Collecting Jaguar Scale Models by Michael Driver
The Jaguar XK120
The Jaguar XK120 was launched in 1948 at the Earls Court Motor Show. The impact of the car on the public and press re-defined sports cars in Britain. The rest is, of course, history and a whole new breed of sports cars emerged from Jaguar to go on and win at Le Mans.
The Jaguar XK120 by Dinky Toys
The iconic Jaguar XK120 was modelled by Dinky Toys, but this did not appear until March 1954, some six years after the ‘real’ sports car had been introduced. More than likely most of us have owned one of the Dinky Toys models which came in red, yellow, sage green or white. My first model was the yellow one, which at the time, I thought was the best colour.
The Dinky Toys model [no.157] was described in the April 1954 Meccano Magazine with great enthusiasm and they said “this model of the famous car that has been so successful in rallies and high-speed events is a “must” for every collector”. In the advert for the model they quoted “Grace… Space… Pace… is a Jaguar slogan and the Jaguar XK120 Coupe possesses these features in good measure”
The early red and yellow Dinky Toys models had cast wheels in the same colours as the body. The sage green and the white models had beige wheels. The later models were then fitted with spun aluminium wheels before the model was deleted in 1962.
In 1956 Dinky Toys introduced a number of its models in two-tone colours including the Jaguar XK120. One Jaguar was finished in yellow and grey and another in red and turquoise. These were certainly not Jaguar colours by any stretch of the imagination. However, at least there were ‘real’ Jaguar XK120s in two-tone finishes. These were shown in pictures in the Beaulieu Archives – Jaguar in Pictures book by Roy Bacon. Unfortunately, they are in black and white, but they are evidence of a these colour variations, no doubt being more subtle colours than the Dinky Toys variants which were deleted in 1959.
The Dinky Toys models were sold in individual yellow boxes with illustrations of the car. Some later models were sold in plain red and yellow boxes. Today, the models with the boxes are more valuable and as a rough guide they can cost £100 to £150 for a mint example. The two-tones range from £200 to £250. But, as with the real cars, it’s not the price, but the fact that you own one!
It is worth remembering that many older models are not to a specific scale as they were often produced as toys rather than accurate models. However, scales of 1:76, 1:43, 1:32, 1:24 and 1:18 are the most common ones used for Jaguar models today.
© Michael Driver October 2013 London
Useful links for collectors of Jaguar Scale Models
Lindholm Forres Books is a small specialist publisher producing books about collecting. Its first book was the Toy Jaguar Book which is the history of Jaguar cars through toys and models. We are shortly to launch a book on Collecting History which is a personal view looking at collecting toys and models from WW II to the present day. Other titles are on the way. For further details contact Michael Driver.
Keith Powell specialises in new diecast Jaguar scale models and has a large stock from top manufacturers, such as, Auto Art, Spark, NEO, Oxford Die Cast and Minichamps. All scales in stock, including 1/76, 1/32, 1/43, 1/24 and 1/18. Contact Keith for details of new releases, mail order sales, or a list of future events he will be attending.
Diecast Jaguar Scale Model Specialist
Phone: 01933 667358
Italian Miniatures Despite the name, we sell all sorts of products related to classic cars, including Jaguar, and ranging from clothing, stickers, decals, books, posters and models to long since forgotten new items from the Jaguar catalogues which are no longer available via the usual routes. The web link below will take you directly to the Jaguar products on offer.
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All information correct at time of publishing.