Thursday, July 9, 2015

First Look: 2015 Matchbox 1975 Mack CF Pumper...

Everyone loves fire trucks.

You may not scroll endlessly through Instagram hunting for slammed and cambered fire truck pics, but if you dig deep down far enough, you will find that happy place.  Fire trucks live there.

I am in the same boat.  Fire trucks may not occupy a large portion of my brain like they did when I was 5-years-old, but I am always happy when Matchbox releases another one.  That's because Matchbox knows how to do a fire vehicle.  Whether it be a standard pumper like the Pierce Dash, classics like the Seagrave, or off-roaders like the International Brush Truck, Matcbbox does them right.

So excitement has been high for the '75 Mack CF Pumper.  But we are in the plastic era with Matchbox, so all bets are off until we actually see and feel the model.  Well, I have it in hand, and...

I love it.

But there is a fair amount of plastic, and it is small, so why don't I address those as part of the post:

Q:  Is the '75 Mack too small?

A:  Yes and no.  Here is the yes:

It is dwarfed by a Porsche Cayman.  That is a little out of scale.  Compare that to the scale-obsessed folks at Tomica Limited Vintage:

But the big difference is the two TLV's came in two different-sized packages, and all basic Matchbox have to fit into the same size blister.  Plus, they have to go with the wheels they have.  You can't always compare the size of one Matchbox with the next, when they all have to fit on the same card.  So I am ok with that.

Here is the no:

As different as one model might be to the next, Matchbox has done a fine job of keeping similar models the same size.  Case in point?  The most recent fire/emergency castings:

Pierce Dash

Hazard Squad



They work together.  That right there is a fleet.  I can get behind that.

Q:  Am I bothered by all the plastic on this new model?

A:  No.

I have been accused of being a Matchbox apologist in the past, and it might be true, but in the case of this model, honestly I am not bothered.  And that's not to say plastic on models hasn't bothered me before.  The Renault Ambulance and other full-body plastic models are not in the collection.

But in the case of the Mack, there is a nice metal frame, and some plastic fill-in.  The most visible plastic piece is the rear panel, but this is actually a good thing, because it allows for a two tone model each time it is made.  I will say the plastic could look a little more substantial, but that is being a little too much of a stickler.

Q:  Will I collect it?

A:  Absolutely.

I love Matchbox fire trucks, and this one is a wonderful addition.  And a mid-70's classic at that.  The Mack wins...

(Find the '75 Mack at Wheel Collectors...)

Matchbox 1975 Mack CF Pumper (2015 New Models):


  1. Coooool! Absolutely a must have. One itsy-bitsy, tiny complaint of mine that the opening between the cab and the panel vanished... I know it has to fit in into the blister but I think they could shorten the rear part, too, and... that's all :) They did a great job in every other aspect.

  2. The majority of European sales of these delicately designed Fire Engines will be bought by kids who will no doubt appreciate the the fact that they're Fire Engines but the real vehicles are non existent in the UK. I'd love to see a Volvo or Scania equivalent, especially if it retains the charm of these models.

    1. E.g. the Blaze Blitzer is the spitting image of a 4x4 Scania, don't you think? And quite a charming truck as well.

  3. I've always thought we were the only ones (well, the Canadians, too) that had the Mack CF. However, a quick Bing search reveals several were apparently sold to New Zealand with right hand drive, and some with European bodywork.

    I will buy it. The canopy cab is miles better than the only other Matchbox model to have a canopy cab the old Fire Pumper, which I believe is also a Mack, a C to be specific. This canopy cab is open at the back, while on the old one, it's closed in. Problem is, on the CF it's really stubby. The space between the pump panel and the area behind the cab is non-existent.

  4. Great looking truck. Way to go for Matchbox.
    As for the scale, comparison should not be made against TLV, but against the standard box-sized Tomica regulars where the trucks are scaled very small to fit into their regular size box.

  5. Great tiny little details .