Friday, 23 January 2015

Three types

At first glance you might have thought there was just the one Corgi Jaguar E Type 2+2. #335 in red or a nice shade of dark metallic blue had everything working - opening bonnet, tailgate, opening doors and folding seats and if my memory serves me right the rear seat could be pushed forward to make more room in the luggage compartment.

The dash board is also beautifully detailed. An amazingly good model, although it did seem a little too big when parked next to the earlier convertible model. That's a minor moan, though. the solution was simply to keep them apart.

This appeared in 1968, with nice wire wheels (and I think with cast louvred type later on although I haven't seen any with that variety). The following year was when Whizzwheels came along and in mid-1970 this model changed to #374 with the dreaded plastic things.

It also lost its opening doors at this point but not the lovely dash which you could still make out if you peered through the open tailgate. The seats are now fixed but the other features remain. A red version continued and then a yellow one appears too. The transfer with the tailgate badge, though, was in white so an amusingly pointless addition to the yellow one! I actually thought the transfer was missing and was about to order a replacement.

In red or yellow this version is scarce. That is because it appeared in June but in September Corgi started producing the 5.3 litre version and the boxes have the amendment as an added sticker. So, whilst it was popular and quite a few will have been sold, that is a very short period of availability, bearing in mind that there were probably quite a few of the original #335s still in many shops so they might not have bothered re-ordering in that brief period.

In September 1970 the 5.3 litre V12 appears and, to their credit, despite economising yet further by ditching the wing mirrors and exhaust, Corgi created a new version to reflect the change of grill, bumpers, exhaust style and even the tailgate gets replaced, now with the V12 symbol in the cast itself. They did keep the yellow colour, though, just to confuse us collectors years later (although it is a slightly greener yellow). I believe that the 5.3litre versions are only yellow (with a darker, metallic yellow coming later), and have brown plastic interiors whereas the 4.2 litres are all black. The interior still retains the detail but the dash is just moulded in the brown plastic now and not quite as impressive.

So you need three versions, at least, of this model. To be really complete, you may need seven:

335 red and metallic blue with spoked wheels
335 metallic blue with cast wheels (I think this exists but probably not in red)
374 (4.2) red and yellow
374 (5.3) yellow and metallic yellow

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