Kaden/KDN (Czechoslovakia, Czech Republic)
I have several examples of Kaden in both plastic and diecast. The Plastic model is a Fiat 1100 Lusso Berlina taken from a Politoys mold (as many, if not all, the plastic models are). Since I don't have the Politoys version I can't tell you what the differences between them are. The bottom has the name of the car along with the Logo on the bottom of a circle holding two more circles, the "K" and the "N" being in each of the two circles, and the "D" in their intersection.

Other plastic Politoys copies include a Ford Anglia, Innocenti (Austin A40), and an Alfa Romeo 2000 Berlina.

Of the diecast cars, I've only seen copies of Skoda cars and Tatra trucks, which is what is also shown on the Web site. Newer models will have the new logo, a stylized child playing with a toy car. You can see the site for Kaden here.

Can anyone help with the history of Kaden? And if you speak Czech, offer to translate their site for them!!!!

KDN Octavia sedan
KDN Octavia hatchback
KDN Octavia bottom
KDN Fabia
KDN Skoda wagon

Kado (Japan)
Corresponding with Chuan Chai, I realized that, as he predicted, my Kado says "Tomica Dandy" on the base (you see now the problems of starting a site like this several years after you've put a model in the case). Chuan sited a book written in Chinese in the following:

"The book I refereed to didn't really have much on the history or nature of the Kado company. But here is what I got: Kado was a company based in Japan. It commissioned Tomy Co. of Japan to produce models for them, and then these models were sold under the Kado brand name via their own distribution network. Tomy used existing dies and tools to produce these models -- mostly 1:43 Tomica Dandy. However a promotional set for a magazine was made in the 3-inch size. This set consisted of 5 cars, all were based on Tomica no. 27 Isuzu Hipac Van."

Kaiser (Hungary)
Resin models made in Hungary. The model I have is of a Tatra T-602 racing car. Yeah, I know, racing cars AREN'T my thing, but I just couldn't pass up a car from Hungary. The bottom says "Kaiser Models, Made in Hungary, 1949 Tatra T-602." The base is screwed on, and the wheels do not turn.

Kaiser apparently also makes resin kits, and it appears that they concentrate on racing cars. Anyone have more information?

Kaiser Tatra T-602

Kawabatakikaku / J-43 (Japan)
J-43 LogoFor an American, this name is quite a mouthful -- and a really difficult model to find. Whenever I had the time, I would put this model name along with some other rare ones into into Ebay to see if anything came up... well it took me about 3 years, but something finally popped up for Kawabatakikaku. There were two for sale -- a Subaru 360 and the Toyopet Crosn that I bought. I would have loved to have gotten both, but it was much more than I usually spend for my models -- I just REALLY wanted this one! I have some pictures below alongside my Modelpet Toyopet Crown. The J-43 is pretty hefty, like a Brooklin, and not a bad model, although it does rest pretty low on its wheels. One thing to note: You'll know that box belongs to the model, because there is a color dot showing the color of the model on the label.

I really don't have any information on this company... but there is one interesting note -- I found online a Honda S800 with a box that says "1994 Diapet Collection Club by Yonezawa... Produced by Kawabatakikaku." Does anyone know what the Diapet Collection Club is, and why Kawabatakikaku made this model for Yonezawa?

I know for sure you'll find these models:
Hino Contessa
Subaru 360
Toyopet Crown
Toyopet Crown fire car

J-43 Box
J-43 Toyopet
J-43 Toyopet next to Modelpet Toyopet
J-43 Toyopet bottom
 Diapet Collection Club box endcap

Kenner Fast 111's (Hong Kong)
First of all, I'm going to rant about one of my bugaboos... WHY is there an apostrophe in 111's? There shouldn't be... and it's a problem that only seems to be getting worse with "initial words" like DVD and CD (it's DVDs, NOT DVD's!). Sigh. I guess I'm on my way to being a cranky old man...

At any rate, you can find a history of Kenner Toys at Wikipedia. Kenner is now a part of Hasbro, and the name seems to have disappeared.

Fast 111's were an attempt by Kenner to cash in on the Hot Wheels (notice it wasn't Hot Wheel's, with an apostrophe? Okay, I'll stop now) phenomenon. For an excellent article on the history, read this article by Doug Breithaupt. The really odd thing about these cars is that they all (cars, trucks, and racing cars alike) have the same rear bumper. You can imagine what that makes some of the cars look like, especially when the rear bumper in question is a sort of cow catcher on the back. That probably (just guessing here) means that they all have the same chassis as well, since the bumper is part of the chassis. The Fast 111's "claim to fame" was that the rear bumper had license plates from all 50 states, undoubtedly to get kids and collectors to get 50 of each model. So, Kenner, how did that work out for you? Apparently not very well.

I have a BMW Dynamo still sealed on its original card, which sold for $1.29 at Venture. The front of the box says "No.92040, For ages over 3, Kenner Fast 111's, One of a kind license plates!, Die cast metal, Certificate of ownership on back of package, Collect cars from all 50 States!, Dynamo, Contents: Die cast metal and high impact plastic car, Kenner, Meets or exceeds all safety requirements of Product standard 72-76." The bottom says "CPG Prod. Corp. 1980, Kenner Prod., Cinti, Ohio 45202, No. 1027, Made in Hong Kong." According to Doug, ALL models had this same inscription on the bottom. Under the bumper is also inscribed "Fast 111s." On the back is a "Certificate of Ownership, which the owners (up to three) are to write in their names and dates. This, I suppose is great for when you inherit your brother's cars and you can truly make them yours by scratching out his name. There are statistics for this particular car, and then pictures of all the other cars available, Cyclone 3, Drag King, Range Runner, Evil Eye, Blazin' Bandit, Jet Vet, Turbo Tram, Saturn Seeker, Formula Special, Blue Monday, King Cobra, Shark Shifter, Piston Pusher, Dynamo, Dirt Digger, and Outlawer. Unfortunately, unless you have the original card, you'd never know what the name of your vehicle is.

Fast 111s package front
Fast 111s package rear

Kidco (Hong Kong, Macao)
It's sometimes amazing what you can find on the Internet. I found tbirduk.com, which actually gives a blow-by-blow account of changes in the he Kidco T-bird from 1979 to 1981. Amazing, and good on you boys (or girls)! Please drop by that site for a good overview. Also according to that site, they assert that the cars were made made for Airfix from 1979-1982, and that they were sold in Europe as Dinkys. That piqued my interest, so I entered "Dinky" and "Kidco" in Google, and came up with (of course!), an article by Dave Weber on Doug Breithaupt's site. Okay, I'll say this again -- if you REALLY want to know about diecast cars and haven't visited Doug's site, do it now. Just wander a while through the pages. You're bound to find something you like.

Dave lets us know in this article that, yes, Airfix did at the time own Dinky, and they had these models made by Universal Products in Hong Kong for sale in Europe as Dinky and in the U.S. as Kidco Tough Wheels. Dave and tbirdkuk.com differ on the start year; while Dave says 1989, tbirduk shows a car and card with a 1979 date. Also, my T-bird as a 1979 date on the bottom with 1981 on the card. Also, Dave mentions that Kidco was based in Elk Grove, Illinois. My card, and the cards sited by tbirduk.com say Bensenville, Illinois (a suburb of Oak Park, perhaps?).

For a comprehensive listing of all the models (and there a surprisingly large number of them), check out Dave's article.

Kidco Tough Wheels T-Bird
Kidco package
Kidco package reverse

Kiko (Brazil)
Kiko was the company of Arno Kikoler (you'll find him listed mostly as A. Kikoler). For those who like plastic airplane model kits, you may know them as the Brazilian manufacturers of molds from Revell, Airfix and Heller. Diecast car lovers (and we know who we are) will know them as makers of Corgi Jrs. in Brazil. Interesting, you'll found both the Kiko and Corgi Jr name on the packaging. I have Ford Thunderbirds from both companies: the English Corgi has a chrome plated metal base with similarly plastic plated front grill, rear bumper, and Continental tire kit, while the Kiko has a black metal base with the aforementioned parts in black plastic. The engine of the Kiko is also all black, while the air cleaner in the Corgi is plated plastic. The interiors appear to be identical, while the the Kiko has 5 spoke wheels and the Corgi has 10 spokes. The base of the Kiko says "Kiko, Ford Thunderbird, c 1980 ASP, Ind Bras." The bottom of the Corgi says "Corgi, Ford Thunderbid, c 1980, Made In GT Britain."

Arno Kikoler's son-in-law, Mauricio Nhuch, co-founded Roly Toys in Brazil (see Roly Toys).

You'll find some information about the company (albeit in Portugese) here.

As an aside, I find it interesting that Kiko manufactured cars from Corgi molds and not Dinky, considering that they were already working with Airfix, the owner of Dinky (see previous article for Kidco).

Apparently, Kiko made a "Kiko Jet-Car" - which is, indeed, a Norev Jet-Car made in Brazil by Kiko. Up to now I didn't know that Kiko manufactured Norevs. Manufactured in the late 70s or early 80s, only the Kiko name shows up on the box, though the Jet-Car logo and Norev appear on the bottom of the models.

Kiko Thunderbird (left) and Corgi version (right). The colors came out badly -- the Kiko is actually is sort of French's mustard, and the Corgi is pale yellow. Another view here.
Kiko Jet-Car bottom
Kiko box scan

Kirk (Denmark)
(See Tekno)

Kookaburra/Weico (Australia)

I can't believe this company isn't more well known. Undoubtedly it's because their models are of Australian cars -- but I think that just adds to the value. The Kookaburra in my collection (number 26 of 250) is a 1:43 1961 EK Holden. It is one HEAVY car! Details are a bit rough (like the writing on the fenders and trunk), but it's mostly very agreeable.

Per a previous version of their Web site: "Commenced over 12 years ago the models were produced to enable models to be manufactured for collectors of Australian cars which were not available from other producers. Originally mastered in a brass pattern. Reproductions were produced in no more than 250 of each. Currently we have no new models available.Sa"

Sad, that last part. And they don't seem to come up for auction on the Internet very often. They do now seems to have a neat-looking line of 1:87 cars, which I'll have to start ordering!

Kookaburra 1961 EK Holden
Kookaburra Ford Falcon

Kovap (Czechoslovakia)
Kovap is a maker of tin toys, some of which (VW beetle, pickup, van, mercedes, etc). were originally CKO Kellermann models. Known under this name since 1991, it was built on an earlier company founded in 1950.

I have not seen a Kovap "in the tin," but I have seen a photo of the base of one of the ex-CKO models, and it still has the CKO logo, but instead of "Made in Western Germany" it says "Replica."

Copyright 2013 by Keith Bickford. All rights reserved. No portion of this site may be reproduced without written permission. Quoted passages remain the property of respective authors.