Category Archives: LIncoln

Greenlight Lincoln Continental 1965

By Maz Woolley

All text and photographs by, and copyright of, the Author unless otherwise stated.

This article looks at another 1:43 scale LIncoln from Greenlight. Here we have the 1965 Lincoln Continental in standard wheelbase form. The model has been produced by Greenlight in two colours Madison Grey Metallic, as featured in this article, and Wimbledon White.

The model represents the fourth generation of Lincoln Continental and its styling was a radical change from the third generation with its fussy styling and attempt to provide every body style you could ever want, though several sold in very low numbers indeed. The third generation was significantly cheaper than its predecessor but that contributed to Mercury making a substantial loss from 1958 to 1960. The fourth generation was subtle in form and detail and returned US premium car brands to styling based upon a restrained dignity. It was only available in saloon and convertible forms, though specialist coach builders did provide lengthened versions. By focusing on quality and driving down faults the car quickly gained a reputation for being well made as well as good looking.

During the model life, it ran from 1961 to 1969, there were constant changes to details and the 1964/65 cars are recognisable by having a revised front grille which is flat apart from a small bulging centre section and the secondary lights which are relocated from the bumper to the edges of the front wings.

Now to the model. The Greenlight appears to be accurately detailed for a 1965 car and the body shape seems to be excellent. I wonder whether the model is made for them by Universal Hobbies as it shares many details in common with the James Bond Collection Lincoln from Goldfinger, though that was based on the previous version of the car with a different grille and was modelled with the boot open. The roof section appears to be made out of plastic so a convertible should also be possible from the same casting.

The model has been beautifully painted with the metal and plastic parts matched in colour. The chrome features on the real car are all well replicated too with excellent bumpers, grilles and the like.

The lights are all separate plastic parts with neat chrome surrounds and even the headlights look convincing, without the visible peg that mars some budget models. Front, back and side windows are all flush fitting inserts with chrome printed on where needed. The door handles are printed over raised mouldings but they actually look finer than separate ones would have done.

The wipers are moulded and plated in silver, not etched, but that gives them three dimensions and they are quite finely moulded which makes them very acceptable. The printed badging is excellent as is the Continental emblem on the bonnet.

Inside is finished in tan leather effect seats and door cards with a darker brown rear parcel shelf. The dashboard is excellent with the black padded top moulded and the chrome strip with printed instruments in place beneath it. It also has a neat deep dished steering wheel.

Finally the wheels seem to match some 1965 cars on the Internet well. The thinner whitewalls used are appropriate as these shrank in width throughout the 1960s. The wheel centres and trim match several 1965 cars on the web.

If I have a criticism it is of the generic ’65 LNCN’ plates the car carries. Some real period US plates would have been nice. But that is a minor flaw on a good model.

All in all an excellent budget model of a very attractive car. I hope that these sell so well that Greenlight are encouraged to make more models of American classics in 1:43 scale.


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Greenlight 1:43 Lincoln Continental 1941

By Maz Woolley

All text and photographs by, and copyright of, the Author unless otherwise stated.

Here we have Greenlight 86324 1941 Lincoln Continental diecast in China for the US. My model is in Mayfair Maroon, but it is also available in Cotswold Gray Metallic. The model also features in their movie related series in black as it appeared in The Godfather. As cars of this pre-war period era are not common, the US entered the Second World War at the end of 1941, I hope that their lovely 1:18 scale Packard Super and Duesenberg SJ are also produced in this scale.

The Lincoln Continental originated with a personal vehicle designed by Eugene T. ‘Bob’ Gregorie for Edsel Ford‘s vacation in March 1939. This was based on styling cues from the Lincoln-Zephyr and was a convertible. Keen to revive Lincoln’s successful earlier line of coupés and convertibles with modern models with more European styling the one off personal car influenced the creation of the Lincoln Continental range.

Lincoln Continentals from 1939 to 1941 were largely unaltered except in details and for purists are the classic Continental with the lovely, simple grille profile. From 1942 the car got a huge wide front grille assembly and lost its restrained beauty. The only choice the buyer had was between a coupe and a convertible and all were fitted with a 4.8 Litre V12 engine from the Lincoln Zephyr. The famous ‘Continental kit’ of a covered externally mounted spare wheel at the rear came about because of the long bonnet pushing the location of the passenger compartment back leaving only a small boot. The spare wheel had to be fitted externally to make the maximum room for luggage.

And so to the model. The base has Lincoln Continental 1941 embossed on it, and Greenlight details are only printed on in silver. The baseplate is largely flat, and from appearances it looks highly likely to me that this model has been made by Universal Hobbies for Greenlight. Looking at details of a 1941 Lincoln Coupe recently sold on the web the model has caught the shape well and the maroon paintwork appears to be fairly close to the colour of Continentals painted that colour seen on the web.

The front of the model is pretty good, although like many cars at a cheaper sales point the grille has no black wash which would have improved the excellent plated plastic mouldings. The wipers printed on the front screen are too high and have no modelling at all. Frankly they would have been better left off rather than printed on in such a heavy handed manner. The lights and sidelight fitments are good. and the vertical strip in the centre of the front has been neatly printed with the red accented V12 badge incorporated. The bonnet panel gap is almost non-existent which is a shame as it’s swooping line is an important part of the appearance of the real car. The bumper is largely accurate with the small red painted inserts all included. The twin sections in the middle of the bumper are rather thicker in appearance than those on the real car but this may be a compromise to make sure they are moulded consistently and not too fragile to handle on the assembly line.

At the rear we have nice separate lights in silver with the red lenses printed on. The rear mounted wheel and cover are also in plastic with a nicely detailed number plate, though it has no companion at the front. The raised script ‘Lincoln Continental’ that appears on the real car on the chrome centre of the spare wheel cover is missing on the model which just has the red Lincoln print like the centre of the hub caps on the wheels. The rear bumper is neatly modelled, again including the red details painted in, and the boot hinges and catches are all well printed over raised mouldings though the boot lock is not moulded in or highlighted.

Viewed from the side the thinness of the casting around the roof area becomes apparent and the chrome rain channels are cast well and printed finely. The windows are flush fitted and the window surround raised and chrome and body colour printed giving the same effect as a photo-etched insert but without the issues of keeping it glued flat. The door locks and handle are printed on raised mouldings and are quite effective as is the printed ‘chrome’ strip round the bottom of the car. The wheel covers securing bolt to the rear is moulded in but is not picked out, and the protector is present on the leading edge of the rear wing, but it may be a bit smaller than the one fitted to the real cars. Finishing the side off is the gold Lincoln Continental script on the side of the rear of the bonnet which looks to be rather overscale but that seems to be a convention amongst model makers as printed at real size it would be practically invisible. The wheels are neatly done with a body colour painted area, though the wheel embellishers may be a bit large. The small hub caps have the Lincoln script in red printed on them.

Inside the model shows its budget origins the tub is all a basic brown colour the same as the seats. The door cards are the same colour and have some moulded and highlighted fittings. It is nice to see that the dashboard has been moulded in some detail and the gold rims of the instruments and other fitments have all been printed as have faces for the instruments. The steering wheel is neatly moulded and highlighted and has the levers fitted to the steering column.

It is nice to have a model of a coupé for a change as so many models of this classic Lincoln are of the convertible version. This Greenlight model has a few small detail issues and omissions but none that spoil what is a very good basic replica of this car. That these 1:43 scale Greenlight models sell in the US for under 20 US dollars makes them a real bargain. Sadly when imported into the UK they cost much the same as a Corgi Vanguards model but even at this price they are still worth getting if you like the subject.


1978 Lincoln Continental from Automodello

By Karl Schnelle

All text and photographs provided by the Manufacturer.

1978 marked the 75th Anniversary of the Ford Motor Company and, to commemorate it, they released the most extravagant Lincoln to date: the Mark V Diamond Jubilee Edition. Released in just two exclusive colors—Diamond Blue and Jubilee Gold—the special editions were loaded with all of the Mark V’s options as standard equipment, making them the first Lincolns to top $20,000 in base price.

They also had several exclusive features. Front seat passengers were coddled in unique power-adjustable bucket seats, and vinyl covering over the continental spare to match the Landau top. That top includes special coach lamps and unique opera windows with “Jubilee Edition” scripts engraved into them, with the ‘i’ dotted with an authentic diamond chip. 

Automodello has recently released them in 1:24 scale:

  • 24L020 in Diamond Blue, build 175
  • 24L021 in Jubilee Gold, build 175

Both include free worldwide shipping from Automodello. See Diamond Blue and Jubilee Gold for details.


GFCC Lincoln Premiere Coupe 1956

By Maz Woolley

All text and photographs by, and copyright of, the Author unless otherwise stated.

GFCC models have featured before in MAR Online. Starting with the Dinky-esque SS1 Jaguar, and then moving forward to a series of American prototypes: 1959 Pontiac Parisienne, 1955 Studebaker Speedster and 1956 Buick Roadmaster.  The sales directly from China and in packaging very similar to that used for the Atlas and DeAgostini Dinky models, particularly the protective inserts and tissue paper covering,  makes one wonder if this is basically a direct sales operation from the Factory hiding under the guise of Tongbo Toys

More recently other models have been released:

  • 1941 Cadillac Fleetwood
  • 1954 Cadillac Eldorado Convertible
  • 1956 Lincoln Premiere Coupe

As each model has been released prices have increased considerably, only partly because of the pounds slump against the dollar in the last year or so. The quality of the models also seems to have risen to the point that collectors who dismissed the earlier ones as toys are now becoming interested.

I have yet to obtain either of the Cadillac models, but the Lincoln was recently delivered.

 A large and impressive model marked as 1:43 on the baseplate. GFCC claim it is yellow but in fact it is in a ‘peach’ shade and looks very period US with two tone paint and lots of chrome. The chrome is largely printed on except for chrome effect components like bumpers, grille and mascot.

 The large grille is well replicated, though it could do with a black wash. The lights are simply part of the chrome grille assembly and could really do with being clear lenses or painted white. The massive mascot is neatly modelled and even picked out at the front in red. The Lincoln lettering is neatly printed.

Lincoln and Premiere scripts are printed in gold on front and back wing respectively. Against this colour they are a little difficult to see but would be more striking on the light blue or violet painted versions also available.

The rear is equally striking with the taillights painted in clear red over the chrome effect lights. And the boot chromed fitting is also red overprinted.

The two clear tubes visible through the rear window caused much debate on bulletin boards until, after a bit of research, they were identified as part of the rare air-conditioning option transferring cooled air from the unit in the boot to leave vents in the roof of the car. 

Inside is painted in considerable detail with the dashboard having a silver strip but no printed instrumentation which is a shame. The door cards are moulded in black but have no picked out detail.

The wheels are toy like with silver dished hubs held in with an axle with domed ends. By coincidence these wheels actually look similar in some ways to the huge chrome dished covers fitted to the original car. The tyres are reasonable rubber ones with white walls which seem to compare well  to many cars shown on the Internet. 

Other budget features are the printed door handles.So like all GFCC models to date a nicely made curiosity, not quite a detailed model and far too detailed for a toy.


Neo’s Yank Tanks – a personal overview

By Graeme Ogg

Having apparently noted my occasional musings elsewhere about the merits (and otherwise) of Neo’s output of American cars, the Editor asked if I would care to post something here. Well, I don’t have any particularly original insights or behind-the-scenes revelations, but for anyone who hasn’t been following Neo’s offerings in great detail, here are a few personal thoughts about the good, bad and occasionally ugly aspects of some of the models I’ve acquired (with lots of helpful pictures for the hard of hearing).

After spending quite a few years trying to maintain a fairly representative 1:43 picture of the progress of car styling around the world, it finally dawned on me not so long ago that keeping up with it all was a hopeless and never-ending task, so I decided to gradually limit myself to filling long-standing gaps in my existing collection, of which Americana is a major element. That would ease the strain on the pocket.

Unfortunately, just around that time Neo started blitzing us with a series of Yank Tanks (as we disrespectful Brits call them) under the American Excellence label, which eventually just became the name of Model Car World’s U.S. sales outlet. So I wasn’t going to get off so lightly after all.

One of the first to reach me was this 1959 Dodge, a fine piece of baroque art, and for those of us who cut our teeth on Dinky Toys (my gums are still bleeding), the level of trim detail is pretty amazing. We used to have blobs of silver paint for headlights and smaller red blobs for tail-lights, and now we get full-colour photo-etched badging you need a magnifying glass to read. Well, that’s progress for you.

If a black and yellow rocketship is a bit too dazzling for your taste, they also did a nice, restrained police version, which against a suitable background could easily be passed off as the real thing.

I couldn’t wait for the next offering, a ’57 Imperial Southampton, and it turned out to be a real stunner. Also produced in black, ivory over powder blue and more recently as a Ghia Crown limo.

 

Yet another piece of wonderfully in-your-face aggressive styling was the 1960 Chrysler 300F, again well-executed, finely detailed and dramatic.

Hmm, getting tired of fins and chrome? Well, how about something more restrained, the Lincoln Continental-inspired ’64 Imperial.

Or even nicer, the ’69 Buick Riviera. I’d have preferred the original 1966/67 version, before they started fiddling with the clean styling, but it is still a handsome model.

Not all offerings were quite as subtle, but this 1972 Pontiac Grand Prix Hurst SSJ looks suitably striking and typical of its times.

Of course, if you produce models to this standard, you are going to attract the attention of seriously knowledgeable (and picky) collectors, ready to jump on any detail faults. Get a badge half a millimetre out of place and you are careless, guilty of poor research and treating collectors with contempt. So when Neo produced this 1958 Chevrolet Impala, there were loud protests that it might look handsome enough, but Impalas didn’t come with 2-tone paint.

Ah, so it must be a lesser Bel Air? No, the Bel Air had a different rear roof pillar treatment, and 4 tail lamps instead of 6. So the cognoscenti wouldn’t touch it with a bargepole. Me? I just thought it was a pretty nice ’58 Chevy. However, I wouldn’t let Neo off so easily with their ’61 Dodge, which was handsome in many ways but had a seriously sagging roofline (I bought one anyway, but that roof does annoy me).

Grumpy old man? No, I just treat each arrival on its merits, and this ’58 Rambler certainly has many. The real thing may have been a strapped-for-cash re-skin of an ageing platform, but Neo’s cool, clean rendering deserves a place in any Old Yank collection.

Another fine item delivered by my overworked postman was a 1959 Pontiac Bonneville. I always remember this car being advertised in dazzling white or yellow, so the gunmetal seemed a little drab at first, but it’s very subtle and the finish and detail are pretty much flawless. It’s another model you could easily pass off in a photo as a 1:1.

So then they heard my complaint and did a convertible in a more suitable yellow, but spoiled it with an ugly black windscreen surround. I suspect it’s because they had to glue the screen to the slim pillars and wanted to hide the glue. Personally I think the odd trace of clear adhesive would have been much less obtrusive. But if you can divert your eyes from that detail, the rest of it is a thing of beauty inside and out.

Oddly enough, they can do convertible screens with that black border when they want to, as shown on their ’57 Ford Fairlane, but this unsightly feature re-appears on several other convertibles.

Having done a ’59 Pontiac, they turned their attention to the ’59 Oldsmobile, which was essentially the same body. So how did they manage to make it look like the Sydney Harbour Bridge? It makes the old Franklin Mint ’58 Edsel (the famous “Pink Banana”) look pretty good by comparison.

Mine was so bad I e-mailed them in the hope they would be doing a product recall, but received a terse little reply saying that “Due to the fact that this model was made by hand and not machined, it may result in small inaccuracies.” So that’s OK.  It is a lovingly flawed artisanal product and I should display it with pride. (It’s in a box under the bed in the spare room).

More recently they had a touch of the same problem with the ’57 Mercury Turnpike Cruiser. Not nearly as bad, and it’s harder to see quite where it goes wrong, but it certainly isn’t entirely straight.

One of the latest arrivals is a 1961 Dodge Dart. A slightly odd bit of styling, and an interesting choice. So interesting, in fact, that Neo apparently went to the trouble of scouring the entire planet to find the only car in existence (presumably a restored specimen) with a non-standard side spear, and promptly modelled it as a BoS in 1:18 scale in the identical metallic grey colour, followed by a maroon Neo version in 1:43. Overall it’s actually quite a nice model, but why ….?

They redeemed themselves with this 1960 Buick Flxible ambulance, which looks accurate in every respect and with plenty of the kind of detail we oldies could once have hardly dreamed possible.

But all that fine detail comes at a cost, not just in the price but in terms of fragility. I’ve photographed some of these models on their plinth because removing the model then trying to re‑mount it on those spring-loaded screws is almost guaranteed to detach a photo-etch strip, wing mirror, badge, aerial or whatever. Even without touching them, P/E parts applied to curves can spring free over time, and even careless dusting can detach a part. There’s obviously a very delicate balance between unsightly excess adhesive and parts coming loose because of too little glue. It also looks as if the P/E parts come pre-backed with “instant grab” adhesive, and if the final assembly operative (political correctness forbids I should say “the little Chinese lady”) doesn’t get a part perfectly lined up first time, any attempt at adjustment can lead to buckled or semi-detached trim strips.  If as a buyer you’re nervous about getting to work with the white glue, cotton buds and masking tape, you may have to put up with a few loose dangly bits on the model shelf.

Maybe this partly explains why Neo seem to be moving away from using so many vulnerable P/E parts where a less vulnerable form of trim will suffice – which brings me to the fact that there is a strange state of flux developing between Neo and their BoS “budget brand”. BoS recently brought out a ’61 Lincoln Continental where the trim detail wasn’t that far off what you’d expect from Neo. Then we get a convertible version, obviously based on the same mould, and pretty much the same trim level, but badged as a Neo. Lovely colour, which may be enough to tempt some people – but at twice the price? Hmm.

And then they do it again. BoS issues a decent enough Chrysler Valiant with mainly painted brightwork but P/E side window frames. Then out comes a Neo version, in a stunningly bland colour and with the P/E frames apparently replaced by silver paint – which is arguably tidier, but once again, twice the price for a near-identical model from the same outfit?

What sort of marketing strategy is that? Maybe they are testing the waters in terms of pricing and trim levels (while collectors can only watch in confusion) and we may end up with Neo and BoS being “averaged out”, which might mean leaving the high-end detail market to deadly rivals Matrix/GLM.

We shall see. Meanwhile, with just a few specimens from my own Neo collection I hope I’ve shown you – if you didn’t know it already – that despite some flaws and detail blunders, Neo at their best have given us some stunning 1:43 models which can take pride of place on any display shelf.

Just don’t take them to bed and hug them at night, because they’ll break.


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Atlas Classic Dinky Models 532 Lincoln Premiere

By Maz Woolley

 

The latest model issued here in the UK is another French Dinky. This time it is 532 Lincoln Premiere. A large model and one Dinky France made to 1:48 scale when they normally made models to 1:43. Despite this it is an impressively long model.

The model was introduced in 1959 and withdrawn by 1965. The model is most commonly seen in metallic green with a dark green roof or in sky blue with a grey roof.  Atlas have chosen to have it painted in metallic grey with a garnet red roof which was a much rarer version.

The model is well made with features replicating those on the original well down to the domed chrome wheels and white tyres.

The large window unit has been well replicated though it has a clarity that I doubt the original models ever had and that emphasises the lack of any interior.

The Dinky itself rather simplifies some of the original cars details, particularly at the rear .

If Atlas provide more replicas of the French produced US cars it may encourage people to stay with the collection.


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The Ford in Miniature – Lincoln Mark VI and Lincoln Town Car

By Dave Turner

 

Photographs of many of the models discussed in the article can be seen after the detailed table listing all known models lower down this page.

Lincoln Mark V1 1980-83

At the end of the 1970s Ford and the US motor industry in general were forced to come up with more environmentally sympathetic vehicles whilst at the same time continue to make their products attractive to their established market. After much shuffling and re-aligning, the Lincoln Division managed to end up with an exceptionally successful range that met most requirements and their sales record indicated that the public were also happy.

First, the huge Mark V had been forced to downsize and the new Mark V1 for 1980 now came in both two and four door form and echoed the lines of the big cars remarkably well, down to the opera windows, triple vents in the front fenders, headlamps hidden by opening doors and of course the spare wheel ‘hump’ on the trunk lid. The two door version came on a 114 inch wheelbase, six inches less than the Mark V while the four door version was on a 117 inch wheelbase. During its four years of production the Mark V1 received annual detail changes and at the same time small reductions in its weight whilst the ‘Designer Series’ of Special equipment and finish was continued from the Mark V. The completely different Mark V11 arrived for 1984, Model Auto Review 103 in July 1996 looked briefly at the Mark V11.

Town Car had been a label attached to the more lavishly equipped version of Lincolns various Continentals since the early 1970s. A new Continental arrived for 1980, inevitably much smaller, trimmer and lighter than the preceding model. In both two and four door form, unlike the new Mark V1 these were both on the same 117” wheelbase but easily identified by the absence of headlamps doors, the front fender vents, spare wheel ‘hump’ and the opera windows – four distinctive long standing features of the Mark Series. Some shuffling around of models took place for 1981, the Continental name was dropped (briefly), Town Car was now the name of the four door versions of what had been the Continental while the two door was called Town Coupe. A new quite different Continental appeared in 1982 featuring semi razor-edge styling.

After 1981 only the four door Town Car was made and it now adopted top of the range status taking on ‘Signature Series’ and Cartier labels for the most expensive options. Very few obvious changes took place during the nine years of Town Car production. The Lincoln name moved around the front of the car a few times, it was top left side of the grille in 1981 but moved over to above the left side headlight in 1985. For its final year the name badge moved to low down on the left side of the grille. The texture of the grille changed a few times while the tail lights were put onto an angled plinth from 1985. Interestingly Lincoln were including illustrations of stretched Town Cars in their sales material in the mid-1980s. A completely new Town Car that had been designed in the UK arrived for 1990.

In view of the popularity of the cars it is perhaps surprising just how few models have been found, at least those that have turned up provided examples of most but not all variants of Mk V1 and Town Car.

Very little in the way of Mark V1 models unfortunately – back in the 1990s, the US 1:25 resin kit ranges included the Mark V1 in both two and four door forms from Guy Cantwell. More recently the big range of Neo resin models in 1;43 included a four door Mark V1 which they listed as a 1979 version. Masses of detail include the wire spoke aluminium wheels and minute Continental script on the left headlamp door. Like many of these recent models. handling them usually results in a few parts falling off, so poorly fixed are they.

Lincoln Mark V1 1980-83

 

Neo China 2013 43540 4 Door 133mm 1:43 resin
Guy Cantwell USA 1990s 4 Door 1:25 resin kit
Guy Cantwell USA 1990s 2 Door 1:25 resin kit

Illustrations: Lincoln Mark V1

 Neo 1:43 resin from China: 43540, 4 Door

Lincoln Town Car 1981-89

There have been a few more small Town Cars. An interesting model from Neo depicted the huge mid-1970s Continental in Town Car form – all nineteen and a half feet of it. For 1977 the Continental had adopted the Mk 1V style front end while the colonnade style roof had appeared for 1975. Town Car features are the full vinyl roof with coach lamps while options depicted on the model include opera windows and the forged aluminium wheels. A 1:25 resin kit for a 1978 Continental Town Car was produced in the USA by TKM while another US based similar range by Guy Cantwell included an example of the later 1986 Town Car.

Some years ago a German range of 1:87 resin kits under the name BS Design issued a large number of solid resin miniatures that consisted of simply, body, base, interior and wheels on axles. A 1987 Town Car was included.

In addition to their Mark V1, Neo have also produced some models of the very similar Town Car. From the forward slope of the tail light assembly their Town Car has to be an 1985 or later but the combination of the Lincoln badge over the left headlight and the layout of the badges on the tail and position of the twin back-up lights the year is narrowed down to 1988. Neo also did a stretch on their Town Car scaling out to 190”. This has the badges on the rear depicting an 1989 car but the Lincoln badge should be low on the left side of the grille in that case, but it remains above the left side headlamp as a 1988.

Apparently stretch limos are popular at the toy end of the model car scene, a couple of hefty diecast stretch Town Cars are obviously in the toy category. One from Majorette carries the simple inscription “Limousine” on the base but is obviously based on a Lincoln. At first glance the Sunnyside toy looks very similar but closer scrutiny shows that it is to a larger scale and representing a shorter 168” wheelbase. Both feature opening doors and transparent sunroof.
A far more modest stretch is featured on the Matchbox Town Car, in fact based on the toys width it is hardly a stretch at all! Some imagination went into the toys creation, it features a plated tiara over the centre roof section and a ‘discrete’ small rear window while the marking on the rear light indicating where the back-up light resides suggests a 1986 example.

Lincoln Town Car

 

Neo China 2012 44420 1977 Continental 140mm 1:43 resin
TKM USA 1978 Continental 1:25 resin kit
BS Design Germany 1990s 8701 1987 1:87 resin kit
Guy Cantwell USA 1990s 1986 1:25 resin kit
Neo China 2013 43548 1988 132mm 1:43 resin
Neo China 2014 45335 1989 190” stretch 175mm 1:43 resin
Majorette 1995 3045 190” stretch 228mm 1:34 diecast/plastic
Sunnyside China 1996 SS9732 168” stretch 230mm 1:31 diecast/plastic
Matchbox Macau 1988 24 1986 Minimal stretch 77mm 1:68 diecast
Illustrations : Lincoln Town Car

 

Neo 1:43 resin from China: 44420, 1977 Continental Town Car
Neo 1:43 resin from China: 1988 one of several colours from Neo
Neo 1:43 resin from China: 45335, 1989 190” stretch
Majorette 1:34 diecast: 3045: 190” stretch
Sunnyside 1:31 diecast from China: SS9732, 168” stretch
Matchbox 1:68 diecast from Macau: 24, based on the width of the toy it is hardly a stretch at all.

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The Ford in Miniature – Lincoln Mark V 1977-79

By Dave Turner

“Destined to Become a Classic” – Lincoln Mark V

The Author’s photographs of some of the models discussed below may be seen at the end of the text.

When Ford introduced the last of the massive Marks for 1977, they knew this would be the final fling of such immense motorised luxury in the face of various pressures to reduce fuel consumption in line with rising gas prices. In fact during the three year run of Mark V the list price was intentionally inflated in an attempt to slow sales and help the Corporate Average Fuel Efficiency figures and so avoid gas-guzzler penalties. Ironically the buying public also realised this was the last opportunity to enjoy the experience of a new car in this class and went out and bought Lincolns like they were going out of fashion…they were! In just three years total Mark V production was 228,862.

With styling that was based on the theme of angularity and based on the same 120” wheelbase the Mark V looked bigger than the preceding Mark 1V whilst at the same time was 800 pounds lighter. With triple functioning louvres on the front fenders, the Mark V came with either 400 cubic inch or 460 cubic inch V8s depending on where they were sold. Interiors of Mark Vs were finished to a degree of opulence not found on any other cars worldwide, on top of that there were four “Designer Series” specials at much greater cost that offered even more luxury. Given names of prominent fashion houses of the time – Bill Blass, Cartier, Givenchy and Pucci they came in different distinctive colour finishes each year.

An additional and yet even more lavishly equipped special came in 1978 as the Diamond Jubilee Edition honouring Fords 75th Anniversary, while this continued for 1979 as the Collector Series. By the final year of the Mark V, Lincolns were the only cars of this size in production in the US with the result that Ford had the market to themselves, for just one year.

Models of Mark Vs cover a vast spectrum of size and quality, from a simple diecast Matchbox toy, a crude lump passed off as a “Promotional Model” in 1989, some exceptionally good depictions of various Designer Series cars and a huge but relatively simple 1:18 model.

Produced contemporary with the real thing, the Matchbox toy was made for only two years and apparently didn’t sell very well. It had a simple diecast body and plated base the latter incorporating bumpers and the headlamps – obviously with their doors open. There was a simple plastic interior and plastic textured roof section with the outline of the opera window cast into the plastic. At the other end of the scale is the big 1:18 Mark V from BoS Models. Lacking much of the fine detail one has come to anticipate with models of this size the BoS catches the character and slender lines of the Mark V. Marked 1978 on its base the silver finish with deep red landau roof together with the turbine style wheels suggests that it depicts a Designer Series car but one that matches these colours has yet to be found. Beware, the extremely delicate upright Lincoln star on top of the grille falls off at the slightest touch – then try to find it!

The “Promotional Model” was featured in Model Auto Review 40, Autumn 1989 as a result of a very dissatisfied customer of a certain James Wieland sending in a short feature. The accompanying illustration of the $130 model supports the criticism!

The popularity of 1:25 promos, kits and models in the USA inspired an active cottage industry producing numerous resin kits in that scale. A late 1990s listing from Guy Cantwell included 1979 Mark Vs with either full or coach roof while a list by S.C. Miller from the same period also listed a 1979 Mark V. Another similar kit comes from TKM featuring one-piece resin body with separate resin grille and bumpers.

Along with the Matchbox, the only other two miniature Mark Vs available for many years were the Japanese diecast Sakura and Diapet offerings. Apparently the Sakura range enjoyed but a brief period of activity while Diapet was part of the long established Yonezawa group of toy producers. The latter’s Mark V came with opening doors, hood, moonroof and trunk while headlight doors were operated by a lever in the base. the wheels depicted the turbine style alloys but the whole thing had a slightly clumsy character.

Now producing only aircraft models Western once listed a Mark V in their range of model cars although finding proof of its existence is proving quite a problem!

There have been several 1:43 Mark Vs from Neo, some of which were sold under the American Excellence banner. For some reason they were not usually described exactly as to which they represented, as a result some detective work is necessary. For example, one model that is described as a 1978 came in dark metallic green with turbine pattern wheels, it could be meant to depict a Givenchy apart from the fact that the model has a tan coloured landau roof, the Givenchy has a tan coloured front section roof covering. Neo also produced this same Mark V in 1:87. Back in 1:43, another Neo finished in Midnight Blue metallic and white with turbine pattern wheels is definitely a ’79 Bill Blass complete with the white full carriage roof covering.

Scaling out a tad larger at 1:42, the Premium X Mark V came as a ’78 Diamond Jubilee in gold or its successor the ’79 Collector Series in Midnight Blue Metallic. The “Collector Series” script is present on the sale panel of the model, if almost impossible to decipher.

Lincoln Mark V Models

 

BoS China 84 2014 1978 320mm 1:18 resin
Matchbox UK 28 1979 1978 77mm 1:75 diecast
Cantwell USA 1990s 1979 full roof 1:25 resin kit
Cantwell USA 1990s 1979 coach roof 1:25 resin kit
Miller USA 205 1990s 1979 1:25 resin kit
TKM USA 1979 1:24 resin kit
Diapet Japan G84 1978 147mm 1:39 diecast
Sakura Japan diecast
Neo China 43550 2014 1978 Givenchy? 136mm 1:43 resin
Neo China 43552 2014 1979 Bill Blass 136mm 1:43 resin
PremiumX China 001 2013 1978 Diamond Jubilee 138mm 1:42 resin
PremiumX China 002 2013 1979 Collector Series 138mm 1:42 resin
Perfect ?
Western UK 104 1977 if made 1:43 metal

 

Illustrations: Lincoln Mark V 1977-79

 

BoS 1:18 resin from China: 84, 1978 Mark V

 


Matchbox 1:75 diecast from UK : 28, 1979 Mark V Outline of opera window embossed into plastic roof.

 


Diapet 1:39 diecast from Japan: G84, 1978 Headlamp doors operate from a lever in the base but don’t close properly.

 


Neo 1:43 resin from China: 43550, 1978 Almost a Givenchy but roof covering would be at forward end not the rear

 


Neo 1:43 resin from China: 43552, another of several from Neo, this is a 1979 Bill Blass

 


PremiumX 1:42 resin from China: 002, 1979 Collector Series

 


Neo 1:87 resin from China: 87255, 1978, miniature version of the the Neo 1:43 43550

 


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More Matrix – July 2016

By Maz Woolley

 

Matrix has announced another set of releases for later this year. These are all resin models to 1:43 scale produced in  China. In many cases these models capture specific prototype vehicles. All pictures shown below are provided by Matrix, as are the expected release dates.

Bentley 4 25 litre All Weather Tourer by Thrupp and Maberly green 1937

MX40201-131 Bentley 4 ¼ Litre

An all weather tourer coachwork by Thrupp and Maberly  based on a 1937 Bentley chassis. This model is due to be released in August.


Bentley 8 Litre Mayfair Close Coupled Saloon #YX5124 black and green 1932
MX40201-111 Bentley 8 Litre

This a 1932 Mayfair Close Coupled Saloon YX5124 and is painted in black and green. This is expected to be released in October.


Horch 930S Stromlinie maroon 1948
MX40803-031 Horch 930S Stromlinie

This model is finished in Maroon and is based on a car from 1948.  Again it is expected to be released in October.


Freestone and Webb Continental Sports Coupe on 1933 RR Phantom II Chassis 42PY maroon
MX41705-141 Rolls Royce Phantom II

This is a Freestone & Webb Continental Sports Coupe based upon a 1933 Rolls Royce Phantom II Chassis and finished in Maroon based upon 42PY. Another model expected to be released in October.


Dodge Firearrow II Concept Ghia Exner yellow 1954
MX50405-021 Dodge Firearrow II

This is another concept car from Matrix. The design was by the Italian house of Ghia with Virgil Exner’s involvement for Chrysler Corporation. The car was first shown in 1954. Another planned for release in October.


Lincoln Model K LeBaron Convertible Sedan grey metallic 1938Lincoln Model K LeBaron Convertible Sedan grey metallic 1938 2
MX52106-041 Lincoln Model K LeBaron

This model is of a 1938 Convertible Sedan in  grey metallic paint.  Of particular note is the table in the rear which is shown open and with bottle and glasses.  Another scheduled for release in October.


Maserati 3500 GT Spyder by Frua AM101 268 white 1957
MX51311-021 Maserati 3500 GT Spyder by Frua

This 1957 car bodied by Frua is well presented. It is in white with a pale blue interior. This model is scheduled for a November release.


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Ricko 1:87

By Maz Woolley

Ricko are a Hong Kong based model maker. They launched a range of 1:87 scale models in 2004 made in plastic. The range covered modern, classic and vintage vehicles as it developed but sales were not as high as expected and no new models have been announced for many years though existing models have remained in stock  at many suppliers. Some sellers have reduced the prices to clear unsold stocks in recent months.

Like Neo, which has ceased its premium priced 1:87 range in favour of a simplified and cheaper BoS range, Ricko set high quality standards in this scale. The initial prices were too high for the US 1:87 market which was flooded at the time Ricko launched with cheap diecast models from Model Power, Malibu and others. And of course the German market was already dominated by the existing 1:87 makers like Wiking, Herpa and Busch.

The author has previously described some Ricko 1:87 vehicles in the now defunct Model Auto Review magazine. This article focuses upon a few of the vintage models made by Ricko which the author had not previously covered.

Audi Alpensieger

August Horch, who founded the Audi car manufacturing company, won the Austria Alpine Rally with this car in June 1914. The car was dubbed ‘Alpensieger’ (Alpine Champion) after winning that rally in three consecutive years between 1912 and 1914. Later models were military versions as 1914 saw the start of the Great War.

The Audi Alpensieger was not a specialized racing car, but rather a sporty touring car. The mountain legs of the Alpine rallies called for a car with a powerful engine capable of handling rough terrain. A total of around 1,400 examples were built. An example of this vehicle can be seen on the web site of the Deutsches Museum.

The Ricko model shown has finely detailed features like the lovely headlights with inserted lenses. The brass effect finish is also very well modelled. The dashboard and footwell are moulded in some detail but are not picked out. The “wire” wheels are incredibly fine and show what can be achieved in this scale.

Rolls Royce Silver Ghost

Like the Audi pictured above the Silver Ghost appeared before the Great War and later examples were used as military vehicles. In 1906 Rolls-Royce exhibited two examples of a new car designated the 40/50 hp. The 40/50 hp was so new that the show cars were not fully finished. The first finished examples were not provided to the press for testing until March 1907.

The car was continuously developed and famously completed many reliability trials helping to make Rolls Royce’s name as quality manufacturers.

The Ricko model is delightful. with a superb spirit of ecstasy mascot and fine radiator and lights. Inside the dashboard is wood effect with instruments showing. Like the Audi very good wire wheels are included. A nice touch is the two occasional seats in the upright position in the rear. Fine rear lights and even an exhaust embellisher are featured.

Lincoln Model K

This car dates from 1931 when the Model K appeared with a new chassis with a 145 in (3683 mm) wheelbase. Factory bodies included a two or four door phaeton. The 6.3 Litre  engine was a derivative of the earlier L-series V8 which had been developed to produce 120 HP. The car was also bodied by contemporary coach builders and competed with the Chrysler Imperial, Rolls-Royce Phantom II, Mercedes-Benz 770, Duesenberg Model J, Packard Eight, and the Cadillac Series 355. 

This is another fine model with period correct white walls and lovely fine wheels. The radiator and mascot are very fine indeed as are the lights front and back both with separate lenses. Small details abound like the chrome grab rail in the rear and the nicely modelled folded hood. The dashboard again has some neat details and the winders and door furniture have also been picked out.

Maybach Typ SW35

Maybach became part of Daimler Benz in 1960 and since then has only featured rarely in the Daimler Benz line up. Most recently as arrange of very luxurious long wheelbase vehicles sold and leased in small numbers. Maybach was founded in 1909 by Wilhelm Maybach and made high quality products and was closely associated with the Zeppelin company too.

The SW35 was built in the lead up to the Second World War being produced from 1935 to 1938 and started with a 3.5 Litre engine. It was smaller than the Maybach Zeppelin but still a car for the rich and powerful.

The Ricko model appears to be identical to a car displayed at Sinsheim Museum in pictures from 2000. Again this is a very fine model with the steel wheels and hubcaps captured perfectly. At the rear the fine rear lights on slender stalks are modelled so finely they are at real risk of being broken when handling the model. On the dashboard instruments are picked out with chrome printing. The front lights and radiator are again very detailed and the mascot is well reproduced as a tiny fine etching.


There are other vintage vehicles available in this series from a tiny BMW Dixi to an inter-war Wanderer and Mercedes Benz.


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