Panda Models Retailer Exclusives
Published: August 2021
It has once again become commonplace in recent years for 400 scale manufacturers to make models for specific retailers and the king of this method in 2020/2021 has been Panda Models. To be fair Panda has always had a strong relationship with retailer partners but the change in the past year or two has seen a shift towards a diverse portfolio of customers globally.
It certainly isn't a new phenomenon to build models for retailers as in the early days of 400 scale there were several shops getting models made for themselves, often using a sub-brand. These included AURORA Models, Black Box Models and SkyJets400. Typically they used Aeroclassics and Gemini Jets to make their models. Panda also utilised this mechanism from its beginning.
2015-2017: SKYWINGS & HYJL WINGS
When Panda Models started out in 2015 they already had a partnership with the Chinese store Skywings and over the next couple of years they made around 71 releases for that store, all of which featured Chinese airliners, aside from a pair of Lufthansa A330s. This relationship seemed to tail off towards the end of 2017 and indeed the Skywings store doesn't even stock Panda models anymore.
Panda Models also made the first 11 releases for the HYJL Wings brand prior to HYJL releasing its own stream of Airbus A321s. Once again these were all Chinese airlines - the most interesting being a trio of Air Guilin A319s. I discussed these releases back in late 2016:
2017-2018: INDONESIA AHOY
Moving into 2017 and Panda began to build relationships with stores in Indonesia and Malaysia. They produced several Indonesian models under their own name but also a selection of releases for Airshop Diecast and MP4 brands. I have covered these releases in the Brand page for these stores:
A pair of 737-300s were also made for MyHobbyHouse:
In late 2018 Panda made their first model for the Taiwanese brand Dream Air who up until this point had used JC Wings and HYJL Wings moulds. The model was an Evergreen Int 737-700 on the old mould.
2019-2021 A PROLIFERATION OF PANDA
2019 was a time of seeming turmoil at Panda but the company emerged with a more Western facing feel and for the first time its models began to be widely sold outside of China. It also began to build relationships with new retailers and continue its business with existing partners. The result has been an impressive number of models in the past two years with new ones announced regularly. Below is an up to date chart of all the retailer exclusive models made or announced from 2020 to August 2021:
NOTE: Just because a model is made for a retailer it doesn't necessarily mean it will be available from only that retailer. Sometimes the models are shared around a little.
NOTE: Many of these retailers make models with multiple manufacturers not just Panda. JC Wings and Aeroclassics are especially common as partners. This graphic only covers Panda Models.
Below is a selection of the above retailer exclusive releases:
I have covered many of these releases in the following posts - click an image for the blogpost:
Here at Yesterday's Airlines I try and keep as up to date with retailer exclusives as possible and hope to be able to undertake some detailed reviews of several of the upcoming and recent models soon. To date I have reviewed the following Panda made exclusives: