First released in a trade box of six models in 1948, this model with seven others became affectionally known as one of the 40 series by Dinky enthusiasts. I believe it was the second release following the Riley 40a, but for some reason the renumbering which took place in 1953-54 did not follow the same order; for example the Riley became ‘158’.
The model itself changed very little over its manufacture which ended in 1960. The following observations identify changes that I have recognised.
Casting & Base Plate
The model casting remained the same throughout as a body style. However, the early models under ’40b’ held the rear axles by way of a casting pillar. This can be best observed through the rear side windows. The small writing base plate remained the same throughout the model’s life. The very last models had a cross hatched underside to the roof.
The tyres changed three time. You may find occasionally an early release with fine griped tyres but this is un-common. Usually they had smooth black tyres and the final releases the attractive ‘M’ grip tyres.
Box Packing - Trade Boxes
The packing of these models was provided in trade boxes of six to the shop keeper and these came in several designs. A Type 2 trade box was the first release post war and this was a brown box with yellow label to the end with model description marked ‘40B’.
A Type 3 box was then used, this was an all yellow box with model description as Type 2. This was followed by a Type 4 box similar to a Type 3 but with a 5 digit reference code. The final box was a Type 5 which was all over yellow as before but now offering the dual numbering, and for the first time identifying ‘151’, its eventual final coding.
There were 3 designs used. All three were similar in being the yellow box with red ‘Dinky Toys’ on the ends and sides.
This was a dual numbered box with black end ovals and white numbering with red early numbers ‘40b’ to each side of the oval. There was no numbering on the picture sides.
This type now dropped the dual numbering but included a small colour spot at each end to identify the model within and small black ovals on the picture side also with white numbering.
The final box changed the small colour spots to large colour spots and introduced large red ovals with white numbering to the picture sides.
Type 1 models seen with rear axle support pillars and smooth inside roofs. Issued 1948-49
- Taupe body and matching ridged wheels. I have also observed this model with the very early tyres not often seen.
- Black body and matching ridge wheels
- Grey body and matching ridged wheels
- Blue body and matching ridged wheels
Type 2 models seen with no support pillars and smooth inside roofs. Issued 1949-59
- Blue body and blue ridged wheels
- Blue body and grey ridged wheels
- Tan body and green ridged wheels
- Blue body and beige ridged wheels
- Dark French Blue body and beige ridged wheels
- Dark Blue body and blue wheels
Type 3 models with cross hatched inside roofs and ‘M’ tyres. Issued 1959-60
- Tan body with green ridged wheels.
Sales and Evaluation
This is not an easy model to accurately categorise. Several of the colours could have been boxed in later trade boxes or individual boxes but I have tried to provide a guide only and a fair reflection of sales and how easy each model is to obtain.
The sales’ totals reflect the total sales of each colour not whether they were sold un-boxed as a ‘40B’ or boxed item as a ‘151’ and in a wide range of condition from mint to play worn.
I have utilised two additional main stream sales businesses, as well as my own Diecast Gems sales and stocks to reflect the units sold, these sales are archives of the last 15-20 years.
The total sales recorded for this survey since August 2000 are 197 models. The distribution is as follows:
- 1 Taupe Body & wheels
- 12 Black body & wheels
- 37 Grey body & wheels
- 59 Blue body & wheels
- 1 Blue body & grey wheels
- 19 Blue body & beige wheels
- 29 Darker French Blue & beige wheels
- 12 Dark Blue & blue wheels
- 27 Tan body & green wheels
- I have seen a blue body version with red wheels.
- Black has always been seen as a very rare colour but the Taupe version is considerably harder to find.
- The blue version with grey wheels is very rare and may be unique. I have only seen one.
- The darker blue version with blue wheels is hard to find but even harder with the correct last box, with large printed dark blue spots.
If you are aware of any genuine variations not listed above, please feel free to email me with details and pictures and I will always consider adding to the above article or follow with a blog.
Below is a guide to value in my own opinion.
Unboxed – Rear Axle Pillars
- Taupe body & wheels. Very rare – £400-£600
- Black body & wheels. Rare – £300-£400
- Grey body & wheels – £80-£120
- Blue body & wheels – £80-£120
Unboxed – No Pillars
- Blue body & wheels – £50-£80
- Tan body & green wheels – £50-£80
- Blue body & beige wheels – £125-£175
- French Blue & Beige wheels – £125-£175
- Darker Blue & Blue wheels – £200-£300
- Blue body & wheels – £140-£175
- Tan body & green wheels – £140-£175
- Blue body & beige wheels – £225-£325
- Blue body & grey wheels. Very rare – £500-£750
- French Blue & Beige wheels – £200-£300
- Darker Blue & Blue wheels. V Scarce – £400-£600
- Last issue with cross hatching inside roof.
- Tan body with green wheels. Scarce – £150-£200
Price guide is for mint models and boxes only.
I hope you enjoy this article, any comments you may have will be gratefully received