Lotus make exciting cars; small. light and fast.
I recently added a Lotus Seven to my collection, this was in some respects the original “track car”, designed to be light, fast and fun. The rights for the Seven were sold to Caterham in the early seventies, who continue to make the car. My 1:43 scale model by DeAgostini is barely larger than the smaller scale Matchbox and Hot Wheels Lotuses in my collection.
Lotus had much track success; winning 79 Formula One Grand Prix races and winning the constructors’ championship seven times. The Formula One cars included the iconic John Player Special of the seventies that was such a big seller in model form for Corgi (2 million units produced).
I don’t collect formula one models, I prefer models of road cars.
My first Matchbox Lotus was a Europa that was one of the first Superfast models, now I only have a picture of that model from the 1970 Matchbox Superfast Catalogue.
It seems strange Matchbox fitted the model with a towing hook, the real car was so light it would have only been able to tow the lightest of trailers. The later Matchbox model of a Europa has no tow hook.
At a larger 1:32 scale I have two Kinsmart Exige models, which look ready to race, the Exige S sports the number 3 and the Exige R-GT is in full racing livery.
Update: January 2017
Since writing the original post I’ve added three Hot Wheels Lotus Esprit S1s, the white one (carded) represents Bond’s Lotus from The Spy Who Loved Me and a Mebetoys Lotus Europa, which bizarrely has the bonnet hatch opening the wrong way. The Lotus Seven, unfortunately lost its windscreen when we moved.
Some Matchbox and Hot Wheels Lotus Cars are shown at the end of a Racegrooves unboxing video: Racegrooves Unboxing Video from 13:07 to the end of the clip.