Marx Batmobile, £4500 at British Toy Auctions.

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According to British Toy Auctions (20% buyer’s premium) of Runcorn, Cheshire, Marx had already been making that model “in several different colours and with or without a remote control for a few years so they saw an opportunity and decided to dress it up as a Batmobile and cash in on the success of the 1966 movie with Adam West and Burt Ward”.

All Marx did was to “change the original Le Sabre’s wrap-around windscreen for a split canopy style with an extra rear screen and add figures of the Caped Crusader himself and his trusty sidekick Robin.

“The friction drive and siren features touted on the box were already part of the previous model incarnation so adding a couple of Bat logo stickers on the doors and some new box artwork and the job was done for minimal outlay.”

These cars were produced for the UK market. Marx was a US company (1919-80) but ran factories worldwide including Swansea and London.

Childhood gift

British Toy Auctions offered one of these hybrid Batmobiles, about 10½in (27cm) long, on April 24 with an estimate of £1200-1500. The vendor from Cheshire was originally gifted this toy as a child by his father.

It had some minor condition issues but was described as appearing to be in ‘Excellent Plus condition’, and gives the impression that it has experienced very little ‘play’. The cardboard box had ‘some signs of age wear, and storage related creasing, appearing to be in very good condition overall’.

The Batmobile is speeding away to a new owner in Singapore who paid a hammer price of £4500.

One sold at Hake’s in the US in 2020 for a touch over $3000, premium inclusive, but that example lacked its original box. A boxed version had made £750 at Vectis back in 2008.