All about that base...

Guest columnist John Whitaker questions what appears to be a new phenomenon when it comes to ‘limited editions’




I know that manufacturers sometimes re-issue a model some years after the original limited edition offering, but isn’t a gap of a few weeks pushing it a bit?

It seems that BBR’s definition of a limited run is based not on the model itself but on a model/plinth or model/display case combination. Is this a new phenomenon?

Take, for instance, the superb 1:18 LaFerrari Aperta in Black Daytona finish (pictured)... This was made available as a limited edition of 99 about a month ago (following a January pre-order) and was supplied on a white alcantara base. A few weeks later, it was offered with a suitcase-style opaque case in a limited edition of 70. Following this came a further limited edition of 99 in a “display” and, then, just last week I saw it is advertised with a red leatherette base.

So, the expected limited run of 99 in that particular colour now totals 367. But maybe BBR will offer other limited editions on leatherette bases in various colours of the rainbow, or perhaps in wooden cases shaped like famous world landmarks. I’m holding out for a Dino 246GT in a 3Dprinted case resembling the Seven Hills of Rome!

I buy models to display, so actually the plinth/base/ cover is irrelevant to me. (Who keeps their models on plinths anyway?) Fortunately, I’m in a position not to be at all concerned about future re-sale values so the edition size is of little concern to me, but it does seems that BBR’s marketing, in this particular example anyway, is deceiving. BBR could have publicized at the outset that they would be offering hundreds of the same model and colour, albeit in different packages, but they didn’t, did they? A bit naughty, I’d suggest.

And so we come back to my earlier question: is this a new phenomenon? And it an acceptable one? I’d be interested to hear your thoughts on the subject.

What do you think?
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