Vintage Car, Vintage Model

May 20, 2018

Vintage Car, Vintage Model

The most exciting models we carry are from historic model companies. (above Jaguar D Type, description and link further down!)  Because many miniature vehicles were originally aimed at children as playthings, there is no precise difference between a model car and a toy car, yet the word 'model' implies either assembly required or the accurate rendering of an actual vehicle at smaller scale. The kit building hobby became popular through the 1950s, while the collecting of miniatures by adults started to pick up momentum around 1970. Precision-detailed miniatures made specifically for adults are a significant part of the market since the mid-1980s.

Miniature models of automobiles first appeared in Europe around the time real automobiles did. Then, shortly after, they appeared in the United States. These were toys and replicas often made of lead and brass). Later models made in the early twentieth century were slush cast plaster or iron. Tin and pressed steel cars, trucks, and military vehicles, like those made by Bing of Germany, were introduced in the 1920's through the 1940's, but period models rarely copied actual vehicles, likely because of the crudeness of early casting and metal shaping techniques. Casting vehicles in various alloys, usually zinc (called zamac or mazac), became popular in the late 1930s and remained prominent after World War II.

Post-war, pressed tin and die-cast zinc were the most popular materials used in Europe and Japan. Mass-produced diecast metal toys appeared in America as well, but unlike those in Europe, they were often cruder and less detailed. Meanwhile, the use of plastics surged and became popular by the mid-1950's. During the 1950's and 1960's, tin and pressed steel were seen broadly Japan, which dominantly used die-cast into the 1970's. By 2000, China and other countries of Southeast Asia became the main producers of die-cast metal companies headquartered in Europe, the United States and Japan. Generally, as of 2015, only specialty models for collectors are still made in Europe or the United States. Model Cars and related brands and people have been inducted in the Model Car Hall of Fame since 2009.


1967 Ford GT40 Mk IV GMP model

This model is our 1967 Ford GT40 Mk IV is a 1/12 scale GMP model, 14" long. This Ford ran at Le Mans and finished 4th O.A., driven by Mark Donohue and Bruce McLaren after losing the tail during the race.

(below Actual GT40 in 1967,  source:

"Bruce returned to Le Mans with Ford in 1967, this time paired with Donohue in a Mk4 run by Shelby American, alongside the sister car of Gurney and AJ Foyt. The latter was making his European debut having just scored his third Indy 500 win, while Gurney would go on to win the Belgian GP in his own Eagle the following week.As ever Bruce proved adept at setting the car up and honing it through practice.Despite an early puncture McLaren and Donohue were in contention in the early going, running second in the 10th hour. Then just after halfway Andretti had a heavy crash at the Esses after suffering brake failure, triggering a costly incident that also took out the Fords of Roger McCluskey and Jo Schlesser.

Bruce managed to thread his way through the wreckage, but he picked up a puncture, and had a long slog back to the pits. Later he had problems with the clutch in the pit-lane, and he also lost the engine cover. All of this saw the car slip down to an eventual fourth, while Gurney and Foyt went on to score a famous win – with McLaren’s set-up, of course – and that famous racing tradition of spraying champagne was enacted for the very first time." 

(source:Thanks to for this entry

The detail is really specific to the distress the vehicle suffered during the race.

This model was highly modified by Dennis Koleber to its configuration after the race, in a very distressed condition.


Die-cast metal with extensive details to the engine, cockpit and chassis. Comes with original box.  


Mr. Dennis Koleber's detailed work reinforces the idea that these items are not mere "toys," but can become a unique historical artifact.

The Diorama

The word "diorama" can either refer to a 19th-century mobile theatre device, or, in modern usage, a three-dimensional full-size or miniature model, sometimes enclosed in a glass showcase for a museum. Dioramas are often built by hobbyists as part of related hobbies such as military vehicle modeling, miniature figure modeling, or aircraft modeling.

The word "diorama" originated in 1823 as a type of picture-viewing device, from the French in 1822. The word literally means "through that which is seen", from the Greek di- "through" + orama "that which is seen, a sight". The diorama was invented by Louis Daguerre and Charles Marie Bouton, first exhibited in Paris in July 1822 and in London on September 29, 1823.


Two Lancia Beta Monte Carlo Turbo models by BAM

Here the BAM company offers 1/43 scale models with Two Lancia Beta Monte Carlo Turbo models racing on a curved diorama. Two Lancia Beta Monte Carlo Turbo models by BAM, France, 1/43rd scale, red and white #19 car, replica of the R. Patrese/W. Rohrl car that won Brands Hatch in 1980; blue “Fruit of the Loom” #51 car is a replica of the C. Facetti/M. Finotto Jolly Club entry that ran at Silverstone in 1980, cars come with ceramic, race track curve diorama display, both 4.25" long, A- cond., lot of 3.




Lancia D24 Model Hand-built by Jack Harper

Based on a  MG + kit, 1/12 scale, (13” long), with many modifications and additions. It represents the car that won the Carrera Panamericana in 1953, driven by Juan Manuel Fangio, with full engine and cockpit details, resin & metal construction, A+ cond.


The 1953 Carrera Panamericana was the fourth running of the Carrera Panamericana Mexican sports car racing event, and the first edition as a part of the World Sportscar Championship. The race took place from 19–23 November, and was run from Tuxtla Gutiérrez, Chiapas, to Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua, over 8 stages and 3,077 kilometres (1,912 mi). 182 cars started the race, and 60 finished all 8 stages.


Jaguar D Type Ecurie Ecosse Model Hand-built by Jack Harper

Based on a  MG + kit, 1/12 scale, (13.5” long), with added details and modifications. It represents the winner of the 24 hours of Le Mans in 1957 driven by Ron Flockart and Ivor Bueb, with cockpit details, resin & metal construction, A+ cond.

"The winning car covered 4397 Km, an average speed of 183kmh, a record which remained unbroken for four years.

D Types also finished in second, third, fourth and sixth places, an unparalleled result to that time. Ninian Sanderson and John Lawrence were second, Jean Lucas/ Jean-Marie Brussin third, Paul Frere/’Freddy’ Rouselle fourth and Mike Hawthorn/Masten Gregory sixth. Flockhart also won the race in 1956 partnered with Ninian Sanderson."



Enjoy these models and our other items at

Blake Arnold

staff member

l'art et l'automobile



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