1932 Duesenberg J481 Victoria Convertible Greta Garbo Diecast Model

  • Retail Price: $367.90
  • Our Price: $324.95
  • Sold Out
Ilario 1932 Duesenberg J481 Victoria Convertible Greta Garbo diecast car
  • Year: 1932
  • Brand: Ilario
  • Make: Duesenberg
  • Code: IL 43050R
  • Model: J481 Victoria Convertible Greta Garbo
  • Scale: 1:43
  • Color: Dark Red
  • Note: Limited Edition 80 pieces

Ilario Chiera has been producing 1:43 scale models and kits since 1984. One of his latest models is that of the 1932 Duesenberg Victoria convertible J-481 2503. The car was introduced at the 1932 Paris Auto Salon and was reportedly built for the film star Greta Garbo. She denied on several occasions that she ever owned a Duesenberg and no photographs exist of her with the car although there are pictures of a close friend of hers with it. All Duesenbergs have custom bodies and this one was bodied in Paris by Fernandez and Darrin. Dutch Darrin is probably better known for his later work with Packard, Kaiser-Frazer, and other American manufacturers.

Duesenberg introduced their J model in 1928 shortly after E. L. Cord acquired the company. The chassis had a 153.5 inch wheelbase and weighed in excess of 5,200 pounds. The 419.6 cubic inch, straight eight, dual overhead camshaft engine produced 265 horsepower. This would move the car up to 116 miles per hour. The chassis and engine sold for $9,500 and a body would bring the cost up to $14,000 and above. This was in the days when a doctor might make $3,000 per year. Later supercharged versions, the SJ, produced 320 horsepower.

Ilario has produced three versions of the car, a blue top up with black fenders, a blue top down with black fenders and a black hood, and a dark red with the three position top in the half way position. Ilario stated that the blue top up was the original version as sold to Greta Garbo. However, Dennis Adler, in his book “Duesenberg”, states that the dark red version was the original. Regardless, all three models are wonderful examples of this outstanding car. I chose the red one for myself because of the color and the unique half top position.

The model is as detailed as any model I have ever seen from any manufacturer. The dimensions are right on the money and every exterior detail is correctly chromed. The black washed grille sits behind massive head lamps, driving lamps and triple horns. Additional driving lamps sit at the cowl and a large spotlight is at the windshield on the passenger side. The pontoon fenders have the correct center raised crease on each one. There is a step rather than a running board on each side, finished in black and chrome. The rear of the car has a cream colored trunk that matches the top and interior, complete with tiny chrome latches. Twin spare tires are mounted behind the trunk and a single large lamp is also on the rear.

The half top is further enhanced with landau bars and chrome trim. In that position, it would afford Miss Garbo a great degree of privacy if the car was truly hers. The detail continues on the interior with individual cream colored seats front and rear, door handles, window regulators, and door locks done in chrome on the red and cream interior door panels. The dash is detailed with gauges and the gear shift lever and hand brake reach up from the floor. The undercarriage appears well detailed although I did not have the courage to unscrew the model from the plinth. The realistic wheels are multi-spoked wire wheels mounting wide white sidewall tires. The model is screw and spring mounted on an attractive wood and gray leather plinth and covered with a 5¾ x 5¾ inch plexiglass cover to protect it and creating a very nice presentation box.. The undercarriage appears well detailed although I did not have the courage to unscrew the model from the plinth.

Only 80 of the red model, 80 of the blue top-up, and 65 of the blue and black top-down are being produced. If you are a Duesenberg fan or just love great models you will not want to wait to get this one before they are all gone. It quickly became the favorite model in my collection.

-Dick Browne

  • Retail Price: $367.90
  • Our Price: $324.95
  • Sold Out

Buy the best die-cast cars, trucks and motorcycles online from LegacyDiecast.com! Where to buy diecast cars, tanks and planes. Best selection of die-cast models and display cases. Look for great deals and cheap prices on selected sale items.