By Fabrizio Panico
All text and photographs by, and copyright of, the Author unless otherwise stated.
More Mercury by Hachette Parts 7 – 9
Here we have three more models, #7 to #9, in the Mercury partwork collection being sold in Italy by Hachette.
Hachette no. 7 is the Lancia Appia 1st series, a 1:48 scale model (Mercury no. 14) from 1955. As usual a simple model, but very faithful to the real one. The headlights are like small aluminium nails, inserted into the body, no windows or interiors are present, green livery. The real one was launched in 1953, smaller than the Aurelia
the Lancia flagship, but similar in outline. In 1956 the 2nd series was presented at the Geneva Motor Show, same front but a new rear body end with a more modern look. A coupé, by Pininfarina, and a cabriolet, by Vignale, were now available. In 1959 there was the 3rd series, with a new front, inspired by the Flaminia, the Aurelia’s successor (both were reproduced by Mercury, the 3rd series as no. 5, the Flaminia as no. 8).
Hachette no. 8 is the Mercedes W196 formula 1 carenata, a 1:43 scale model (Mercury no. 56) from 1956. Quite a heavy model, larger than the previous ones, and really faithful. It has a very nice front grille, painted in matt black with the “star” emblem. The driver’s seat is painted in blue, and the steering wheel is present. Racing numbers are added on the satin silver livery. The “carenata” was reproduced by many other brands, but Mercury was the only one to reproduce both versions, the “carenata” and the “cigar shaped” one (Mercury no. 55). Mercury also reproduced the “carenata” in 1:60 scale (Mercury no. 22).
Hachette no. 9 is the Autobianchi Bianchina, a 1:48 scale model (Mercury no. 6) from 1958. Another simple but very faithful model, very small (only 63 mm), and fitted with windows. In the beginning it was produced only in single colours, later it was presented in nice two-colours liveries (here light green and grey). All the details were carefully reproduced, down to even the smallest ones. The small box was enhanced by a colour reproduction of the car, whilst the model name “bianchina” was reproduced in the script used by the manufacturer on the car on both the box and the model baseplate.
The real Bianchina was the result of a joint agreement amongst Fiat, Bianchi and Pirelli: It was a success, and the car was followed by a cabriolet and estate “Panoramica” versions (the Panoramica was reproduced by Mercury as no. 11).