Hey guys, did you knew Lego produced actual die cast cars on the past? Neither did I, until I read the excellent piece on T-Hunted by a collaborator named Mauricio about this.
In the 50's and 60's, Lego only had the - now called - system blocks, which were the vanilla parallelepipeds we all know. But, for immersion, people wanted to give a bit more ambience to their builds, so Lego started to make small scale (1:50 and 1:87) cars and trucks, first in wood, and after that in die cast metal. These were made until the the introduction of model cars actually built from Lego blocks in the early 70's.
As an example, take a look at these city models, which included several die cast cars:
As per usual with other diecast manufacturers, these cars spotted some rare variations. The intention of the Dane company wasn’t to create chase cars, but often some minor modifications were introduced to a small number of cars. For example, the Esso truck made in Norway had bronze wheels (top right)
Bronze wheels! How cool is that? What could be cooler? I tell you, these models we saw until here were included in sets, but Lego realized they could sell them as collectible models. These collectibles had what I think is one of the coolest boxes of all time:
According to Mauricio’s text, some of these VW Bugs, if the ribbon is intact, can achieve almost a thousand euro price tag.
On the following years, they slowly began to introduce some new models here and there. From ‘57 onwards, on Denmark and Norway, they started to sell the VW Bugs in these 24-units counter boxes, while on other countries they were sold in boxes with 10 or so models:
Between ‘61 and ‘63 they introduced several new models, like Citroëns, Jaguars, etc:
And loads of VW Buses!
Finally, in ‘64 they introduced these amazing trucks
I had no idea this existed, and now I want everything :) There are some on the Bay of E’s, like this one for cheap, but they seem a bit hard to find...