Collections in Liechtenstein: Sports and Touring Cars stamps
This issue, depicting another four rarities from the world of cars, continues the "Collections in Liechtenstein" series started in autumn 2012. All the sports and touring cars illustrated in this series were built in the 1950s and are today housed in the garages of Liechtenstein collectors, from which they are occasionally brought out for a short drive in Liechtenstein and the adjoining areas. As in the earlier series the stamps are based not on photographs of these automotive treasures but on oil paintings by the Canadian artist Mark Heine. The lettering on the stamps is stamped in gold foil.
The "Aston Martin DB 2/4" (face value CHF 0.85) was built in England in 1954 and delivered already adapted for lefthand drive to Switzerland, where in 1957 it was given a new 3-litre engine. At the beginning of the 1980s it arrived via Biel and St. Gallen in Liechtenstein, where shortly afterwards it was bought for restoration.
With its 240 HP engine output the 1958 "Ferrari 250 GT PF" (face value CHF 1.00) is the most powerful of the four sports cars depicted. In the mid-1990s this exclusive car (only 353 were built) came from Texas to Germany, whence in 2001 it found its way to Liechtenstein and was officially certified by Ferrari.
The perhaps most striking model in this set must surely be the blue "Jaguar XK 140" (face value CHF 1.40), among whose illustrious former owners was the German rock-'n-roll legend Peter Kraus. This 200 HP car was built in 1955.
Fourth in this select gathering of exceptionally finely crafted vehicles is the 1956 "Mercedes 300 SL" (face value CHF 1.90). From 1957 onwards this roadster equipped with normal doors replaced, with an eye to the American market, the by then legendary 300 SL gullwing. This cult car was fully restored between 1988 and 1993.