Giganotosaurus (Nanmu)

3.7 (21 votes)

Review and images by PhilSauria, edited by Suspsy

If you are of a certain age then chances are that this animal was not among the species in the dinosaur books that you may have had growing up. Formal recognition came in 1995 (by Rodolfo Coria‭ & ‬Leonardo Salgado) with its name, Giganotosaurus, meaning “giant southern lizard.” A reference to its location in the Southern Hemisphere with remains found in Argentina at the Candeleros Formation. Those remains have been few in number but what they lack in quantity they make up for in quality: the first specimen almost three-quarters complete. Taxonomy has it grouped in with Carcharodontosauridae. Its main claim to fame is that it was a huge theropod that rivalled the iconic Tyrannosaurus rex in size, an animal I think that it is fair to say, many a person not the slightest bit interested in dinosaurs in general could identify. Size estimates put this animal at 12 – 13 meters long.

While not very well represented in fossil form, Giganotosaurus has certainly been well covered in terms of nearly every major player in the manufacture of paleo-plastic having one in their range. A quick scan through various online databases that catalogue such things reveals around two dozen releases, the majority of them in the 21st century. 2019 was a particularly good year with no less than five new additions to the list.

Most of the models are on the large side, as befits such a big animal, and the subject of this review, courtesy of Nanmu, is easily the largest one yet. At about 42 cm long and 15.5 cm high, it dwarfs the previous giant among giants, the Vitae release. The curved nature of the pose making a precise length measurement difficult. A scale of 1/35 is usually quoted.

Two colour variants are available, one termed ‘Tiger Stripe’, the other ‘Blue,’ with both options available either with or without a base depending on how much you want to pay. The model comes well-packed inside a classy white box with the company logo and a monochrome image of the Giganotosaurus on the outside. There is also a well presented and illustrated info card inside. The base is packaged separately, should you order that as well. The simple rocky bases are coloured grey for the orange-toned model and orange for the blue one. However, the model is carefully engineered to stand quite steadily with no wobbles if you pass on the base option. Holes in the feet help position and hold it to the base. The version covered here is the Tiger Stripe, and I have just the figure and not the base.

The first thing that hits you on unboxing this model is the impressive size; the term ‘shelf presence’ was invented for creations like this! And every part of that large frame is covered in a very high level of detail to render this a very naturalistic and life-like realisation. Easily on par with the Vitae and EoFauna versions as my particular favourite sculpts of this dinosaur. There is some contention as to how long the reconstruction of the head should be and I’d say this one lands part way between the short-faced Vitae and the long-faced Safari Ltd. interpretation.

And on that same note, the characteristic ridges along the top of the head and over the eyes segue into a series of crocodilian-like scutes and plates that run down the neck, over the body, and down along the tail. Speculation to be sure, but I’m okay with that. The tail appears slightly shorter than some other models have given it but it’s not a major issue. Hand and toe claws are in black and the distinctive green eyes are surrounded by dark brown. The articulated jaw is filled with individually sculpted pointy teeth using that almost translucent and bony treatment that Nanmu has perfected. A gloss to that area and the eyes add to the realism. And did I mention how heavy this thing is? In all, this is a truly impressive model of an animal that must have been similarly impressive in life.

In summary, if you are at all interested in Giganotosaurus, have the funds and the display space, then I highly recommend this model from Nanmu.

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Comments 4

  • Superb Phil review Sauria is without a doubt my favorite giganotosaurus in my collection and I like it more than other scientific and non-scientific versions of this prehistoric animal although honestly the most scientifically accurate are Vitae and Eofauna.

  • Note on size.

    T. rex: Scotty was 42.8 ft long and 9.8 tons. (13 meters=42.8 ft.)
    https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/saskatchewan/sask-scotty-trex-biggest-ever-1.5068830

    Giganotosaurus: Slightly long at 44-45 ft long, but considerably lighter 6.5-7 tons.

    • no giganotosaurus mesurait 12 à 13.5 m pour un poids de 7 à 9.3 tonnes
      alors que scotty c’est 12.8 m pour poids 9 à 9.7 tonnes max .

  • Thanks for this fine review of a magnificent figure, @PhilSautia. I’m enjoying your latest reviews, so keep ’em comin’. Myself, I’ve got five Giganotosaurs: the Carnegie, Safari, Eofauna, PNSO and Vitae, so this is extraneous to my collection, even though it’s top-flight. A bit pricey for me too, but if it’s in the budget for the collector – what an acquisition!

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