My basement is done.
I don't expect anyone to follow the exploits of my flooded basement, but it is significant because starting today I can put my office back together. The collection comes out of storage and more importantly, the photo studio will be back in functional form.
That means I can start doing the features I have been planning to do. You might have noticed an absence of Hot Wheels and Tomica Limited Vintage. That is because I haven't been able to photograph them. That finally changes later this week.
Not that I haven't had awesome stuff to show. Matchbox gave me a few models to preview, and before things went haywire in the basement I photographed them all. Thankfully I have these previews to roll out while the studio was down. I wanted to stretch it out a little, but it has been nice to have this stuff to show.
And I have some good stuff to show today, and it is Jeep-themed. Jeep has always been a staple at Matchbox, and with its 75th Anniversary coming up, that presence will increase even more.
It starts with the special 75 Years of Jeep line that will be found in 2016. All the colors and liveries will be exclusive to the series, so thankfully no repeats from the mainline like the 2015 series.
We will be sure to showcase that when it comes out, but hopefully in that grainy pic you can see two new castings, both of which will be released in 2015.
The Jeep Willys 4x4 will be first, and in fact a few have already been found at random Targets. Another of those no-brainer Matchbox models. A little off-road theme, but by way of a classic, and I mean CLASSIC truck. I didn't give this new model too much thought until I saw a real one a couple of months ago in Durango, Colorado, and I was sold.
So much character, and for this sucker for classic pickups, this becomes an instant fave. I don't have the new Willys in hand, but I do have these pics I took at the Gathering in July:
It doesn't take much to get excited about the Willys. All the elements are there for this to be an instant hit.
And that is not the only Jeep coming this year. Right on the heels of the Willys will be the Cherokee Trailhawk. There are two ways to look at the Trailhawk. One is related to the actual car itself, and the other to the model.
I am not a Jeep aficionado, so I don't know for sure, but it seems the look of the Cherokee Trailhawk has gotten mixed reviews. It isn't as "Jeep-y" as people expect, looking a little less off-road and more fleet car. But there is no doubt the car is working for Jeep. The Cherokee is EVERYWHERE. As one who drives a lot for a living, I think I see more Cherokees on the highway than anything else. Whether or not it is a true Jeep, it is a very popular car.
Which leads to the model. Like the car or not, there is no doubt that Matchbox nailed the casting. Looking at it with all the detail it has really looks like the real thing. There is a place for models like this in the Matchbox range, and I am glad it is there. The Matchbox basic range doesn't need to be stuffed with common road models, but a few here and there adds to that variety we are seeing return to Matchbox. And this model is definitely smack dab in the realism column. It's a winner.
The first release will be red, which I photographed in July, and the second will be blue, which I photographed a couple of years ago. Look for them soon...