Expanding the Collection

The following toy cars were purchased or received in trade by Doug Breithaupt in the previous month. Some are new but others are older diecast acquired from other collectors. The prices paid are also shown. This addition to 'Tales of Toy Cars'. is intended to share recent finds with fellow collectors. If you have found some interesting diecast cars recently, let me know and send an image if possible, attached to an e-mail.


1955 Ford Thunderbird - $1

1964 1/2 Ford Mustang - $1

1970 Ford Mustang Boss - $1

1969 Ford Talledega - $1

1999 Ford Explorer - $1

1999 Pontiac Firebird - $1


Toyota Celica rally car - trade

Toyota (Lexus) Crown - trade

Toyota (Lexus) Soarer - trade


Audi TT Coupe - $.65

2002 VW Beetle - $.65


2002 Jeep Liberty - $.49


Majorette Jeep Cherokee - trade

Majorette Jeep Cherokee Ambulance - trade

Recent Additions

Between trades and a trip to Canada this past month, the collection gained a nice variety of new and classic diecast. My choice for 'car of the month' is not a car, it's one of the founding fathers of the SUV. The original Jeep Cherokee by Majorette is a delightful model. The casting is crisp and well executed. The rail-gate drops and Majorette even included a canine passenger. This classic from the 1970's is one of those models that just begs for play-time. Majorette also did an ambulance version of the Cherokee. The casting has major revisions, compared to the original. The grill is different and the raised roof and opening back doors allow for access to the ambulance. A third version of the original Cherokee was done by Majorette as a 4x4, (shown top, right). This one features big tires and a third grill revision.

Car Chains are a new diecast product that include a 1:64 scale car attached to a key chain. Car Chains offers six models in the 'classic' series shown here. The first five are Ford products, beginning with a '55 Thunderbird. Two Mustangs, a '64 1/2 and '70 are joined by a '69 Talledega and a '99 Explorer SUV. A '99 Pontiac Firebird rounds out the six cars. The castings are on the crude side but they feature rubber tires. They are designed to have light-up headlights and pull-back motors although the ones here have neither. On several cars, the wheels are mis-matched. The key chains are screwed on to the car's rear base screw and easily removed.

Three new Toyota models from Tomica were received in trade. The Celica rally car features a bank of auxiliary lights on the nose. The Crown and Soarer models are offered under the Lexus name outside of Japan.

Real Toy has done one of the nicer Audi TT Coupe models. It is joined by a new VW Beetle. These castings are well-painted and a real bargain. Maisto joins Matchbox in offering a Jeep Liberty model. The Maisto casting is superior but it lacks an interior.

Both old and new Hot Wheels came my way this month. A non-collector friend found three red-lines at a garage sale for $.10 each and gave them to me. The Twin Mill II and Super Van are valued at $15-20 each but the rare 1973 Double Header was a one-year-only model and can go for over $100 in mint-loose condition. This one is not mint but is still in excellent condition. Those bargains are still out there!

In the regular HW line, five 2002 first editions were added. The 40 Something is interesting in that it represents a modern retro version of Ford's famous GT40. The question is if HW designed this model before or after Ford introduced their own modern retro GT40, to be sold in 2004. The HW version is not quite the same as the Ford concept but close. I would guess that HW selected the yellow and black colors after seeing the Ford concept but that the casting was done before. The Nissan 350Z is the second new Z car, following Tomica. The HW casting is not as accurate as it should be but continues a tradition of Z-Car models from Mattel. The Lotus Elite is a welcome addition as this is the first new Elite casting in many years. This Elite is the V8 version, currently offered from Lotus. The original Elite concept from Lotus was presented in 1972, making this the 30th anniversary of this mid-engine sports car.

The Torpedo Jones model could be one of the most impressive HW models in many years. I say could be because it is an amazing model with a major flaw. First, it appears to be a vintage 1909 Fiat Grand Prix racer. The big 4 cylinder motor was of 34 litres but only 100 h.p. The vintage driver with scarf blowing in the wind is a new touch for HW and adds enormously to the charm of this model. The major flaw is the wheels. These fat, low-profile tires are so out of place that they make this beautiful casting into a joke. Even the wheels on the Toyota RSC, directly below, would look better. Come on guys, design a vintage wheel for all your great vintage castings. Is that too much to ask?

From their newest collector series, HW is offering more of the premium models for a realistic $2.97 (at Wal Mart). The 'Light My Firebird' is a modern casting of the classic model, done in 1969. This casting has been used before but now sports a full wind-shield and rubber tires. Curiously, the base is dated 1967, the date the original Custom Firebird was produced. It appears that HW is re-writing their own history! Nitty Gritty Kitty, King Kuda and Heavy Chevy re-castings will make this a four-car series. The 1940 Ford Convertible is in the Hot Rod series but has a stock look. With it's opening hood and rubber tires, this is a nice model. The 40 Ford has now been done as a coupe, fastback, convertible, woody wagon, pick-up, panel truck and numerous hot rods. This may be one of the most complete model year representations in small-scale diecast.


Jeep Cherokee 4x4 - $.99

Twin Mill II - gift

Super Van - gift

Double Header- gift

40 Something - $.79

Nissan 350Z - $.79

Lotus Elite - $.79

Torpedo Jones - $.79

Toyota RSC - $.79

1967 'Light My Firebird' - $2.97

1940 Ford Convertible - $2.97