If there’s one thing I enjoy it’s seeking out the lesser known diecast brands. I’m always eager to learn more about my hobby and besides, some very cool models came from the most obscure companies. Case in point is this Matra MS630 made by then West German company Gama.
When it appeared as a “suggested item” on Ebay I admit I hadn’t realised Gama had done smaller scale models, given that they are mostly known for their 1/43 models, some of which were sold as promotional models in car dealers. But after a quick Google I discovered they also produced a very short lived 3 inch series sold under the Minette name. The line up featured only a small variety of cars but included amongst others a Porsche Carrera 6, a tiny NSU Ro80, Lotus Type 40 Ford, a very desirable VW Beetle (complete with opening doors) and this Matra MS630.
The MS630 itself was a rather mediocre sportscar ran by the otherwise successful French manufacturer between it’s debut at Le Mans in 1967 and 1969. Gama’s version replicates a 1968/69 version powered by Matra’s incredible sounding 3 litre V12. Despite the sweet sounding powerplant, the MS630 failed to notch up any notable results, but looked damn cool nevertheless.
The Gama car is certainly in keeping with diecasts of the era, the wheels are the plastic “fast/speedy” type with rather cool looking centres. There’s sprung suspension too, and it’s a really cool little car to roll around the desktop. And if you know me by now you’ll know I love a good patina. And this thing has history. As my fellow writer Bryan @beardedmugmedia commented: “The aged paint is so perfect. Just imagine all the literal hands it’s been in. Too cool.” Couldn’t agree more.
There’s not much else I can say as there really isn’t much more to the model! It’s a bit basic in it’s construction but probably all the better for it. There’s a bit of an odd alignment issue with the base on mine, but a slight degree of manufacturer error is something common with diecasts of the era and in no way exclusive to the Gama cars.
My remit on Lamley is to cover these obscure brands and models and this certainly delivers. I’m now going to be chasing the aforementioned Lotus Ford and Beetle for a long time I imagine! But this Matra is a leftfield part of diecast history and a now a prized part of my collection.
(Find Gama models on Ebay)