Friday, August 26, 2016

Lamley Unboxing: Opening a 2016 Hot Wheels Q Case...

The last case of 2016!

Crazy eh?  We are done.  2016 is history.  Sort of, clearly, since these cases haven't hit retail just yet, but we are essentially moving into the Hot Wheels 2017 year starting now.

But not before we go through this case, which just arrived from A&J Toys.

One final significant new model, plus some welcome recolors.  But I would say this one doesn't hold up to previous Q cases.  Remember 2014, with a Datsun Super, new Ford Mustang, and Porsche 934?  Not this one.

Let me know what you think.


Thursday, August 25, 2016

Lamley Unboxing: Opening a 2016 Matchbox K Case...

Our rush to the end of the 2016 diecast year continues.

I will open a Hot Wheels Q Case tomorrow, which will be it for Hot Wheels, and we are now two cases away from the end of Matchbox with the opening of this K Case.  2017 is so much in our minds how that I accidentally used 2017 in the title of the video.  Drat.

But, here it is, the K Case as provided by our friends at A&J Toys.  Model showcases coming to YouTube and the blog soon:


Hot Wheels '17 Ford GT: Fantastic model, but a lousy $uper?

Okay, where do I start with this one?

Well, let's start here, with a photo of the brand new Hot Wheels '17 Ford GT, in both basic and Super Treasure Hunt outfits:

And here is a cool photo from Ford:

Just look at those photos, and I think you will agree with me that the '17 Ford GT from Hot Wheels is stellar.  One of the best of the year.  Sure, the size difference between the front and rear wheels on the Hot Wheels is more exaggerated than the real thing, but considering what they had to work with, this model is just about perfect for a Hot Wheels basic.

And look at that color!  I already highlighted the Liquid Blue Trifecta that Hot Wheels released this year, but it is still stunning to see how well they did.  Just looking at the Hot Wheels Ford GT, it is an easy choice as one of the best new models of the year, if not the best model of the year.  A significant car done well by Hot Wheels.

And then add to that the fact that it debuts as a Super Treasure Hunt!  This is a first.  No model has officially debuted as a Super, and that takes into account the Toyota 2000GT, which wasn't an official new model.  (The tool was slated for a previous line, but the line was cancelled after the tool was made.)  If Hot Wheels is going to debut a New Model as a Super, this is a perfect choice.

So add that together, and the Ford GT is up there with a whole slew of fantastic New Models in 2016, from the Ford Focus RS to Porsche 356 to Honda Odyssey to BMW 3.0 CSL.  It has been a stellar year.

But as Supers go, it could be argued that the Ford GT is a bit of a dud.

I should probably explain.

Let's start with this.  It actually doesn't really matter what model gets the Super Treasure Hunt treatment.  Supers are so entwined with Hot Wheels collecting now, everyone knows what the current Super is, and everyone wants to find it.  Sure, they might compare Supers, but ultimately Supers are more about the hunt than the actual model.  So really, it doesn't matter what model is a Super.  We will all hunt them.

That being said, the more premium a Super, the more $uper it really is.  The Super TH these days is an upgraded version of a standard basic model.  It always has real riders, spectraflame paint, and many times additional deco, in addition to the "TH" logo somewhere.  It definitely is an upgraded model.

And if I am honest, the Ford GT just isn't.  It is hard to say that, because I actually REALLY LIKE the Super.  If it were a Car Culture or Boulevard model, I would probably have two.  It looks beautiful in that dark blue with the grey GT wheels.  But the basic looks better.

First off, the signature Ford Liquid Blue is an exciting color, and Hot Wheels duplicated it perfectly.  Second, the PR5 wheels are the better wheels on the model.  They have lower profile tires, which work better.  The PR5s are not as deep as the GT wheels, which replicates the actual car more accurately.  It is strange to say, but the basic is the more significant model.

Want to compare, look at these three stellar models:

The Datsun Wagon is a great Super not because it is the Datsun Wagon, but look at the wheel upgrade, the splendid spectraflame, and additional deco.  The Honda takes things several steps further.  Chrome base, headlight tampos, hood tampos, and an additional flat black on the hood and roof.  I think the S2K is the most upgraded Super Hot Wheels has done, next to the 2000GT's metal base.

And then there is the Mooneyes van.  The basic is a very nice model, especially in its signature Mooneyes colors and livery.  The Mooneyes models are always a favorite.  But the Super takes things to a completely different level.  The gold spectraflame is nuts, the additional logo on the rear is crazy cool, and the most appropriate upgrade of all - moon discs!!  Those wheels were made for this model, and sporting one of Mooneyes' signatures makes this model significant.  It is what makes the Mooneyes Van, to me, the best Super TH Hot Wheels has ever done.

The Ford GT is kind of the opposite.  The basic is the significant model, the Super is a little treat.  So, do I love the Ford GT Super?  Hell yes I do.  But judging solely on its merits as a Super, there have been a lot better.  I could actually see myself calling the Ford GT the best model of the year, and still think it is less than stellar Super.  How about that?

Alright, I will stop yapping.  I need to get my hunt on.  There are Ford GT Supers to find...

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Hot Wheels Gran Turismo is appearing at US East Coast Walgreens stores...

photo credit: Dan Pardo
(UPDATE: Not five minutes into this posting and I have gotten several reports of them being found in California Walgreens as well.  So everyone go look!)

Over the last 24 hours, I have received countless messages from collectors who have found the ever-elusive Hot Wheels Gran Turismo Assortment at Walgreens.

The only caveat?  Everyone who has reported finding them lives in the Eastern US.  (Canadian collectors, wipe that smug look off your face.  We know you have had them for awhile.  By the way, where are the Car Culture Trucks?)  Dan Pardo of Florida, Jim Woodburn of Maryland, and Freddy Roshe of Miami all sent photos.

So, while you are out hunting Walgreens for exclusive Hot Wheels Dodge Rams and other N Case models, keep an eye out for Gran Turismo and even Car Culture Euro Style.

And if anyone out west finds these, let us know...

photo credit: Jim Woodburn
photo credit: Freddy Roshe

The Hot Wheels display is finished, and Car Culture is getting a lot of love...

Over the last few weeks I have asked for ideas for one of my Carney diecast displays that I house in my office.  I have three, and until recently two were dedicated almost entirely to Matchbox and one to Tomica Limited Vintage.  But a few days ago I put up my newly acquired Matchbox store display, which allowed me to move many of my Matchbox from the Carney.

So now I have one Carney for Matchbox, the store display for Matchbox, another Carney for Tomica Limited Vintage, and now one for Hot Wheels.

I need more displays though.  Kyosho needs some love, so does Auto World, Majorette, Aoshima, Greenlight, and M2.  That will come with time, but based on the ratio of brands in my collection, Hot Wheels was definitely the brand that needed some attention.

So I asked, and you responded.  Some gave me specific models to show, some said all JDM, others all Real Riders, some said "Who gives a shit!?! Just fill it up already and get off my lawn!"  Ultimately, all those suggestions were taken to heart.

There is some JDM, but no way would it be all JDM, because that is only a small fraction of what I collect.  There are mostly Real Riders, because Real Riders usually accompany better-looking, collector-aimed releases.  But ultimately it is a slew of favorites, mainly from the last few years.

There is one series that got a lot of love though.  Car Culture in its entirety is on the wall, from Japan Historics to Euro Style to Trucks, and I left five slots open for Track Day when it arrives soon.  Car Culture is becoming the best premium line Hot Wheels has ever done.  It isn't too big, each batch is themed, and they are choosing some of their best existing castings to go along with tremendous new castings. My only complaint is that the models don't get the full front and rear tampo treatment, and maybe that will change over time.  If it does, Car Culture will be just about perfect.

So for my display, it seems to me to be a prudent idea to just go with Car Culture in full.  The models look amazing, the variety is spot-on, and the themes work perfectly.  So for now I will make space for each batch as they are released in 2017 and hopefully beyond.

For now I like what I see up on the wall.  I know I do because I catch myself sitting back at my desk staring at the wall, pleased with how awesome Matchbox and Hot Wheels have been lately, and how cool the TLV collection is.  Now I just need to put more displays up...

JNC previews the 2017 Hot Wheels Fairlady 2000...

photo credit: Japanese Nostalgic Car
I was very happy to see this on Japanese Nostalgic Car this morning.  Because first, you knew this preview was coming, and I have been very excited to see the Fairlady 2000 up-close.  And second, my day went completely haywire yesterday - ER visits are never fun - and I didn't have anything to post today.  This more than suffices.  And wow, what a model.

So head over to JNC for all the pics and some very interesting details on what inspired it and how it was made:

MINICARS: 2017 Hot Wheels X JNC Nissan Fairlady 2000

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

The Surfline is coming. Tomica Limited Vintage perfects the Hako 4-door for the Skyline's 60th Anniversary...

Next year, the Nissan Skyline will be 60.  60!

Man, how time flies.  Contrary to what some diecast fanboys might think, the Skyline was born in 1957, not 2011 on a Hot Wheels blister.  2017 will be a significant year for a significant car.

And how better to celebrate than to see some models released that highlight one of its most iconic - yet most under appreciated - features, the surfline.  Too many surflines on the Hakosuka and Kenmeri Skylines have been sacrificed for GT-R homages, and too many diecast Skylines have replicated the same.

But that is changing.  Matchbox is releasing its most anticipated model in years, the 1971 2000GT-X, complete with an intact surfline.  And not to be outdone, the masters of stock Japanese cars in 1:64, Tomica Limited Vintage, is releasing two brand new molds, the 1972 GT-X 4-door and 1968 2000GT.

TLV has released a 4-door Hakosuka before, but these two will be different, and based on the pics, slightly more accurate than the previous version released several years ago.  The wheels appear to be a fantastic touch, and all the colors are stock.  Yes, even lavender.

Look for these to be released early in 2017.

Monday, August 22, 2016

DLM Party: Opening a Hot Wheels Ford GT Super Treasure Hunt, an Auto World Ultra Red, and a few Matchbox...

This happened on Facebook Live last weekend:

You know I enjoy liberating diecast, no matter what it is.  So when I do, I will try and share.  We will start with Facebook Live, and if all goes well, transfer it to the Lamley YouTube Channel.

And if you are ever joining in, always let me know.  Maybe I will share it.

Look for pics of the GT's, along with the Matchbox preview, soon...