Every year from 1961 to 1967 this would be on my birthday and Christmas lists but it has taken me until 2015 actually to have an Ecurie Ecosse Racing Car Transporter of my own.
It was an expensive item in those days. Quite frankly, it's not cheap now, either! I saw this going as a complete set - the Gift Set 16 with the later edition racing cars - and didn't expect my modest bid to win but at 2am not many others were around or hadn't set their maximum bids very high.
The transporter appealed to me at the time because it had steering and I loved how that system worked, something Dinky never matched, their steering being a most unrealistic whole axle rotation that just wasn't right! I also liked the idea of putting a car inside and carrying it around.
What didn't appeal to me at all, though, were the racing cars themselves. The BRM and Vanwall aren't too bad but seem very old-fashioned, even for those days.
Those two are in excellent condition, being the S versions with suspension added and slight changes to the paintwork, adding a silver nose cone and decals.
The Lotus is a weird looking affair that may have been what was racing around Le Mans in the Sixties but, in my view, it didn't make a very appealing model. This one is 151A, the A being the second edition which included a driver and a slightly different windscreen fitting. I think there were similar blue 151 models but most of those were silver. The paintwork isn't too bad on this one but those big wings fore and aft are very vulnerable and chunks are missing there. There was no space for suspension without major reworking so this never got an S suffix.
The steering wheel was broken on this one and the driver didn't look right. I have replaced the steering wheel and used another driver but I'm still unsure. I feel he needs to be leaning back further so maybe both are wrong. I think I'll leave that to a new owner to sort out. The steering wheel is simple to fit and a driver can easily be installed on this model too.
As I said, the thing I really wanted, though, was the truck and it has some delightful features, including the little vice in the workshop area. The windows are remarkably clear and the interior all good but the paintwork has quite a few chips. The top deck folds down very nicely with a clever mechanism and locks in place again when the tailgate is returned to vertical. Corgi were good at this sort of thing, although many examples have had to have replacement tailgates from what I can gather looking at others on sale. This one is all original.
The steering works but the turning circle is about as big as the real thing would have been!
I'm glad to have got this and seen it up close but I won't be sorry to see it or the racing cars go to a new owner. It will be quite a decent bargain: about £45 for the truck, £29 for the Lotus and around £40 for each of the BRM and Vanwall. I think the whole set could go for about £130 and I expect it to sell pretty quickly.
I guess I will still have to get the original racing cars, without the S or A suffixes, one day but I can't get too enthusiastic about them and, despite longing for the truck 50 odd years ago, now that I've seen it and checked it off my list I won't be that sorry to see this one go either. My dad was probably right not to buy it.