Although Gerry Anderson had been developing the process on previous TV series for several years, Supercar is considered the first true Supermarionation TV series. The format would continue (with continuous improvements over the years) until The Secret Service (1969).
The series inaugurated what would become an Anderson trademark, the launch sequence. Every one of his series up until Space: 1999 (1975) would include these - in Supercar's case, the charging and firing of port and starboard engines, the activation of an interlock, the opening of (overhead) hangar doors, and finally the vertical take-off.
The format uses puppets in a technique called supermarionation, a name that was first seen in the closing titles of the last 13 productions.
Although the end titles carry a credit reading, "From an original idea by Gerry Anderson and Reg Hill" the final result owes much to writers Martin Woodhouse and Hugh Woodhouse. Whilst under contract to the BBC, Hugh had devised a series called Beaker's Bureau about the exploits of an eccentric genius called Doctor Beaker and his encounters with various villains. The BBC rejected the pitch and so elements, including Doctor Beaker himself, were incorporated into Supercar. In 2006 Martin and Hugh revised the Beaker's Bureau idea and produced a pilot script and comic. Sadly, the project didn't come to fruition before their deaths just weeks apart in 2011.
The main characters in Supercar were not designed in-house by A.P. Films. As with Four Feather Falls (1960) the faces were first sketched by an ex-Disney animator. Sadly, his identity is lost to history.
The second series of Supercar marked a turning point for APF with the permanent appointment of Derek Meddings as Director of Special Effects. Derek has previously worked on a freelance basis for APF painting backdrops etc, but from this point on he was the guv'nor when it came to blowing stuff up.
There was nearly another series of Supercar (possibly in colour). On the 8th March 1963 Television Mail reported, "Associated Television is to spend about £1,000,000 on telefilm production this year. The company is preparing to go ahead with a new series called Sentimental Agent, another series of The Saint (1962), a further 26 productions of Supercar, probably another series of Fireball XL5 (1962) and a new project from AP Films involving an underwater world." The last project being hinted at is Stingray (1964). Sadly, a new government bill forced ATV to scale back their production plans and in May 1963 Television Mail reported, "Grade has already had to effect a small measure of economy - namely a second series of Supercar." And so Mike Mercury and co were consigned to history.
To produce "Supercar," Gerry Anderson had to secure a loan from his bank manager. Each episode cost approximately £700.