Objects of Desire: Leica Golden MP

March 10, 2010
By Dan Havlik

Objects Leica Golden

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.

Created by special request from China and only offered as a limited edition model with a total set of 61 cameras, the Leica Golden MP is the perfect blend of luxury, kitsch, and questionable politics. These special edition Leica MPs are plated in 24-carat gold and are estimated to cost 199,900 Chinese Yuan ($29,300). They won't be available outside of China but we're pretty sure Leica fanatics will do their best to get their hands on some of them.

Each Golden MP is wrapped in red calfskin, bears an inscription of Mao Zedong's favorite slogan, and sports a Summilux-M 50mm f/1.4 lens. Leica's also made limited edition Leica M8.2 and D-Lux 4 models to celebrate the PRC's anniversary but it's the gold MPs that really caught our eye.

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 to eBay, we predict they'll fetch a lot more than $29,300.

Cost: $29,300

Further information: www.leica.com

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