Bruder vs Tonka | Which one are you going for? Both beautiful brands

by Joost Nusselder | Updated on:  February 12, 2021

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Both Bruder and Tonka are a collector's item favorite and famous brands in the world of cars and all kinds of other construction and auxiliary vehicles, they have a high play value and children can enjoy themselves in a variety of role-playing games.

At first glance, Bruder and Tonka have many similarities.

But let me compare these brands to discover what the main differences actually are.

Bruder vs Tonka toys

Bruder makes all vehicles - except the Roadmax children's series - in 1:16 scale, while Tonka makes his construction vehicles at 1:50 and his Minimover series at 1:64. Where Bruder always uses high-quality plastic, at Tonka you see that plastic is only used for the children's series, but steel for the other series. 

Bruder makes a good contribution to the - technical - development of your child and shows how different professions are practiced, there are accompanying dolls with most vehicles.

The German consumer association 'Spiel gut' in any case, recommends Bruder toys!

Tonka, however, also stimulates the development of technical insight.

Did you know Tonka has been manufacturing vehicles for over 70 years? All vehicles - except the kids series - are made of solid steel.

Here I'll put both toy brands versus each other for you:

Bruder Tonka
Bruder Delta Loader vs Skid Steer Loader

 

(view the entire range)

Tonka bulldozer vs bruder bulldozer

 

(view the entire range)

Dimensions: 

 

  • Professional series 1:16
  • B-world series 1:16
  • Roadmax series is not to scale
Dimensions:

 

  • Tonka mini movers 1:64
  • Construction machines 1:50 
  • Children's series not to scale 
Materials: 

 

  • the best plastic, comparable to what the car industry uses
Materials:

 

  • the Steel Classic series is made of real steel
  • the children's series is made of plastic
Bruder series:

 

  • Professional series
  • B-world series 
  • Roadmax series 
Tonka series:

 

  • Steel Classic series 
  • Mud Rescue series  
  • Mini Movers 
  • Mega Machines
  • Storm chasers
  • Children's series
Bruder for little ones: Roadmax seriesTonka for little ones: Tonka children's series

I believe these toy brands contribute to responsible playing; your child can take up the challenge and get ready for many adventures! 

There are a number of differences between these brands that you can read further in this article.

What makes Bruder Toys so much fun?

Best Forklift: Bruder 02511 Linde H30D Forklift

(view the entire range)

Bruder has a huge range of all kinds of vehicles.

Beyond that, the great quality of their toys is known all over the world. Mostly their construction toys are excellent.

Bruder produces everything to scale, except for the series for the little ones.

If you buy Bruder toys you are probably familiar with the advantages:

Bruder produces professional series including cranes, trucks and jeeps.

The B-world series from Bruder consists of play figures and sets; a lot of fun for children and great for using their imagination.

The Bruder Roadmax series is for the little ones. The vehicles in this series have safely rounded corners.

Check out the latest series here

What makes Tonka toys so much fun?

Tonka dump truck

(view the entire range)

Tonka has been around for generations! For over 70 years, Tonka has been producing one of the world's most loved toy trucks.

Tonka makes thousands of models: bulldozers, police and fire trucks, garbage trucks, concrete mixers, cranes, pickups, tractors, and much more.

There is also a lot of interest in Tonka vehicles among collectors, especially the first Mighty Tonka series.

Did you know that Tonka means “big” in Sioux?

The beautiful Tonka toys inspire children to use their imagination and to stay active, to embark on new adventures and not just 'hang around the computer'.

Tonka's most beautiful series now are the

The Steel Classic series is produced in real steel. These solid vehicles are ready for the toughest loading and unloading jobs!

Nice examples from this series are, for example, the Mighty Dump Truck or the Tonka Steel Class Bulldozer. The latter can easily move sand and gravel!

Tonka Mini Movers are built on a 1:64 scale. These - mostly collector's items - are also available in the Mud Rescue series.

The Tonka Mud Rescue series offers your child a spectacular way to play with their favorite Tonka vehicles.

In every pack you will find a vehicle, play accessories and Tonka Mud, a compound with real mud!

Tonka Mega Machines are large vehicles equipped with sound effects and real lights.

This series from Mega includes Mighty Mixers and Storm Chasers, which are strong enough to continue rescue missions during a huge storm.

One of the most important websites for Tonka collectors is Neatoldtoys.com.

This site features over 100 Tonka ads, a Tonka ID directory, Tonka history and lookbooks. You can also find restoration tips and other tips here.

View available vehicles here

A bit of history of both companies

In 1958 the German company Bruder Spielwaren was founded. However, it was only in 1987 that the products started to expand considerably.

All of their scaled vehicles have been hugely popular for decades, with children and collectors all over the world.

For decades, the toy vehicles of these two companies have been at the top of the wish list of many children and collectors.

The American brand Tonka started with the Regular series of trucks in 1949, followed by the Mini Tonka series in 1963.

The following year, production of the great Mighty Tonka trucks started.

Their extensive series of vehicles are lifelike and are often collected. Children love to play with the beautiful bulldozers and trucks of this brand.

FAQ Bruder and Tonka

Are old Tonka vehicles worth anything?

Most Tonka trucks in good condition from the late 40's to early 60's can be bought for between $ 100 and $ 300.

There were so many Tonka products manufactured; good places to find Tonka trucks are standard stores, flea markets, and antique stores.

Does Tonka also make real trucks?

There is a whole fleet of real trucks used for advertising purposes.

Unfortunately you cannot order one from the dealer, but some Tonka employees drive it every day, for example to work.

What kind of vehicle series does Bruder have?

Bruder has two main product lines: the Professional series, which is their primary line, and a Roadmax series of toys with a simpler design for younger children.

Their toys have been recommended by 'Spiel gut', a German consumer advisory committee.

Bruder vs Tonka: what are you going for?

It is not easy to point out the differences between Bruder and Tonka vehicles: these (work) vehicles are all sturdy and can withstand multiple knocks.

What we know is that both brands are extremely reliable and durable: they stand for solid toys and give children so much fun!

What are you going for, Bruder or Tonka?

Also watch: Bruder vs Playmobil | Two toy giants compared.

Joost Nusselder, the founder of Speelkeuze.nl is a content marketer, father and loves trying out new toys. As a child, he came into contact with everything around games when his mother started the Tin Soldier in Ede. Since 2016, he and his team have been creating helpful blog articles to help loyal readers with fun play ideas.