Thursday, October 3, 2013

Just Unveiled: Matchbox 2013 Leipzig Special Edition Toy Show Volkswagen Karmann Ghia Type 34, as presented by Mattel designer Michael Heralda...

We have been sitting on this for awhile, and we are excited to finally unveil the very beautiful Matchbox Exclusive, 2013 Leipzig, Germany Special Toy Show Special Edition Karmann Ghia Type 34.

Event organizer Dirk Schleuer from Moyshop was kind enough to send one for us to photograph, and as we are unveiling it here on Lamley, some VERY lucky toy show attendees in Germany are getting their hands on their own example.

If showing this off wasn't enough, we have an extra special treat for our readers as well.  Instead of us rambling on, legendary Mattel Designer Michael Heralda, who has designed for both Hot Wheels and Matchbox, was nice enough to give us his take on this special model, for which he did the design.

So enjoy the photos, and especially enjoy Michael's thoughts.

And one other bonus:

Dirk also sent a few extras for our Lamley readers.  We are going to be giving one away (we will let you know how soon), and we have a few to sell to those that want one.  If you are interested, email us at or contact us on our Facebook page...

Alright on with Michael's write-up.  Enjoy...

(Thanks Micheal.)

According to experts on color theory and the psychology of color, the color red signifies: action, energy and speed, attention-getting, assertive and confident, energizing, stimulating, exciting, powerful, passionate, stimulating and driven, courageous and strong, spontaneous and determined.
With that said, do you think the color red is a good choice for the 2013 Leipzig Special Edition Toy Show Volkswagen Karmann Ghia Type 34 model (that’s a mouthful to say in one sentence)!
This has to be one of my favorite new MATCHBOX models this year.  Phil Riehlman (Hot Wheels Manager/Designer) is the person responsible for bringing to life the Matchbox version of the VW Karmann Ghia Type 34. And as a side note, Phil recently celebrated 20 years with Mattel.
Who wouldn’t love owning and driving a convertible like this in the open country on a beautiful and invigorating spring morning although I would imagine being in Leipzig, Germany, this week where the temperature is in the lower 40’s is not the place to be driving around in an open top vehicle.  But then again maybe holding one of these gems in your hand at Leipzig will warm the heart of those attending the event and bring the feeling of springtime and the freedom of the open road to the forefront of their thoughts. That’s how I feel just looking at it!
As a graphics designer these are the projects I love working on because the cost of the deco is not an issue!!!! We are not talking about a basic car here – this one is SPECIAL!
Talking about decoration I am proud to say that we have 5 panels of artwork on this model! On the rear we have silver trim tail lights and the name of the event where this model will be presented – LEIPZIGER MESSE MODELL HOBBY SPIEL along with a unique license plate.  On the front we have classically detailed head lamps along with a silver Volkswagen badge. On the driver side rear panel can be seen the MATCHBOX 60th Anniversary logo. And on top of the rear trunk, in classic lettering, is the Karmann Ghia signature badge – a signature that is beautiful in its simplicity.
The vehicle is showcased in a handsome acrylic case with its front panel decorated with the MATCHBOX 60th Anniversary logo, model, and event name.
I will proudly display this model on my work shelf.  But I have to tell you something here and now as I scrutinize the details of this model and that is that I am now thinking about next year and what I can do to top this one. 
By the way, before I could even offer Dirk Schleuer a list of three vehicles to choose from he beat me to the punch by requesting this model as his model of choice!  Good choice Dirk!
I hope you enjoy this model as much as I do.
MODEL: 1966 Volkswagen Karmann Ghia Type 34 MB883
BODY: High Gloss Red
PACKAGE: Acrylic case packed in a corrugated box

-Michael Heralda

Matchbox 2013 Leipzig Special Edition Toy Show Volkswagen Karmann Ghia Type 34

Family reunion:

With its cousin from an earlier Leipzig show:


  1. Red is an outstanding color choice for this special edition. For me, the ivory interior gives the T34 a period-1960's look that the black interior was missing. The detailed script, door handles, side marker lights, and different rims are all great new features. Thanks for the story, Michael. And as always, great photos by John!

  2. It's a nice model. It has all the details. The way the toy fair's logo is, it looks more like a bumper sticker.

  3. This is the kind of stuff Mattel does to really make me livid. Perhaps listening to My Bloody Valentine is putting me in the mood, but here we go again:

    They take a really nice casting like this VW, and find a way to dress it up in clown shoes and a power brooch. The wheels are just too big for this car. They are good looking in their own right, but on this diminutive car, they look like something 10 guys with rubber noses coming out of a similarly-scaled vehicle would wear on their feet. It just makes no sense from an aesthetic vantage point.
    If the huge wheels were not enough, there is that gawd-dang logo hogging space on the quarter panel.
    For the love of Mike, make it stop.
    You guys get the casting spot-on, and then go and make it sillier than a rabbit in denim pants. If anyone can do realism, who the heck are those who cant?


    1. Two quotes to share: "Give the world the best you have and it may never be enough.
      Give your best anyway.” – Mother Teresa
      “Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great ones make you feel that you too can become great.” – Mark Twain

    2. This is a corporate product, not my daughters ballet recital. Metaphor is an old hat trick, but still an effective one. Apathy will not bring about the change we consumers deserve from our beloved brand.


  4. The car is fine till some Muppet put a childish 60 logo on it.

  5. There are so many shades of red to choose from. I think you got it right for this one. The graphics are done in a very conservative way. You have everything printed on the car that needs to be there but they are not on the hood or trunk lids which would detract from the beauty of the model. The car itself is the center piece the graphics and what event they depict are secondary. Great job. I would love to have one of these in my collection.

  6. I guess some people will never be satisfied. Considering that this is a commemorative car, I say it was done in a very elegant way. The logos are the right size and are in the right places, but at the same time without detracting from the essence of the design. Don't get me wrong now, I am a bit of a stickler when it comes to my die-cast as well, but what do you expect from a toy show car? And, especially at this scale? I think Mr. Mike did a hell of a job, I say. I can say that the graphic design was more tasteful than some of the toy show cars of old. And the wheels are fine. Better than the ones that we got on the mainline version.

  7. ...and this is why Micheal is "da man!!!"
    Detail, commemoration, rollin' art, all in one.
    Yes, magnificence when you don't have bean-counter restrictions.
    absolutely awesome, MH!
    -Terry Ozima
    mbx amb 4

  8. If anyone needs one I have one for sale

    1. or e-mail me