Mercedes-Benz Pontonobilia

Pon'-ton-o-bil'-ia: n. 1. An object, most often a scaled representation of a Mercedes-Benz Ponton. Also includes any other Ponton minutia suitable for a collection.

Mercedes-Benz Pontonobilia was launched June 20, 2001 by Jeff Miller – Principal, and highly motivated visionary of The Closeum – an ever-expanding role of developing sustainable, long-term, eclectic, miniature vehicle acquisition, cataloging, and strategic (water-proof) storage solutions.

Interested in Matchbox since 1966 or '67 when dad (1931-2009) presented the 70-B Ford Atkinson Grit Spreader. Regretfully, no original boxes survived. Still have all my original Matchbox and Hot Wheels collection (circa 1961-1972 era), plus dozens of 1:43 scale specimens (Corgi, Dinky, etc.), some 1:87 stuff (Herpa, Brekina, Wiking, Roco, etc.), and other 1:64 scale models (Siku, Husky, Impy, Majorette, Tomica, etc.), tinplate models (AHI, SSS, Bandai, Kovap, etc.), Schuco (various scales), 1:18 scale (CMC, Revell, Sun Star, etc.), original catalogs, storage cases, and more. Early exposure to Lesney products led to a serious bias toward European models.

Jeff Miller /
Supreme Miniature Vehicle Storage Solutions Architect

When the Mercedes-Benz Pontonobilia web page was launched in 2001, it did not seem possible that such a large and diverse range of scale models, toys and ephemera would develop. Scale models of contemporary Mercedes-Benz vehicles have always been popular, but the 1953-1962 Ponton era began more than 65 years ago. Fortunately, for "Pontonobilia Archaeologists", numerous toy manufacturers from around the world have made (and continue to make) Mercedes-Benz Ponton scale models for both the toy and collectible markets. 

Four-Cylinder Ponton

Six-Cylinder Ponton

SL / SLR / Competition

Some of the more common materials used in manufacturing these beguiling little models include plastic, rubber, tin, pot metal, and in some cases, even brass and nickel. While some models were made for display purposes, others included battery powered head lights, functional steering, and can move about by means of a spring-wound clockwork motor. There was even one model with a fluid transmission. The miniature vehicles can be as diverse, attractive and detailed as their full scale counterparts. Many of these models were originally made for young lads to play with, and unfortunately did not survive the test of time. On the other hand, some examples were treated with more care, and have endured for new generations to appreciate. Needless to say, these are quite valuable for serious scale model collectors today. 

Ponton Variants

Type 300 (W186)

UNIMOG / Truck / Bus


Almost counter-intuitively, it is interesting to note that often, the original packaging (boxes with colorful illustrations, instruction sheets, etc.) can be worth substantially more than the Mercedes-Benz scale model itself. A well preserved model with its original packaging is certainly a rare and valuable combination.

From June 20, 2001 the Mercedes-Benz Pontonobilia collection existed on a single page. As it grew and developed, it became too unwieldy to manage effectively. So, on October 18, 2008 it was divided into six pages according to classification. Enjoy your journey into the world of classic miniature Mercedes-Benz "Pontonobilia"!

Share your Pontonobilia Photos and Memories

Mercedes-Benz Pontonobilia
Created: June 20, 2001 / Jeff Miller
Last Update: November 05, 2021
Return to the Ponton Photo Gallery

Return to the Mercedes Ponton page