Bedford "Dormobile" Personnel Carrier - 404

page last updated: 25 September 2016







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Of 24 new models released by Corgi in their first calendar year of production,1956, 6 were Bedford CA vans. This is the Dormobile conversion which put windows in the sides of the van and seats in the back to make a crew bus. This is quite a nice model really and I was surprised to see metallic paint this early in the life of the brand, especially on such a mundane vehicle. Although as this is the 797th model I've collected I should not now be surprised by anything in the Corgi range. Putting the whole story together has been such a journey and I've learnt so much about the thinking of the people behind the brand. Clever, innovative and brave entrepreneurs with a genuine passion for what they were doing. Always it is that passion that makes one company stand out from the herd and Corgi really stood out from the herd. (if you can have a herd of dogs, 'pack' perhaps)

The Dormobile crew bus was released in 1956 in the original split windscreen casting in both freewheeling (404) and mechanical (404M) versions. In 1959 the mechanical version was dropped and a new, updated casting was released to reflect the changes made by Bedford to the 1:1 full size vehicle. A one-piece windscreen was introduced, the updated grille and some other minor changes to the casting. The colour was changed at the same time to reflect the two-tone models launched at the same time in the passenger car models. Colours for the original van are white, metallic maroon and turquoise. The 1959 release is yellow with a blue roof, sometimes it is just the top of the roof which is blue, sometimes the roof pillars are also blue.

The values for the early casting are fairly consistent - the later blue and yellow version gets a significant premium.

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