Thursday, October 9, 2014

#466 MERCURY SPEEDY VELOX – FERRARI P5 (Ref. 915) (Around 1971)



In other occasions we have talked about Mercury, the history of the company as well as other interesting facts can be read in my previous entries.

The following information has been mostly retrieved from breithaupts.com, and a wonderful article written by Craig Mueller.

This entry is devoted to the 1:66 scale / 3 inches toy cars made by Mercury. Mercury is most known for their 1:43 line, but they also had smaller scale cars from the late 60s on. The story goes like that of many other companies: Matchbox, HotWheels and all the other major companies were releasing toy cars in this scale, for example, Politoys launched the “Penny” line. Mercury (also in Italy) simply followed with “Speedy”.

A list of all Speedy references:

801 Porsche Carrera 6
802 Chaparral 2F
803 Ferrari 330 P4
804 Ford GT 40
805 Lamborghini Marzal
806 Ferrari 250LM
807 OSI Silver Fox
808 Alfa Romeo 33
809 Alfa Romeo Montreal Bertone*
810 Dino Pininfarina
811 Lamborghini Miura Bertone*
812 Matra Jet 5*
813 Ford Mustang*
814 Lola T 70 GT*
815 Ferrari P5
816 Sigma GP Car
817 Lotus Europa
818 Mercedes Benz C111
??? Porsche 917**

* These models are unknown to-date. Three of them appeared in the catalogue, but maybe were never mass produced, the other two didn’t even appear in that catalogue, were only referenced.
** Not numbered

Later additions to the 800 series:

870 Fiat Van (no rear windows)
871 Fiat Van (Ambulance, with rear windows and siren)
872 Fiat Van (with rear windows)
873 Fiat Van (higher roof)

Apparently, Dr. Force seems to list also these references as part of the series:

850 Covered Wagon
851 Stagecoach

In the same size, there were also some references of Formula 1 models. At least five references, based on the same cast, but with different colours.

1201 GP Jarama
1202 GP Monte Carlo
1203 GP Zeltweg
1204 GP Hockenheim
1205 GP Zandvoort

These early models had a reference number starting with 801 (to 818) and rubber tyres, which is somehow rare for car models in this scale. At some point, the series changed its name from “Speedy” to “Speedy Velox”, and the rubber tyres disappeared to be replaced by plastic tyres, just like the rest of the companies, and following the trend started by Hot Wheels. These wheels (both with rubber or plastic tyres) also had very detailed hubcaps, up to four different types depending on the car.
The new “Speedy Velox” were models made out of the same casts than the 800 series, only they were numbered with 900s. The box lists:

901 Porsche Carrera 6
902 Chaparral 2F
903 Ferrari 330 P4
904 Ford GT 40
906 Ferrari 250LM
908 Alfa Romeo 33
910 Dino Pininfarina
915 Ferrari P5


Some of this series were also sold under the brand “Mercury import Märklin”, and under other brands (resellers) like “Micro Mites” (World Toy House) or “Majorette Mini Cars” (Physio-Chem). These distributed cars from many different countries, like Majorette, Lonestar or Budgie.

Speedy models were sold in cardboard boxes with windows (either red or blue), plastic boxes, or even blister cards. There were also some cars available as keyrings, and some were used as promotional giveaways from Elf in France.

Some of this models have some similarities to other models made by Penny or early Guisval.


FACTS AND FIGURES:
  • Name: FERRARI P5 Pininfarina  (Nr. 915)
  • Scale: 1:66
  • Year: Around 1971
  • Company: Mercury - Speedy Velox (Italy)
  • Size: approx. 10 cm

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