This is a post we have wanted to do for awhile, but figured we would wait until we had a new version of at least one of them. And finally, after some time, we have a new version of the Subaru Impreza Police, so we can put this post together.
The mixed opinions about Matchbox's direction as a brand continue. It all started a few years ago when it seemed that Matchbox had ditched its commitment to realism in favor of more cartoonish castings and decos. Thankfully it appears that Matchbox is slowly moving back to realism, but there is quite a bit from the orange brand that doesn't interest us at all. (But that shouldn't be a surprise. 75% of what Hot Wheels does we find no interest in either.)
But with all the ups and downs that Matchbox has gone through the last few years, one thing has remained consistent: They nail their police car castings. Yeah, we can argue the liveries and decos used, but the casting choices and execution is top notch. We have seen so many good and diverse Matchbox police cars, from the Dodge Monaco to Dodge Charger to Buick Century to Lamborghini Gallardo to the most recent, and maybe best of them all, the '93 Mustang LX SSP.
And in the middle of that ongoing run debuted two fantastic Japanese police cars, the Subaru Impreza WRX and Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X.
It makes send to put these two together. Obviously, they are both Japanese cars. But beyond that they are both speedsters, both have their share of fanboys, and both are used by police forces NOT in the US.
Some have complained that these should have been standard street versions instead of police versions, but we disagree. The police versions are more interesting, and there is more that Matchbox can do with them.
It is great to have both castings released regularly now as well. That was not always going to be the case. The Impreza debuted in 2008 in grey, and was recolored that same year in white. Soon after, a licensing snag of some sort emerged (we don't know the details), and there were rumors that WRX would never be seen again. Thankfully, Mattel and Subaru worked out their differences, and the WRX returned to the mainline in 2012. This new version in blue is the third we have seen since the big gap.
And it pairs perfectly with the Evo, which may have been considered a replacement for the WRX until the licensing issues will resolved. Now we get both.
And Matchbox could do more with them. We are seeing real licensed police liveries return to the range, most notable in the upcoming Supreme Heroes line, and we hope to real liveries used more on these castings. That is bound to happen. We hope.
But with or without licensed liveries, both models look fantastic. We even like the Arctic Police WRX. Here they are all are, starting with the latest version of the WRX.
(Find both the Suparu Impreza and Mitsu Evo X on ebay...)
Matchbox Subaru Impreza WRX Police (2014 Mainline):
2008 Mainline recolor
Mitsubish Lancer Evolution X:
2011 Mainline Recolor
2011 10-pack excluisive
2013 60th Anniversary