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Essex Models and Miniatures archive
Matchbox, in the early 1970′s came up with some wacky designs, most of which I have but what they also did was to immortalise many of the concept cars that never made production, which would of otherwise slipped into history and oblivion.
The Lamborghini Marzal, Matchbox number 20 has 1969 on the base plate although, two years after the official release of the real car.
Matchbox finally replaced it in 1975 with the Rola-matics Range Rover No20
What fantastic body lines.
All four original colour versions below.
This model got a new lease of life as part of the Matchbox ‘Made in China’ budget range in the 1980′s where the cars have the interior left out, black glass and any opening details removed along with engines etc, the Chinese Marzal Super GT also lost it’s lower door windows which, in my opinion takes away the beauty of what this car is about.
Dinky also made one in a much bigger scale and came in bright green/white, orange/white and yellow/white that I know of.
Dinky number 189.
The real car
The Lamborghini Marzal was a prototype concept car presented by Lamborghini at the 1967 Geneva Motor Show.
Designed by Marcello Gandini of Bertone, it was created to supply Ferruccio Lamborghini with a true four-seater car for his lineup which already included the 400GT 2+2 and the Miura. It was distinguished by amply glazed gullwing-doors and an equally amply louvered rear window. Propulsion was by a 2L 175 bhp (130 kW) in-line six engine, actually a split-in-half version of Lamborghini’s 4L V12, mated to a five speed transmission.
The Marzal remained a one-off, though the general shape and many of the ideas would go on to be used in the Espada. The Marzal design probably found wider recognition as a die-cast model, with both Dinky and Matchbox making scale models, albeit in other colours such as orange livery, although the original show car was painted in silver. This car was publicly driven only once by Princess Grace and her husband as the Monaco Grand-Prix pace car the same year it was designed.
The Marzal made a second public appearance at the 1996 Concours Italiano in Monterey, California in honor of Carrozzeria Bertone. The Athon was also exhibited at this time. The Marzal was located for long time in the Bertone Design Study Museum, and it was sold in auction at Villa d’Este (Italy) on 21 May 2011, for the highest bidder of 1,350,000 Euros, approximately 2 million dollars.
Real car information from Wikipedia
For some time I have been trying to get my hands on the yellow Lamborghini version but as always didn’t want to pay silly money for one.
This week one came up on Ebay for a reasonable price in reasonable condition so I bid on it and won the auction, this is one of those models that started me off collecting diecast Matchbox and one I had as a kid.
This particular model was released in 1968 and only produced for a year and has a visable transverse V12 engine, this was replaced with the Superfast version all being numbered 33 and continued until 1972, the superfast version don’t have a visable engine, I have seen these go for over £100 in mint condition and with a box.
Matchbox Lamborghini Miura P400
Year released, 1968
Colour, Yellow with red interior
Country of origin, UK
I now have three versions but there is one version I don’t have which is copper in colour with red interior, this is classed as a rare find.
The picture below show my three, note the two Superfast versions have different colour grills and there does seem to be a variation in colour although one could be faded rather than a colour change.
The one with the silver grill and base is the earlier one and has the thinner Superfast wheels, the one with the red base and grill had the later thicker Superfast wheels.
Matchbox also did a Kingsize version, K24 and issued in 1969
This one has an opening engine cover and steerable front wheels.
The rear window is fitted with a black plastic grill rather than glass.
The real car
At the November 1965 Turin Auto Show, Ferruccio Lamborghini astonished everybody with his latest car, only the chassis could be seen on the show, but this was already very special, the engine was transversely mid-mounted, up to then this configuration was only seen in real race cars.
For more on the real car Click Here
An old Miura found in a barn, some find!