PLEASE NOTE: I will no longer be altering the variation codes. All new discoveries will be inserted in to their correct place in the timeline and given a suffix.
So a new variation that would be nearest to variation 4 would become the new 4a, etc.

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Moko Lesney Matchbox 53b Mercedes Benz 220SE



Early 1963 saw the introduction of the Lesney model of the Mercedes Benz 220 SE into the Matchbox 1-75 series which was a quite a revolutionary model in its day because it had the new feature of opening front doors, it was also slightly longer that all previous models so the boxes had to be made longer too.
Initially released in maroon with a black baseplate and silver trim to the grille, headlights and front and rear bumpers, the interior was cream coloured plastic and it held the opening front doors in place.
The wheels were 9 x 20 silver plastic but were soon changed to 9 x 24 in either silver, grey or black plastic, the axles were dome head with rounded ends.
A clear plastic window unit was fitted but this was only for the front and rear screens and because the doors opened it was not possible to have side windows.

The model was later recoloured to a dark red with 9 x 24 grey plastic wheels,
The colour of the doors did not match the colour of the rest of the model on the maroon painted model and this problem seemed to be even more noticable on the dark red version.
The final issue of the red painted model was fitted with 9 x 36 black plastic wheels and the silver trim was omitted from the rear bumper.

There were two casting variations carried out late in its life, The first one was where three diagonal ridges were cast in under each of the front wheelwells, these are visible by looking at the body casting above the front wheels,
The baseplate was modified on the final issue when "pat no 983558" was added to the baseplate inscription.
There are no particularly rare variations but the maroon body with black plastic wheels is not so easy to find.
The Mercedes Benz was sold in box types 'D' and 'E' and after a five year run was replaced by the 53c Ford Zodiac MkIV in early 1968.

code number general wheel type baseplate front wheelwells silver trim
code 1 maroon body, black base, clear windows, cream interior, silver trim 9 x 20 silver plastic no patent number smooth front & rear
code 2 maroon body, black base, clear windows, cream interior, silver trim 9 x 24 silver plastic no patent number smooth front & rear
code 3 maroon body, black base, clear windows, cream interior, silver trim 9 x 24 grey plastic no patent number smooth front & rear
code 4 maroon body, black base, clear windows, cream interior, silver trim 9 x 24 black plastic no patent number smooth front & rear
code 5 dark red body, black base, clear windows, cream interior, silver trim 9 x 24 grey plastic no patent number smooth front & rear
code 6 dark red body, black base, clear windows, cream interior, silver trim 9 x 24 grey plastic no patent number with ridges front & rear
code 7 dark red body, black base, clear windows, cream interior, silver trim 9 x 36 black plastic no patent number with ridges front & rear
code 8 dark red body, black base, clear windows, cream interior, silver trim 9 x 36 black plastic with pat no 983558 with ridges front only

box types notes
D1 one black side one blue, "new model"
D2 one black side one blue
D2 two blue sides
D2 light blue sides,
E3 light blue sides,

values

maroon, silver wheels 25

maroon, grey wheels 35

maroon, black wheels 60

dark red, grey wheels 35

dark red, black wheels 25

values are for mint models in mint boxes

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