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Friday, November 6, 2015

The recent real pickup production at Matchbox...


On numerous occasions I have tried to explain my love for pickups, big and small.  I honestly don't know exactly where it comes from, mainly because I grew up the son of a business executive whose idea of casual wear was brown wingtips and who popped the hood of a car only to show Charlie over at the dealership what to work on.

But you have to dig a little deeper.  My father also grew up in rural Nevada.  And you don't know rural until you see rural Nevada in the Great Basin area.  He also grew up the son of a truck company owner and car dealer.  In high school he droves trucks and worked at his father's GM dealership.  After he left for the big city of Boston for school, and took his first job in San Francisco, he always had his father's dealership to return to, which eventually became Tri-City Ford in Utah.

So my father grew up loving, and using, vehicles of all kinds.  He would point out old Buicks and GMC's that he drove as a kid, and I think I started to pick up on what he loved about them.  He loved their looks, but he also loved their function.  Whether haulers for family or dirt, he loved how they work.

Of the six kids in my family, I am by far the most car-centric, and I think a lot of that comes from my father.  I grew up in wagons, and now have almost a sacred respect for them.  He broke from his family in 1982 and bought a Japanese car, and his love for the Honda definitely set what would become my love for Japanese cars later in life.  And yeah, he liked a good truck.

So thanks to Dad, I think my love for pickups comes down to utility.  I am more apt to appreciate a used and abused '91 Ford Ranger than a heavily modified Datsun, but that shouldn't be a surprise.  My collection reflects that.  My walls are covered with stock Tomica Limited Vintage, and my permanent Matchbox collection is as large as permanent Hot Wheels collection.  Translation?  I love realistic, stock cars, and the same goes for trucks.

What is also no surprise is how happy I have been with Matchbox's return to realism.  I have documented a ton of that in the last weeks and months, and it just keeps coming.  Matchbox is pushing realism and variety.  If I am standing on a street corner, there is a good chance I will see a pickup in one lane, maybe a sports car or sedan in another, maybe a van behind that, and a police car next to that.  You won't see a SEMA showroom floor, that is for sure.  And the street corner is what Matchbox appears to be going for.  Like this:


That photo above is why I have always enjoyed collecting Matchbox, and why I am so thrilled to see that coming back.

But back to trucks.  The pickups are a great indicator of where Matchbox is headed, and the evidence is very positive.  With the recent release of the Jeep Willys 4x4, the Ford Contractor Truck (which I still need to find), and two new 5-packs, we now have a year's worth of great releases.  And from what I know that isn't going to stop anytime soon.

I am not documenting all the pickups from the last year here, but a lot of them.  The Contractor Truck, brilliant in white, as most fleet trucks are plain white, is the one I wish I had to show as well, but that will come.  I also totally forgot to photograph the Dodge A100 Pickup, but I can show that with the upcoming recolor in black.  In the meantime, here is some of what Matchbox has offered lately.  New, old, shiny, dull, all ready to get to work.  Maybe in Nevada.  Maybe in brown wingtips.

Jeep Willys 4x4 - 2015 Mainline






Ford Stake Truck (2014 & 2015 Mainline)



Chevy Silverado (2014 & 2015 Mainline)



Toyota Tacome Lifeguard San Diego Rescue - 2015 Mainline


'57 Chevy Stepside - Farm Mission Force and Classics Rides 5-pack









'75 Chevy Stepside - Farm 5-pack



9 comments:

  1. Actually, you don't know rural till you've seen the Pampas where I grew up... but I digress, the rural parts of America are beautiful, I hope I can visit someday.

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  2. The castings look good, but it's the attention to details where Mattel often disappoints. The Jeep body looks really nice, but that silver plastic base looks like it's made from the cheapest stuff. Matchbox might be clawing their way back, but they have a lot of demons left to exorcize.

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  3. Let's agree rural is rural wherever you have lived or live. As for trucks let's be honest if it's not cars it's trucks and in present day I think trucks have taken the place of the car. Trucks have today what cars don't big engines and muscle. Where except for a few the Stang, Camaro and Challenger and let's add the Charge you don't have that gritty car. Trucks have always been a part of the hotrod and cool scene however now they are more admired imo.
    As for the debate over MBX not doing enough well, yes I would love to see them full steam ahead. Remember this is the begining and I'm sure their working on the things that concern us all. The thing is this is a large company that when it comes to putting out money they are just not going to hand it over. They want to sales figures for what their changing now and I'm sure if the projections are better they will consider what everyones is begging for. Remember Money is the bottom line and if there is no profit they are going to fight it tooth and nail. Now with everything that sits my guess with the new direction the sales should improve dramatically. Then they think ok they asked for licensed vehicles sales grew lets give them detail. Point is it's going to take some time for them and some patients from us.

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  4. The Willys Jeep casting looks terrific, especially in red. It'll be perfect when it appears with a stock height chassis in a later release. This has future classic written all over it.

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