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New Models Update #2: the Audi R8 returns, introducing the newest Corvette & MORE!

By Brad Bannach

 

 

Hot Wheels releases dozens of New Models every year. In 2020, there are over 50 being introduced in the mainline alone. Have you ever wondered what the story is behind them? Why the licensed models were chosen? How the designers came up with the Hot Wheels original designs? Let’s take a look at the latest creations to come out of El Segundo and see what the designers who designed them, have to say.

 

Hot Wheels Designer Ryu Asada has his fingerprints all over the Hot Wheels mainline for 2020. The five designs below are all his creations. Ryu is known by collectors as one of the best scale-model replicators the Hot Wheels design team has ever had. Collectors are also getting to know Ryu for his Hot Wheels originals designs with kid-centric details that are both interesting and fun. Below are five new castings Ryu designed that will debut in mixes “H” through “K” in the 2020 mainline.

 

 

‘19 Corvette® ZR1™ Convertible

Hot Wheels Designer: Ryu Asada

First Appearance: 2020 Hot Wheels mainline, Mix H

Mini Collection: Factory Fresh

 

Corvette® and Hot Wheels go back to 1968 with the introduction of the Custom Corvette®. 52 years and nearly as many Hot Wheels Corvette® castings later, Hot Wheels Boulevard and Corvette® Street intersect once again. Corvette® castings have always been a part of the Hot Wheels lineup. Ryu likens Corvette® DNA to that of the Hot Wheels brand, as they are both synonymous with speed, performance, and attitude.

 

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Hot Wheels Corvette® castings have been introduced in a wide array of colors over the years, but not many have been orange. So why was orange chosen for its debut color? Ryu states that the Hot Wheels design team looked at a good majority of the factory colors and ultimately decided on the orange that most closely represented the Chevy® Sebring Orange. He said it immediately caught everyone’s attention as it is, “fun and flashy,” and that the color will also stand out at the pegs.

 

 

‘20 Jeep® Gladiator

Hot Wheels Designer: Ryu Asada

First Appearance: 2020 Hot Wheels mainline, Mix J

Mini Collection: Baja Blazers

 

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Back in November of 2018, Jeep® unveiled the Jeep® Gladiator – their long-awaited pickup. It was the talk of the internet, as images of it spread like wildfire. Concurrently, the Hot Wheels team was looking for a cool and unique pickup truck for the 2020 Hot Wheels mainline. Ryu said the design team knew this truck was going to be a hit based on the immediate buzz surrounding it. The decision was made. Then the team found images of the truck with the two dirt bikes in the back, and the decision was made to include those as well, since they tend to add character to the toy.  He added that “kids can also use their imagination and come up with [a] story” because of the bikes. It's the same concept we explored in the “Six Decades of Hot Wheels with Bikes!” article, where we initially previewed the Hot Wheels ‘20 Jeep® Gladiator for Red Line Club members.

 

 

‘98 Honda Prelude

Hot Wheels Designer: Ryu Asada

First Appearance: 2020 Hot Wheels mainline, Mix J

Mini Collection: Honda

 

Some New Models hit closer to home than others. The Hot Wheels ‘98 Honda Prelude is a great example of this. Ryu designed it after the 1997 Honda Prelude SiR (1998 in the US) his parents owned in Japan. The car had a 2.2L VTEC engine in it, and Ryu had fun driving it whenever he went home to visit them. Replicating those memories didn’t stop at the casting level for Ryu, as he had the graphics team release the car in silver -- just like his parents’ car -- and even had them include the matching license plates. 

 

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Will we ever see his parents’ ‘82 and ‘92 Preludes, too? Maybe one day. Ryu stated that Prelude fans have been asking for Hot Wheels to release one for years. He had many great memories in his parents’ Preludes, and it’s likely that the large following of Prelude fanatics had similar experiences. After the already highly-positive response to this new model, you can bet other model years are now on the radar.

 

 

Veloci-Racer

Hot Wheels Designer: Ryu Asada

First Appearance: 2020 Hot Wheels mainline, Mix K

Mini Collection: Street Beasts

 

Since the Hot Wheels Speed Demons hit shelves in 1986, all types of creatures have become Hot Wheels -- including dinosaurs. Ryu doesn’t recall ever designing one in the past, so before he designed what would ultimately become the Veloci-Racer, he solicited the help of his nephew. Since Ryu’s nephew is your typical kid who plays with dinosaurs, his input made him a key contributor to the design, and he even had a hand in the naming. The end result is a velociraptor straddling a giant engine, a true street beast screaming down the orange track -- especially through the loops.

 

NMU2-Veloci-Racer-1570-tiny.jpg

 

With all the licensed replicas Ryu has designed at Hot Wheels (and Matchbox) over the years, he has carved out a soft spot in collectors’ hearts with his attention to detail. That carries over to Ryu’s design of Hot Wheels originals as well, where his skill of replicating specific aspects in replicas is transferred to innovation through the flexibility of creating for kids by virtue of introducing interesting and fun ideas.

 

 

‘19 Audi R8 Spyder

Hot Wheels Designer: Ryu Asada

First Appearance: 2020 Hot Wheels mainline, Mix K

Mini Collection: Factory Fresh

 

One of the coolest exotics out there is the new ‘19 Audi R8 Spyder. It's sleek, it's cool and it evokes memories of Tony Stark driving his 2010 R8 Spyder down Pacific Coast Highway in Iron Man 2 (2010). In fact, it was that scene that inspired the design team to launch this latest Audi in white.

 

NMU2-AudiR8Spyder-1570-tiny.jpg

 

Ten years have passed since the previous release of an Audi R8 in the Hot Wheels basic lines. The 2008 casting is no longer in production, and the LMS casting has only been used in Hot Wheels Premium and in Hot Wheels™ id. So, it may come as a surprise that the spyder was chosen over the hardtop. Choosing any roadster over its hardtop counterpart is always a controversial choice. Leave it to Ryu, though, to accentuate the positives of having the roadster. He is a convertible guy who fancies driving on PCH with the top down on his S2000, like many other people who own convertibles in Southern California. He stated that not only does the silhouette of a roadster add variety in the line, but it also allows for the designer to show off the great interior details while letting kids (and collectors) imagine themselves in the driver’s seat.

 

 

 

Which of Ryu's 2020 designs is your favorite? Let us know in the comments!

 

 

Items and dates subject to change. Production cars may vary from the photos shown. Mattel reserves the right to modify the color, decorations and wheel type.

 

Jeep, the Jeep grille and related logos, vehicle model names and trade dress are trademarks of FCA US LLC and used under license by Mattel, Inc. © 2020 FCA US LLC.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

BIGBADBRAD01
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Love the Corvette. Can't wait until Hot Wheels brings out the 2020 mid-engine marvel.

 

Phil

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FIREBIRD02

Posted

8 hours ago, PHILFRY said:

Love the Corvette. Can't wait until Hot Wheels brings out the 2020 mid-engine marvel.

 

Phil

Ha! That's what I was looking  for when I saw "newest Corvette" !!!!

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MAXIMUMKARMA

Posted

That Prelude is in short supply in my area. Please make more so the s.c.a.l.p.e.r.s in my area will leave a few behind for me!

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They're all my favorites. 👍I have all 5 of those in my hotwheels collection. 👍

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Sugarcaddi

Posted

I have found all five of these. THE '98 HONDA PRELUDE absolutely "ROCKS" everything about this casting is cool. From the right hand steering wheel to the JAPANESE license plate this car is done right.👍Once again thank you BIGBADBRAD01 for the great and informative article.👍

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Davidstingray

Posted

I scored these yesterday at Target and found an id Batmobile on the peg!

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Crohnenberg

Posted

Not a Vette fan, but that casting is mean!

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Davidstingray

Posted

The Honda is nice and I had to pick up several Veloci-Racers for the grand sons.  They will go ape over them!  

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I like all of these. BUT! THE JEEP GLADIATOR! WOW! Have you ever seen one of these in the showroom?! I saw a black one and it was incredible looking!!!!!🏁

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I sure hope that we can get the Jeep Gladiator in the RLC. It would be great to have a ”HARLEY DAVIDSON TRIKE” in the back. It looks kind of heavy,so acrylic case in a 3D like background would be great. I would be all in for that.

🤞🏾🤞🏾🤞🏾🤞🏾🤞🏾

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Man , good luck finding the lude, i had to buy a few off ebay. Looking forward to the blue. 

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BABYRAIDER

Posted

very nice I seen a couple but only picked up the  veloci-racer I want to see if it can really make it down the track and into the loop d loop without crashing and breaking a claw.

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DarthGalicia70

Posted

Does anyone know how I can buy a box of Hotwheels?

 

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On 10/5/2020 at 8:22 AM, DarthGalicia70 said:

Does anyone know how I can buy a box of Hotwheels?

 

try jcardiecast

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