ARC vs Elite Diecast: What’s their difference?

The two most popular diecast brands in the United States are ARC and ELITE. They both produce high-quality model cars, but if you’re not sure which one you should go with, I’ve got some info to help you out.

There are many differences between ELITE and ARC Diecast. For one, ELITE diecasts tend to be more expensive than ARC diecasts. Furthermore, the details such as engine, dashboard, and chassis tend to be better with Elite diecasts. When it comes to collecting, ARC diecasts tend to be better for beginners.

This blog post will differentiate ARC and Elite Diecast. Furthermore, I will give a brief introduction to each of these brands.

ELITE vs ARC Diecasts

What’s the difference between ARC and ELITE diecast?

ARC diecastElite diecast
BoxHas Authenticity StickerHas “Elite” in Authenticity Sticker
CertificateNo Certificate of AuthenticityHas Elite Certificate of Authenticity
AvailabilityAvailable on many RetailersHard to Buy
DetailsLess DetailedHighly Detailed
Recommended ForBeginner CollectorsDetail-Oriented Collectors
Differences between ARC and Elite Diecasts

There are many differences between ARC and Elite diecast.

One of their key difference is the price.

Generally speaking, Standard ARC versions are cheaper than RCCA Elite diecasts.

Standard ARC versions are available from most Diecast distributors for $59.99 to $69.99, depending on the region from where you are purchasing. The RCCA ELITE retails for $89.95 and can only be bought from

Another is the difference in production rate.

One of the reasons why ELITEs tend to be more valuable is because of the lower production rate.

Plus, Elite diecasts tend to have an accompanying Certificate of Authenticity (COA) card that gives information about the car and its serial number.

This certificate is essential if you intend to sell your collectibles. For example, when I check for expensive diecasts, I check if the seller has a certificate of authenticity(COA). I also find that models with COAs tend to go high in price, and some can even go for thousands.

And those aren’t just book values; they are confirmed purchases that go for thousands of dollars.

However, I would like to note that some COA from Elite diecasts are generic. This means the COA looks the same on many Elite diecast cars and can be swapped so be careful when buying.

There is nothing specific on the COAs as of now but I hope Lionel will change it soon since it’s a loophole in the diecast collecting industry.

I made a blog post talking about the most expensive Nascar diecast sold. You can find it here: Most Valuable Nascar Diecast Cars.

Another difference is their attention to detail.

If you’re a novice collector, it’s difficult to tell the difference between them. The differences are hardly perceptible.

You can check for paints, materials, and details relative to the actual car.

For example, the grills of the front window from ARC diecasts are made of plastic. On the other hand, Elite has metal grills and looks sleeker.

When it comes to details, here is where Elite diecast stands out.

For example, The Elite’s diecasts dash electronics are better than the standard ARC diecasts, and a red curly cable connects the steering wheel and the dashboard through the front glass.

With these, you can see from the outside that Elite diecasts tend to be more realistic in appearance.

But the exterior looks are not the only one that differs when it comes to details.

In fact, the engine details are upgraded on the ELITE. For example, you can see through the locking chrome hood hinges and tethers on both sides.

Plus, you can also put an antenna in one of the roof flaps of the ELITE, which has tethers attached to the flaps.

There are some significant differences at the bottom of the ELITE.  

Among other things, you can see the rear bumper braces, the number on the bottom with the RCCA emblem, and the rear sway bar. The rear suspension of the ELITE is also functioning.

The Elite has a metal chassis instead of the ARC’s plastic one, and it has an opening trunk.

That’s why ARC is less expensive. In addition, special finishes of ELITE include Liquid Color and Color Chrome.

The most popular finish is the standard finish, which is precisely what the car appears on the track.

Differences between ARC and ELITE are very subtle. It’s almost undetectable in the eyes of a novice collector.

However, if you have just started with the hobby of collecting NASCARs, ARC is an excellent choice.

As it’s less expensive than ELITE, you can increase your collection much faster.

In the end, the collector must decide whether or not to pay the extra $20 to $30 for the ELITE. However, if you’re looking for a way to increase the value of your collection, these tweaks may be worth it.

What does Elite diecast mean?

As the name implies, ELITE diecast means they provide the most detailed Nascar diecast models in the market. ELITE diecast is very meticulous in detailing the dashboard, engine, chassis, and more. For that reason, serious collectors often opt for Elite diecasts.

ELITE diecasts are the most realistically detailed NASCAR diecasts currently available.

Every inch of an ELITE diecast NASCAR stock vehicle has been meticulously recreated in 1:24 scale as the premium Lionel Racing diecast brand.

Not only do the diecast bodies accurately depict the automobiles’ contours and body shapes, but the attention to detail on the engines is equally impressive.

RCCA’s ELITE diecast is the most sought-after item by collectors, and there’s a good reason for it.

Each ELITE diecast has been meticulously made to look like a real thing. As a result, ELITE diecasts are created in minimal quantities, which increase their value as collectibles.

In addition, this diecast is available in high-end plating that increases the finished product’s value and collectability.

What is an ARC diecast?

ARC or Action Racing Collectables diecast is the standard diecast collectible people can purchase through local distributors. They have been a standard for more than 25 years and has been part of the collection of almost all Nascar diecast enthusiast.

Action Racing Collectables has been a standard for diecast collectors and enthusiasts for more than 25 years.

The Action Racing Collectibles brand is trendy among both children and adults.

ARC diecast models, made by Lionel Racing, are essential for every race fan’s collection.

Twenty-five years later, Action Racing Collectibles (ARC) automobiles are still the preferred choice of champions. Consolidation of three distinct companies into one brand, Action Racing Collectables, was completed in 2018.

ARC diecasts range from the tiny 1:64-scale models that children and collectors can’t get enough of to the larger 1:24-scale models that are eagerly sought by fans when they’re at the track.

Die-cast Action Racing Collectibles are meticulously crafted to resemble the action on the track. Replica paint schemes and detailed bits and pieces are included in each Action Racing Collectables 1:24 scale diecast model.


It may seem that Elite diecasts are the winner in quality, materials, and details.

However, please note that Elite diecasts are hard to find and usually limited.

Thus, it is easier for beginners to go for ARC diecasts since they are the standard, while Elite diecasts fit those who are detail-oriented.

However, this doesn’t mean that ARC doesn’t produce high-quality models. In fact, it is hard to differentiate an ARC diecast from ELITE diecast with a simple glance.

You can only see their difference once you are being very careful on checking the details.

In the end, this depends on you as a buyer. However, if you plan to sell your models in the future, Elite diecasts tend to sell a lot more than ARC.

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