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Jan Oldenhuis's picture
Jan Oldenhuis
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DTCA MemberNetherlands

-194 Bentley 'S' Coupe (1961-67)

This beautiful model deserves attention. Here are some pictures of my Bentley S2 Coupe.

A beauty on display.

First issue price 6/3 in pencil on box.

First issue price 6/3 in pencil on box.

I love this beautiful typical British model, because its distinguish British style as a convertible with a driver behind the steering wheel. It invites you to get in for a ride with this car. Indeed a stately car for stately homes as announced in the Meccano Magazine of March 1961.

Introduction of DT 194 Bentley S2 coupe on the back cover of Meccano Magazine March 1961.

Meccano Magazine UK March 1961 with Dinky Toys news about the Bentley S2 coupe.

Meccano Magazine UK March 1961 with Dinky Toys news about the Bentley S2 coupe.

Meccano Liverpool introduced with this car a completely new Dinky Toys feature – a well-detailed walnut-coloured dashboard.

A beautiful red coloured interior with walnut-coloured dashboard and folded tan-coloured hood.

A beautiful rounding line of the car.

A Rolls-Royce styled front.

I found the following information about the production of this car:

Wikipedia:

The Bentley S2 is a luxury car produced by Bentley from 1959 until 1962. The successor to the S1, it featured the new Rolls-Royce - Bentley L Series V8 engine and improved air conditioning made possible by its increased output. Power steering was also standard, and a new dashboard and steering wheel were introduced. Some early S2s were built with the earlier S1 dashboard.

A high-performance S2-derived Continental edition was also produced.

In all, 1,920 standard and long-wheelbase S2 car chassis were built between 1959 and 1962. Almost all were fitted with standard factory bodywork. A number had coach built bodies by Park Ward, Hooper, H. J. Mulliner & Co., and James Young.

Announced at the beginning of October 1959 the S2 replaced the S1's straight-six engine the a new aluminium Rolls-Royce - Bentley L Series V8 shared with the Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud II. It displaced 6.2 L (6230 cc/380 in³), and offered significantly improved performance.

As advertised in The Times, Friday, 2 October 1959.

The cylinder block and heads are cast in aluminium alloy and hydraulic tappets operate the overhead valves. The engine has a compression ratio of 8 to 1 and is fitted with twin carburettors with automatic choke.

Other features available include fully automatic transmission, power-assisted steering, electrically operated ride control, redesigned and more flexible air conditioning, electric rear window demisters and press button window lifts

Production

S2: 1863 (15 with H. J. Mulliner & Co. drophead coupe bodies)

S2 long wheelbase: 57 (5 with James Young bodies and 1 by Wendler)

Brochure

I found on Ebay the following brochure of this car:

According this brochure the real car must be a convertible drophead coupe on a Bentley S2 chassis build by H.J.  Mulliner & Co Ltd, Motor Body Builders, Bedford Park Works Chiswick London W4. It is a very interesting brochure with much details about the appearance of this model.

According to Wikipedia there were only 15 of these Bentley S2 drophead coupe bodies made by H.J. Mulliner & Co.

I'm not a specialist so I recommend me for corrections or additions.

Here are some pictures of a real Bentley S2 convertible I found on internet.

Bentley S2 1962 Mulliner Drophead Coupe. Imperial Palace Auto Collections Las Vegas.

Bentley S2 1962 Mulliner Drophead Coupe. Imperial Palace Auto Collections Las Vegas.

Bentley S2 1962 Mulliner Drophead Coupe.

When you look at the brochure and pictures of the real car, I think Meccano Liverpool has done a very good Job and reproduced this model very well.

Lastly, I'll show some pictures of my Bentley S2 coupe and the brochure in full format.

Note: There are more colour variations and South African issues of this model.

Kind regards,

Jan Oldenhuis 12-6-2017

 

Dinkinius's picture
Dinkinius
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AustraliaDTCA Member

Jan

An excellent contribution from you on this stunning Dinky Toys! You are quite correct when you wrote that this "beautiful model deserves attention".

I never received one when I was a youngster, as in 1961 I was in my final year at high school, and my thoughts were primarily aimed at achieving my Leaving Certificate!  But in recent years I have made amends to this omission.

Like you I have the usual issue in grey with maroon seats,

which came into my household in April 1996.  I have since then added another of these handsome models in January last year. 

This being the less common model with red seats.  From what I have been able to determine, the red seat version was available for a period between June 1962 and June 1963. Why this came about is naturally unknown, although we can speculate that someone got the colour mixed up which was rectified as soon as it was noticed in view of the small numbers seen that have been sold through the Internet which is a good barometer.  I classify this version as an accidental introduction but none-the-less worthy of being added to one's collection! Although with the introduction of the following colour scheme during the same time frame, it may have been a necessity to change the colour of the seats in view of the unavailability of maroon paint which would make it non-accidental!

The new colour mentioned above, temporarily replaced the grey with bronze, and with pale cream seats and a mid-blue folded hood. In view of the small number of these that have made an appearance in the many auction houses in the United Kingdom, the period when this colour scheme was made must have been relatively short with UK prices on their boxes being applicable to 1962-63. The familiar grey with maroon seats then made a return until the model itself was finally deleted from the Meccano inventory in late 1966.

The deletion date of the Bentley is perhaps one year earlier than shown with its title from the PDF File.  Its last appearance in a Dealer Order Form was August 1966 and from that date on the Bentley was no longer included for dealers to order. The model did make an appearance in name only without an illustration (a sure-fire indication of the demise of a model) in the 2nd Edition of the 1966 catalogue dated July 1966 with its inclusion being due to the final stocks being held by Dealers.  Certainly all sales material from December 1966, the Bentley Coupe is no longer mentioned.

Thank you for all those additional inclusions, especially the sales literature. Well researched and a boost to our knowledge of the car in real life and in model form.

Kind regards

Bruce H.   (150)

20171306/1122/2034

Jan Oldenhuis's picture
Jan Oldenhuis
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DTCA MemberNetherlands

Bruce,

Many thanks for your compliments and your very valuable additions.

Kind regards,

Jan O 14-6-2017.

Jan Oldenhuis's picture
Jan Oldenhuis
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DTCA MemberNetherlands

In addition to David Busfield's very interesting article on the 194 Bentley Series S2 coupé in the April 2021 Journal, I like to show just how accurately Meccano Liverpool has reproduced this truly beautiful car in miniature.

As mentioned in # 1, the bodywork was made by H.J. Mulliner & Co Ltd, Chiswick London, a complete brochure of which already was shown above.

It can be clearly seen that even the upholstery of the benches accurate has been reproduced. The upholstery of the rear bench has 17 strips and is exactly counterfeit. The front seats has 8 strips on the left and right seat. Meccano Liverpool must also have had such an interior drawing.

This model is really one of the most beautiful cars ever made by Meccano Liverpool.

Jan Oldenhuis 27 May 2021

Jan Oldenhuis's picture
Jan Oldenhuis
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DTCA MemberNetherlands

Strange that the Toyman of Meccano Liverpool in MM of March 1961 did not mention the name H.J. Mulliner as coachbuilder of this Bentley S2 Coupé, as was done for example with the Kenex coachbuilder of the 295 Atlas Kenebrake Bus and Park Ward and James Young coachbuilders of the 198 Rolls -Royce Phantom V. That is the reason for me to do another good research on the prototype of the Dinky Toys 194 Bentley S2 coupe in existing documentation, such as catalogues, photos, internet etc.

The Bentley S2 was released from October 1959. Given the issue date of Dinky Toys model 194 in March 1961, the prototype Bentley S2 Coupe must have been model year 1960. Unfortunately, GB of DT do not provide any information about the 194 Meccano Assembly drawing. This type of Drop-Head Coupé was not included in the regular 1960 Bentley S2 sales brochures. As shown, H.J. Mulliner had his own brochure for the Bentley Convertible Drop-Head Coupé Drg No. 7492.

Documentation on the Bentley S2 Drop-Head Coupé always mentions H.J. Mulliner as the coachbuilder of this S2 Coupé model. Only 15 of these convertibles were built and seven of them were left-hand drive (Export) vehicles! Indeed as the introduction DT advertisement above stated: Stately cars for stately homes. (Only!)

I did find a 1960 Bentley S2 Continental brochure showing a S2 Continental Drophead Coupé from coachbuilder Park Ward, but it had a more rectangular front and back, as can be seen in the attached photos.

Jan Oldenhuis 3 June 2021.

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Jan Oldenhuis
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DTCA MemberNetherlands

In the introduction advertisement of model 194 in MM March 1961 a "complete" new Dinky Toys feature was announced, namely "this superb model introduces a completely new Dinky Toys feature - a detailed dashboard". But the 140a Austin Atlantic Convertible, issued in April 1951, already had a complete cast dashboard, as can be seen in the accompanying photo. The only difference is that the dashboard of the 194 is made of plastic. The Toyman had forgotten that for a moment.

Jan Oldenhuis 5 June 2021

dinkycollect's picture
dinkycollect
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DTCA MemberFrance

The Simca 8 Sport ref. 24s which is the French eqivalent to the Austin Atlantic also had a finely detailed dash board.

When you read the descriptions by the Toyman, you find that like most politicians, he could write a lot while giving a minimum of information. The Toyman was definitely a marketing man, not a technician.

dinkycollect's picture
dinkycollect
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DTCA MemberFrance

In one of his very poor books, Dominique Pascal writes that the driver of this Bentley was first diecast in zamac and later in plastic. As Pascal can not be trusted, can omeone confirm that this is true.

Kind regards

Jacques