Boxes > Japanese Boxes

The following types of Matchbox picture boxes – all featuring Japanese lettering – were made especially for the Japanese market from 1977 to 1979, in connection with re-releases of some older Matchbox models which had already been replaced in the worldwide range, and with some models actually made for Matchbox in Japan:

Type Ablack box with red and grey stripes
Type B1white front, red side, number with “J-” prefix
Type B2white front, red side, number without “J-” prefix
Type Csingle-coloured box (similar to worldwide L type)
Type DYellow window box with number

In the following list, all known boxes issued especially for the Japanese market are listed with the Japanese model numbers printed on them. Type D boxes and models were issued around about 1982/3. Other models which were re-released in Japan had the same numbers and box designs as had been used worldwide before.

For a more comprehensive gallery of images, Christian Falkensteiner’s Matchbox Box Pictures provides an extensive gallery.

Type A – Matchbox Japan Series – Rolls Royce Silver Shadow

Black box with grey and orange vertical stripe. Picture of model on front of box, with only the Matchbox banner as an identifying logo.

Japan box – Type A FrontJapan box – Type A Side

Type B1 – Matchbox Japan Series – ADAC VW Golf

Now colour based, details are in both English, and Japanese. Picutre of car is depicted in the drawing style silimar to that of box Type K that was issued in the UK.

Also note the silimarity of the Superfast logo branding on the side of the box.

Japan box – Type B1 FrontJapan box – Type B1 Side

Type B2 – Matchbox Japan Series – Mazda RX-7 (Mazda Savannah RX-7)

Branding has now changed to include the ’75’ logo, and again, details are in both english and Japanese. The model illustration has moved away from drawing, and now is depicted by a colour photograph of the model superimposed onto the box.

The Model number is also displayed on the bottom left hand corner of the box.

Japan box – Type B2 FrontJapan box – Type B2 Side

Type C – Matchbox Japan Series – Toyota Celica (Toyota Celica XX 2600G)

Silimiar to Japan box Type B2, the model number has moved to the top of th box.

Again, details are in both Japanese and English

Japan box – Type C FrontJapan box – Type C Side

Type D – Matchbox Japan Series – MB62 Toyota Celica 2800 GT & MB44 Fairlady (Nissan) 280ZX Police Car

A yellow window box, with the Matchbox banner to the top left hand corner. The model and model number are to the bottom right of the box. The date of this box is around 1982/3 (please contact the webmaster if you have any further information on this box).

It is interesting to note that wherever possible, the models are given their full name, and the colour schemes are authentically reproduced to match those of their real life versions.