By Maz Woolley
All text and photographs by, and copyright of, the Author unless otherwise stated.
Well the Atlas Dinky Deluxe series has finished without delivering all the models shown on the original advertising. If you study the picture below you will see the Ford Galaxie 500 and the Mercedes-Benz 230SL which I believe were not delivered to any subscribers here in the UK. So DeAgostini’s management of Atlas’ closure is responsible for subscribers being sold short. It is not as if the models are not available, as DeAgostini is selling the missing models on its own website for a higher price, all marked Atlas on the boxes and bases.
The equivalent French market collection from Atlas, Dinkies with opening parts, ran to many more parts and included the missing models shown on the UK advertising as well as many more. The French Atlas organisation no longer has any trace of these series on its website with the whole site now changed to Altaya Model Space, Atlaya being another DeAgostini brand.
So here is a look at one of the models that subscribers were expecting which I obtained from DeAgostini, but the box and the base of the model are both clearly marked Editions Atlas.
French Dinky #516 Mercedes-Benz 230 SL launched in 1964 and withdrawn in 1970, is a model from the peak of Dinky France‘s model making. The box has a lovely attributed period illustration with the car emerging from a mountain tunnel and being driven by a cool guy in his shades. Of course the yellow painted car was never actually produced as the model came in silver, metallic grey, and red. Here Atlas has chosen to model it in metallic red which suits the car well. The car is as ever marked 1:43 on its base which carries full Mattel and Atlas licensing details.
The model captures the original cars slim but sturdy shape very well. and the metallic paint is nicely applied, albeit that the bonnet seems a little darker than the rest.
The car features a removable hood which lifts off with all the windows to create an open car.
The interior is modelled fairly basically, though the nicely shaped front seat backs tip to give access to the rear shelf. Like many other French Dinkies there is no cutaway below the dashboard for the drivers legs. Although the interior tub is fully sized there are no door card details either. But then this was sold as a toy for children.
In addition to the plastic detachable roof both bonnet (hood) and boot (trunk) open and a neat representation of the engine with Mercedes-Benz star on top is moulded in plastic and fitted in the engine compartment.
Tyres are as usual well presented but do not have Dunlop imprinted as so many other French Dinkys do. The wheel hubs are the standard shiny steel wheels. Lights at the front are separate plastic lenses and painted at the rear. The grille, body mouldings and badges are all well moulded and the bumpers are part of the base plate.
All in all this is a very nice model and well worth seeking out by those who have the Dinky Deluxe Collection, though why we should have to pay DeAgostini an extra couple of pounds for the pleasure of owning what we expected to be shipped in the collection I do not know.