My new stuff from Wheel Collectors has just arrived, so next week I will be showcasing new for 2020 items again. But in the meantime, it’s time for 1 more dive back into the vaults.
In 2004, Matchbox re-launched Superfast to celebrate its 35th anniversary. As many know, the Superfast name was launched in late 1969 with 5 brand new castings, and 5 castings immediately turned into Superfast issues for a 10 model first year. Over the next few years everything else was either swapped to the newer wheels or replaced with something that had them (except a Bulldozer as it didn’t have wheels, and that was swapped for a Badger in 1974).
The first year had been a test, and they had created a full set of 75 models, all coming in blister packs that contained a box too. They were limited to 15,000 pieces and only sold in USA. It proved to be a success so in 2005, they came up with an even bigger plan. The full set of 75 again, but this time they would be done twice. Another 15,000 piece run for USA, but a second set of 75 limited to 7,500 of the same models but in alternate colours. But that wasn’t it. They also created a few multi-packs too. Sadly people often forget about the multi-packs. Well not me. At some point I may attempt a 2005 Superfast showcase of all the singles (it will be a big post), but for now, I am going to focus on the often-forgotten multi-packs of 2005 Superfast.
The first multi-pack we saw was a 5-pack. It was called Autobahn, and contained 5 German cars. They all came with boxes too, as these were simply a 3rd issue of whatever the model was, so the boxes showed the same number as its single issue. I will go alphabetically with these.
The first model was also the oldest model in the set. The MB240 BMW 850i. The casting had first debuted in 1993, and was having a final flurry of activity before retiring.
It appeared in blue with a high level of detailing front and rear.
This was in contrast to the burgundy issue being sold in ROW countries and the charcoal in USA in the number 15 slot, which is often referred to as SF15. That is because if you said 2005 MB15, you would be seeing a Radar Truck here. So being as it is a Superfast series, we refer to them as SF… Note to self, perhaps a future post on Radar Trucks. You may also note that the wheels are different. The 5-spoke slotted Superfast wheels that had debuted in 2004 were being replaced in 2005, but they weren’t ready for the start of the model year, so the first few batches of singles still saw the 2004 wheels. The BMW was a part of the first batch. A new 5-spoke design was launched a few batches into the series and shortly before the Autobahn pack was made, so the last BMW 850i produced was the only 1 to sport them. As I said, the box included in the Autobahn 5-pack did also have 15 written on it.
Alphabetically second would be the MB673 Mercedes-Benz SL55 AMG in black. The second of 4 Mercedes-Benz models that were AMG versions, although the earlier C-Class never made mention of it on the model. This was the first that specifically stated it was the AMG version.
Which you can see also meant that the AMG logo was included as part of the detailing on this black model. The casting was also brand new for 2005, so was getting quite a debut year.
It was also the opposite of the BMW, as the Autobahn set was released before the model arrived in the singles. It was actually a part of the final batch (batch G) where the white was the ROW SF70 and the gold was the USA SF70.
The third casting was the MB565 Opel Speedster in teal.
It sported fully detailed tampo prints and also a large matte black area over the top too.
Something that the 2 issues which were in the regular single series did not receive. Yellow was the US version and orange the ROW version of the model that was in the SF54 slot that year. As you can see, they all had the same wheels, as they came out later in the 2005 year and saw the new wheels immediately.
Next up would be the first of 2 Porsches. The MB544 Porsche 911 Turbo.
This arrived in yellow looking fairly similar to the 2002 debut version except with a lot more detailing and different wheels.
The model was sold as SF20 that year with black being the 7,500 run for ROW markets and red being the 15,000 run for the USA market. I should point out that if you were to ever see a package, they will actually not say limited to 7,500 or 15,000. They say limited to “up to” 8,000 and “up to” 15,500. It’s a legal thing. If somebody was to try and prove that perhaps they made 15,001 of a model by accident, or possibly try to argue the point that pre-production samples and FEPs should be counted too then by saying “up to” and over-number the package then it will avoid anybody potentially trying to sue them over it. But that was the goal. 7,500 for the ROW market, 15,000 for USA.
The final model in the set was the other Porsche, the MB675 Porsche Cayenne.
Just like the Mercedes-Benz above, this casting had only just debuted in 2005 anyway, and the Autobahn release also arrived before the regular Superfast issues, as they too were in batch G, the last one of the year.
We had a lovely burgundy for the ROW market and a pale pea green for the USA market where they were being sold as SF74.
Later during the model year we saw a second 5-pack. However, the model year actually started in mid 2005 and ran through early 2006, and this set actually turned up at the beginning of 2006. Some call it a 2006 set, but they were alternates to the 2005 models and officially were a part of the 2005 model year. The set was called Off Road Riders.
I’m going alphabetically again. The first model was the MB555 GMC Terradyne.
It came in the 5-pack in a nice dark blue with full detailing all round.
Which was just a tad more colour to the model than either of the singles saw. The USA market saw the SF65 that year in charcoal, the ROW market saw it in a lighter grey.
After G comes H, and the Hummer H3. The MB666 casting had only just debuted in the basic range, and was immediately coming out in Superfast designs too.
Quite a busy year. The Superfast 5-pack issue was a dark charcoal, which was quite close to the basic’s debut black. However, it was a tad more detailed.
Although you did see the attention to detail on the roof much more on the 2 single issues that year. The brightest was the yellow was sold as SF66 in the ROW market. The red was the USA equivalent.
Of course you couldn’t have an Off Road pack without a Jeep. In this case, it was the MB486 Jeep Wrangler with luggage casting.
This is one of my favourite looks for this casting. A nice medium-dark green with everything detailed. I always felt it really suited it.
Not that I didn’t like the other 2 that came out. But that shade, coupled with black wheels instead of chrome wheels I felt really set it apart from the metallic dark green that was the USA version of SF29, or the blue that was the ROW version.
Which brings us to another obvious choice for an Off Road pack, a Land Rover. The MB524 Land Rover Discovery to be exact.
For this 5-pack the model came in white with a full detailing tampo print. You can really see all the little details highlighted in black.
Sadly, the Land Rover was in one of the first 2 batches of the 2005 series when it came out as a single, so was still sporting those older wheels that just didn’t suit it. It was SF51 for the year, and had it not been for the wheels, that green (looking very similar to the Jeep’s 5-pack shade) would have been my favourite Discovery release of all of them. It was the ROW version of the model, with the red being the USA issue.
Finally, we get the MB543 Nissan Xterra.
The only model in the set to feature an opening part. It was a nice bright red for this pack.
In contrast to a bright yellow which was sold in the ROW market as SF63 or dark green which was in the USA market. Note that the red was the only one with chrome wheels too, the others sporting a duller grey wheel.
But that wasn’t it. We saw 2x 5-packs, each sporting the 5 models and 5 boxes inside a larger box. But Target stores in USA saw a little something else. A tin. Included in the tin were 5 Superfast issues all with their boxes, but in alternate spectraflame style looks.
All 5 were also classic vehicles sporting retro 5-spoke wheels too. The first was the MB629 ’69 Chevy Camaro with exposed headlights.
It appeared in this rather bronzed look with dual white stripes.
The tampo design was the same as the 2 regular issues in the Superfast range, but obviously they weren’t spectraflame. Pea green was the USA issue of SF57, and grey was the ROW issue.
We also had another Chevy, in the way of the MB361 ’57 Chevy Corvette Hardtop.
This came in an shiny blue with matching roof. It also sported blue-green tinted windows, which is something quite often seen nowadays on classic vehicles.
In contrast, the 2 models being sold individually both sported clear windows, but did also match their roof to the body. Black was SF47 in USA, with the darker blue SF47 in other countries.
After a pair of Chevys, we move on to a pair of Fords. First up the MB322 ’70 Ford “Boss” Mustang.
This one came in a bright shiny green with various black striping details.
Again, as with others, this was the same tampo print used on the normal 2005 Superfast issues, except it was on a spectraflame model instead of regular paint model. Red was SF28 for the ROW market, blue for the USA market that year.
The other Ford was a classic in a dual sense. The MB042 ’57 Ford Thunderbird casting is still going strong after first debuting in 1982. It was utilized in this set in a shiny lavender look.
It also sported whitewall tyres which made it stand out even more.
Especially as the regular Superfast issues didn’t have whitewalls. But in opposition to the Corvette, it was the regular issues that sported the blue-green window, and the Target spectraflame model had clear. Pastel pink was the USA SF1 that year, and blue was the ROW equivalent.
The 5th model in the set was the MB587 ’65 Shelby Cobra 427S/C in a shiny darker blue.
It featured dual white stripes over the entire body.
It was also one of the few (the Opel Speedster being the other) that didn’t see the exact same tampo print. I am not sure why, but the 3 roundel on the front was slightly altered for this release, as the number itself was slightly large, thinner and was not tampo printed black. A small but subtle change. The dark green was the ROW version of SF16 that year, with silver being the USA version.
But that wasn’t it for this pack. It wasn’t a 5-pack. It had a bonus 6th model included.
But this wasn’t another model from the Superfast series in an alternate colour. This was a unique casting to the set. This was the brand new MB669 Ford Shelby Cobra Concept that had just debuted in the basic range. It was added to this set as a bonus model in silver with dual white stripes.
They also enhanced the model with 2-part rubber wheels too. As it was not a part of the Superfast series that year, it had no equivalent models to compare to. It was also unusual in that it wasn’t a spectraflame paint finish and it was also not a classic car, but a concept paying homage to a classic car.
So that was actually a bit of a surprise. The model did also get a box, but instead of a model number, it was simply denoted as “S” (for Special) in the box number.
But well, I did say about a tin. This Target set was sold inside a unique tin. Now the tin itself was sold inside an outer cardboard container which was open in the front to see the tin, and the lid was off (stashed under it) with the models on display. They were positioned in a plastic bubble with all 6 models and their boxes on display. Obviously all that plastic went away once I got the tin, but the tin itself, I still use it. Sure it has a couple of dings and dents, but I love it.
It’s not very deep. Literally, deep enough to fit one layer of Matchbox boxes.
Of course mine doesn’t. It had other things in. I emptied them out for this show and tell.
Of course I could put the models in loose. Hmm! Lots of space still.
How about all the multi-pack models? Hmm! Still a bit of space. Oh well….
Note to self: don’t just finish, pick up the lid, put it on the tin, then pick up said tin, put it under my arm and walk off. I heard a lot of noise coming from inside the tin. Eek!
But that was a little rundown on the 2005 non-singles Superfast models. Next week, I will be back up to date as I begin my journey through new items.