Matchbox Jeep Gladiator 71 1
Lesney "Matchbox" 1-75 series
Model: Jeep Gladiator J200 Townside Pick-up truck
Reference number: 71
Scale: 1:74th as quoted in Matchbox catalogues
Actual scale: 1:76th
Made in England
This model was released in January 1964. This year also saw the 1-75 series go up in price to 1/11d. Despite this being a model of a commercial vehicle it had all the new gadgets that were found on cars newly issued in the range. These being windows, suspension (front axle only), seats and steering wheel. In addition it also featured opening doors. Early examples featured plastic springs which held the doors in the shut or opened position. However, plastic was substituted for metal very soon into the production phase. On the box end flaps there is acknowledgment that Lesney used Solido's method for the opening door feature: "PORTIERES OUVRANTES - LICENCE SOLIDO". A delightful model that has lots of superb cast detail. Just in front of the doors can be seen "J200". You will have to look under a magnifying glass to see it or look at the detail shot within this series of images. The model lasted in the range until 1968.
The real vehicle was introduced in 1962 and the J200 model was the short wheelbase version available until mid 1965. Townside was the designation for the pick-up with flat body sides.
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