Now *this* is very me. A wafty old French saloon from a diecast brand from way back. This is the Lone Star Peugeot 404.
The Pininfarina styled Peugeot 404 was first introduced in 1960. Available with either a 1.5 or 1.6 inline-four petrol or a 1.9 diesel, various body styles were available including the stunning 404 Coupe and convertible. Production ended in 1975 although a pickup was still available through until 1988! The 404 gained a reputation for being a reliable and durable car, and examples saw heavy use across the world as taxis. In Africa the 404 proved to be incredibly popular, and license built examples continued to be produced in Kenya until 1991. Even today it’s not uncommon to see them buzzing around North and West Africa, especially in pickup form.
Lone Star’s 404 is a real beauty. I picked mine up from the huge diecast hoard I recently sorted through with a friend. The roof has seen some damage, with a snapped A-Pillar and another missing entirely, but I managed to fabricate a replacement and blend it in (as best I could) with the beautiful playworn patina.
Much like the real thing, it’s a rather pretty car in my opinion. It’s a pleasure to roll around on the desk, a result of the softly sprung suspension, and the skinny little wheels suit it very well. If you read my Single File on the Fiat 2300 Coupe, you’ll know that Lone Star diecasts had a full set of opening parts: doors, bonnet (hood) and boot (trunk) and the 404 is no exception. The metal base and use of screws rather than rivets allowed me good access to repair the A-Pillar and clean the interior up from the years of dust and grime that had accumulated.
It was at real risk of being missed or even worse, sent to the toy heap in the sky, so I’m really glad I managed to save this one and give it a new lease of life and a well deserved spot in the Lamley limelight.
(Find the Lone Star Peugeot 404 on Ebay)