Tomica continues divergence from conventional automobiles in salute to Hayao Miyazaki’s anime adaptation.

Takara Tomy’s Tomica toy cars are loved by fans both young and old for the painstaking way they fit so many intricate details into a tiny package that recreates the beauty of automotive design. Recently, though, Tomica has been showing it can also do some very cool things with the designs of Studio Ghibli, and it’s continuing to roll with the idea behind its Dream Tomica Full of Ghibli line with its newest entries, hailing from Howl’s Moving Castle.

When choosing what designs from the Hayao Miyazaki-directed anime film to turn into cars, the titular mobile fortress itself was naturally at the top of the list, with the result being this miniature car version of Howl’s Moving Castle.

▼ With the right camera position and backdrop, it’s like the castle has jumped off the screen and into our world.

In order to replicate the castle’s mysterious sense of scale, the metallic paint is applied in such a way as to create shadows on the many different sections of the almost organic-looking building.

The wheels, a necessity on a toy car, are mostly covered, with just the bottoms of the tires sticking out, so that they don’t distract from all of the little doors, hatches, and smokestacks that the designers have included to spark your imagination as you look at the castle.

But though it’s called Howl’s Moving Castle, he doesn’t live there by himself, and the second Howl’s car from Tomica stars one of the sorcerer’s scene-stealing castle-mates, Calcifer!

As with Tomica’s rendition of black cat Jiji from Kiki’s Delivery Service, the designers are once again thinking outside the automotive box here, with a “car” shaped like a metal cooking pot and the lovable fire demon clinging to his position so he doesn’t get scraped away. The wheels are almost entirely concealed (you can see just a tiny bit of the tires from certain angles), and the contrast between the metallic pot and the translucent material used for Calcifer’s body help create a sense of Calcifer’s in-anime non-solid form.

Tomica cars are pretty compact, and that goes for these too, with Howl’s Moving Castle measuring 5.52 centimeters (2.2 inches)in length and 6.38 in height, and Calcifer 5.22 in length and 4.8 in height. That makes them easy to keep on even a modestly sized desk or shelf for display purposes (or, more honestly, displaying until you eventually give in to the urge to play with them like a little kid). Both are priced at 1,320 yen (US$9) and go on sale in mid-November at Japanese toy stores, including Ghibli specialty shop chain Donguri Kyowakoku and the gift shop inside the Ghibli’s Grand Warehouse section of Ghibli Park. If you really want to be sure of nabbing one, though, they’ll also be offered for pre-order via the Takara Tomy Mall online store (here) starting September 29.

▼ The complete Dream Tomica Full of Ghibli lineup so far, with cars inspired by My Neighbor Totoro, Spirited Away, Porco Rosso, Ponyo, and Castle in the Sky/Laputa.

Oh, and if you’re looking for Ghibli cars on a full-size scale, don’t forget that real-world Catbus cars will be running around Ghibli Park this coming spring.

Source, images: Press release
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