Tomica (トミカ, Tomika) is a line of die-cast toy vehicles produced since 1970 by Takara Tomy Co. of Japan (formerly known as Tomiyama and Tomy Kogyo Incorporated). Ostensibly, Tomica diecast were an outgrowth of Tomica World, an autonomous toy line of motorized train accessories that Tomy had created based on Plarail and produced since 1959. Similar in concept, Tomica can be thought of as the Japanese Matchbox – but focuses mainly on Japanese brands.
Tomy Co. of Japan was founded in 1924 by Eijira Tomiyama in Tokyo. The company has produced a variety of toys, but in 1970 started production of the Tomica line of diecast vehicles as a result of the surge of interest in the global market in toy cars which was led mainly by Matchbox and Mattel’s Hot Wheels. Although models of various scales have been made, the name “Tomica” normally refers to the 3-inch sized mainstream vehicles most commonly produced by the company. Originally, the name “Pocket Cars” was given to Tomicas sold in the 1970s in the United States. After four decades, Tomy Corporation again entered the North American and European markets with the Tomica name in 2010.