3D Printed car models: Take your passion to the next level

3D Printed car models: Take your passion to the next level

Published May 17th, 2022 02:14

3D printed car models are also one of the interesting hobbies of car collectors. And to diversify and own many car models, 3D printing is not a bad choice.

When it comes to the auto industry, 3D printing is now not just limited to prototypes but also to car manufacturing. So owning and rebuilding models of cars is very easy. So what's so special about it? What 3D printed materials will cars in general and models be made of? Let's explore the evolution of technology applied to 3D printed car models.

I. Start deploying 3D printed car model in the automotive industry

1. Advantages of 3D printing

While both customers and manufacturers are starting to dream of a fully 3D printed car, This is possible thanks to the continuous improvement of materials and 3D printing technology. Led to a veritable explosion of interest in innovations surrounding the automotive industry.

We still have to wait before we see a fully 3D-printed car on our streets, but additive manufacturing is already common in the industry for several applications. Manufacturers see all the advantages of this technology for their business strategy, from product development to manufacturing. Shorten proof-of-concept and production times, and save money on your outsourcing process. We will see that some additive manufacturing applications are game-changing and can be a real competitive advantage.


2. Use a car design app

Using 3D modeling software is the first step you must take when starting a 3D printing project. You must first choose the perfect automotive software to start the design process. There are no commercially available 3D programs for automotive projects. But there is some software you can currently use for your automotive projects.

The best solution is to use 3D software made for mechanical and engineering applications, which can create engineering and industrial equipment. These apps make the way cars are developed and built different. Using 3D allows for faster iteration. These apps provide simulation and visualization features and can help you with realistic renderings that can help you with presentations.

II. How to make 3D printed car parts?

You can find many great tutorials on making a miniature car using a 3D printer. You can watch a YouTube video detailing how hobbyists build car models with opening doors, active suspension, moving parts, and 1/64 3D printed wheels. 1/32 or 1/16.


It's time to turn virtual car models into physical 3D prints. You will need filament or rosin, flexible material for each 3D printed spinning wheel, and pieces of yarn for assembly or decoration. Usually, you can use wheels from Hot Wheels and your unbranded cars, scale down or augment 3D printed models, etc.

Sometimes, you don't have a 3D printer at home but want to expand your Hot Wheels car collection with other stunning models. In this case, you can use a 3D printing service to make the model on-demand and ship it to you.

III. How can 3D printing car materials be used in the automotive sector?

To carry out additive manufacturing in a demanding field, such as the automotive industry, you need to use adaptive materials. The mechanical properties you'd expect from traditional manufacturing are now available with 3D Printing with high-performance materials. Here are the best 3D printing materials that you should use for automotive applications:

1. Polypropylene

Some plastic materials, such as polypropylene, are used extensively in the automotive industry. Ultrasint® PP nat 01 has a mechanical construction that allows for new applications and the automotive industry. For example, Polypropylene can be used for 3D print interior components, dashboard parts, airflow, or adaptive fluid systems.

3d printed car

2. Polyamide 6

Additive manufacturing enables possibilities other than heat resistant materials such as Ultrasint® PA6 FR, an advanced engineering polymer powder containing flame retardant (FR) additives. This material combines excellent mechanical and thermal performance with flammability requirements; It is especially suitable for applications in the fields of electronics and transportation.

Ultrasint® PA6 MF is highly resistant and perfect for creating functional parts for engine bay components and other parts in the transportation sector. The PA6 is strong enough to hold the entire engine assembly and handle all thermal, vibration, and static loads. Thanks to the 3D printing and tightness of this PA6 MF material, you can create chemically resistant parts built to measure, such as 3D printed reservoirs.

3. TPU

Are you looking for a strong and flexible material? With impressive properties such as high bounce, low compression, and good fatigue resistance, TPU is ideal for applications that require impact absorption, friction, or flexibility!

For example, Ultrasint® TPU 88A or Ultrasint® TPU 01 can be used to create interior car components in the automotive industry. With the Shore A 88, air filter caps, bellows gimbal, or any other tough and flexible part needed in the automotive industry can be 3D printed with TPU.

3d printed car

4. Nylon PA11

Using bio-based materials is also possible to incorporate more sustainability into your production processes. Nylon PA11 3D printable is based on a 100% renewable biomass source. Castor seeds are extracted from the castor plant to make oil. The oil is then converted to a monomer (11-aminoundecanoic acid), eventually polymerized into Polyamide 11. Here are some options that are suitable for making automotive parts:

  • Ultrasint® PA11 & MJF PA11: These PA11s are bio-based materials perfect for making durable parts. These PA11 Nylon materials offer great opportunities with live hinges and highly impact-resistant components.

  • Ultrasint® PA11 CF is a carbon fiber reinforced 3D printing material that delivers enhanced mechanical performance to your parts where strength and stiffness are required. Does your project require a high strength-to-weight ratio, high impact resistance? Ultrasint® PA11 CF could be the perfect solution.

IV. 3D printed car model

1. Realistic car model

Your 3D printed car design can be a replica of an actual car. You can use a 3D printer to collect all your favorite realistic cars in 1/64, 1/32 scale models.


You can also make a mini model of the Bugatti Veyron supercar. If you choose different filament colors, your 3D printed car models will require less post-processing. You will just remove the brackets and assemble your part.

You can also make realistic car models like the Tesla Model 3. The model's free STL files make it simple to bring designs to life. If you can't make your own 3D printed spinning wheel, use other car parts.


Tesla Model 3 for 3D printing does not have a specific scale, and it requires the use of 1.75 mm filament pieces to fix the axle. But it looks like a miniature replica of an electric car.

2. Old Model Car

Your 3D printed model car can be a replica of some good old vintage models. For example, you can load V8 Ford Falcon STL files and breathe new life into this 1973 coupe. You can find a V8 Ford Falcon STL file for 3D printing in 1/64 scale, which can work well with medium wheels.


A Volkswagen Brasilia in 1978 is among other 1/64th scale old car models that you can 3D print. This mid-size car will look great on the shelf alongside your Hot Wheels and other models. According to the 3D designer, it is best to print this Volkswagen car toy model at a 15% flood level and layer height from 0.08mm to 0.12mm.


One more old model car toy designed to be 3D printed is the classic 1967 Shelby Cobra. And this free 3D model is an iconic sports car from the 1960s era. Moreover, it was considered one of the best vehicles for competitions.


This car is scaled down, similar to the Pinewood Derby cars. So you can 3D print it to expand your toy collection. And if you have a set of Pinewood Derby spinning wheels, use it to move your toy car.

3. Model cars with doors that open

The list of car model toys to build includes projects with open doors. Such cars become impressive displays or collectible pieces.

Gambling hobbyists show how to build a moving toy car. Building a 1967 Chevrolet Impala SS with movable parts and opening doors can be a great project. The prop from the TV series Supernatural boasts a "KAZ 2Y5" license plate, active suspension, spinning wheels, four opening doors, articulated windshield wipers, and other details. Such a 3D-printed toy car will amaze the kid in you!

The DeLorean Machine is one of the greatest toy cars with open doors. And you can 3D print it with detailed DeLorean STL files.

Your toy car will look like the real car from the movie Back to the Future. This 3D printed model comes in 3 kits to equip your project with a flux condenser, swinging door, motor, active suspension, interior, etc.


V. How to make a miniature car model

If you think 1/64 3D printed cars and wheels are too big for your collection, start making a miniature car toy.

3D printing never stops surprising us. Just look at these tiny 3D-printed toy cars. Everything from the design, resolution and operability of small objects is impressive. Even their wheels were moving, and the door opened.

You can also make a miniature car. And it is printed as a single piece, and its tires will move when you lose them a little. This model is free to download, and you can scale it up if you want your 3D printed car toy to be a giant or medium-sized toy.

VI. Summary

Hopefully, you'll find a great 3D printing project for the weekend and share the pictures of your new 3D printed car. Find your desired materials together with STL drawings to be able to create the car model you want.