First Look: Matchbox 60th Anniversary International Scout & Ford Explorer…

A general rule of thumb: Don’t peak too early.

These two castings may have done just that.  But let’s just be glad they peaked at all.

The latest batch of Matchbox 60th Anniversary just arrived at dealer shops, and we got these from our friends at Wheel Collectors this weekend.  Five models.  Two British classics, two US off-roaders, and a German bike.  It makes for easy categorizing, and here are the off-roaders.

There is another reason you can put these two together.  Both castings were eagerly anticipated when they were announced, but didn’t deliver the way most collectors had hoped.  Of course, that matters little in the whole scheme of things, as long as they are popular on the pegs, and it appears they are.

Nonetheless, both debuts were less than stellar from a collector perspective, but now we have the Scout and Explorer in 60th duds, which means full tampo treatment and eye-popping deco.  And going back to the original point, I don’t think we will ever see these two look better.  Sad thought on one hand, happy thought on the other because at least there was a means this year in 60th to look this way.

Let’s start with the International Scout.  You can look at it two ways.  One, the strange proportions are still there, and of course they aren’t going anywhere.  I think we all agree that if the body were a tad larger this would be a great model, but then again that could mean it goes full plastic.  So pick your poison.  So if you overlook the proportions, the white with front, side, and rear deco looks great.  As do the white hubs.  For what is worth, I like it.

(Find the latest batch of Matchbox 60th at Wheel Collectors, and take advantage of their Back-to-School Sale…)

Matchbox ’76 International Scout 4×4 (2013 60th Anniversary):

Now the Ford Explorer.  Proportions weren’t the problem when this was released.  It was the all the bells and whistles.  Ford granted Mattel permission to customize the model a bit, making it an off-road police vehicle.  Collectors were hoping for a street police car, and were disappointed with this one.  I personally was fine either way, as this is not a casting I would get excited about either way.


How great does this model look?  This “construction security” model is darn near perfect.  Full tampo treatment, including the front grill, and the colors, highlighted by Matchbox orange, really pop.  Now the big grill cover, bolted fenders, and roof rack look great.  While this is not a favorite casting of mine, I would say this is one of the best models in the 60th Anniversary line.

What do you think?

Matchbox 2012 Ford Explorer (2013 60th Anniversary):

6 Replies to “First Look: Matchbox 60th Anniversary International Scout & Ford Explorer…”

  1. No one has botched a casting as bad as Matchbox did on the Scout. That has to be one of the absolute worst castings of a real car to come out of the design studios. Ugh.

  2. The Explorer was the quickest grab for me with all the paint detail and resembling the brush fire truck. I liked the chevron on the back. I didn't like the recolor of the Scout in the regular line so I figured this was the best chance to see it decently with more paint on it. I got it as well at the big box store.

  3. The Explorer is one of my favourite casting in the 60th anniversary line.I like all the features matchbox puts in.

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