By Maz Woolley
This article was originally written for the first MAR Online site in January 2014. It is one of the items which we have collected from the old site before it is eventually turned off. It has been adapted to the new site.
The Atlas Dinky collection has now been running for about six months here in the UK. Models have been issued at roughly monthly intervals, and although the packaging seems very minimal, they have all arrived in good condition. As yet there is no sign of any special editions like those offered in France, despite the potential sales these would attract. All of the models so far seem to be different from those offered in the continental Dinky Collection, even if only in colour. Whilst some collectors have suggested that the choices of models so far have been dull, the frenzy on eBay when models are first shipped shows that others disagree, and are prepared to pay a premium price to get these models. Pictures cannot capture one of the main attractions of these models, which is the feel of them in the hand.
Since MAR 278 I have received another three models: 262 Volkswagen Swiss Post, 39a Packard Super 8 and 177 Opel Kapitan.
262 Volkswagen Swiss Post
The continental Atlas Dinky Collection featured 181 Volkswagen in a plain colour but for the UK series they have chosen to issue the Swiss PTT version produced between 1959 and 1966.
The original model is now highly sought after since very few were sold outside Switzerland. The Atlas model has yellow hubs, so it represents the model as launched.
The replica box has no model pictured on it, just like the original.
39a Packard 8 Sedan
This model was originally released by Dinky in 1939 and was finally withdrawn from the range in 1950 by which time it was well behind the contemporary scene in the USA.
It was issued in a wide range of colours and Atlas have chosen to produce it in the post-war green version. The model comes in a replica post war box.
The pictures above include a photograph of an original Dinky Toy taken by the Executive Editor of one in his own collection.
177 Opel Kapitän
This model has already appeared in the continental Atlas Dinky range in blue. For the UK series Atlas have had it painted in lemon yellow, a rare colour applied only in South Africa.
This is the second model for which they have chosen a South African colour, the first was the Ford Thunderbird, and again the box has the features in Afrikaans as well as English. The Kapitän was made at Binns Road between 1961 and 1966, and appears to have only been available in the UK in blue.
Shown below is the Meccano Magazine back cover advertisement published when the model was launched.
It should be noted that Atlas Dinky models are not made from the original moulds but are replicas copied from original models. They are produced by Norev for Atlas using contemporary paints and printing and both models and boxes are clearly marked as Licensed by Mattel, who own the Dinky brand. All production dates are as stated in the reference work Dinky Toys and Modelled Miniatures by Mike and Sue Richardson.
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