Speedy by Mercury
by Doug Breithaupt
Images from the collections of Mac Ragan, Mark Foster, David Cook and Doug Breithaupt

Ferrari 330 P4 #803

Alfa Romeo 33 #808

Dino Pininfarina #810

Mercedes-Benz C-111 #818
Mercury is one of the one of the best-know and best-loved Italian diecast producers. Founded in 1932, they managed to survive until 1980 before closing their doors. Mercury produced models in many scales but is best known for their wonderful 1:43 scale line of the 1960's. These 1:43 scale models are highly collectible and quite valuable today.

Like many 1:43 scale diecast producers, Mercury was impressed with the success of Matchbox in the 1960's and decided to offer their own 3-inch line. Like Dinky's Mini-Dinky models and Polistil's Penny Cars, Mercury gave their junior line a special name. In keeping with the Mercury theme, they called their 1:64 scale line 'Speedy'. Most if not all Speedy models were based on larger Mercury castings.

Many collectors today have never seen a Speedy model. Only 18 castings were actually produced and few were sold outside of Europe. These models seldom appear at toy shows and can command prices of $20-30 in decent condition. The quality of the paint on many Speedy models has not survived well over the past 30 years and finding perfect examples is almost a lost cause.

As I only have one Speedy model in my collection (Porsche Carrera 6 #801), it is with the generous assistance of several other collectors that the accompanying images are presented. Mac Ragan, noted diecast author and enthusiast provided the four images to the left. Mark Foster provided the Osi Silver Fox and David Cook sent the image of the Chaparral. Thanks guys.

Like the Mini-Dinky and Penny Car lines, Speedy models were only produced for several years, contributing to their rarity on the market today. Several models from the 18 produced may be the only examples of certain cars in 1:64 scale. The Ferrari 250LM is an excellent example of a wonderful Le Mans winning car, not done by other small-scale manufacturers. This model is quite high on my 'seeking' list. The Matra Djet may also be a unique model in 1:64 scale.

While it's too bad that the Speedy line did not last longer, it makes these rare models all the more interesting when found. If anyone can send an image of the models not shown, I would be happy to post them in a future issue.

Porsche Carrera 6 #801

Chaparral 2F #802

Osi Silver Fox #807

Ford GT40 #804
Lamborghini Marzal #805
Ferrari 250 Le Mans #806
Alfa Romeo Montreal #809
Lamborghini Miura #811
Matra Djet #812
Ford Mustang #813
Lola T-70 GT #814
Ferrari P5 #815
Sigma Grand Prix #816
Lotus Europa #817