|History of the Changes|
|15-Apr-2014||Ambassadors Report 33|
|14-Apr-2014||Ambassadors Report 32|
|13-Apr-2014||Ambassadors Report 31 Updated History|
|I was pleasantly surprised to receive so many snippets of information regarding the Dodge Stealth and Morphed together with the Ford GT-90. We have a much better picture of what happened and this could only come about through collectors willing to share their knowledge so thank you to all the contributors.|
|ANSWERS FROM MATTEL|
1. Shouldn't #78 SWAT truck be MB830 instead of MB824?
This is a very good question. Tool MB830 was intended to have a different body molding process from the current version. This process however has not been implemented yet, so we will continue to use MB824.
2. The original Land Rover Defender was MB697 with its exhaust on the left, the new one is MB838 with a new roof design & the exhaust on the right (hence the new number) so why is the orange 60th version with the exhaust on the right & new roof design MB697?
The 60th Anniversary version is MB838 (new one). If you are referring to the chassis markings only, it is possible that the plant had used surplus 697 chassis’ on your sample to use up inventory. The 838 chassis would also include the Netherlands address. Since both chassis will fit the new body, you may have the older chassis. Send us a picture. Thanks.
3. I have a question about licensed new models. The Tacoma pre-pro was made from a 3D printer, by a computer. I am assuming the 3D file in the computer was a perfect format of the truck, or was that the part that Miguel designed? Or, once the perfect file is printed, does the designer use that as a basis for their casting? Or do they just modify the 3D printed resin model? Can anyone clarify
Sorry that information is confidential.
4. I quite like the Tacoma, but it's a shame that the HiLux wasn't done as that's what the rest of the world gets. Did you consider making the HiLux? What made you decide on the Tacoma?
Yes we considered the HiLux version. The Tacoma is more widely known on this side of the globe where we live and we have better access to the actual truck making it easier to replicate. This does not mean that we wouldn’t consider the HiLux in the future.
5. I can find no mention of the Tacoma's scale anywhere. Is it shown on the chassis?
The scale is 1:64th.
6. The Toyota is great. With front lights it would be even greater, and, if we could get a set of Baywatch figurines with the model, Pamela perhaps, it would be perfect. Would the team please give this some consideration?
We thought about it. It would increase the cost.
7. I am wondering if the Infiniti G37 and '70 El Camino will make a return to the MB line-up at some point. It is truly a shame that the Infiniti has only been released once, and it'd be great to add another example of the '70 El Camino to my El Camino collection. Any answer from the Matchbox team would be appreciated. I heard that the Infiniti G37 is coming out in 2014 as a gift pack exclusive. Can you give us any further information on this, please?
Both the G37 & 70 El Camino will return to the line at some point in the future.
8. Casting 256 Hummer - The data base shows this casting as being the correct number, because it has the roof turret. The base plate on the casting in the five pack still reads 522 however. Can you explain, please?
Yes: #256 Hummer has the gun. The #522 version has no gun but the chassis is interchangeable. It is not always practical or cost effective to swap out multiple variations of chassis markings when the vehicle itself has not changed. For 2015 we will be modifying the body again. This time the hatch will not open and it will be part of the die cast body. The gun will also be removed and the chassis name will be updated to HUMVEE instead of Hummer since Hummer is Civilian. When this is done the MB number will change again.
Casting 606 Armored Response Vehicle -. The database and livery show this as 606, but the base has number 510 on it. What is the right casting? And what is the casting difference between 510 and 606.
The current model is 606 but the chassis marking has not been updated. The 510 number originally was used for the China casting. 606 denotes that the casting is duplicate tool and is from Thailand. Both 510& 606 are visually identical but 606 indicates a different country of origin.
9. I've just been reading the ambassador's reports, and I noticed someone suggesting that Matchbox should make regional fire vehicles and worldwide rural fire vehicles. I would like to voice my support for their idea. Australia probably has more bushfires (that's what they're called there) than any other area. If the design team is looking for inspiration, then the site http://www.111emergency.co.nz/ is a good place to look. It's a New Zealand site, but the city and rural fire appliances here are very similar to the ones used in oz. Here are links from that site to two rural brigades near where I live, Motueka/Tasman Rural Fire Force -- http://www.111emergency.co.nz/S-W/TasmanRFF.htm -- and Ngatimoti RFF -- http://www.111emergency.co.nz/N-R/NgatimotiRFF.htm -- which are part of the Waimea Rural Fire Authority. I have also taken pictures of these vehicles myself. I think it would be a good idea for the design team to look at this site for inspiration; there's plenty of it here. I recommend starting at Region 4, Area 17 (Tasman/Marlborough); which is where I live.
Thank you for your suggestions and interest in Brush fire vehicles. Thanks also for sending the links to some of the vehicles from your region of the world. We will definitely give them a look.
10. The "blue" side of Mattel produces "Final Run" models which at least indicates to collectors that a model has been totally deleted from the range. Would Matchbox consider doing this ..... or at least publishing an annual list of models that you have decided never to use again.
|ANSWERS FROM MATTEL|
|There are no answers this week. I hope to have more next week. Please keep your questions coming in.|
|ANSWERS FROM MATTEL|
1. Will 2015 see a different type of segmentation than we have seen in 2013 and 2014? If so, can we be enlightened on the plans as of now?
Cannot discuss the 2015 line at this time.
2. Please find a way to keep the licensed models appearing in the series "decently above" 50%. If you go back to a 1-100 model lineup, please aim for a minimum of 60-65 licensed vehicles. I'd like 100 out of 100, but I know it can't happen and just asking that would devalue any point I'm trying to make here.
Thanks for your suggestion.
3. Although I can understand retiring models that have passed the mark of time, why on earrth retire a model like the KG or A100 which has only been out one season? How can development costs be justified by such a short model run? Or is there a sinister plot powering the retirement of great licensed models and replacing them with generic trash?
Please refer to the Ambassadors latest report regarding the A100. Also note that have never used the word retire when referring to these two castings which would imply that they will never return again. These models will return.
4. Would there be any licensing issues with John Deere if Matchbox made the Acre Maker with a green cab, green body, and yellow wheel? I'd like to see a version like that. While there may be some color schemes that may seem synonymous with certain brands there are some colors that are universal.
We try to be creative in that regard.
5. The report states that there is no school bus at all, but I wonder if the Field Tripper is the production name for the Mega School Bus. From what I remember, Mega School Bus was just a placeholder name. Can you please enlighten us as to the fate of the Mega Bus. Were you able to listen to the voices of collectors?
You are correct that the Field Tripper™ is the final name for the Mega School bus. It is #96 on the list.
6. Mattel has owned the Matchbox brand for several years now. Are there any plans for a book to be written on these years with sponsorship from Mattel?
Not at this time.
7. The Citroen DS Mattel came up with a few years ago is a stunning replica. Not many manufactures get the shape of the car that spot-on. I'm still surprised we never got a Lesney Edition version of it. I'd still love to see a dark burgundy version with a cream roof. Please assure me that you have not consigned the Citroen to the Garbage Grinder!
Rest assured, the Citroen DS has not been sent to the Garbage Grinder. It will appear again sometime in the near future.
8. I'd like to see the Mercury Cougar casting back into the line up. One of my faves - any chance??
It will appear again sometime in the future. We like this model as well.
9. Does Mattel keep records of sales as I was wondering what has been the best seller during the Mattel era?
That’s a good question.
10. Is there any reason why the new castings for 2014 are all the final MAN numbers?
Not sure what you mean by the final MAN numbers. Can you elaborate?
(I think the collector meant that the latest Manufacturing numbers are grouped at the end of the 2014 range between numbers 100 and 120.)
11. When choosing a color for a model, do you have all of the other 119 models out in front of you so that for instance you don't have too many yellow models in the range and not enough red ones?
Yes, we do this for every SKU we make. It does get complicated sometimes because we also have to include carryover models as well. It’s very challenging for the team.
12. It does seem that Hot Wheels sometimes make models which come under the Matchbox category. Are there meetings to decide who makes what or are you independent?
Yes we meet with the team on the blue side. Sometimes a cross over is allowed to happen.
13. Does one person make up the names for the non-licensed models and is that his or her only job?
We do have such a person(persons). They are called copywriters and they create names and written copy. They help us with names and vice versa. It is a fulltime occupation to do just that. Many companies have copywriters. Their job is very important since they deal not only creating names but they must create copy for anything written or published.
|ANSWERS FROM MATTEL|
1. Although I can understand retiring models that have passed the mark of time, why on earth retire a model like the KG or A100 which has
only been out one season? How can development costs be justified by such a short model run? Or is there a sinister plot powering the
retirement of great licensed models and replacing them with generic trash?
Please refer to the Ambassadors latest report regarding the A100. Also note that have never used the word retire when referring to these two castings which would imply that they will never return again. These models will return.
2. Can you ask Matchbox to consider doing some Caterpillar-licensed deco's on their existing construction models? They did this 10+ years ago and have some great construction models out now that would look good in a Caterpillar theme. Thanks!
Matchbox did do this in the past but it is a bit more complicated today to do this.
3. We see that the new castings are numbered from MB902 through MB926, with the new Mustang Police added in as MB969. It took the place of the VW Bulli which was dropped, but was that given a MAN # (possibly MB901) before it was dropped? We had up to MB900 to finish off 2013.
Very soon we will exceed the 3 digit MB number milestone as we develop new models in 2015. This means the MB numbers will soon be 4 digits. Should we celebrate?
The Mustang SSP was in the works for 2015 but was ahead in development so it was moved to the 2014 slot hence the MB number.
4. The 3-axle Dump Truck does not show a MAN #. Is this an oversight as it is still MB536 or is it being retooled and will be receiving a new MAN #?
The 3 axle dump truck is in the process of being retooled. A new number has not been assigned yet. So it is left blank at the moment.
5. I was delighted to receive my Brush Truck. I think it was fabulously decorated proving to the doubters that real talent exists within the Matchbox team. Are there any plans to repeat this sort of thing, hopefully without the complications ..... though the model certainly was worth waiting for.
We are glad that you like our efforts on the Brush Truck. Much love went into creating it even though it had a rocky start. If this program is successful we would consider doing another special item.
6. Many of the models that have been dropped for 2014 are licensed vehicles. If you bring these back in 2015, do you still have to pay licensing fees?
Yes on certain models.
A note to all collectors. If a certain licensed model drops out of the line, it is not retired unless the team feels it has outlived its usefulness. We will simply bring the model back the following year or it will find its way into 5 packs or exclusive models in the 9/10 packs so don’t panic or be distressed. Unless a tool is damaged or completely worn out it will return.
7. There are hundreds if not thousands of collectors who read the message boards. Is there any chance of having an exclusive for collectors? I am sure they would pay a little more so that Mattel would not lose out and I am sure they could be distributed through the clubs.
The International Brush Truck is an exclusive for collectors this year. How well it does will determine if we do more. In terms of making Club Models this is not possible at the moment.
8. Can I have a 5 pack where all the models are in black?
I love black vehicles. Thanks for the suggestion but we prefer to have a variety of color in our 5 packs.
9. Can anyone be an Ambassador and do they keep the models they show? I would like to be boss of Matchbox as well.
Wow you are asking for a lot. Ambassadors do not receive samples of the models they show except pictures for their own collections. Sneak peek photo images are forwarded to the Ambassador by the Matchbox team. At the end of the Ambassador’s term, they do receive a gold finished London Bus. Someday you could possibly be a boss at Matchbox if you work very hard and have a passion for die cast cars.
10. Do you have any information on retooled vehicles filling in the gaps?
MB901 (this may just be the canceled VW Bulli) MB927 - 968
This is a long list that can’t be answered this week. Check back next week.
11. Since 2010 collectors have regularly asked for a list of issued Skybuster planes by Matchbox. Although it was promised that Matchbox would work on it, the list still has not been forthcoming.
2013 poses even more problems for Skybuster collectors because W-numbers (2012) are mixed up with Y-numbers (2013) and some planes have been issued with their recolour in the same wave. Previously we could buy a couple of planes in Europe and we could more or less guess what was issued in Wave A and Wave B. Wave C is a great mystery for us as various models keep popping up on auction sites. Some 2013 models have only seen in 2014 packaging but we can only guess whether it was a model from 2013 unreleased until 2014 or whether we had some 2013 models still missing.
Many people from different countries have been asking why Matchbox cannot release the information regarding the content of wave C. We would like to have a list of all models issued in 2013 together with a list of which 2013 models have been re-issued in 2014 in new packaging.
I can work on putting together a list of SB planes and SB numbers for 2013 & 2014. I cannot provide actual toy numbers (Y & W prefixes) nor will I provide the content of each mix for this is not allowed by Mattel.
John should also be aware that we distribute Sky Busters in different ways in different countries. I simply don’t have the bandwidth to filter this. Pooling this information is time consuming because confidential information must be edited from the lists as I have done on the mainline 1-120 numbers.
I do this on my own time so I have to prioritize what is important. In short I cannot provide everything that John is asking for.
However, I have enclosed the 2013 and 2014 Sky Busters assortment lists.
For your information in certain European regions, the contents of the assortments may vary since some countries do not like to have military style vehicles in their assortments.
SKY BUSTER ASSORTMENT LISTS 2013
Comments John: To my idea this list can not be right. I will ask for more clarification to Dave Weise to check this out.
SKY BUSTER ASSORTMENT LISTS 2014
|ANSWERS FROM MATTEL|
1. With the success of the INC construction series, is there a possibility of seeing the Street Cleaner in INC Construction colors? It would
be great to have a 5 pack in this livery next year. Is there any chance?
The Street Cleaner could have INC markings in the future but we normally use INC on vehicles in the construction segments. The Street Cleaner is usually in the Adventure City segment. We will take your suggestion into consideration however. Thanks.
2. My most depressing part about the 2014 list is the reduction in cars. When it was increased from 100 to 120 the other year, it was purely to add cars in to the mix. The range had been set up with 100 non-cars, and they decided last minute to sprinkle in 20 cars. Last year, they kept it at 20 cars in the series. But this year it has been reduced to a paltry 9. I felt 20 was too little as they make up the majority of what you see out and about. I understand they are trying to get variety, but cars are important. Will 2015 see a larger intake of actual road cars in the range?
3. #9 is listed as MB807 Caterham Superlight R500, is it the MB802 Caterham or is this in fact meant to be MB807 Holden VE Ute? Please say it’s the Ute.
Sorry but there was a typo. The correct number should be MB802. You have a keen eye. Thank you for pointing out the error. It should not be the MB number for the Holden.
4. I hope it is the model name they got wrong (I know you’re most likely right though) that way we would get the MB868 Travel Trailer at #26 instead of the MB865 Torque Titan but again I think it’s the MAN they have incorrect, the trailer would be a far better inclusion into the main line than that hideous Torque Titan. Can you please comment?
Thanks for pointing out yet another typo on our part. The correct MB# should be 865 for the fantastic Torque Titan. You will be happy to know that the Travel Trailer will be included in this year’s 5 pack.
55. Regarding the Mini Dozer I feel compelled to remind you it is a bucket or a loader. A DOZER is a blade, of which I learned at a very early age BECAUSE of Matchbox. Actually a single arm skid steer loader is a real machine. If you google 1110t JCB you can see some pictures. I say skid steer, but this is really a compact track loader. The MB track layout is not the same as JCB, but they probably cannot do an exact copy. I do agree the radiator out front is way off.....as in it should be in the back. I also agree that it is not a dozer. This always bugs me when the news cannot get this right either. Any comment?
You are overthinking this. Sorry if it keeps you up at night. At Matchbox we reserve the right to call our vehicles whatever we want. We designed it so we get to choose the name even if folks aren’t happy with it. Sorry about that.
6. I'd rather see either of the two new Fiats, the Mini Clubman, a modern Corvette Stingray, a Koenig's Egg, a modern Ford Fiesta, a 2014 Dodge Challenger Shaker, the new Dodge Dart or any number of another 20 or so vehicles before seeing some of the generic creations. I just miss the regular cars and more than that, I miss newer regular cars. I like the heritage cars we see from the '50s, '60s, '70s and even '80s in terms of the Toyota 4Runner, but the type of modern cars MBX is running out there right now are a 2007 GT500, a 2008 ZR1…...come on, MBX. Get back up to speed on some of the daily drivers, lower-end (i.e. semi-affordable in real life) sports cars and add a few eye-catching exotics. I appreciate where you're coming from, but I think that is the Matchbox brand of the past... A Skoda Octavia isn't a bad choice for an international police car. A quick image search shows it in liveries from Iceland, Switzerland, Holland, Portugal, Egypt, Israel, Hungary and, of course, the Czech Republic. It's also on sale in China and India so you just about justify liveries for there as well. Are you able to act on our suggestions?
Not at the moment. You have some good suggestions but we can only acquire a certain number of licensed vehicles each year. We have a limit. As the team has stated before, just because we want to do certain licensed vehicles does not mean we can. We have to get permission from licensors first. Sometimes they say no. Sometimes it can take a very, very long time to receive information about new vehicles which can delay development. Much effort is required to develop any vehicle especially licensed ones. Licensing is complex these days. Finally, there can often be language barriers. Obtaining international licenses can often be challenging because of translation issues. If you can find someone that can speak 16 different languages please let us know. Cheers.
Comments John Nijhuis: I worked in the Automotive business for over 25 years in over 35 different countries and or languages. You really think you need to speak 16 different languages or may you expect they talk English in International Business. Certainly in the Automotive Businees English is the common language. The language have never been a problem but professionalism is!
7. Did Matchbox base their model on an existing real vehicle?
The Matchbox team always scours the world of vehicles for inspiration. We were influenced by many innovative vehicles when we created the MBX Coupe not just the Local Motors machine.
8. Is it possible to fit in your plans for 2015 Ford S-Max, any new Audi, Mini Countryman Dakar or Paceman, any Lamborghini, Mclaren, or Rolls Royce in your city adventure segment? Or how about the MG B Coupe, Ford Transit MK1, Fiat, Lancia and others would be good ....
Thanks for the suggestions.
9. Anyways, I got another question, one that the people at Matchbox are probably tired to hear, but I still have to ask... Are there any plans to bring the brand back to Brazil? Or rather, were there ever any attempts at bringing Matchbox back to Brazil, or it was settled that the brand would not be coming back once it was removed? It's unfortunate that the collecting landscape in Brazil probably wouldn't be able to support both Matchbox and Hot Wheels when only HW is a good seller among kids, but I've started seeing MBX playsets in stores recently and became curious.
For the moment Brazil appears to be Hot Wheels territory. Perhaps in the future this will change in terms of the availability of Matchbox vehicles.
|ANSWERS FROM MATTEL|
1. What is happening with Walmart? Many stores seem to be discounting all Matchbox items. Is this Walmart dropping
the brand, reducing the amount of stores taking them, or simply getting rid of stock to bring in new Matchbox items?
Walmart has been restructuring their die cast brands in some stores.
2. What is happening with the number of vans in the range? A few years ago there was talk of increasing the amount available due to the large area for tampo design on the sides. Yet recently they appear to have vanished. Models like the Ford Transit, VW Caddy, Ford Panel Van, 1956 Ford F-100 Panel Truck and 1965 Austin Mini Van. The only one that appears to be continuing is the Delivery Van. Please can we have more vans? This will depend on the segment themes we have chosen for 2014.
Since we add new tools each year, some tools will drop out to make way for them. We also have issues with the weight of some of these vehicles. Note however that the 65 Austin Mini Van will reappear in the “City works” 5 pack this year.
3. Talking of Ford Transit, it has been a staple of the range since 1976. Has any thought been given to including the latest generation full size Transit? Ford will soon introduce the redesigned Ford Transit (full size van) and the Ford Transit connect .
Hot Wheels showed their custom version of the Transit connect at the SEMA show last year. Matchbox won’t pursue either model at the moment.
4. There was talk in a previous q&a about Swedish cars. Has any thought been given about retooling the Volvo XC90 into an emergency vehicle? It would simply be an alteration to the roof to incorporate a light bar, and then you could re-issue it as ambulances, fire vehicles or police vehicles - vehicles that will all easily fit in with the current categories.
This is a good suggestion. Thanks.
5. Are there any plans to work with Superlift again? We had the Ford F-350 Superduty and Jeep Wrangler. Could we see any more collaboration in the future?
6. The news that the Range Rover Evoque is hopefully on course for a release next year, will the model still be classified as a 2013 model when it does finally surface, or will it simply be released under its 2015 number? We would like to know so we can either keep the 2013 list open until it reaches stores or close it after the BMW bike hits stores.
The Range Rover Evoque will carry over into 2015 but as a 2014 model due the very late introduction.
7. Have you ever seen the TV series "Last Man Standing"? It is a Tim Allen comedy on ABC Friday nights. Quite often you see various Matchbox models laying around on the series. He drives an early 1950s pick up. I think it would be great if you could make a version of the GMC Pick up similar to his green one.
We have had a similar request regarding a Canadian TV series with the same model. We probably would not tie into a direct replica of either one as there could be licensing issues.
8. Do you know how many models in the 5-packs are exclusive? As pictures come out, it appears that some packs have barely anything exclusive in them.
For this year 36 models will be exclusive. 24 will be from mainline.
9. Will the Garbage Grinder be seen again? I loved that mould and it would be great in a National Parks livery. l hope we see it again.
Yes the Garbage Grinder will appear again this year in mainline.
10. Thank you for doing lime green fire apparatus. While not as popular as that other color in the States it is still used by many departments. Do you have further plans to use this colour on emergency vehicles?
This has not been determined yet but we are glad to hear that you liked this color choice.
11. British and EU emergency vehicles are using a fluorescent lime and red (fire) blue (police) and green (ambulance) checkerboard. Could the Matchbox designers ensure that the colour match is more accurate as these colours have changed?
We will do our best to create authentic colors when we can. This does requires research that we find on the net and certain colors must be approved by our licensors when using licensed vehicles.
12. We would love some campus police cars. It's Xavier from Barcelona, Spain (the MATCHBOX administrator of the Spanish uno64 forum). I still intend to send you questions from the Spanish collectors... it has been a hell of a time at work with many threatening deadlines, and I've been unable to sit down calmly to try to do a proper translation of the collectors' questions, worries and frustration. And that's one of the things that makes the task a bit more complicated: almost all the comments I'm collecting are full of bitterness, frustration and desperation as it is IMPOSSIBLE to get *fresh* Matchbox product in Spain. I'll try to send you the input this week, and filter a bit the bitterness (and some proper language) from some of them. But I'm contacting you because of a finding I made today which only confirms the frustration of us Spanish collectors w.r.t. Mattel and the way they handle (destroy, swipe) the Matchbox brand in Spain.
We welcome any questions that you may have from your home country of Spain.
|There are six new images available to show this week. First is a new tool for 2014 and called Mini Dozer. It will be the smallest dozer produced under the Mattel banner. It does have a shovel that can be raised and yes it only has one arm.|
|The Deep Diver which will be used in both the singles mainline and in a 5 pack for this year nad the next three models will appear in the 1-120 line.|
|Lastly a new decoration for the Freeway Flyer (flying car) in the Sky Busters range has been revealed.|
|Pre-production models of the Mark IV Cortina come in a range of colours, for a different colour may be in use in the paint shop at any one time and in the early stages colour was not important. These colour pre-production models were used to check for minor errors in production. As the development of the model proceeds the castings may reveal slight alterations. The very first casting, which was possibly assembled in the toolroom, used the first shots from the moulds and was painted light blue with a beige interior and amber windows.|
Sometimes, a problem developed very late in the production process and there
are examples of pre-production models with the wrong base number for example
the 57 Carmichael with 45 base, 54 Mobile Home with 52 on base, 38 Camper
Van with 35 and 17 London Bus with 50.One colour trial model was painted red with a yellow interior and amber windows and a black base.
Another example, as shown, was painted white with a black, red or yellow interior and an unpainted base. By now the base number had been added to the base casting. When models with opening parts were manufactured, these parts had to be given a strength test. Close examination of the white model shown shows the driver’s door missing. It had been pulled off in the strength test and was despatched to the waste bin for recycling. Some colour trial Cortinas were painted in the military green colour used on a number of range models at the time. Once the body colour had been agreed, in this case metallic lime green, discussion followed regarding the interior colour.
In this case the pre-production models were released for sale but the only
difference between these and the normal issue models is that the early
models had no patent number. All subsequent variations, with the exception
of the Chinese model, featured a patent number.
Perhaps the most interesting of the red Cortinas were those found with light brown interiors and those with black bases.
The final Cortina was only available in mainland China. Apprentices for the Shanghai factory learnt their trade on three models, one of which was a red Mark IV with tan and white flame tampo on the bonnet and roof. The base was painted metallic silver and was not cast with a patent number. The model was sold in a special blister pack.
|ANSWERS FROM MATTEL|
1. The Princeton, WV Rescue Squad version shown on the Kimtek website I've actually seen in person. In fact, that's the main reason I was excited when I first saw the prototype version of the Matchbox one. Maybe Matchbox will consider a Princeton Rescue Squad version of this model in the future.
This is something to consider. Thanks for the suggestion.
2. We do already know that Matchbox won't be doing any Mercedes models until something changes in the licensing agreement between the two companies, so the Sprinter can't happen any time soon. But I do like the idea of a Chevy Express or the now-deceased Dodge Ram full-size van. I think it's high time that Matchbox had a minivan in the line-up, simply based on the number of kids that ride around in them...I think they'd be pretty excited to have a toy version of their family car. As far as minivans go, though, I think I'd vote for the Honda Odyssey. What does the Matchbox team think?
These are good suggestions. We do have challenges regarding their size and weight but we will take your suggestions into consideration.
3. I'd like to know if we're going to see anymore classic American Muscle cars from the 60's and 70's, like the 71 Firebird or the Mustang CS. I know Muscle Cars are more up Hot Wheels' alley, but, in my opinion, Matchbox's take on the 71 Firebird was much better than Hot Wheels' "custom" version, for example. From the stance, to the proportions, to the overall body shape, there's something about Matchbox's 'Bird that just feels right and I can't quite put my finger on it, but I do know I'd love to see more American cars getting the same treatment. My personal suggestion would be the 1973/1974 Chevrolet Nova, which, despite similar to the 1968/1972 models, has yet to be done in small scale. Is there a place for it in Matchbox's line-up, with the Firebird and Mustang?
Never say never when it comes to Muscle cars. There is always a place for them in the City Adventure segment. We are doing Mustang LX SSP this year although it's a police version. We have not abandoned Muscle cars but need to be prudent about where they fit in the line.
4. I think the already too-large wildfires around the world are going to become more common in the news, perhaps as soon as this summer, and I think the public's response to a Forest/Park Service themed fire five pack will be positive (perhaps frustrating me when I can't find them....). That said, I wonder if Matchbox will ever produce a European forest fire truck....Unimogs are commonly used as are other marques. While I'm on a roll, (we fire guys often call a fire response a "roll"), my best-case scenario has Matchbox making some Australian forest fire trucks too...there are some very interesting vehicles in use "down under", from all around the Australasian region. An "international forest fire" themed multipack would be a "hot" item in my book. (Puns intended....) (I'll keep dreaming about those, as the practicality of the idea is a bit far-fetched.) Would you consider making some regional fire vehicles? Your suggestions are not farfetched.
We are always looking around the world to see what new vehicles will work in our Heroic Rescue segment. You have some good suggestions.
5. When will you be able to provide the complete list for 2014 releases?
We hope to post this later this month. Revisions are always happening. We want to post a list that is the most final. The paint is not dry yet as they say.
6. Do you have any news on the Premier series planned for 2014 â€“ just a clue would help?
Note that there is no â€œPremierâ€ series for this year.
7. As the Acre Maker has received so many favourable comments and it has a tow hook, are you planning to release some trailers, either in the range or as parts of a set?
No plans for new trailers at the moment. We did want to make it compatible with our current farm trailer however.
8. A few years back Matchbox had a wonderful idea and recolored the whole range gold. It was known as the Gold Challenge. Could we have another one of these, please? It would stimulate sales and should be easy for you to do as there was no decoration on any model â€“ just plain gold.
Thanks for the suggestion.
|There are no new images available to show this week. I hope to have more in my next report.|
In the 1960s most Matchbox models were replicas of vehicles that could be seen on the streets. The1970s saw a change in direction, not
only to feature unrealistic cars in flamboyant colours, but also to copy the most exotic and expensive cars often including concept
cars in the range that would never see the action outside of the motor show stand.
The full size Maserati Bora was first introduced at the Geneva Motor Show in 1971 during an era that spawned a myriad of mid-engined sports cars such as the Lamborghini Countach, Ferrari Boxster and BMW M1. The Bora dates back to the days when Maserati was owned by Citroen and although it was an Italian, Alfieri, who designed the real car, a number of French idiosyncrasies were included in the design. Citroen's high pressure hydraulic system not only meant no-travel braking but also was the source to raise and lower the headlights, tilt the front seat and move the pedals forwards and backwards. The seat was rigidly fixed to the bulkhead and so the pedals, steering column and seat squab had to move to accommodate different sized drivers. The Maserati Bora could be yours in 1972 for just £9832, which included air conditioning and electric windows and a speedo showing an optimistic 200 mph â€“ its top speed was just 175 mph. Only 500 were made of which only 20 were right hand drive and so Matchbox decided to model the left hand drive version.
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