Odds & Ends...

"Welcome to the major league."  Above is a page from the 1970 Mattel International catalog showing the 11-car Grand Prix line up.  There's some very interesting stuff on this page.  First of all, check out the two new cars for 1970: the Porsche and the Ferrari.  The Porsche is wearing Ford Mk IV numbers and appears to have black windows and headlights.  Is it a photograph or a drawing?  The Ferrari is wearing McLaren numbers, but that's not the most interesting feature.  Rather than intake stacks behind the cockpit, this car has a scoop!

Several of the 1969 cars in the photos are prototypes.  The green enamel Brabham has a clear windscreen and white interior.  Same for the Shelby Turbine and Indy Eagle.  The Lotus Turbine has the prototype clear glass and white interior and is painted in orange enamel, a color that never showed up in production.  All four of the Indy cars that were used for the catalog photos still exist!  Two belong to Bruce Pascal and two to Bob Rosas.


Above: catalog models!  Photos courtesy of Bruce Pascal & Bob Rosas.


From the 1968 catalog, here's an artist's rendering of the Ford J-Car.  The description reveals two interesting points.  First, the original plan was that this car would only be produced in white enamel.  Second, "streamlined underbody" refers to the painted base found on HK, but not US, J-Cars.  Below is the photo of the J-Car that appeared in the 1969 catalog.

The 1969 catalog featured artist's renderings of the four new Indy cars.  Interesting that the Lotus is wearing Indy pole sitter Joe Leonard's #60 badges, rather than the #70 badges that ended up on the production decal sheets!

Below: 1969 catalog photos of the four new Le Mans & CanAm cars.

The two-page spread below is pretty cool!  This is from the catalog that came as part of the Hot Wheels Club kit in 1970.  Pictured are all of the cars from 1968 and 1969, and the new cars for 1970.  Several of the cars in the photo are prototypes (see the orange enamel Lotus Turbine in the 6th row?  the rear-loading Beach Bomb in the 3rd row?).

Note that the four Indy cars are the exact same four cars pictured above and now in the hands of two collectors.  Also, note the very interesting prototype Ferrari 312P (1st car, 8th row).  It has a red intake scoop, rather than metal intake stacks!  I've always wondered if this car existed as a prototype or was simply a drawing (as in the catalog photos at the top of this Odds & Ends page).  This photo suggests that there was indeed a prototype in one form or another.  I wonder where it is now...

Click on the spread to see a larger version on the photo.

Above is a rare 4-car Indy Team set from 1969.  Unopened and still in the shrink wrap, these sets are valued in the $1200-1800 range.

Similar to the Indy Team set is the Ontario Team set.  These sets contained a McLaren, a Lola, a Ford Mk IV and a Chaparral.  The above set is missing it's shrink wrap and stickers have been applied to two of the cars.  The Ontario set below is still wrapped in the original plastic.

Here's a hard-to-find Action Set Gear Box featuring a red Ford Mk IV and a white Chaparral 2G on the front.  The box is about 3 feet long and has room for track and accessories, and a 12-car tray.

Every Grand Prix collector needs one of these cases!

The following color guide is from the 1969 catalog and shows the first generation Hot Wheels colors.  Both gold and light blue essentially disappeared after 1969.  "Lime" covers both lime and antifreeze.  "Lavender" is known as creamy pink among collectors.

Below is a color guide that was created by a collector using PhotoShop.  Although this is not an official Mattel chart, it does a reasonably nice job of showing the six new colors that appeared in late 1969 and early 1970.  Note that the "lime" VW is actually antifreeze in collector jargon, and that the "light green" Peeping Bomb appears to be US lime rather than the Granny Smith green apple color characteristic of US light green.

Some redline era artwork featuring Grand Prix cars!  These beautiful panels by artist Otto Kuhni were featured on track set boxes and depicted the layouts that kids could assemble with the track sets.  This particular artwork was featured on the Grand Prix Super Charger track set.

Below is a rare and valuable Hot Wheels store display from 1969.  Displays such as this were provided to stores to introduce and advertise the Hot Wheels line.  This particular display features the four Indy cars about to race on the streets of Monaco!  A red Maserati Mistral serves as the pace car, and residents driving a rose Custom VW, a blue Mercedes 280 SL, and a green Rolls-Royce patiently wait for the race parade to pass!

This display was listed on eBay in Oct. 2004 with a Buy It Now price of $28,000!

       MORE TO COME!     
       Please check back later...


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 © 2004 by Rick Wilson. All Rights Reserved.