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Sunday, January 1, 2017

Matchbox 1959 Chevrolet Brookwood Wagon

2017 got off to an early start with Matchbox: normally the first new batch of the year arrives after the first of the year, but this year Matchbox had three 2017 batches before the end of 2016!  One of the first new castings to arrive this year is the Chevy Brookwood wagon with a new feature that will be coming to a few Matchbox castings: removable parts.

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Everyone knows the 1959 Chevy Impala range and its long rear decklid and cat-eye taillights, but the average consumer in 1959 more than likely had a more practical and affordable low-end Chevy sedan or wagon.  The Brookwood wagon was the Chevy station wagon from 1958 to 1962 and again in 1969 to 1972.  The wagon has familiar Chevrolet styling cues of the cars in 1959 carried over from across all model lines, so it was common to see styling from an Impala on a low-end Biscayne sedan or Brookwood wagon.  The interior offers seating for six  with controls mounted closer to the driver.  Powertrains range from an I-6 to the 348 CID V8 with 3 or 4-speed manual transmissions or a 2-speed Powerglide automatic transmission.

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This Matchbox Brookwood comes out of the gate in a fantastic red with silver trim accents and black wheels with chrome hubcaps.  However, Matchbox did not finish off all the trim detailing so I added the rest to really make this car stand out.  Up front is quad round headlights next to a billet grille, with upper eye brow vents with integrated signal lights.  The fenders have spears near the front, while the side trim and Brookwood badges on the front fenders are added by Matchbox.  The roof's straight-up pillars look out-of-place with the sleek beltline, but add the silver trim around the windows and it somehow seems to flow with the rest of the car.  The large decklid fenders are less pronounced with the wagon roof filling in the vast decklid, yet the fenders still protrude out of the rear fenders before diving down to the center license plate with badge just above.  Then there's the cat-eye taillights nicely done.

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The base shows off the X-brace frame with engine and exhaust details.  Add to that some camping or family road trip adventures with the roof-mounted luggage rack with canoe.  The tray (where I added the silver on the latches) holds the luggage inside with the canoe mounted just above the rack.  The rack is removable to allow the wagon's clean lines all by themselves, but that leads to two downsides: one, there's no interior thanks to Mattel's four-part rule and that rule means the luggage rack is favored over an interior, and two the windows support the roof rack when in place leaving a ugly large black square on the roof (making the luggage rack look better on the car than off it!).  Now on a side note Matchbox is aware of the four-part rule and designers have crafted an interior for future use should either the four part rule die out or a premium line is created.  No word if the Brookwood wagon has an interior tool, but the upcoming Mercedes G63 6x6 has both an interior and non-interior tools.

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Despite the lack of an interior this Matchbox Chevy Wagon is nicely done and with added function looks like a best match for the adventerous Matchbox brand.

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