Category Archives: Pontiac

Goldvarg Collection for 2019

By Maz Woolley

All text by, and copyright of the Author. All photographs provided by the Manufacturer.

It is only about 18 months since Sergio Goldvarg’s Goldvarg Collection was re-launched. Aimed at a relatively modest price point for high quality models made in resin with fine etched parts, the models have found a ready market with collectors . Many who have watched Brooklin and others becoming increasingly expensive over the same time period have welcomed a more affordable collection. Goldvarg models have not just had price on their side but also quality. The releases to date have provided an interesting range of models which in many cases are the first modern models of the subjects. Up to now the focus has been on US produced vehicles for which there is a strong demand.

Sergio is very happy about the sales he has made since introducing the range, with retailers regularly ordering the latest releases. The first six models GC-001 to GC-006 have all completely sold out and others are selling fast.

One interesting feature of the Goldvarg Collection development process is how Sergio has used the Internet to allow keen and knowledgeable collectors to comment on his choice of subjects, colours, and the accuracy of his pre-production samples. This appears to have been a very creative process with issues being identified and ironed out well before models are launched, and accurate and attractive colours being chosen. For collectors it offers a unique degree of participation in the development of a model range.

Looking forward to the next set of releases due in March/April 2019 models from the 1960s are to the fore. We also see one of the classic car based vans with US Airline related livery. Please note that the models shown below are mostly samples, some even early pre-production tests and the final releases may differ slightly from what you see below.

GC-007 A 1970 Ford Galaxie Grey Metallic & Black roof


GC-007 B 1970 Ford Galaxie Caramel Bronze & white roof


GC-008 A 1965 Mercury Ocean Turquoise & White Roof


GC-008 B 1965 Mercury Gold Poly


GC-009 A 1969 Ford Torino Calypso Coral


GC-009 B 1969 Ford Torino Yellow



GC-010 A 1963 Ford Falcon Sprint Rangoon Red


GC-010 B 1963 Ford Falcon Sprint Polar White


June to October 2019 Releases

GC-011 A 1961 Chevrolet Impala Turquoise Metallic


GC-011 B 1961 Chevrolet Impala Fawn Metallic


GC-015 A 1964 Pontiac Grand Prix Sunfire Red/ Marimba Red


GC-015 B 1964 Pontiac Grand Prix Aquamarine /Yorktown Blue


GC-017A 1961 Pontiac Catalina Twilight Mist


GC-017B 1961 Pontiac Catalina Rose Metallic


GC-019A 1962 Buick Special Station Wagon Camelot Rose W/roof rack


GC-019B 1962 Buick Special Station Wagon Marlin Blue no roof rack


GC-022 A 1966 Mercury Comet Cyclone  Jamaican Yellow with vinyl black roof


GC-022 B 1966 Mercury Comet Cyclone red with white roof

GC-PAA-001 1953 Ford Courier Pan American “The System of the Flying Clippers”


GC-BI-001 1953 Ford Courier “Braniff Airways”

GC-PAA-002 1958 Ford Ranchero “Pan American Airways”


GC-BI-002 1958 Ford Ranchero “Braniff Airways”


Also planned for later in 2019

GC-012 A 1956 Mercury Monterey Station Wagon Verona Green
GC-012 B 1956 Mercury Monterey Station Wagon Lauderdale Blue

GC-014 A 1958 Ford Country Squire Station Wagon Sun Gold Yellow
GC-014 B 1958 Ford Country Squire Station Wagon Seaspray Green


GC-016 A 1960 Mercury Country Cruiser Station Wagon Aztec Turquoise(tba)
GC-016 B 1960 Mercury Country Cruiser Station Wagon Royal Lilac.(tba)


GC-018 A 1963 Chevy Nova Laurel Green Poly
GC-018 B 1963 Chevy Nova Saddle Tan Poly


GC-026 A 1958 Ford Fairlane 4 Door  Gunmetal grey metallic & Sun Gold
GC-026 B 1958 Ford Fairlane 4 Door Silvertone Green & Seaspray Green


GC-020A 1961 Oldsmobile “Bubble Top” Red Metallic with white roof. Photo of prototype.
GC-020B 1961 Oldsmobile “Bubble Top” Green Metallic with white roof

GC-021 A 1960 Oldsmobile Charcoal Mist Poly & White roof. Photo of prototype.
GC-021 B 1960 Oldsmobile Palmetto Mist Poly


So collectors of US cars in 1:43 scale have quite a few interesting models to look forward to during the course of 2019 from Goldvarg as well as the models expected from Esval, Matrix, Neo and others.


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Brooklin Latest February 2019

By Maz Woolley

All text by, and copyright of the Author. All photographs provided by the Manufacturer.

Brooklin has recently shared some pictures of their latest models. Please note that the first three are pre-production tests with decals rather than photoetching on their sides. The final model is a test casting and is missing its vacform and rear bumper.

As the photographs show the level of detail on the models continues at the higher level introduced over a year ago.

All these models are cast in white metal in the United Kingdom nd are to 1:43 scale.

BML-28 1934 Chevrolet 2-door sedan


BML-29 1942 DeSoto DeLuxe Foor Door Sedan


BRK227 – 1957 Pontiac Safari Two Door Station Wagon


BRK-226 Buick GS 455 Hardtop

As can be seen the castings from Brooklin are rather thinner than they used to be and the chromed castings finer too. The increased use of chromed cages to represent the window surrounds has also increased the level of realism on the 1950s models in particular.


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London Toyfair 2019 Part Three

By Maz Woolley

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

This the third in a short series of articles based upon the Author’s recent visit to the London Toyfair, a large trade show featuring toys of all kinds, where vehicle models for the UK market are shown by wholesale importers as well as Hornby and Oxford Diecast. The previous article about the Hornby stand can be found here.

This article shows some of the models displayed on the Oxford Stand. With so many models in production the stand has an impressive display of hundreds of models in various scales.

Last year I tried to photograph models through glass in the crowded display cabinets and the pictures were not very good. This year the Oxford representatives on the stand were extremely helpful and got out a number of items for me to photograph. Although I photographed quite a few models I did not capture all the novelties on display. A few have been photographed in the cabinets as there wasn’t time to get out every model that I would have liked to photograph.

It should be remembered that many of the models pictured are made up of a special light alloy used for trial shots and 3D printed fittings. These can only suggest what the final product will look like. Even the fully painted models of unreleased items are hand finished production samples used to confirm that the model is ready to put into production and may not fully reflect the models when they go into production.

So starting with 1:43 scale. Here there was a display of all the expected re-coloured models. but also pre-production casting of the Bedford CF Ice Cream Van as shown below. Adrienne Fuller who is responsible for selecting cars and other vehicles for Oxford explained that although this is a quarter without many new 1:43 models they are still expecting to produce two to three entirely new castings in this scale this year in addition to recolours.

This mould by Oxford has really caught the look of the CF well. It should make an excellent model when it appears. It will be appearing in classic Mr. Whippy livery first, then Hockings but I am sure there will be more liveries over time especially as so many of this type of van were brought secondhand by small local firms across the UK.

The 1:43 scale Morris J2 minibus in Skyways livery from the final release of 2018 was shown and looks like an impressive model. Seen to the rear is another of the final release in 2018 the Fred Dibnah Lightweight Land Rover in 1:43 scale.

And now on to some very large 1:43 scale models. The new Weymann Fanfare South Wales – announced as an Oxford special to celebrate their 25 Years trading. The model shown below is a pre-production item and is fitted trial plastic components – the broken horn will not feature on the production model! The model features a plastic upper section with a diecast chassis. It is a striking model with the very high level of moulded and printed detail they can achieve when using plastic.

The South Wales version is not to be the only use of this moulding. Oxford were showing a Southdown version which has been announced as part of release one 2019. With a destination board for Bournemouth this model suits the Southdown livery well.

Moving on to 1:76 scale there were some interesting recolours shown. Below is another version of the J4 this time as an Austin J4 in BMC Parts livery due for later release. This is a nice livery and the Austin version of the grille seems to be very well printed.

The forthcoming Volkswagen Transporter T4 Camper looks very good and will be a popular model.

Oxford’s Transporter T1 Camper and Samba Bus in 1:76 scale both showed up looking ready to be put into production. Photographs are shown below.

Another re-use of a casting is the relatively new Leyland Sherpa now seen in Egyptian telephone livery, as seen in a well known Bond film. This model is sure to be popular even without film themed packaging. I hope that this casting soon gets used to produce models of vehicles used by the UK utilities firms.

We also saw test shots for the Volkswagen T5 Transporter which will be seen in various forms and also in a set which includes one of each generation of the Transporter from T1 to T5. Below we have test shots of the California camper

Shown below are test shots of the T5 van which will appear in several liveries starting with that of the RAC. I am sure that this will be seen in a wide range of liveries for current users.

Oxford often show models in a very early stage of development before they are announced. The Volkswagen T1 camper with surf boards shown below does not seem to exist in any current release but I am sure that we will see it in the future.

The Volkswagen T1 van casting get another release this year in Coca Cola livery. The test shot below shows the roof display with an advertising bottle on the roof.

One of the model sets which created a lot of interest when announced in the last release of 2018 was the RAF Bloodhound missile set. This was released by Corgi in the 1960s and by Airfix too. Here we have the new 1:76 scale from Oxford. The accompanying Land Rover has been well finished in RAF blue and markings.

This will make an impressive set re-creating the Jet Age long before Cruise missiles and Polaris carrying submarines.

The Oxford 1:87 scale range of US vehicles has been a strong seller. And the display showed some due for early release and others in early pre-production form.

The new Chrysler 300 Convertible can be seen in the photographs below. This casting looks good in red and the printed silver and badging looks like it could be very well done.

The forthcoming Dodge Charger Daytonas were also shown and are impressive in this scale.

The ‘standard’ Dodge Charger was shown too and looks good. It is interesting that it has been modelled with the headlights showing as many models of this car have the headlights in their concealed position.

Another model close to release is the De Soto Suburban with its roof rack. This is a rather earlier car than many in this range so it will be interesting to see if models from this period sell well. A taxi version is expected later.

Another model due soon is the Dodge D100 Sweptside which is due for release soon. The model looked very well finished and US pickups make for popular models so I expect it may sell out quickly. It is interesting that the rear seems to be a separate moulding so we may well see more variations on the D100.

Here we see very early test shots of the 1954 Pontiac Chieftain with a siren fitted to the roof. The model has been announced for release 1 2019 in two tone blue as a standard sedan so presumably police and possibly fire versions will follow later in the year.

Another very early casting shot is the Cadillac Eldorado Brougham 1957 again announced in release 1 2019. Reminiscent of the contemporary Matchbox model this is slightly smaller but promises to be impressive even in this smaller scale.

Another announced recently as part of Release One 2019 is the Chevrolet Panel van. The model may be released as an Ambulance first but clearly a van will also be forthcoming and I expect this to appear in several classic american liveries.

The early shots below show that Oxford have captured this classic 1950s van very well.

The final test casting on display in this scale is the Chevrolet Corvair Coupe announced recently. Even though this is an early shot it shows the potential for this to be a really nice model. The coupe also came in some very nice paint finishes so hopefully Oxford will be able to release it in several different authentic versions.

Oxford’s 1:148 scale range is another with upper components made in plastic. On show were some pre-production trials. These are interesting as they are made in clear plastic with 3D printed parts as shown in the photographs below.

First we have the Land Rover Discovery 4.

Then the Shelvoke & Drewry Freightlifter which is to appear in British Railways Western livery in 2019.

Presumably the photographs below show the pre-production test for the recently announced Hants and Dorset Bristol MW6G.

And finally in this scale the Green Goddess fire appliance expected in National Fire Service livery.


Unfortunately although samples of the new Citroën H catering van were there I did not photograph them.

I would like to thank Oxford Diecast for sharing so many pre-production and test models with us, and for so patiently getting models in and out of cabinets to allow me to photograph them.


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News from the Continent September 2018 – Busch

By Hans-Georg Schmitt

All text by, and copyright of, the Author. Photographs provided by the manufacturer.

Here are the new releases from Busch for September. All are moulded in plastic to 1:87 scale.

Combine harvester Progress E514

The successor of the type E512 was in a number of points improved self-driving harvesting machine for threshing cereals, oilfruits and pulses.Production started in 1982. In the former DDR, the vehicle was also used for harvesting maize and sunflowers.

40174 Combine harvester Progress 514 with maize picker – blue
40175 Combine harvester Progress 514 with maize picker – green

 

41710 Pontiac Firebird TransAm – red

 

45001 Chevrolet Bel Air – Flames

Car2go:

The concept: Smart forTwo cars parked around the City which can be hired like the bicycle schemes in many cities.

46135-01 Smart Fortwo 07 Car2go – free tanker
46135-02 Smart Fortwo 07 Car2go – Local patriot
46135-03 Smart Fortwo 07 Car2go – Rhineland Express

 

46656 Plymouth Fury “Tennessee State Trooper

 

47365 Citroen Jumper “French Gendarmerie”

 

47524 Ford Mustang Cabriolet with soft top – yellow

 

49820 Mercedes-Benz M-Class W164 “Emergency Doctor – Herford”

 

50362 Land Rover Defender “British Airport”

 

51127 Mercedes-Benz Vito “Patrol car of the German Autobahn Police”

 

51128 Mercedes-Benz Vito “Portugesian Taxi”

 

51167 Mercedes-Benz V-Class “Politi (Norwegian Police)”

Barkas Collection latest releases

Eight differently coloured and liveried Barkas V901/2 half-bus or box van have been produced as a mini-series.

51292 Barkas Halfbus V901/2 No. 7 “BVF Carburettor Factory of Berlin”

51293 Barkas Halfbus V901/2 No. 8 “KfZ Werke Ernst Grube Werdau”

 

51508 IFA G5 1959 “NVA loaded with convoy-way plates”

The 6×6 truck loaded with typical pre-manufactured concrete pieces for the reinforcement of the paths along the German/German border.

51509 IFA G5 1960 “NVA with crane and loaded with boundary posts”

51605 Robur LO 1800A “Measuring vehicle for tractor tests”

EsPeWe Models 1:87 Scale

 

95234 IFA W50 LA/A “Sea rescue service”

95236 IFA W50 LA/A “Fire brigade”

Busch Aircraft models

 

25018 Messerschmitt Bf 109 G6 Hungary

The Me 109 G6 aircraft from 1944 is painted in the colours of the 101st fighter group, also known as the Puma Group. The group was created under the command of wing commander Aladar Heppes for the Royal Hungarian Airforce. Approximately 760 aircraft fought with the Luftwaffe against the Red Army along the Eastern Front during the Second World War.


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Goldvarg September 2018

By Maz Woolley

All text by, and copyright of the Author. Photographs have all been provided by the Manufacturer.

It is amazing to think that Sergio Goldvarg only returned to producing 1:43 scale models just over a year ago. Since then licences have been obtained from Ford and General Motors and once the first cars were released a steady stream of new ones has been announced. The cars are resin moulded to 1:43 scale and finished in China to Sergio’s specification. Lots of attention is paid to having pre-production tryouts made and shown to knowledgeable collectors to help get them absolutely right before production. These pre-production samples also help Sergio to get a good idea of the colours that will sell strongly and builds up a direct relation between the maker and the collectors.

Most of the releases to date have sold out at Goldvarg Collectibles, though some can still be found on the inventories of retail sellers. What is also amazing is that the US price of some of the cars to pre-order today are still at the bargain $99 launch price, and even a few that are not are only $109. This seems to be a bargain price at a time when prices from  European companies like Matrix and Brooklin have increased very significantly over the same period and other competitors are much dearer anyway.

So lets look at some of the models announced but not yet shipped.

1961 PONTIAC CATALINA Twilight Mist

 

The 1961 Catalina sold for less than a Chevrolet Impala yet was fitted with a better automatic box and was kitted out to the standards of a Oldsmobile and was cheaper than that too. The new squarer, straight through, wing styling front and back heralded the start of the much more conservative styling of the early 1960s.

The Goldvarg model captures the complex curves and pressed surfaces very well.

GC-007 B 1970 FORD Galaxie Caramel Bronze

The 1970 Ford Galaxie was a full-sized car. The name was used for the top models in Ford’s full-size range competing with the Chevrolet Impala. Here the Goldvarg model has captured the typical early 1970s shape well and the intricately finished rear chrome panel and badging are worthy of note.

This car is also to be available in metallic silver with a black vinyl roof.

GC-008 A 1965 MERCURY PARK LANE MARAUDER Ocean Turquoise

 

In 1965 the chassis of full-size Ford and Mercury cars was redesigned and the Mercury line was given much flatter sides. a much more slab-sided appearance. Europeans will see the influence of the front end on both the German Ford Taunus 17M and the British Mark III Cortina.

The Goldvarg model again has very fine grille work as well as badging. The car is also available in a nice metallic gold finish.

GC-009 A 1969 FORD TORINO Calypso coral

 

The Ford Torino modelled by Goldvarg is an early car from the second year of production. It is nice to see an earlier Torino as the Starsky and Hutch car has meant that most Torinos produced have been 1973 cars. The Torino filled the mid-range segment and was named after the Italian city of Turin, perhaps to add some suggestion of Italian style to what was only a Ford Fairlane in disguise.

The Goldvarg model looks good even in this early pre-production form with the wheels still not ready to show. The front grille seems to be very neatly replicated and the badging too.It is also to be available in a yellow which is undoubtedly period correct but much less attractive to my eye.

GC010 A 1963 FORD FALCON SPRINT Rangoon Red

 

The Falcon was the small platform in the Ford line up from 1961 onwards. By 1963, there were two and four door sedans, convertibles, wagons and hardtops. In mid-year a V8 was offered for the first time in the Sprint line only. The Sprint acted as a test bed for the soon to be launched Ford Mustang which may have looked very different but was pure Falcon underneath!

The pre-production model has a few parts that are not yet finely finished as I expect that they will be when the model is launched. But  it captures the lights and grille very well as well as side spear and badging.

This model will also be available in Polar White.

1963 Chevy Nova Laurel Green

 

The Chevrolet Chevy II/Nova was the smallest platform for Chevrolet cars and went through five generations after being introduced in 1962. Its influence on GMs former European Opel division is clear to see. Powered by four or six cylinder engines the Chevy II/Nova started out intending to be a thrifty purchase but as time went on more expensive variants rapidly emerged. By 1963 the Nova option for the Chevy II was available in a convertible body style, and a two-door hardtop was available from 1962 to 1965. All Chevy two-door hardtops in the range were marketed as the Sport Coupe .For 1963, the Chevy II Nova Super Sport was released and it featured special emblems, an instrument package, wheel covers, special side mouldings, bucket seats, and floor gear change.

The Goldvarg is still at the prototype phase but  seems to me to capture the original car exceptionally well with excellent fine detailing to finish the relatively simple shape of the car well.

1956 MERCURY MONTEREY Station Wagon

 

The Marquis-Monterey range had a longer wheelbase and longer body than the Ford LTD, Ford Galaxie, and Ford Custom. The 1956 model had a new engine, the 235 hp (175 kW) 312 cu. in. This year, along with the rest of Ford, Mercury cars started to sport the ‘Lifeguard’ safety equipment. The deep-dish steering wheel and safety door locks were standard.

Here the Goldvarg is in very early prototype form and we can expect to see more prototypes as the details are developed and the colours are tested. Here we can see that the shape seems well developed and the side mouldings are being readied for the woodie treatment.

1962 Buick Electra

 

The Buick Electra was a full-size luxury car included in the Buick range from 1959 to 1990.  Famed for its extreme rear wings when first introduced it was offered in many forms over the years and here it is in two door coupe form.  The 1962 model had four VentiPorts per front wing and was restyled from 1961 version. The car was fitted with many luxury fitments as standard but came with a lot of options too.

Again this is an early prototype but it clearly has the correct shape and stance and we can look forward to seeing more developed prototypes in the near future.

1964 Pontiac Grand Prix

 

The 1962-1964 Pontiac Grand Prix achieved strong sales for General Motors during its run,  It set to win over the buyers of Ford Thunderbirds, amongst others. Based on the Catalina hardtop coupe it had unique styling touches and was fitted with T-Bird style bucket seats and a large central console. The name, Grand Prix, was used to add associations to speed and daring. The car could be fitted out with one of five versions of Pontiac’s superb Trophy 389 V-8, from a 230-horsepower economy special to a high-compression Tri-Power version (three two-barrel carburetors) with 348 hp. This, and its lower weight, made the GP faster than the T-Bird. A three-speed manual gearbox was standard, but most GPs were ordered with the new “Roto” Hydra-Matic, a new three-speed torque-converter box. An alternative option taken by enthusiasts was a four-speed manual floorshift.

Again the Goldvarg is in its early stages and much fine detail is yet to be added. The shape appears to be caught very well which is important as the GP is a relatively plain car with limited chrome adornments.

Our look at what is on the way from Goldvarg ends here but I am sure that there are yet other drawings, and work in hand, on yet more models. The current trend for Goldvarg to produce cars from the 1960s seems to be popular with many collectors as there are a lot of cars from that era yet to be modelled well. If you are interested in Goldvarg models their website is https://www.goldvargcollection.com/


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Oxford Diecast Pontiac Bonneville Coupe 1959

By Maz Woolley

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

Oxford Diecast has issued a re-coloured version of their 1:87 scale diecast in China for the United Kingdom 1959 Pontiac Bonneville Coupe.

The re-colour is in sunrise coral with a white roof which is a very period look.  Our review of the original issue can be found here. The model itself is excellent with a lot of very fine printing of chrome embellishments and very neatly printed wipers and window surrounds.

The wheels are excellent and the printed badges and side chrome fine.

To the rear the rear lights, badging and chrome strips are very delicately done, remember that this model is only 1:87 scale!

Inside nothing is picked out but there is a nicely moulded interior with neat door cards and dashboard.

All in all a lovely model and a well chosen colour which is enough to persuade this collector to buy another model from the same casting.

What I cannot understand is that this lovely Pontiac model which is up to the highest standards of 1:87 metal casting and finishing is made by the same company that produced the crude Isetta shown below which we recently reviewed. How can this be? Does Oxford have multiple teams responsible for models and the resultant model is good if the A-Team do it and poor if not?

After being disappointed by the model above I went back to the London Toyfair pictures and I note that the Heinkel Trojan casting on show appears to rely on the same large central shaft to hold the base on which is a very considerable disappointment. Most 1960s toymakers didn’t resort to such crude engineering.


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Brooklin January 2018

By Maz Woolley

All photographs supplied by Brooklin

Brooklin has recently released a number of  new and re-coloured models. Here are their studio photographs of the latest releases. All these models are now available from Brooklin suppliers even if Brooklin’s web site does not show them as available. Those interested in buying them should bear in mind that Brooklin dealers are now often offering significant discounts which did not happen previously. It is noticeable that there are no new Lansdowne models at the moment as Brooklin continues to develop it’s new sales strategy.

BML22 – 1939 Nash Ambassador

BML23 1948 Ford V8 Station Wagon. [Colour change]

 

BML24 – 1934 Ford Five Window Coupe –

Stated as Cordoba Grey but beige/brown colour

BRK221 – 1957 Chevrolet Bel-Air 4 Door Hardtop

The four door hardtop has not often been modelled and this model has been favourably received for the significantly improved levels of detail.

 

BRK223 – 1965 Chevrolet Impala Convertible Coupe

Another well received model. This model is neatly detailed.

 

CSV26 – 1937 Superior-Pontiac Provident Ambulance

IPV446 1939 Railton Cobham Saloon (Flying Squad)

Six cars were assembled during the war for the use of the Metropolitan Police.


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Oxford Diecast 1:87 Scale Yank Tanks

By Maz Woolley

All photographs taken by, and copyright of the Author.

Regular readers may remember my criticisms of the last release of 1:87 scale American subjects by Oxford Diecast. It wasn’t that they were bad models it was just that some details were not finished correctly and the models could have been much better. If you wish to refresh your memory of the shortcomings click here.

This time round I am happy to say that the latest release of new castings are impressive and very good value for money here in the UK. There are a few minor details that could be better but overall these are as close to excellent as I would expect for the price point. All the models in this release are licensed by General Motors.

87CI61001 Chevrolet Impala 1961 Convertible.

The third generation of the Chevrolet Impala was considerably less flamboyant than the previous generations. US cars were going through a period of transformation as the fins retreated and squarer body styling gradually asserted itself.

The 1961 Impala was based upon the GM B platform and could be bought with a 3.8 Litre Straight six or a range of V8s from 4.6 Litres to 6.7 Litres.

The Oxford model is excellent with really fine printing of badging and number plates. The wheels capture the real ones excellently with the correct narrower whitewalls and the elaborate wheel covers. Inside the chromed dashboard has been moulded and picked out.

The rear lights have been cast in well and are neatly picked out. In the photographs you can see that even the button to open the boot has been printed on.

All these models have the chassis moulded in some detail for their size.

The windscreen is a single part plastic moulding and it may be possible that Oxford intend to model the very rare two door saloon or a coupe as it would just need a different plastic top and interior tub.

87CSD61001 Cadillac Sedan DeVille 1961

This is based on the second generation of the DeVilleCadillac restyled and re-engineered the model for 1961. Gone was the wrap around windscreen and the fins were had shrunk. Even the suspension was no longer by air. All Cadillac DeVille’s had lots of accessories fitted as standard with power brakes, steering, automatic transmission all coming with every car.

The roof of this car is again moulded in plastic allowing for much thinner chrome printing than is usually seen on small Oxford Models.  And of course it allows for flush windows which look the part. Again fine badges and chrome tampo printing is visible especially when magnified. The small chrome strip with a slight rise to the front on each front wing is modelled and printed. The grille is black washed as was the Chevrolet’s which certainly highlights the fine mouldings.

Wheels are neatly represented with a correct thin white wall and the elaborate wheel covers too. The rear of the vehicle is nicely modelled though the centre section is a bit less crisp than it could be and the printed chrome may extend too high as well. The fins lack the chrome on their end section and on one side mine has a minor casting fault on the inner part of the fin. Not perfect but at this scale it is not immediately obvious either.

87PB59001 Pontiac Bonneville  Coupe 1959

This was third generation of the Bonneville which was Pontiac‘s costliest and most luxurious model throughout the 1960s. The distinctive front end was based on a 1930s design feature and stayed in use throughout the 1960s.

The Bonneville differed from the models lower down in the range like the Catalina and Star Chief counterparts. It had luxurious interior trim with upgraded cloth and vinyl, as well as walnut veneer trim on instrument and door panels.   Hydra-Matic gearboxes were standard on the 1961 car but power steering and brakes, and air conditioning were all additional cost options. The Bonneville also had more powerful standard V8 engines than other full-sized Pontiacs including the 6.4 litre and 6.6 litre V8s with four-barrel carburetors.

The Oxford model is lovely. The plastic roof with its excellent tampo printing gives he huge windows a really excellent finish.  Looking in detail a lot of tiny badging can be seen on the rear wing and at the rear of the front wing. Chrome side features are delicately printed too especially notable are the four chrome features on the rear wing. The front wing top chrome with its spear like front edge is also well modelled.

At the rear the delicate modelling of the rear lights and panel are a tribute to the modeller who made the master. And impressively even the boot release button has been printed on the rear panel.

At the front the Pontiac “nose” is beautifully modelled though it would have been nice if Oxford had managed to model the grille or even just print it on. But again this is not a major issue.

As the roof is plastic it is possible that we will see this car as a convertible at a later date .

87OR50001 Oldsmobile Rocket 88 Coupe 1950

The Rocket 88 was featured in a record by Jackie Brenston and Ike Turner in 1951 which was one of the first Rock and Roll records. The Oldsmobile 88 was one of the cars that set the style in the early 1950s and was noted for its track performances making it a fashionable car for a type of motorist who would not have bought Oldsmobiles before. Indeed some suggest that with a small and relatively light body and big powerful V8 it was the first “muscle car“. The 1950 model featured a single piece screen for the first time and a Hydra-Matic automatic came as standard unless it was deleted when ordering. The 88 famously won the 1950 Carrera Panamerica.

The Oxford model is all metal. The glass fitting was so flush I couldn’t believe that the roof was not plastic and I took the model apart to check. The car is fitted with plastic windows that push into the window openings to flush fit, a technique I wish they would introduce for all their new 1:76 models.  The front grille again gets a black wash

The tampo printing is excellent with tiny badging and lettering evident when looking at enlarged pictures.  It is a shame that the moulded in bonnet mascot has not been printed too. The wheels and tyres are good with the wider early 50s style white walls and neat chromed wheels finishers and hub caps.

At the rear the Oldsmobile badge and lettering, Rocket 88 symbol , and printed chrome are all well done with simple but effective painted on rear lights. The painted cream roof seems to have rather thick paint which fills the fine shut lines round the upper parts of the doors though later colours for the model may not have the same issue.


So Oxford continues to delight me with some releases and frustrate me with others. These four new 1:87 scale models may have some flaws but they are well made and finished like the recent 1:76 scale Rolls Royces and I am sure that they will be popular items.


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GFCC Models

By Graeme Ogg

All photographs by, and copyright of, the Author.

I read that Mr Editor Woolley is hoping to report sometime soon on a model of a Jaguar SS1 made by a new toymaker calling themselves GFCC Toys. [Editor: as the model is coming from China a review may be some weeks away]. Their official registered name seems to be Tongbo Toys Co Ltd, based in Albany, New York. and I’ve read that they are a toy and sports equipment marketing outfit rather than a model manufacturer, but apart from that I don’t know anything about them or what their intentions are in the 1:43 field. The models are produced in – surprise – China.

I’m not into vintage Jags, but GFCC have also issued a 1:43 model of a 1959 Pontiac Parisienne, which is more up my street. I don’t know why they’ve chosen to do this particular car in isolation, you’d have imagined they might have produced a small series of U.S. cars from this period, but there you are. You take what you can get.

I’ve seen this model offered in the United States for about $15, but I think that may have been wholesale. The current retail price from  a Hong Kong dealer is about £25 but that is with free postage, so it can be considered relatively “cheap and cheerful”.

Mine has just arrived, and from some angles at least, it really looks pretty good, quite crisp and clean with a very smooth paint job. The windscreen frame (on my example at least) has no chrome or silver paint applied, it’s just clear plastic, and would benefit greatly from some Bare Metal Foil. The silver highlighting on the edges of the fins is a little weak in places and could also be improved with foil. The model lacks front vent windows, which could be made up easily enough from fine wire. But the overall impression isn’t bad at all. If the Neo versions of this car didn’t exist – and I don’t know if there are any other ’59 Pontiacs available in 1:43 apart from the rather expensive (and very hard-to-find Madison) versions from 2013 – it would certainly fill a gap in any collection of GM ’59s quite adequately.

From the side, it sits a little high, and has very narrow tyres, so you are almost expecting to find a clockwork motor or friction drive underneath. The clip-on top supplied with the model is very, VERY plastic-looking, so the car probably looks better open, even though it lacks a tonneau cover behind the rear seats.

Obviously at this price you wouldn’t expect the model to match the Neo for overall quality or detailing (although at least it doesn’t have the awful black front screen surround of the Neo convertible), but it isn’t disgraced either. It matches the Neo for scale, length is identical and I could almost suspect they might have pirated the Neo body, although there are small differences here and there when you look closer.

There is also a version in black with body flames, and a 2-tone version in not very authentic colours (it looks more like a contemporary Ford colour scheme to my eyes).

The model comes in a “distressed” box, with fake dampstains and scratchy lettering, which is an odd sort of gimmick. We can probably expect to see some cretins on eBay offering these models as “rare vintage barn finds” at silly prices.

It will be interesting (for me at least) to see if they do any more Yank Tanks, hopefully some that haven’t been done to death already.


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