By Maz Woolley
All text by, and copyright of the Author. All photographs provided by the Manufacturer.
The day that Corgi announced its new models for 2019 their web site was unable to cope. Many people on bulletin boards and Facebook commented about this being unsurprising given Corgi’s recent history. The other comments again focused on being underwhelmed by the announcements.
Please note that all illustrations on this website have been provided by the manufacturer and may be computer generated impressions or pre-production samples which are not fully representative of the final product.
In summary they have expanded their generic toy ranges, produced a lot of D Day anniversary tie in items including military vehicles, re-introduced a couple of Steam vehicles, and produced a ‘new’ casting in the Vanguards range. However, as is usual the main focus seems to to be on Aircraft which form the bulk of the release. Original Omnibus and Truck ranges get no releases at all.
Readers will need to judge for themselves but some of the military models and toys look to me like they are probably bought in from Chinese contractors to fill gaps in the range rather than being designed by Corgi.
In parallel to the Corgi announcement Hornby announced a series of 1:76 scale models in their trains range:
- A Ford Anglia
- FX4 Taxi
- Post Office Telephones Mini Van
- Land Rover 109
- Ford Transit Mark 1
- Fowler Steam Roller
- Fowler Ploughing Engine
All are clearly Oxford Diecast Models packaged as Hornby and sold at a higher price then the original Oxford models. This may make sense where it allows Hornby stockists who do not also stock Oxford to have a wider range of accessories.
Chunkies are a new toy range introduced by Corgi. At last years Toyfair a Corgi representative explained that they felt that the lack of toys to draw in young collectors to the brand would be damaging in the long term. Clearly this new range is meant to address this. All the vehicles are pocket money priced and in bright attractive colours and designed to have play value for children. The models are generic but the trucks all seem to be rather US styled to me. Pictures of a couple of these toys from the Corgi Catalogue are shown below.
A re-packaged James Bond Aston Martin DB5 will not come as a surprise given the fact that it still seems to sell steadily over 50 years after the original model was launched. To complement it it on the Movie tie-in front are the Harry Potter Night Bus and Ford Anglia as well as a static Hogwarts Express steam engine.
After a number of years of absence Corgi bring back two steam models.
- CC20008 1924 Super Sentinel Steam Waggon, RS 5540, Tiger Engine No. 5260, The Aberdeen Coal & Shipping Co. Ltd
- CC20311 1919 Garrett Showmans 4CD Tractor, AD 8787, Works No. 33486, ‘Queen of Great Britain’, Turner Brothers of Thormanby.
The catalogue pictures are of real vehicles and not pre-production models so it is not possible to determine whether these are new models based on existing castings previously seen in the Glory of Steam range or entirely new models.
The Corgi Showcase range of cheaper fit the box models has many models aimed at anniversaries due this year. Firstly a large number of military vehicles to tie into D Day anniversary.
- CS90635 Panzer IV – SS Panzer Division Hitlerjugend, France 1944
- CS90630 M48 Patton Tank
- CS90631 M3 A1 Half-Track 41st Armoured Infantry, 2nd Armoured Division, Normandy 1944 (D Day)
- CS90633 Willys Jeep – SeeBees
- CS90632 Sherman M4 A3 – US Army, Luxembourg 1944
- CS90642 King Tiger – sSSPzAbt 501, France 1944
- CS90641 M3 Stuart Tank
- CS90640 M8 Greyhound – 14th Armoured Division, N.W. Europe
- CS90639 Panther – 4th Battalion Coldstream Guards ‘Cuckoo’, Netherlands 1944/5
- CS90637 Tiger I – German Army SpzAbt 502, Russia 1942
- CS90638 Churchill MkIII – 6th Scots Guards Brigade 1943
A couple of examples of the illustrations of this range are shown. As these are ‘fit in the box’ ranges the models will be to a variety of scales.
There are also models to fit in with the Anniversary of man landing on the Moon which are again sized to fit the box
- CS90647 Apollo Command Module
- CS90646 Lunar Module
The Vanguards range gets a number of re-colours and a new tool. The new tool is for a Jaguar XJ Series 2. Corgi already have tooling for the original XJ6/12 so presumably this has been adapted to create the similar Mark 2 which differs mainly in the front end treatment and interior. The illustrations are of real cars so it is impossible to judge whether the mould is entirely new or modified.
The models to be sold based on this new tooling are:
- VA13900 Daimler Sovereign (Series 2) Double Six Vanden Plas, Caramel (metallic)
- VA13902 Jaguar XJ12 Series 2 LWB, Juniper Green.
- VA13901 Jaguar XJ6 Series 2 4.2-litre, Avon & Somerset Constabulary
The recolours are shown below with the Corgi publicity photographs. Some need a considerable improvement to be acceptable, notably the hoods up Morris 1000 where the hood looks odd and certainly ill fitting.
Another well known collectors car is featured in the range this year. This time it is the MGB of Don Hayter who was instrumental in the design of the MGB and who has written about its birth.
VA11912 Ford Cortina Mk4, 3.0 Savage, Strato Silver
VA11706 Ford Sierra RS500 Cosworth, Moonstone Blue
VA10014 Ford Sierra Sapphire RS Cosworth 4×4, Sussex Police
VA10313 Ford Cortina Mk3 2000E, Purple Velvet
VA04118 Ford Lotus Cortina Mk2 FVA, Group 5, Graham Hill. 1967 British Saloon Car Championship.
VA07105 Morris Minor 1000 Convertible, Maroon ‘B’
VA13005 MGB Roadster V8, Don Hayter’s car, Brooklands Green
VA07406 Triumph Spitfire (sic) Mk3, Saffron – Website describes as Spitfire but it is actually a Triumph Herald Convertible.
VA09013 Rover SD1 Vitesse Grampian Police
VA12906 Audi Quattro, Sable Brown Metallic
VA12413 Ford Granada 2.8i Ghia, Cosmos Blue
VA12615 Ford Escort Mk2 RS Mexico
VA01318 Austin Mini 850, RAF Police.
VA01427 Morris Mini Van, The Red Arrows.
VA01319 Austin Mini 850, RAF Station Commander
VA08102 Volkswagen Type 2 Camper, Sea Blue and Cumulus White
The repaints are quite attractive and I am sure collectors may pick up one or two that appeal but there is no compelling reasons for most collectors to buy them as they probably have one of the earlier releases. A new tooling is welcome and the Mark 2 XJ6/12 has not been modelled in a diecast range as yet. It has been seen in 1:43 scale by SMTS as an expensive white metal model and is scheduled to be released in resin by Ixo at some point but that will again be at a higher price point. It is nice to see Corgi filling in a missing link.