The Taiyo Jet Hopper MK1 (Japan) is a radio controlled buggy, manufactured by Taiyo Toys in Japan, and released into the Japanese market in 1986. This was the original, the very first Jet Hopper or Turbo Hopper sold anywhere.
When it eventually found its way overseas as the Taiyo Jet Hopper MK1 (Global), and two years later as the Tyco Turbo Hopper MK1, it would set off a revolution in radio control toys globally that would last for 15-20 years, and is what we might today call the ‘Golden Age of Toy RC’.
Identifying the MK1 (Japan) vs MK2, MK3
The MK1 is easy to distinguish due to its ‘Jet Hopper’ lettering cut into the front bumper, the lack of a speed sticker in front of the cockpit, and the fatter front wheels. The original Japanese version is obviously packaged with Japanese language box, manual, etc., and is Made in Japan.
Why it was it so revolutionary?
While many existed before it and ‘better’ hobby-grade RC vehicles sold in the same year, the Jet Hopper was revolutionary simply because it was able to deliver an incredible “hobby grade” performance (24kmh or 15mph) at a price which made it possible for everyday toy stores and department stores to sell, and parents to buy for their children.
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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.