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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Majorette started out as a French toy company primarily know for their 1:64 scale diecast cars, construction vehicles and military castings. The company was originally named "Rail Route" when it was founded by Emile Veron in 1961. Emile is the brother of Joseph Veron who had earlier started Norev. Which is Veron spelled backwards.

Rail Route's first offerings were of course model railway related items. In 1964, their production focus was changed over to diecast cars and trucks, but the Majorette name was still not used until 1967. Their diecast production factory started out in Lyon, France. But, in 1987, production was moved to Thailand and then later still to China. The initial Rail Route die cast vehicles had all been #ed below 200.

Rail Route Casting List

The basic Majorette series of 3" (1:64) diecast models replaced the "Rail Route" series and started the use of the Majorette name in 1967. For these castings, the 'Series 200' nick name has been adopted by collectors for all the vehicles in this series. Each casting had a number in the range of 201 to 299 assigned to them. The previous "Rail Route" models that continued to be produced were renumbered by having 200 or 100 being added to their original Rail Route series numbers. The "200 Series" has had many updates over the years. In the 2000s, they had been split into several different themed series - such as "Street Cars" and "Racing". Since most models still have base plate numbers in the 200 range though collectors have found it useful to still use the term "200 Series" when referring to the whole range of 3" diecast models by Majorette even today.

In the mid 1960s, Chas C Merzbach Company Inc marketed Majorette made diecast as "Fastwheels". Merzbach himself is believed to be the person who coined the 'Fast wheels' name. Physio-Chem is another American based distributor who marketed Majorettes '200' and '300' series castings. World Toy House also distributed Majorette made castings as part of their "Micro Mites" brand diecast offerings.

In 1969, a series of twin packs made up from the 3" diecast models in the '200 Series' were introduced. These became known as the '300 Series', so named because all models had new casting numbers ranging from 301 to 399 assigned to them. Each casting model included a tow behind trailer of some sort or purpose. The series also included models of semi-trailer truck sets. Some of models where much larger than their 3" cousins from the '200 Series'. Some of the models or pairs that were issued before 1969 were originally part of the Rail Route series and then the 200 Series. Those which remained in production were also re-numbered into the 300s range. The 300s # range is not officially used by Majorette anymore and current twin packs are not assigned any individual numbers. But as above, collectors still find it meaningful to use the term '300 Series' to refer to this range of twin packs today.

A rather unique casting product offered by Majorette were their "Smelly Speeders" series. These castings came with scent infused wheel sets. This series was intended to have 12 models produced and has 12 scents listed, but only 7 casting versions are known. "Smelly Speeders" were blister carded with a tattoo (?) sheet that was the same design as the applied casting stickers. Some "Smelly Speeders" models were packaged on '200 Series' cards. The French carded versions called them "Tutti Frutti Serie 460" with only 6 models being listed by scent and known by the individual castings that were made. The "Tutti Frutti" series had no applied stickers or tattoo sheets included with the blistered casting.

Smelly Speeders Casting List

Tutti Frutti Serie 460 Casting List

Another interesting casting series they produced was the '290 Series'. These "Magic-Cars Special FX Series", were castings made with lenticular images printed on their window pieces. Lenticular images are the cylindrical shaped lens covers - that show different printed images - as you view the car from different angles.

In the early 1970s, WT Grant marketed a Bernard cab casting made by Majorette with a 'Grants' decorated delivery trailer.

In the mid 1970s, Elf gave away a (6) car Majorette set packaged as "Club Cadeaux Elf" at their gas stations.

In the late 1970s to early 1980s, Kiko, a Brazilian toy company made a licensing agreement with Majorette to produce models in Brazil.

During the 1980s, Kiko, aka A Kikoler, offered their "Globe Toys" range based on the Majorette '200 Series' models. Kiko's Globe Toys range were marketed as a 100 #ed series. The Majorette logo was removed (or hidden) on their bronze tinted Zamac bases and issued in Kiko labeled brand packaging with graphic decorations not found on the regular Majorette "200 Series" models before. They were made in Brazil starting in 1981, and then later in France. In the French produced packaging, there are two different blister card types known. One is for the Greek market and the other for the German market.

In 1980, Majorette purchased Solido Majorette took over the Solido line and began issuing Solido made models under the brand name Verem. Solido closed their Oulins, France, factory in 2006. Casting production was then transferred to China.

In 1982, Majorette USA, Inc was formed and sustained distribution of Majorette offering through to the late 1990s.

In the mid 1980s, Mini-Motor (France) issued a series of friction pull back castings made for them by High Speed, but identified as a Majorette product on the card back. A variety of plastic Majo-kits were also available in the mid-1980s. These accessory kits provided different play settings with buildings, signs, animals and other theme related items included in each set.

Metchy is also noted to have made a Jeep casting similar to the one Majorette had made.

In the 1990s, models with light and sound features were introduced along with garages.

In 1992, Majorette had been facing bankruptcy since 1988, and was subsequently purchased by Ideal Loisirs. Playmates Interactive Entertainment Ltd of Hong Kong then purchased a large percentage interest in Ideal Loisirs.

In 1993, Majorette also purchased Novacar and took over production control of Novacar (Portugal) but with Novacar castings continuing to be produced as a distinct line of cars from Majorette. Later on they were absorbed completely by Majorette with casting production changing over to be under the Majorette label.

In 1996, Majorette was purchased by Triumph Adler of Germany.

In 2001, Mira (Spain) was taken over by Solido holding portion of Majorette.

In the early 2000s, A Kikoler was purchased by Triumph Adler of Germany. Majorette also marketed Welly's "Motor Car" series during this time frame replacing the Welly brand label with their Majorette logo.

In 2003, Majorette and Solido are both acquired by the Smoby Group who combined both companies as "Smoby Majorette". In 2007, they once again had to declare themselves insolvent.

In 2008, the French financial investor group MI 29 acquired Majorette.

In 2010, the Majorette brand becomes a holding company of the Simba Dickie Groupl.

In 2012, a tsunami destroyed the Majorette factory in Thailand. Simba Dickie Group rebuilds the factory with new, ultra-modern machines, molds and tools.

By 2015, their product range had been completely revised under the Simba Dickie Group with a new packaging and point of sale design.

In 2017, Majorette carded items could once again be found in the US.Majorette has though returned to the American market in 2017. Today both Majorette and Solido"]Solido[/URL] diecast are produced by the Simba-Dickie group - more commonly know as Dickie Toys in both 1:18 and 1:64 scale models.



Sourced References -

My primary reference resources are member posts and images here at HobbyTalk
HobbyTalk member input - @thanadon
Majorette (toy manufacturer) - Wikipedia
Fandom
Majorette | hobbyDB
Solido | hobbyDB
Verem | hobbyDB
Encyclopedia of Small-Scale Diecast Motor Vehicle Manufacturers - Sahakangas, Foster & Weber (2006)
 

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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
Majorette Brand Series Name List

Majorette Diecast Series

(early series names)
100 Series (1964-1970)
200 Series (1970-1980s) single cars
___Road Eaters
___Sonic Flashers
300 Series (1975- ) twin packs
600 Series (Semi Tractor Series)
3000 Series (larger semi tracor series)
Majo-Kit play sets (1980s-1990s)
Light and Sound
Planes/Helicopters

(2010 series names)
Singles - diecast cars
Extractor Series - (construction)
S.O.S. - Ambulance and police diecasts
Trailers - Semi trucks and vehicles with trailers (follows the old 300 series)
Farm Series - CLAAS tractors
Motorcycles -
Rockerz - 4x4 Monster trucks
Planes and Helicopters
Pinder Circus Series
Racing - liveried vehicles and racing trucks with trailers


Feel free to add photos or post updates, additions or corrections and I will update these listings as appropriate. Adding scale information and years of production if known is especially appreciated. This one needs a lot of details added. :thumbsup:
 

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I´ve got one of the Majorette rocket launcher trucks with the radar antennae on the back, a sonic flasher. Didn´t know they were collectible. I think it is in HO scale 1/87th.

Rusty in eastern Tennessee (Witherington Place Railroad)
 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
Welcome to the boards trainman007! :thumbsup:

Thanks for your service as well.


After your 5th post you should be able to add photos of your collection. Look forward to seeing them. The Majorette line returned to the US last year, but is still a big item over in Europe.
 

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My son found a 1980s Cadillac Limo made by Majorette at a garage sale a few years ago now. Interesting to know more about the company. I wonder how many limos they produced. :p
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I updated the wiki link in the first post to take you to the right information page now. :cheers2:

I would imagine hundreds of thousands of each casting was eventually produced by Majorette.

Funny that I was thinking about this brand over the past few days as I have yet to see any in our area? Did they stop distribution already? :lurk5:
 

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The castings I have seen seem kind of crude and not exactly to to matchbox's standards. My son's limo is about as detailed as this one:


Not exactly a tour de force. :p
 

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Hello from Thailand! Majorette is releasing some nice cars in 2019, of the more "premium" models come with rubber tires. One of the most popular casting that people are looking forward to are the rally car series. They are doing a good job.

Some history from their own website majorette.com

For folks who are looking for a comprehensive list (not complete) of the models released, here is an excellent link.

majorette.fandom.com/wiki/Majorette_Diecast_Database

I use it to keep track of cars I have, looking for variations, colors, etc.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
@thanadon thanks for the link and welcome to the boards.

most of my castings are corvettes, but I have run across a few others over the years. :cheers2:
 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
Majorette Diecast History updates

I merged the pevious history thread together with this one and moved the updated Majorette information into the OP. :cheers2:
 

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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
Known Majorette Series Names

Rail Route
200 Series
Majo-Kit
300 Series
Globe Toys
Tutti Frutti 460 Serie
460 Series - Smelly Speeders
Odorette
Sentorette
290 Series - Magic-Cars Special FX
Super 600 Trucks
Transporter
Turboom
3000 Series
7100 Series
Collection Racing Trucks
Deluxe Collection
Fire Zone
Rescue Force
Road Eaters
Majorette Street Cars

Majorette 300 Series
Majorette Club
Majorette 1/18 Club
Majorette Deluxe
Majorette Motors
Majorette Premium Cars
Majorette Racing Cars
Majorette Special Forces
Majorette Super Club
Majorette Vision Gran Turismo Series
Majoteams Builders
Majoteams City
Majoteams Rescuers
Street Cars
Speed Wheelers
S.O.S. Assortment
S.O.S. Assortment Bulgaria
S.O.S. Assortment Germany
S.O.S. Assortment Italy
S.O.S. Assortment Spain
S.O.S. Assortment Switzerland



https://www.hobbydb.com/subjects/majorette-brand
 
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