Model: Mira Mercedes 450 SEL, casting no. R136, made in Spain
Line: Mira’s standard release line, year unknown
Where to get it: I got mine through eBay
Why it is in my collection: I cam across this casting randomly one night on eBay while searching for a hard-to-find Pilen brand car. Mira was a brand I wasn’t familiar with, so that only intrigued me more. The vintage sticker graphics were branded with Goodyear, so I decided to buy it. Once it was delivered from its previous home in Lithuania, I started noticing some interesting details.
The first thing I noticed was that the casting was very similar to a Yatming Mercedes I have of the same vintage, but the one big difference was that giant Mercedes hood ornament. The car has a metal body and a plastic base, so I was surprised to see the protruding ornament wasn’t broken off. Many of my vintage Lensey Matchboxes and Ertls have broken trailer hitches, so I was glad the Mercedes emblem didn’t suffer the same fate.
The other unique feature of this car is that it’s a moving parts model — the doors open. Opening doors isn’t an odd feature on its own, but it is on this car because the sticker in the car goes along the entire length of the car…meaning you can’t open the doors fully without basically ruining the stickers.
Looking at other examples online, it appears the decals came factory cut at the door end, but not on the hinged side. This causes the sticker to ball together and bubble on models whose doors have been used. But that issue didn’t stop me from buying it and enjoying the car.
Overall this is a fantastic version of a Mercedes 450 that would be a great addition to any collection.