Several recent additions to my Tomica collection have made it impossible to resist the urge to offer another installment of 'Then and Now.' As regular readers know, I never resist such urges.
Hats off to Tomica for offering the new 2000 Honda S2000 Roadster even before it hit the showrooms. Diecast manufacturers are seldom able to beat their big brothers into production. Hot Wheels did it with the 1968 Chevrolet Corvette and it certainly led to future success for Mattel.
The new S2000 is a response to cars like the BMW Z3, Z Roadster and Z8, Mercedes-Benz SLK and Porsche Boxter. Of course, the Mazda Miata really gave re-birth to the roadster. The S2000, through it's name, demands comparison with Honda's roadster of the 1960's, the S800. Tomica allows us to make a side-by-side comparison of both cars. These two yellow roadsters span over 30 years of automotive design and engineering but they both share a common 'come drive me' look. The S800 was never exported in large numbers and only Playart and Tomica offered small-scale examples.
1937 Jaguar SS100 by Matchbox
Every so often two toy cars from different manufacturers just seem to
form a perfect pair. The two shown here are Zee Toy's De Lorean DMC-12 and
the Tapiro show car, based on Porsche 914 mechanicals. Both were designed
by Giorgetto Guigiaro of ItalDesign.
The Tapiro is made by a Hong Kong company of unknown name and represents
a car not done in small-scale by any other manufacturer. The base reads
VW-Porsche. It is a reasonable model of the Tapiro with functioning gullwing
doors and correct interior. The Zee Toy De Lorean is also unique as the
only small-scale stock version of this ill-fated model. Again the gullwing
doors work and the Zee wheels are actually a close copy of the De Lorean
by Remco Natrop
What is the most exciting thing for a Siku collector to do besides a visit to the factory? A visit to the Siku market!
The Siku market is organized twice a year by the Siku Collectors Club. In a park in the suburbs of Dortmund, Germany they fill a hall with tables and organize a market on which club members and Siku dealers can rent a space to sell or trade their Siku models.
It all starts early in the morning when I start to pack my duplicates, a camera and some food in a backpack. It's a long journey from my home town in The Netherlands to Dortmund, Germany and I'm always grateful if someone offers me a ride but I'm also very content with a four-hour train ride. When I arrive at about 10:00 AM fellow collectors are already lining up in front of the entrance. Better to just wait and have a cup of coffee in the park restaurant. This provides good opportunity to chat with other collectors and swap some models or obsolete catalogs. At this time I've already seen most familiar faces.
Once inside you'll be amazed at the models on display; rare color variations, pre 1960's plastic models, promotional models, you name it. Although some models cost more than my wallet can hold they're incredible to look at! After a first round for inspection and some conversations with other club members it's time to get the models spotted to further complete the collection. Most will be 1000's series because they are the most affordable but some cool V-series can also be found at good prices. Of course it helps when you know the person that's selling.
Closely guarded treasure!
A table full of models
Trucks to go!
by Brian Willoughby
By the late 1950s, Daimler-Benz was in the midst of a major dilemma. While it had handily succeeded in reclaiming its Pre-war position as one of the automotive world's dominant players, it had done so with an amazing series of racing and design successes that had not been terribly cost-effective. It was during this mad rush rebuild its image that Mercedes introduced what was perhaps the ultimate road-going sports car of its day: the legendary 300SL Gullwing. Aided by several high-profile victories in similar competition cars, every car enthusiast of the mid-1950s lusted after a 300SL despite the fact that few of them could afford one. In a half-hearted attempt to satisfy the demand for an affordable Benz sports car, Mercedes unveiled the pretty yet ponderous 190SL which was based on some of Mercedes' most mundane sedan mechanicals.
Mercedes-Benz 280SL #V302 by Siku
Made in W. Germany