Charmerz (Hong Kong)
Charmerz LogoCharmerz is one of those brands that if you don't have the box, you'd never know it WAS a Charmerz. I have a Lancia Fulvia 1600HF that is very toy-like. It's vastly out of proportion, with HUGE wheel wells holding tiny go-fast wheels. On the bottom it says "Playart, made in Hong Kong." It seems that the cars were made for a distribution company owned by Charles C. Merzbach in New York. I know he was the owner, because if you put "Super Scale Models, Ltd." into Google, the first half-dozen entries will be for a lawsuit against him and his company in the early 90s.

The cars have opening hoods, doors and trunks, and my model is yellow "jeweled" plastic headlights (four of them).

Charmerz box showing model list

Chico (Colombia)
Bet you didn’t know you could have a car from Colombia? Well, truck, actually. These were trucks from the Danish, then Dutch, company Tekno. They are an odd combination of high-quality (the plastic bits, other than the interior) and decidedly low quality (the metal bits). My Volvo truck is, in fact, disintegrating before my very eyes.

On the bottom it says “Chico Toys, Made in Colombia.” It has an interesting suspension – a bar of metal that goes from the front to the rear, with a spring in the middle.

Written on the box (in Spanish, of course) is a note that the model is produced for Metalurgicas Von Arnim. It also says "El carrito para jugar... y coleccionar!" which is translated by Google as "The cart to play... and to collect!" I assume it actually means something more like "truck" than "cart."
(logo for Metalurgicas Von Arnim)

Chico Toys Volvo Titan

Chiqui (Spain)
See Nacoral

Cigarbox (USA)
(See Aurora)

CIJ (France)
CIJ Logo
CIJ stands for Compagnie Industrielle du Jouet (if my high school French serves me, simply Toy Manufacturing Company). C.I.J. provides a turning point in miniature cars. Early on, toys were generic – they could have been any old car. But C.I.J. manufactured miniatures in the 30s for Citroen. C.I.J. started making 1:43 models in mazac in 1954.

I have not seen the book, so I don’t know if it is only in French, but I’ve heard good things about “Les jouets CIJ en zamac, automobiles et utilitaires (“The Diecast Toys of CIJ, Automobiles and Trucks”), by Thierry Redempt and Pierre Ferrer.

CIJ Fegate and Prairie
CIJ Prairie box

CKO Kellermann (Western Germany)
CKOOh, here I go again. Only it’s not plastic this time, but tin. But really, these are great looking models even if they are tin. They are in the 1:35 range. Founded in 1910 by Georg Kellermann, it appears to have gone defunct in 1979

CKO copies were later made in Czechoslovakia by Kovap, and I have read rumors of copies being made in China.

Please note that I’ve seen “Kellermann” also spelled as “Kellerman” by reputable sources.

CKO Passat
Bottom of CKO Passat

Cle (France)
Wonder why there’s a key on the bottom of your Cle car? Simple: “cle” is French for key (but you’d already figured that out, right?). Cle manufactured finely detailed cars in plastic in 1:43 and 1:64 (these under both their own name and for the French laundry detergent maker Bonux).

Clover Toys (Korea)
Clover is a Korean company which seems to have manufactured a wide range of toys. The Clover I have says “Clover Toys Mini Power” on the bottom, along with “S=1/36, 4418, Hyundai Stellar, Made in Korea.” This is very much a toy. The headlights, the license, the model script and the stripes on the car are stickers or decals, and the wheels are huge in comparison to the car. The doors do open, though… and how many companies made a model of ANY Hyundai?

(Well, okay, that was true when I first wrote it lo these 4 years ago, but that's changed, of course.)

Clover Hyundai Stellar

Cofalu (France)
I haven’t been able to find much about this company, other than they seemed to specialize in sets with bicyclists and support vehicles.

Cofradis (France)
Special models based on Solidos, much like Verem. But though I do know that Verem has become part of Solido, I don’t know if Cofradis is/was a separate company or part of Solido (which is itself part of Majorette these days).

Cofradis models are apparently still being made, though in China. Offered are classic models as Cofradis Nostalgie.

Cofradis Peugeot

Concentra (Mexico)
Here I thought I had discovered an interesting new model... but of course, Eric at 87th Scale is ahead of me (way to go, Eric!).

Concentra models were actually Anguplas 1:86 models made in Mexico -- with, believe it or not, metal axles made in Switzerland. Unlike the "Mini Cars" on Anguplas models, the package of Concentra cars says "Mini Car," but the "s" is present on the bottom of the car -- where, in fact, according to Eric, it even still says "Made in Spain."

The package says that the cars are made for Concentra, S.A., and there is a logo with a Santa Claus and his bag (just a little less creepy than the Asahi logo), and the name "Calidad."

Following is what (in Spanish) you will find on the front of the package (without accents):

"Miniatura perfeca. Escala 1/86 HO.
Hecho en Mexico, con tecnica europea.
Ejes metalicos fabricados en Suiza.
Corre soma los de verdad.
Forme su coleccion. Seran mas de 100 modelos
Serie Amarilla Turismo Internacional

The best translation I can get online is:

"Perfect miniature. 1/86 HO scale.
Made in Mexico, with European techniques.
Metal axles made in Switzerland.
Some really run*
Form your collection.
There will be more than 100 models*
Yellow Series International Tourist (?)

*Thanks to Chuan Chai for help on these translations!

Conrad (Western Germany/Germany)
Although Conrad is a well-known marque for lovers of industrial vehicle models, it’s less well-known in auto model circles. Started in 1956 by Ludwig Conrad, it was known best for model railroads. In 1971 they took over the diecast manufacturing of GESCHA. The few 1:43 models that Conrad has offered have been, no surprise, of German makes.

It took me along time of watching on Ebay to get my Conrad (a VW Santana). They are almost always being sold out of Germany, and Paypal isn’t accepted. I finally found one being sold by a U.S. seller.

Conrad Santana GL

Although Cragstan was an importer of a lot of different toys, I am primary concerned with the diecast cars from Israel
(See Sabra).

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