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Thursday, July 3, 2014

Has Hot Wheels made its last Ferrari? The Mattel/Ferrari exclusive licensing agreement ends this year...


We were very surprised to see this announcement today, wherein Hot Wheels has officially announced that its licensing partnership with Ferrari will come to an end on December 31, 2014.  It was accompanied with this statement:
That is the date that Mattel’s current contract with them expires and has been mutually agreed not to renew it. 
What does that mean?  This announcement was made by Hot Wheels Elite, so we could assume that the relationship with HW Elite, Mattel's 1:18 scale brand, is the only brand to which this announcement pertains.  But in the announcement, Mattel is mentioned, not just Hot Wheels Elite.  Could this mean that it will effect the basic range models as well?

If you are not aware, since 1999 Mattel has had exclusive licensing rights to Ferrari cars.  No other diecast maker was allowed to produce a Ferrari model.  You might be asking, but what about those Kyosho 1:64 Ferraris you show here on Lamley?  Those are technically not diecast models.  Kyosho found a way to skirt around the agreement by technically making their 1:64 Ferrari "model kits", meaning they came unassembled, and the buyer is required to put it together.  This is how they come:


So with Mattel's contract expiring, and not being renewed, this could mean that Kyosho could now release Ferraris assembled.

But the bigger question is what will happen to all these Hot Wheels Ferraris?  Ferrari has been a signature part of the basic range for years, and it easily a collector fave.  Does the end of this contract mean that Hot Wheels will still produce Ferraris, only not exclusively?  Or is this the end of Ferraris on a blue card for good?

If this is the end, this is really sad.  It will create an enormous gap in the mainline, and could sadly signal Mattel's push for Hot Wheels to go in a more fantasy direction.  That would obviously disappoint quite a few of us.

But thankfully this is all speculation.  We don't know what this means.  If it only pertains to Hot Wheels Elite, that is fine by us.  If it means the end of any Hot Wheels Ferrari, that will leave us a little sad, as well as incentivized to go grab those Ferraris we have wanted but yet to pick up.  What if  HW Ferraris started going up in price like the recently retired Bugatti Veyron casting?  Ouch...

We will wait to see what Mattel says, but welcome your thoughts.  What do you think?


20 comments:

  1. I doubt that they will end production of 1:64 cars... Every year there are like 5 new Ferraris in the basic model lineup, which is both great for Mattel and Ferrari sales. Let's hope this pertains to the Elite series!

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    Replies
    1. I hope for the same too, HW Ferraris make up most of my collection since that's the type of casting I collect (exotics)

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  2. I'll be happy if Majorette picked up Ferrari

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    Replies
    1. I am agree...majorette is detail, better than hotwheel...they put really driving volant wheel an the mattel just put a nonfigure bad piece of plastic, yiuuuk!

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  3. What ferrari series is that last pic of? The 308 in the foreground. Looks like a ferrari racer series but I can not locate it? Is it a wheel swap?

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    Replies
    1. It is from the Ferrari Racer series...

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  4. NM I found it. 2009 Ferrari Racer Series.

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  5. Good, this arrangement has never been fair. Now that their can be actual competition Majorette and Tomica can produce Ferrari models.

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  6. I hope Tomica can make Ferrari models again.

    Gettin' tired & frustrated of collecting Ferraris from HW 'cause they're not producing a large number for each model unlike Tomica which can cater a lot of collectors of a certain car. Believe it or not, up to now, I still don't have that s**t red LaFerrari.

    I'm just a simple collector that don't want to deal with hoarders & scalpers. With Tomica, I can get the car that I want right away without looking deep through the pegs or asking the store if there's a newly arrived yet to be opened box.

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  7. I'm glad. Maybe I'm spoiled but Hot Wheels can't even compare to Kyosho. Yes, Kyoshos do cost more but I'd rather pay more for a casting that actually looks like the car it's based on. I also believe that Tomica would do a much better job than Mattel ever did.

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  8. Just Rumours..

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  11. No car makers should choose Mattel or Hot Wheels in particular. Hot Wheels is crap. There are many toy makers out there who deserve better than Mattel.

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  12. I agreed, HW is crap. No collectors should buy HW. Before HW exclusive, there were UT models and Kyosho make 1/18 scale Ferraris. They were way better than HW. Now there is Autoart, have anyone seen their diecast model lately? They are super details, they make 1/18 Lamborghini Aventador, Pagani Huyara, Koenigsegg Agera and up coming Veneno and McLaren P1 and a whole bunch of other classic cars too. I would love to see they make Ferraris 1/18 and 1/12 scale. Go check it out at AA website. Once you buy AA models you will never go back to HW.

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  13. flee markets and stores here i come!

    ReplyDelete
  14. I hope for the same too, HW Ferraris make up most of my collection since ... makeupcasewheels.blogspot.com

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  16. Hi Everyone.. My name is Elijah and I have been making videos on my dads collection. He has lots of Ferrari Nissan and Formula 1. I would love it if you checked it out and comment on my YouTube videos! Your input is always great. My YouTube Channel is "RC Breeze".
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uQHvcFFOpSU
    There is many cool videos on dads cars.

    ReplyDelete
  17. Hi Everyone.. My name is Elijah and I have been making videos on my dads collection. He has lots of Ferrari Nissan and Formula 1. I would love it if you checked it out and comment on my YouTube videos! Your input is always great. My YouTube Channel is "RC Breeze".
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uQHvcFFOpSU
    There is many cool videos on dads cars.

    ReplyDelete