Lesney Matchbox time is here again. Today is Christmas Eve, green is a Christmas color, and this green is probably the most famous when it comes to cars. Today we examine Lesney Matchbox 41b, the D-Type Jaguar. This casting entered the range in 1960, and remained until 1965. The full scale car is a legend, and as one can see, the diecast version is pretty nice too:

This model replaced another D-Type, 41a, which I reviewed almost exactly 2 years ago:

Advertisement

This second D-Type casting is slightly larger, 62mm vs 55mm. In most ways, it is essentially a scaled up version of 41a. This means it has the same excellent proportions, fine casting lines, and laudable detail of the earlier model. with the increased size comes increased scale, this is probably around 1:65. The interesting variations of this casting are the wheels - early releases had grey plastic wheels, but later models had the lovely fine wire wheels as seen on the Matchbox Ferraris of the period, among others. The rarest variants will have wheels with red hubs, or a decal that isn’t #41. Nothing opens, but nothing needs to - these cars are about movement. These cars were still modern when this casting was new, and no doubt being a race car was the selling point. From all angles, it is a fine piece:

Advertisement

Advertisement

Front and rear have similar detail - this is definitely a car with a face:

Advertisement

The base has ample identifying detail, as was the style of the time. This was not the easiest base to photograph:

Advertisement

This casting is lucky enough to live in a nice late run Type B box. With this box and the grey plastic wheels, this was likely made in 1960:

Advertisement

A fun detail of the box is on the underside, where I assume the original owner cut out the catalog illustration for this model. Funny, as those early Matchbox collector’s catalogs are quite collectible and valuable now:

Advertisement

I am pleased to have this in my collection. The 1:1 car is a famous machine, and having a period model of it is a piece of history, especially when as nicely modeled as this casting:

Advertisement

A couple of 1:1s from howstuffworks.com and themonsieur.com:

Advertisement