The very first Hess truck was offered for sale in 1964 at participating gas stations
. This was known as the Hess Tanker Truck and the original retail price was $1.29 and it included the battery. The famous Marx toy company was the manufacturer of this infamous and now highly prized gas station toy truck where it was made in Hong Kong
It’s important to note that Louis Marx and Company
was the premier toy company run by Louis Marx
and his brother David. Louis was known in the industry as the Henry Ford of the toy industry and they stressed two values “quality is not negotiable” and “give the customer more toy for less money”. This very toy which sold for $1.29 now fetches in the thousands and it is this standard which fuels people to buy trucks every year in the hopes that this value can be reproduced in addition to just loving to collect the trucks anyway.
The 1964 Hess tanker truck
was an incredible authentic reproduction of the B Mack tanker truck and there were some 150,000 produced for the public and this very truck is on exhibit at the Marx Toy Museum in West Virgina
. Of interest are two things in particular and are known facts, one is this is the only model truck made which could be filled with water and could be drained by the attached hose, how cool is that! And the bright red funnel included had the Hess logo on it. The addition of collecting Hess trucks began with this very first Hess tanker truck some fifty years ago and is as strong as ever today.