News Nr. 12 – August 2010
It’s hot out there!!!!

Just to be ready for all possible contingencies, Minichamps has released a new “TroLF” fire truck, based on its 1:43 Unimog 404S model. By the way, “TroLF” is the abbreviation for: Trockenlöschfahrzeug, i.e. a fire fighting vehicle using dry powder instead of water. Actually quite an interesting model variant….

Flap your wings!

Yes, that’s the way birds get rid – in part – of excess heat… Maybe that’s why Spark has chosen this time of the year to release their 1:43 2009 Mercedes SLSAMG with the “gullwing” doors in the open position (Ref: S1023). Nice golden colour too… Eminently suited for the next hot shopping trip to the “Mall of the Emirates” in Dubai…

Make your own open convertible…
OK, by now, you probably found a cool corner in your house. The siesta time is over too, and you still don’t know what to do? Can I interest you in building your very own wooden Benz 1886 “Patent Motorwagen”? Great for the season – after all, it was also the first open convertible of sorts … Alright, this one is only a 1:8 replica in wood, yes, and it comes as a kit (“some assembly required”, as the saying goes!), but, hey, it is cheaper than lumber: 15.95 € (+S&H).

It can be ordered from: Mail Order Kaiser in Munich, Germany, either by phone: (0180) 5 34 17 34, or by fax: 1) from within Germany: (0180) 5 33 33 23, or 2) from outside of Germany: (+49) 89 36 08 22 40.

If that’s not modern enough for you…

Well, in that case, there is another new release by Spark, which might just be the thing for you: the 1938 Mercedes 320 (W142) open Cabriolet (# S1054) in 1:43 is now available in… the catalogue describes and shows a dark blue car, yet the latest photo shows what seems to be a blue and dark blue (or blue and black?) car. Whatever the combination, it is a much better looking model in the two tone paint job … and, as far as the interior is concerned: it is simply superb!

Not enough room in the car? Take the bus!
In fact, in the early 1950s, the Mercedes-Benz O6600H buses went right down to Italy, with their loads of sun-hungry Germans … I’ve actually noticed a couple of them (not the Germans, the buses!) in the background of a movie scene shot in Italy around that time. The Deutsche Post Philatelie/Post Collection has now released a 1:87 model of the O6600H in the livery of the Austrian Post. Quite a beauty!

Please, please, please, anyone! Make it in 1:43 too!! And pretty soon, please: I’m getting too old to be able to wait for too many years…

Meanwhile in France…

Norev recently shipped a 1:43 “municipal works department” – Unimog U411 of 1956 vintage to their dealers. The model is principally aimed at the German market – at leastthat’s what can be deducted from the Unimog’s orange livery and its Hamburg license plate! The metal model is available under the number 351173, and is priced at around 30 € (+S&H).

Ah, the lazy, hazy days of summer…

Or: how to make a quick buck without much of an effort! Here’s the recipe as practiced by Minichamps: take the tractor L315S used in the 1:43 “Bärenmarke” tractor-trailer model, which was introduced at the International Toy fair in Nuremberg back in 2007, repaint it, slap a yellow warning triangle onto the roof, (a triangle, which btw should not be in the raised position, if there is no trailer hooked up!), call it a Mercedes-Benz L6600S tractor of 1950 vintage, make only 444 models, and voilà, the collectors are running to buy one! Well, at least that’s what Minichamps hopes for! Oh well, 444 pieces shouldn’t be too difficult to get rid off…

The joy of travel…
When in Paris, France, be sure to watch out for the taxis. No matter whether you’re traveling in one or not…. This one couldn’t make his left turn tight enough!

In Cremona, Italy, on the other hand, watch out for the police. They got themselves a Lamborghini Gallardo for high-speed chases down the autostrada, but managed to total the car at the next gas station, the very first time they took it out for a spin … Mamma mia! There goes 200,000 €! Driving lessons anyone?

On this note, enjoy your summer! ‘Til the next time,

Author Bernd D. Loosen