Wednesday 31 August 2022

Corgi Toys @ 60 : Jaguar Mk X and two big Gift Sets


September 1962 brought the magnificent Jaguar Mk S Saloon to our local toy shops! This was an exciting model with an opening bonnet as well as an opening boot in which there were two suitcases and one of them was huge and could be opened! I never actually put anything inside the big one but there was something nice just about the fact that we could open it. There were also four jewelled lights at the front and a design which produced a silver metal front bumper section. This was never particularly bright but it was solid and stood up to the occasional crashes better than the chrome or silver paint.

Illustrated above is my own Jaguar, purchased as soon as it came out, and you'll see that it was a weird shade of green and a solid colour. There was also a pale solid blue at the outset.

When I was a little older and had pocket money to spare I bought the cerise model - a much classier metallic finish - as I had never been very happy with the pale green for such a quality car in reality. This was the only other colour that I knew about until I started looking at Corgi Toys afresh in my 60s! Now I realise that there was a large range of metallic colours issued during the mid to later part of this model's production. I have done my best to obtain and illustrate here as many as I can find but no doubt one or two more will appear! The metallic cerise colour is the most common by some margin, but be careful with this colour as sunlight fades this particular shade remarkably and you will find several pale metallic grey-pink models around as a result! Look under the wheel arches, however, and you'll see the true original, lovely dark cerise.

All the other colours (and the early pale blue and green) are difficult to find now and some are particularly scarce, with many being available with red and lemon interiors too. You could have good collection that would take a while to gather by looking just for this model alone!

dark silver-blue

pale silver blue


solid dark blue

metallic dark blue

turquoise-blue with red interior

turquoise-green with lemon interior

metallic bright emerald

gold-plated (very few made for VIP guests and Jaguar directors)

This month was a busy month for shops as there were also two large Gift sets issued in September. These were Gift Set 22 Agricultural Set and Gift Set 23 Chipperfields Gift Set.

The Agricultural Gift Set 22 was quite an important one in that it was the first to feature a green Land Rover Series II with suspension. The early sets had a distinctly different and lighter shade of green Land Rover to the deep green that would be issued later as 438. There was also no canopy on the model and I am inclined to list this as 406S rather than 438. It is pretty academic, though, as the 'farm green' Land Rover with suspension and interior only ever appeared in this set.

The set also featured an all yellow 101 trailer which would not be issued anywhere else either. 

Later in 1962 the deep green 438 Land Rover would be used, but still without a canopy, as in the illustration which shows a later set. The all-yellow 101 trailer continued to be included, early sets having one with fixed shaped wheels, later sets having the free-spinning variety. All had the fixed drawbar.

The other components are as shown in the top illustration above. Later the set gets revised with the later components in the lower picture.

The other set was the Chipperfields Circus Gift Set 23 which was the second outing for the Land Rover in Series II guise, still with a tin canopy in the early sets.

The other components in the original issue are as shown above. Later they would be changed, with a Bedford Giraffe Transporter replacing the Booking Office.

Friday 26 August 2022

What was not in its own box at your local toy store?

An interesting question on a Facebook Corgi Collectors' Forum. Someone wondered what models had only been issued in sets and which are unlikely to have been found in boxes at your local toy shop.

I say 'unlikely' because who knows what may or may not have found its way into a box. So I do have doubts about the bronze Hillman Imp and maroon Rover 2000 with normal wheels. The cast wheel varieties, though, I am pretty sure will only have been in the very last of the Transporter Sets in which they were to be featured.

This is my first attempt at a list. No doubt there will be some additions and I welcome any suggestions and, of course, corrections!! 

Click on the 'GS varieties' tab for the list if necessary.

Tuesday 9 August 2022

A box for the rare 406S!


If you thought the 406S Land Rover was hard to find then just try looking for a box! This was the first appearance of the Land Rover as a Series II edition, with seats, suspension and free-spinning wheels, although the box still showed the Series I 406 model!

The box illustrated is an excellent reproduction by Blades Collectibles in Australia. I helped with this one, supplying my colleague there with some details and suggestions and he came up with this marvellous item.

If you'd like one, or would like to know what else he has available or might be willing to make, get in touch with Brian Whitehead and tell him I sent you. His email is

Not a Corgi. A mystery Citroën.


It's not a Corgi. I bought it at a charity shop in Towcester, Northamptonshire, England, and it is a lovely old model of the Citroen Traction. Very heavy, it seems to be made of metal throughout, tyres included, and has a quite detailed, albeit very grubby interior. There is no sign of a manufacturer. I think it is 1:10 scale, measuring 40cm long, 15cm wide and 13cm high. I would love to know more about it. Can anyone help?

It looks very, very much like this Maisto model - except it is much bigger and appears to be 1:10 scale. This was as close as I could get, though. I do hope someone may have some idea.

Corgi Model Club shine a light on the Cadillac Superior


The latest model which has been arriving in subscribers' letterboxes recently is the 437 'Superior Ambulance on Cadillac Chassis'. It's the second edition, rather than the first which is what the box shows. This is all quite accurate, if confusing, as Corgi didn't change the box when they revised the original.

In the package you'll get the model in a box with a certificate. The box is well-made and a good illustrative reproduction insofar as that is possible, bearing in mind the necessary changes and the panel which incorporates all that is necessary to be incorporated in a panel nowadays to satisfy committees across the planet.

I do find the fonts used are still not as accurate as they could be. So much else is well done but whoever is in charge of the text side of things needs some advice. the big catalogue number is also quite different to the original. I also found the panel which shows the special features had a strange pink tinge instead of the original simple red.

However, it is really the model itself that should be under the closest scrutiny and this one passes with quite a few flying colours.

It is well-packed with a piece of foam plastic protecting the roof lamp and I had another piece the same size in the box which I think was protecting the rear end with the sharp fins.

The difficult bit comes when you want to insert a battery. The Club was obliged to include a screw to prevent babies extracting the holder and eating the battery. To be honest, even with the screw removed, I challenge any baby to remove the battery holder! Or a good number of adults, for that matter. The instruction sheet tells us to squeeze the thing and pull but if you have no finger nails then you'll have no chance of squeezing anything as there is simply nothing easy to grip and pull. I finished up prising the battery holder up with a screwdriver until I could grasp it.

One way or another, you'll get it out, insert an AA battery and pop it back together again. Then turn the tiny switch and, yay! The lights come on! Nice. The top is quite pleasantly bright but the others front and rear seem a bit more dim than my original had been. Maybe in a dark room they'll look better.

The light does stay lit rather than flashing. The original, first edition 437 had a device on the rear axle which interacted with a plate as it rotated to connect, disconnect and connect again as it was pushed along. This proved a bit unreliable over time and a second edition was produced with a flashing bulb. The filament had some clever function which made it flash on its own once it had warmed up. You can still buy bulbs like that and I do think the Club should have sourced these for this model as they cannot have been that much more expensive in comparison to the model as a whole.

This model had cast wheels and they have been very nicely reproduced. This is the first time we've seen these wheels on the Club models. The text is accurately reproduced too. They were, I understand, tempted to make it rather more realistic but that was how the original appeared and so too should the reproduction. Well done, Corgi model Club again in this respect.

Otherwise, as you can see, this is a virtually faultless copy. OK, so the suspension is very hard and we might have liked a coloured lamp and that silver surround but a little blue paint will partially fix that, I suppose.

I wonder whether we'll see the red and cream one in years to come? Obviously with the later style battery compartment and mechanism but I can see this being popular and the casting is already available.