of the line. The safety crew offered their condolences and a tow, Ongais turned them down and told them not to touch the car. When the flag man brought out the checkers, Ongais put what was left of the transmission in what he hoped was first gear and hit the starter button. The "00" barely limped across the line.

Rolex thought it was an incredible finish. The France family of Daytona.......did not. Field quickly made a dash for the scoring tower with his rule book. He argued that, yes, the car crossed the line using the starter motor but it was under its own power. He then asked where he could pick up his trophy and wrist watch.

Many other privateer teams won races and championships in North America with the 935 K3. I'm almost certain Bobby Rahal won his first sports car championship in one of them. If you grew up in the 1970's and were interested in sports cars and road racing, you knew about this car. You just couldn't build one, until now.

I could recommend this kit for beginners, however the price is high for an entry level builder. For intermediate to advanced builders, you're getting the same type of details as most of the Japanese "silhouette" types of car kits (Aoshima, Tamiya, Hasegawa) plus some nice Easter Eggs.
If you know what the 935 K3 is, this is your only shot at it in 1/24th scale.

Note that I'm using links to HobbyLinc in the US. You can find these kits on Amazon and EBay but PAY ATTENTION to stuff like the kit price and shipping.
HobbyLinc has the most fair price and you won't be waiting for two months until it arrives.

With the "detail up" set, you can skip it with no big problems. Just find a seat belt kit and some P/E brake rotors (if you really need them) and you're mostly covered. The kit builds just fine without P/E.

US link for the Numero Reserve LeMans winner:

US link for the more-recommended "Kanji" car:

US link for the (not recommended) "detail up" P/E parts:

Last edited by ET2SN; 06-18-22 at 08:15 PM.
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