Model: Matchbox MB727 Bentley Continental GT
Release: 2007 MB1
eBay link: Matchbox Bentley Continental GT
Why it is in the collection: because Matchbox finally managed to get a Bentley done
For many years I have often wondered why Matchbox never had a model of a Bentley in the basic range. Especially once it became known that Rolls-Royce were no longer playing ball. I often used to think maybe it was purely Bentley was seen as a poorer Rolls-Royce during my time growing up. I know officially Vickers, who used to own both, was trying to market Bentley as a more sportier version of a Rolls-Royce, but as a kid growing up in the 1980s I did not see that. A Rolls-Royce was just a Bentley with a different grille and a flying lady on the top of it. But after selling to the VW Group in 1998 they really started to make their own mark with the 2 brands again. the Continental GT was proof of that. It was the first vehicle released under the VW ownership in 2003. It was a huge success, and really put Bentley firmly on the map.
In 2006 Matchbox announced that a continental GT was going to be added to the 2007 basic range and I have to admit, I was really happy. Finally, a Bentley in miniature. MB727 arrived in October 2007 as a part of batch K taking the coveted MB1 slot in the range.
It arrived in silver with a reddish brown interior. It looked amazing. That interior almost looked like it was made of leather.
The detailing to the front was incredible.
As was the rear. The story goes that it took the Matchbox team numerous attempts to get the model right. Bentley were waiting for perfection, and Matchbox delivered. Was it worth the wait? I think so.
The model ran until 2019 although a final MB99 was dropped at the last minute. I thought that perhaps there was an issue with Bentley. But with the MB1235 Bentley Bentayga arriving in the 2021 basic range in batch B obviously there was not an issue as such. Perhaps just they wanted a current vehicle instead. As I said, Bentley wants perfection. Whether it be in miniature or in real life. Let’s face it, this was the first generation Continental GT and Bentley are now selling a third generation. It has done us proud over the years with some very nice releases. I do believe it will not be seen again, with the Bentayga being the only Bentley for now. But I could be wrong. Don’t take my word as gospel.
Although I have to say, I would not be opposed to seeing a classic Bentley in the future too. A 1962 Bentley S3 would be my choice. It stands out, much like the Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud did, plus it sported dual headlamps on the front, which I think is cooler than the S1/S2 single headlamps. I don’t know if I am the only one who would love to see a classic Bentley in the line-up alongside the new Bentayga.