Lesney Products & Co. Ltd, a British industrial die-casting company founded in 1947, was responsible for the concept, manufacture, and distribution of miniature die-cast toys under the name of “Matchbox.” In 1952, engineer John Odell, a partner with Leslie Smith and Rodney Smith (not related, but lifelong friends), designed a small toy that fit in a match box for his daughter to take to school. The toy was so popular that the company decided to make these scaled-down toys to help bridge the gap for the die casting company when business was slow. By the mid-1960s, Matchbox was the largest brand of die-cast model vehicles in the world and had diversified the line into multiple series. Lesney filed for bankruptcy in 1982 and were purchased by Universal Holdings/Universal Toys. In subsequent years, the toys were no longer made in England; later toys are marked Thailand, Macau, China, and Malaysia. These later models are made out of plastic.
This Lesney 1904 English Spyker car was one of the models made in their Models of Yesteryear. It is 3 ¼” long, stands 1 1/4” at its tallest, and 1 3/8” wide. It is made from diecast metal with metal wheels mounted with plastic tires. The body is a bright yellow and the seats are a green plastic that pop in. The underside states: Made in England by Lesney, Models of Yesteryear No. 16, 1904 Spyker It is in very good vintage condition with all of its parts.
This would be a wonderful addition to your Matchbox or miniature vehicle collection. Please contact us if you have any questions.
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