Tuesday, December 13, 2016
Hot Wheels has just made their best basic wheel ever...
Sometimes in this hobby, it is hard to be patient. Case in point? The latest release of the Hot Wheels Custom '56 Ford Truck.
The newest Hot Wheels from Batch E have been hitting Asda stores in the UK, well ahead of the rest the world. There is a lot to be excited about, but most I can wait for until they arrive in this part of the world. The '56 Ford I couldn't wait for, so I asked a collector in the UK, James Yeung, if he didn't mind sending me an example. I sent him payment, and he sent over the model. Yes, I paid the UK prices and shipping for a model that will be $1 here in a few weeks. Goofy, eh?
And I don't even collect the '56 Ford casting. So why did I do it?
It is definitely a good-looking model. The casting is super nice, and the barn find look of this version, with its matte gray color and rust details, is fantastic. But that isn't the reason.
It's those wheels.
The '56 Ford Truck is the first model to sport a brand new basic wheel, the deep dish steelies. Mattel might have a different name for them, but for now we will go with that. New wheels are always a significant deal with Hot Wheels, but these especially so. This is easily the most realistic basic wheel Hot Wheels has ever done, and I don't think I am overstating when I say it is the best they have done.
Hot Wheels has Real Riders figured out. There are styles for all kinds of vehicles. Basic wheels have lagged far behind. There are some really nice options, like the 10-spokes and lace wheels, but others either don't look like any real wheel or have too low of a profile. The gap is particularly large with classic cars. Typically Hot Wheels has used the 5-spoke and MC5 wheels for these type of cars, and while they don't take away from the models, they don't add much either.
That changes now. The DDS (let's call them that for the sake of this feature) will work on all kinds of classic cars. It is here on the '56 Ford, and we know it is coming on the recolor of the Datsun Fairlady Roadster. And style works on both. The detail is comparable to real riders. The barrel has a steelie look with open notches along the outside, making it work on a rusty old truck as well as a sporty classic. Start thinking of the models these would work on, from the '83 Silverado to Datsun Wagon to any classic Mustang to the Hakosuka Skyline. There is no doubt so many of these models will sport these at some point, and I can't wait.
Matchbox has always had the better basic wheels, especially when it comes to classic-style wheels, but the DDS closes a massive gap in a very exciting way. I have a feeling you customizers will be throwing them all kinds of models.
Looking forward to it...