Leica's Limited Edition "Golden" Cameras to Celebrate China Anniversary Are Real

Jan 26, 2010
By Dan Havlik, PDN's Technology Specialist

Leica Golden MP

Yes, they're real. That's the word from Leica when asked by PDN Gear Guide whether those  gold-plated Leica MP cameras designed to celebrate the 60th Anniversary of the Chinese Republic which appeared on several blogs were authentic.

Don't expect to get your hands on one though. Leica says they're very limited edition models and aren't available outside of China.

"We have made a small edition of 61 gold plated MP (cameras) at the demand of our agent in China," our contact at Leica headquarters in Solms, Germany told us in an email.

The Golden MP cameras first appeared on the Engadget blog and on LeicaRumors, along with images of a special edition Leica M8.2 and D-Lux 4 models which were also designed to celebrate the Chinese Anniversary. (Those cameras, however, aren't gold.)

The special edition Leica MPs are plated in 24-carat gold and are estimated to cost 199,900 Chinese Yuan ($29,300). According to Engadget, each is "encased in red calfskin, bears an inscription of Mao Zedong's favorite slogan, and sports a Summilux-M 50mm f/1.4 lens."

No it's not April Fool's Day. And yes, as far we can remember from our school days, Chairman Mao was a Marxist not a Capitalist.

But hey, times change. If those gold Leicas ever make it up on eBay, we predict they'll fetch a lot more than $29,300.

Here are some official Leica photos (though they were captured for documentation purposes, not as marketing materials, Leica tells us.)

Objects Leica Golden Objects of Desire: Leica Golden MP
March 10, 2010 - Here's a product that's so over the top we couldn't resist making it an Object of Desire this month: a gold-plated Leica MP designed to celebrate the 60th Anniversary of the People's Republic of China.More
Objects of Desire: Etre Touchy Gloves
Nikon AF-S DX Micro NIKKOR 85mm f/3.5G ED VR
Canon EOS-1D Mark IV
Objects of Desire: Flex DSLR Remote
K 5600 Joker-Bug 400 & 800
Tech Speak - Kuhlmann Technically Speaking: Brian Kuhlmann Creates a Shadow Forest in the Studio
January 06, 2010 - Assignment: Bacardi USA wanted to feature their product, Martini & Rossi Asti, for a holiday campaign.