U.S. Name: VOLTRON III aka Lion Voltron (Matchbox Version)
Cartoon First Appearance: Episode #4: The Missing Key, Season 1, Sept. 13, 1984
Modern Comic First Appearance: Voltron: Def. Of the Universe #1, 1985, $0.75
Image/ Devil Due Comic First Appearance: Voltron Defender Of The Universe #5, Sept. 03, $2.95
This is my first die cast Matchbox Lion Voltron III. I got him on May Xvii, Mmvi and it cost me $CXXV (with the 6" version). Voltron had always been parted of me...I'm glad to own him. As a kid, I had always want to own the Voltron Lion but never had the finance to get one.
VOLTRON - DEFENDER OF THE UNIVERSE:
-VOLTRON III: Voltron Of The Far Universe-
"From days of long ago, from uncharted regions of the universe, comes a legend. The legend of Voltron: Defender of the Universe! A mighty robot. Loved by good, feared by evil. As Voltron's legend grew, peace settled across the galaxy. On planet Earth, a galaxy alliance was formed. Together with the good planets of the solar system, they maintained peace throughout the universe. Until a new horrible menace threatened the galaxy. Voltron was needed once more. This is the story of the super force of space explorers. Specially trained and sent by the Alliance to bring back Voltron: Defender of the Universe."
- Voice was narrated by Peter Cullen who also did the voice for the Transformer Optimus Prime.
NOTE: In the Vehicle Voltron intro, the yellow sentence was replaced by "And trusted by the Alliance with the ancient secret of how to assemble"
NOTE-1: This review page is meant to give you some ideas about the figure and for nostalgic or sentimental purposes. I hold no responsibility for your action. These images were mostly photographed and scanned by me. If there's a section or image that owned by you and I didn't give you credit, please Email Me and I'll make the correction. Have fun.
- Click on the Thumbnails to view them at a Larger Scale -
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R-1 Matchbox Voltron III in its Original condition:
R-2 Matchbox Lion 1 - Black Lion (Body/ Head):
Out of the five Lions, the Black Lion is the largest, heaviest, and the most blocky of the group. The material included die cast metal on the chest, chrome feet, and the rest is plastic. As for articulation: Neck can be tilted downward, Shoulder, Elbow, Wrist, and Tail all can be bent. In addition, the jaw can be open and stay open unlike the Blue and Yellow Lion.
Pre-Applied Stickers: 4: "1" number 1 sticker on the back of the neck. "1" green sticker on the upper nose. "1" large sticker on the chest. And "1" Copyright sticker below the crotch.
NOTE-4: Unlike the Matchbox Lion Voltron, the 1997 Trendmasters Lion Voltron has a technical specification description of each lion ability on the box.
R-3 Matchbox Lion 2 - Red Lion (Right Arm):
Other than colors, both the Red Lion and Green Lion share the same feature from die cast part, to articulation, to special feature. Die cast for the arm lions are located at the front and rear half of the body segment. Feet are chrome while the head and tails are plastic. As for articulation, these two lions don't have articulated neck. However, they can bent their body in half or rotated it sideway which the other three can't do. Other than these, all 5 Lions share the same feet articulation. And just like the Black Lion, both the Red Lion and Green Lion jaw can be opened and stay opened.
Pre-Applied Stickers: 6: "1" number 2 sticker on the back of the neck. "2" blue stickers locate on either side of the number 2 sticker. "1" yellow sticker rest on the yellow peg for firing the head. "2" large blue sticker at the rear. And "1" Copyright sticker at the underside of the neck.
R-4 Matchbox Lion 3 - Green Lion (Left Arm):
Pre-Applied Stickers: 2: "1" number 3 sticker on the back of the neck. And "1" Copyright sticker at the underside of the neck.
R-5 Matchbox Lion 4 - Blue Lion (Right Leg):
As the feet of Voltron, both the Blue Lion and Yellow also share some similarities with each other just like the arm lions with theirs. Die cast metal part is located on the entire body. Feet are chrome while the head and tails are plastic. As for the articulation, it is pretty much the same as the Black Lion. But unlike the Black Lion, its head can be bent at a full 90 degree upright. The jaw on both the Blue Lion and Yellow Lion is different too. If you tried to let it stays open, it won't stay open because there is a spring or some sort that pull it back in.
Pre-Applied Stickers: 4: "1" number 4 sticker on the back of the lion. "1" on pentagon sticker on the head. "1" large black sticker with white trim on the neck. And "1" Copyright sticker at the underside of the neck.
R-6 Matchbox Lion 5 - Yellow Lion (Left Leg):
Pre-Applied Stickers: 7: "1" number 5 sticker on the back of the lion. "2" red stickers in front of either ear. "2" more color stickers at the back of the ear. "1" large red sticker with black stripe on the neck. And "1" Copyright sticker at the underside of the neck.
R-7 Matchbox Lions Scale Comparison:
So how big are these lions in reference to one another? Well hopefully the left image would give you some general ideas regarding their size. Top right corner is an overall scale of the Lions. Bottom right is the scale comparison between the leg lion and arm lion. Top left corner is the scale comparison between the body lion and the leg lion while bottom left image is the comparison between the body lion to the arm lion. Anyhow, here is a rough dimension on these lions measuring in LxWxH in inch.
Black Lion - 7 1/8 x 4 1/8 x 4 1/4
Red and Green Lion - 5 1/2 x 1 1/2 x 1 15/16
Blue and Yellow Lion - 7 1/2 x 2 5/16 x 3
NOTE-5: Thanks to the extra flap, the 1997 Trendmasters Green and Red Lion is a half inch taller than 1984 Matchbox Green and Red Lion.
R-8 Detail 2 - Matchbox Lion's Special Feature:
Wonder what happen to the Black Lion front leg during the Voltron mode? Well here is how it works. The shoulder swing 180 degree back, next lift the black panel up revealing a storage space for the Black Lion front feet to slide in, now close the panel. And just like that, we have hidden the Black Lion front leg (bottom left image). The face of Voltron is actually hidden on top half of the Black Lion head. To reveal Voltron face, just simply flip it down, (top left image). Yellow Lion features two special gimmicks, open ear and a pop up cannon on his back. The Blue Lion gimmick included pop up head and the red thing on the back of the lion can also be pop out too. Red and Green Lion gimmick feature a firing lion head by pressing a peg on top of the neck. Last but not least, all the lions shoulder are designed in a way so if you compress their opposite leg toward with one another, it felt like they have spring inside. But instead it is hinged.
R-9 Finally as Matchbox Voltron III:
In combine mode, Voltron is one beautiful robot. This is the regular version not to be confused with the 6 inch miniature version. Voltron is tall and measure approximately 12 inch up to the wing. As for the weight, Voltron is very heavy thanks to his large size and the many die cast metal and chrome parts. I would say 80% of this guy is die cast metal so if you love metal part then this figure is for you. The connection on Voltron joints seem to hold each member very well. My only complaint about the Lion Voltron whether the 1984 Matchbox, 1997 Trendmasters, or 2006 Toynami Masterpiece is the connection between the Black Lion and leg lions because the tab locking mechanism is so rigid and stiff. Over time, the leg connection will be the first to break.
NOTE-6: In order to differentiate the three Voltrons, Matchbox labeled the Vehicle Voltron as Voltron I, the 3 individual robots Voltron consisted of Red Robot, Black Robot, and Blue Robot were labeled as Voltron II (or Gladiator), and the Lion Voltron was labled as "Voltron III."
R-10 Matchbox Voltron III's in Battled Mode:
R-11 Voltron - Matchbox Vs. Trendmasters:
R-12 Rémy's Matchbox Voltron III action figure review:
Line, Series/ Wave: Matchbox Lion Force Voltron, First Edition.
Year Issue: 
Box or Card Dimension In Inches: [LxWxD] - 19 1/8 x 13 1/8 x 4 7/16
Box or Card Assortment Number: 
Packaging Method: Mint In Seal Box. Contents were packed with the following procedure:
Rest down on the Styrofoam containers: "1" black lion, "1" red lion, "1" green lion, "1" blue lion, "1" yellow lion, and "1" instruction sheet.
Box Special Note: Front Box Appearance: Voltron art. Back Box Appearance: Ads of Voltron I (Vehicle), Voltron II (3 into 1 robots), Voltron III (Lions) in both the regular size and the miniature size.
Box Point or Robot Point: [N/A] - Not Applicable.
Approximately Toy Dimension In Inches: Height Up To The Head: 11 Maximum Height: 12 (top of the wing) Width from shoulder to shoulder: 6 6/16 Maximum Width: 6 6/16 Dept: 4 1/4.
Toy Stamp/ Fine Print: (Japanese text); GB-36; 1981 © Y & K. (Japanese Text); MADE IN JAPAN
The copyright is printed on a sticker, they do not print or engrave directly onto the lions themselves.
Toy Stamp/ Fine Print Location: Can be found on the underside of Red, Green, Blue, and Yellow Lion. The Black Lion copyright is locate at the appendex.
Transformation Of Difficulty: [Easy] - The only hard part about forming Voltron is connecting and disconnecting the legs...but otherwise it is piece of cake.
Material Durability: [-A] - Since it's mainly die cast metal and chrome, I'll say it's pretty durable.
Toy Materials: Die Cast Metal: The Black Lion diecast metal is located on the chest. The rest of the 4 lions had their diecast metal on their body. Chrome Metal: All of the lions feet. Rubber: None Plastic: All of the lions heads and tail. Clear Plastic Window: None
Stability: [A] - Robot mode can stand on any surface...very stable.
Fun Toy: [A] - Definitely a fun toy.
Negative Drawback: If not too careful, the paint application is easily chipped off especially on the chrome weapons and the lion chrome feet.
Articulations: Head: Cannot be rotated. Shoulder: Can be swung at a 360 degree and a 90 degree sideway. Arm: Can be bent at a 90 degree angle, the lower portion can be rotated at a 360 degree. Hand (lion head): Cannot be rotated. However, the jaw (hand) can be opened. Hip/Waist: Cannot be bent or rotated. Leg: Can be bent 90 degree forward or backward. Knee: Cannot be bent. Feet/ Ankle: No sideway movement. Feet can be bent downward.
Voltron's Cartoon looks alike: [A] - Definitely looks like the cartoon.
Lion's Cartoon looks alike: [A] - Same as previous statement.
Special Notes: Here are "3" special notes which I thought you should know:
1 - Both the Green and Red Lion has the capability to fire out their head so check to make sure yours is in working condition.
2 - To release the leg lions from the Black Lion in Voltron formation, don't forget to press the yellow mechanism on both the Yellow and Blue Lion to separate them back into their lion component. Be gentle with the yellow locking mechanism, don't break it.
3 - Don't forget to look for the Matchbox Lion Voltron accessories (Blazing Sword and Spinning Laser Blade) which sold separately.
Overall Grade: [+A] - Voltron is definitely beautiful!
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