Diecast Gems

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What was the 100 series?

 

Officially there wasn’t a '100 Series', but  five open top sports cars were issued both in Competition and Touring finishes in the 1950’s. They were so popular to collectors that they became known as the '100 series'.

 

There were two colour releases planned for each competition and tourer therefore four recognised options to collect. However, there were two additional colour shade variations; in green for the Aston Martin and blue for the Triumph. There were also variations in the wheel colours, base plates and tyres. These created, as always, rarities that become a collectors pride and joy. There was also a release of the MG Midget for the U.S.A.

 

Below is a list of the standard models, their year of issue and final production and the normal colour schemes and components, followed by a list of known variations.

 

Dinky 100 Series

Competition cars

 

All these models had black racing numbers printed in white circles on each side of the car and the bonnet. The exception was the Sunbeam Alpine, which had a number on the boot not the bonnet. Issue numbers can be found on the tin pressed base, though I have seen both colours of the Austin Healey 109 with un-numbered bases.

Some late models can be found with M Tyres. Drivers in white racing overalls were fitted in each car.

107 Sunbeam Alpine 1955-1959

Cerise body with grey interior (RN 34  -  Fawn hubs)

Pale blue body with cream interior (RN 27  -  Cream hubs)

 

108 MG Midget 1955-59

Red body with tan interior (RN 28  -  Red hubs)

White body with maroon interior (RN 24  -  Red hubs)

 

109 Austin Healey 100  1955-1959

Yellow body with blue interior (RN 21  -  Blue hubs)

Cream body with red interior (RN 23  -  Red hubs)

 

110 Aston Martin DB3S  1956-59

Mid-green body with red interior (RN 22  -  Red hubs)

Grey body with blue interior (RN 20  -  Blue hubs)

Light green body with red interior (RN22  -  Red hubs)

 

111 Triumph TR2  1956-1959

Salmon-pink body with blue interior (RN 29  -  Blue hubs)

Turquoise blue body & red interior (RN 25  -  Red hubs)

Light blue body with red interior (RN 25  -  Red hubs)

Tourers

 

These models had no racing numbers. They had the tin-pressed base but with no issue number on the bases. The early models had ridged hubs and smooth tyres.

Near the end of their production, around 1960, there were changes in components, resulting in silver spun wheels fitted with bobbly M Tyres and a black gloss base. These models have become highly sought after. Additional variations exist. All these models had drivers dressed as gentleman in grey.

101 Sunbeam Alpine 1957-1960

Cerise body with cream interior & fawn hubs

Pale blue body with blue interior & blue hubs

Cerise body with cream interior & spun hubs

Pale blue body with blue interior & spun hubs

 

102 MG Midget  1957-60

Deep yellow body with red interior & red hubs

Light green body with cream interior & cream hubs.

Deep yellow body with red interior & spun hubs

Light green body with cream interior & spun hubs.

 

103 Austin Healey 100  1957-1960

Red body with grey interior & grey hubs

Cream body with red interior & red hubs

Red body with grey interior & spun hubs

Cream body with red interior & spun hubs

 

104 Aston Martin DB3S 1957-1960

Salmon-pink body with red interior & red hubs

Light blue body with darker blue interior with blue hubs

Salmon-pink body with red interior & spun hubs

Light Blue body with darker blue interior with spun hubs

 

105 Triumph TR2 1957-1962

Lemon body with green interior & hubs

Grey body with red interior & hubs.

Lemon body with green interior & spun hubs

Grey body with red interior & spun hubs

Special release for the US market

 

The following models were released in their own 129 picture box. They retained the MG Midget competition base plate with 108 stamped on it and had ridged wheels and smooth tyres. There was no hole drilled in the seating for a driver.

These models are scarce and sought after, adding much greater value when accompanied by a good box.

129 MG Midget US market only   1957-1959

Red body with tan interior & red hubs.

White body with maroon interior & red hubs.

Box History

 

It is my understanding that the first releases were the 108 MG Midget and 109 Austin Healey, followed by the 107 Sunbeam Alpine in 1955. The 108 and 109 had the early yellow non-picture boxes with red writing. These boxes are less common than the picture boxes that were issued next. This second type box (the normal yellow picture box), was used for all five models for both competition and tourers for the remainder of their production run. However, the 105 Triumph tourer can be found with both the lighter yellow picture box and the later red and yellow panelled non picture box in addition to the normal yellow picture box.

Rare variations

 

The following are variations I have seen.

 

101 Sunbeam Alpine - Pale blue body with blue interior & cream hubs late gloss base. M tyres

102 MG Midget -  Light green body with cream interior & red hubs. Late gloss base.M tyres

103 Austin Healey - Red body with grey interior & grey hubs Late gloss base M tyres

103 Austin Healey - Cream body with red interior & red hubs Late gloss base M tyres

103 Austin Healey - Deep red body with grey interior & spun hubs Late gloss base , M tyres

108 MG Midget -  White body with maroon interior. Yellow hubs (As box picture), smooth tyres        

109 Austin Healey - Yellow body with blue interior & hubs RN 28 black number no white roundel. No number on base.

109 Austin Healey - Cream body with red interior & hubs  RN 22 No number on base.

110 Aston Martin DB3S - Deep blue-green body with red interior & hubs  RN 22          

110 Aston Martin DB3S - Turquoise blue-green body with red interior & hubs   RN 22  

(This shade I have also found on Rover 156 two tone green and 159 Morris Oxford cream & green)  

111 Triumph TR2 - Turquoise blue body & red interior with blue hubs.  RN 25

 

149 Gift Set Competition Cars. Isssued 1958-1961

 

This was produced in blue striped lid box.

 

107 Sunbeam Alpine - Cerise

108 MG Midget - White

109 Austin Healey - Yellow

110 Aston Martin - Green

111 Triumph TR2 - Salmon-pink

 

If you have any additional information about this series or have a variation not listed here, I would be pleased to hear from you. Any photos of additional variations would be greatly appreciated.

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