Product: Slot.it has released another in its line of 1:32-scale 24 Hours of Le Mans champions: the Silk Cut Jaguar XJR12, winner of the 1990 race.
The distinctive XJR12 was the pinnacle of Jaguar’s XJR sports-car prototype campaign that began in the 1980s and lasted through 1993. Most of these cars, including the car Slot.it has modeled, used Jaguar’s reliable V-12 engines.
Performance: Slot.it-brand slot cars occupy the premium end of the slot-car market in design and performance, and this Jaguar is no exception. Slot.it, an Italian manufacturer, has been producing models of Jaguar XJR12s and similar XJR9s for more than five years. Slot.it specializes in these "Group C" type racers: prototype Porsches, Toyotas, Mazdas, Lancias and Jaguars that were campaigned in Europe and in America’s IMSA road-racing series in the 1980s and ’90s.
This particular model had been updated from previous Slot.it Jaguar releases with a new chassis, revised motor-mount design and new cockpit interior.
The car featured quality components such as aluminum rear rims, a 21,500-rpm S-can motor mounted in-line with a 0.5-mm offset, and an adjustable motor pod with a removable traction magnet positioned between the motor and the rear axle. The car used a nine-tooth pinion gear and a 28-tooth crown gear. Under power, the motor and gearing were surprisingly quiet. The model, like the real-life XJR12, was wide and quite low.
The plastic body was lighter and thinner then those of Scalextric, SCX and Carrera 1:32 slot cars but surprisingly durable. Inside was a lightweight interior and a de-tailed driver with a multicolored helmet. The distinctive rear-wheel skirts were lightly glued in place but could be removed with a modest amount of effort, although the car looked better with them in place. The wide rear spoiler looked fragile but held up well during hundreds of practice laps and a no-holds-barred club race night. Earlier releases of Slot.it Jaguars came with an extra "racing spoiler" in the box with less detail but more robust mounting brackets; this model didn't come with an extra spoiler.
The car was extremely quick, smooth and stable, but it could bite an inexperienced driver who was heavy on the trigger. I exchanged the stock rear tires on the test sample for Slot.it PT06 S1 silicone tires for better grip, and the stock magnet for a stronger Professor Motor PMTR1028 gold neodymium magnet. The tire-magnet combination was good enough for a second-place finish in the Jaguar’s very first club race on plastic track.
The car’s track guide was fairly deep, and it might have scraped the bottom of the slot on some brands of track, especially shallower SCX and original-style Scalextric track (without the Sport designation). You may need to trim a fraction of an inch off the bottom of the guide with a hobby knife or rotary tool.
Marketing: Slot.it has earned its reputation for producing well-designed, adult-hobbyist slot cars with quality mechanical parts. Slot.it cars are a notch above other popular brands in performance.
This Jaguar came packaged in an attractive orange, flip-top cardboard box with information about the Le Mans victory, and a card stating that the model was one of 4,000 produced. When showing the car, be sure to point out its lightweight body and well-applied decoration. Turn the car over to display the 21,500-rpm motor and adjustable motor pod. The car was designed for intermediate and advanced racers, and its powerful motor may have been a bit too much for a youngster.
Add-on products include light oil in a needlepoint dispenser, a tube of plastic-friendly grease and a small Phillips screwdriver, in addition to silicone or urethane rear tires and possibly a change of magnet. The car came with a fine-size Allen wrench that could have been used to remove the setscrews that hold the rear rims and the crown gear to the rear axle.
Be sure to remind customers that grease is used for gears and oil is used where smooth surfaces make contact, such as where axles pass through bearings.
Slot.it cars are among the best in the 1:32 hobby, and this model is no exception.
Product: 1:32 Silk Cut Jaguar XJR12
Stock number: CW11
Availability: Hornby America
• Distinctive and attractive
• Superior performance
• Quality model for hobbyists