|Find the Matchbox 4Runner on eBay...|
And I am not talking about extreme cartoonish models with oversized wheels. The Jeep Series is here, the Land Rover Series is coming, as is the G63 AMG 6x6 next year. Factor in the Land Cruiser, Defender 110, the upcoming Dodge Ram, and a load of others, and it seems they are returning nicely from those strange off-roaders from a couple of years ago.
One of the best off-road castings from the last few years is the splendid Toyota 4Runner. I say 4Runner and certain images have to pop in your head. Durable, always slightly beat up, and always running. And for me, always with a neat little decal design in bright colors on the side.
80's cars couldn't just be one color, or sport just one little pinstripe. They needed color, and variety, and decals, and nothing exemplified that more than the 4Runner. To me, a true 4Runner always has a blocky, gradually-fading design along the side.
That is why I have always preferred the "non-livery" versions of the Matchbox 4Runner. Of the 8-9 released, about half have sported some type of livery, from Forest Service to some sort of touring company. I like those, but it is the other models, sporting 80's-era decals, that really take a special spot in the collection.
So the brand new 9-pack exclusive is a most welcome site. Blue, with signature white rims, and a nice little door decal. It looks great with the others.
My favorite remains the tan model with black trim. Looking at current Toyota Tacomas, it is obvious tan is making a major comeback. The Matchbox version from a few years ago proves it was always cool.
Here's to hoping we see more 4Runners. It doesn't get much cooler when it comes to a vintage off-roader...
(Find the Matchbox 4Runner on eBay...)