Century Dragon CA10 Jiefang - Limited Edition

Review of Jiefang CA10
Manufacturer: Century Dragon Industrial Limited, CHINA

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I recently obtained a model of the JIEFANG CA10. From information received with the model it appears this limited edition issue by Century Dragon ceased production at about 5000 of the 9999 that were to be made due to a lack of sales [Contact received from Century Dragon Industrial Limited's Marketing Director, Ferdinand Koo, advises my original information is incorrect - I therefore assume the full release of 9999 of the model were issued - my thanks to Mr Koo for pointing out the discrepancy]. However, a second version of the truck, as a petrol tanker, is to be issued later in 2005, as a limited edition of 9999.  ** See bottom of page for more news.


The model is crafted in 1/43rd scale and comes complete with a small historical brochure outlining the history of the vehicle and certificate of authenticity. It is housed in a clear display case and the base of the display unit has a numbered plaque attached to it. The attractive outer packaging opens to reveal the model in a "display window" format with some Chinese text above.


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Century Dragon Industrial Limited is currently the only licensee allowed to produce limited edition models of vehicles produced by the First Automobile Works (FAW) of China. This model of the Jiefang CA10, China's first mass-produced middle weight truck, is the first in a series of proposed releases of important Chinese vehicles entitled "China National Classic Car Series". It was released to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the founding of FAW in July, 1953.


FAW is China's largest vehicle manufacturer and the CA10 was one of the most significant vehicles involved in the building of modern day China. FAW was founded at Changchun City, in the Filin province, on the 15th July, 1953 with plans to produce cars and trucks for domestic use. Production was not started until the completion of construction some three years later. On the 13th July, 1956 the first middle-weight truck called the Jiefang (based on a USSR ZIS/ZIL vehicle which in turn resembles the American International Harvester trucks), rolled off the production lines and into the history of Chinese manufactured motor vehicles. With an output of over 500,000 vehicles a year, ranging from limousines to trucks, the FAW group now employs over 130,000 people and owns licences for the production of Charade, Volkswagen, Audi, Toyota and Mazda vehicles plus the legendary Jiefang and Redflag Chinese brands.


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The level of detail on the model is impressive and the model is hand assembled from 158 separate parts. Details include: steerable front wheels, highly detailed chassis and undercarriage including brake hose lines and fuel lines (in very fine wire?), driver's side mirror, cast windscreen wipers and blades, detailed lights and lenses, glazing, detailed body casting and some interior detailing that is difficult to see due to it being black. The model is finished in its original dark green colour scheme and measures 155 mm long, 57.5 mm wide and 51.7 mm high.


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A close up of the wipers

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Look at the detail on the timber deck...

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Fine fuel lines run from fuel tank and under chassis


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Detail work on underside of deck - rear light has separate lens

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The detailed undercarriage...

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Look closely and you can see the fuel lines and brake lines...

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Front view showing badge work, etc.

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A close-up shot of the front lights reveals the patterns moulded into the front light lens - just like on a real vehicle of this period - pity some of the other model manufacturers don't do this...



** 12 March, 2005 Further information has arrived advising that the Jiefang CA10 truck is also to be released in a limited edition as a Military vehicle with changes to the wheels and other components. It is not yet known if this release will be available outside of China. Only 9999 of the Military version will be made.