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Tyco Taiyo Collectors is a resource for enthusiasts of 80s, 90s, and 00s toys produced by Tyco®, Taiyo (Japan), Metro RC, Dickie Toys, and others, and is not affiliated with any toy company.

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12th November 2023
If you’re looking for the perfect nostalgic gift from the 80s and 90s, a vintage Tyco Mini Hopper is my pick! They’re great collectors items and are still fairly affordable.


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1980 Taiyo Pontiac Firebird

taiyo logo very small198080013xAA9V Vsml km/h

value25 50
4.1 out of 5
One of the oldest yet coolest R/C toys we have on this site. Forget about performance of course, but it looks a treat!
out of 5
Review CommentOne of the oldest yet coolest R/C toys we have on this site. Forget about performance of course, but it looks a treat!


ScaleDiff.Made inMotor


This Taiyo Pontiac Firebird 88 is a 1:20 scale radio control model released into the Japanese market in 1980.

The Firebird is one of Taiyo’s first attempts at an RC sports or muscle car. Without much performance to extract from their early 3xAA+9V chassis, they opted instead to jazz it up in the looks department.

Looking very swish for a 1980 RC, the Firebird had

  • 3xAA for drive train
  • Onboard 9V for car radio (plus another 9V in controller)
  • 2-Speed Gearbox
  • Deep Red body with gold trim
  • Fire bird emblem on bonnet in Gold and Black
  • Working front headlights
  • Red power LED in the rear

8222 Taiyo Firebird MorePhotos Box7
8222 Taiyo Pontiac Firebird

The car internals are complex in comparison to Taiyo’s earlier Bump ‘n Go models, and we can already see signs of their game changing 1986 Jet Hopper MK1 design, such as:

A. Compartmentalization of front steering servo mechanism.
This would evolve into a more typical looking RC 8g servo within a few years.
B. Antenna mount pole.
Similar to Jet Hopper.
C. Custom Taiyo 7820C radio control chip.
Taiyo would continue custom designing their chips throughout the 80s and 90s.
D. LED sleeve.
This is identical to the Jet Hopper.

Similarities with 1980 and 1990 Taiyo internals
Similarities with 1980 and 1990 Taiyo internals


This kind of R/C is a true piece of history. One of the first low cost radio control toys ever produced, and just 6 years before the explosive growth of the company that would come with their 1986 Jet Hopper design which would turbo charge the industry.

If you’re thinking of buying one, just be aware – as Indy said, it belongs in a museum. And I say that with great respect!


    Average Price


    Highest Price


    This average price is based on 1 sales we have recorded (max 10 shown).

    20 Jun 2023$56.78UsedAuctionVery rare taiyo radio racer pontiac firebird remote control car
    Prices in USD. NIB = New In box, MIB = Mint in Box, EC = Excellent Condition, VGC = Very Good Condition, GC+ = Good condition plus, GC = Good condition, PC = Poor Condition. With Controller = Car with controller. With Box = Box, Car, and Controller. We make all efforts to ensure data is accurate, but cannot guarantee it is.


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