Mighty Matchbox makes mega money

06 December 2016
6-Vectis-Cosmobile-12730.jpg This blue oddity is the Superfast Cosmobile; don’t ask us why, though…
Highlights from the Steve Karesboom Matchbox collection
Mighty Matchbox makes mega money Images

The Steve Karseboom Matchbox Collection sale held on the 27th and 28th of October featured over 570 Matchbox Regular Wheels models, including boxed and unboxed trucks, buses, cars, commercials, tractors and emergency vehicles; in addition there were Gift Sets, King Size, Major & Accessory Packs, Models of Yesteryear and catalogues.

If you thought the well had run dry in terms of colour variants and pre-production models, this collection would have proved you wrong. A regular wheels No.41a Jaguar D Type in dark green with racing No.41 decals, type B front rivet post with braces, a tan driver and satin black base was fitted with 20 tread grey plastic wheels with crimped axles: near mint in a B3 box, it raced off to £312, beating the upper estimate of £200. The Superfast No.18a Field Car surprised some: with a yellow body with cast shut roof cross, brown roof, ivory interior with satchel cast to rear shelf, it came with a rare silver painted base and ran on 4 spoke wide wheels. Described as mint apart from usual minor factory assembly marks to the roof, it was sealed in a 1971 copyright US issue blister pack. Estimated at £300-400, it roared away to make £816.

The Superfast 21a Foden Concrete Truck came with a regular wheel cab and chassis castings; it was finished in dark yellow with blue windows and a red chassis, on a green plastic base. A transition example, estimated at £150, it too made just over £800. But that was small beer compared with the Superfast No.66a Greyhound Coach: with a metallic silver body, amber windows, white interior, dark lavender base and 5 spoke narrow wheels with black axle clips, it was in excellent plus condition in a mint New type G box. The estimate of £150 stood no chance, bidders pursuing this all the way to £1,920.

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The Stoat Armoured Car (28b) pre-production trial in red, with silver base and no rear brace also attracted the punters (a bid of £528 took it home) whilst 59c (a Planet Scout) was also a pre-production example: pricing these is obviously a nightmare, for the example’s £120-150 guideline was left standing, the hammer closing on £552. This model boasted a red upper body and white lower with dark amber windows and a chromed interior. Another example, this time in light orange over metallic jade, made even more, finishing on £600. A bit more than that (£624) secured the 75b Superfast Alfa Carabo colour trial, which was finished in white with an ivory interior. The Superfast Holden Pick-up Truck was yet another trial colour, in military green with dark yellow motorcycles, amber windows and a dark yellow interior (£432); whilst the 68b Superfast Cosmobile enjoyed similar status, resplendent in sky blue, with amber windows and a chromed interior: this made £432 (against an estimate of £90!). Finally, the Superfast No.35a Merryweather Marquis Fire Engine was a promotional issue. With a bright red body with Flame Proof Wool labels, blue windows, a light grey grille and base with a letter A on a raised circle, it ran on 5 spoke wide wheels with black twin rivet axle clips. Near mint, it was knocked down for £552.