Day three of Car Week is here, my choice for blue day is another Lesney Matchbox and another Jaguar - all coincidence, as I was thinking of an unusual blue model, and this came to mind. Today we take a look at Lesney Matchbox 65a, the Jaguar (Mark 1) 3.4 litre. This casting entered the range in 1959, and remained until 1962, when it was replaced by a model of the then-current and modern Mark 2 3.8 litre. As one can see, this casting and variant in general is a perfect representation of its time:
As this is a 1959 casting, there is no glazing nor interior. However, the model contains an abundance of fine casting lines, and proportions appear to be virtually perfect. Scale can again be called 1:64. There are few variations of this model, and this is the unusual variant - metallic blue. This lovely shade of blue is a scarce variety, common 65a are a non-metallic blue of a similar shade. This was one of the first Lesney products with metallic paint, and it turns this casting into a little jewel. From all angles, one can see the quality and pleasing lines of this car:
Front and rear have similar detail quality, with mask-sprayed bumpers and front end detail adding accuracy:
The base is basic, as was the style of the time, - technical detailing wouldn’t come around for several years. One can see the base contains identifying data:
This example is lucky enough to live in its excellent original late run type B5 box. With this box type, it was likely made in late 1960 or early 1961, just before the introduction of type C boxes. A prime example of one of the uncommon varieties of the 1959-63 timeframe:
This is another one I am more than happy to have in my collection. Although not as rare as the red XK140, this is still a scarce variety. Some say it is undervalued due to being similar to the common variety, but it isn’t exactly cheap at that. After some searching, I found a fair deal, and it was worth it for this little gem:
Some 1:1s from classiccars.brightwells.com, classicandperformancecar.com, a racing prepped example in a mildly similar color from racingbroad.com, simoncars.co.uk, jec.org.uk, and a period ad from alamy.com - this was the era of “Grace...Space...Pace”.