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What Makes Certain Hot Wheels Collectible, Part 4: An Interesting Backstory

By Brad Bannach



Everyone loves a good origin story, right?


It turns out, Hot Wheels collectors are no different. There are so many over the course of the last 52 years -- many of which we'll talk about in future articles. One of the first, however, was that of the rear-loading Beach Bomb in 1969. The original design of the Beach Bomb, by Ira Gilford, called for it to carry its two surfboards in the rear, with the ends sticking out the vehicle’s rear window. The high center of gravity made the vehicle prone to tipping on curves and the casting’s width was not ideal for booster compatibility, causing the team to scrap the plans for the rear-loading version of the casting. Howard Rees designed the revised "side-loading" version, with compartments on the side for the surfboards to be loaded into. A very small run of the rear-loaders was made, causing them to be highly sought after, with values in the tens of thousands of dollars.




HotWheelsCollectors.com (HWC) brought back the rear-loading Beach Bomb -- naming it the Beach Bomb Too -- as part of the inaugural run of HWC series cars in 2002 (Series One), as well as a couple of holiday releases. In 2003, the tooling of the casting mimicked the fate of the original design, as the casting was retooled in favor of the side-loading design. The Beach Bomb Too lived at the top of Red Line Club members' wish lists for years to come, as many yearned for a yearly release, collecting all that came along -- even after it was converted into a pickup. The Beach Bomb Too was one of the most collectible castings of the ‘00s due to its interesting backstory.




The Bugatti Veyron, on the other hand, doesn’t have a comeback story -- at least not yet. The last release of the Veyron casting came in 2010, and rumors about licensing agreements spread rampant in the collecting world back in 2013. Some collectors even went as far as to claim that the previously released versions of the car were going to be destroyed. This sent collectors into a frenzy, causing many to scoop up all instances of the Veyron, while others parted ways with theirs due to the rising value. Ultimately, rumors of the destruction of previous releases proved to be false, but that hasn’t stopped collectors from collecting all of the releases from 2003 to 2010. 




Collectors have even gone as far as to project value onto the newly released ‘16 Bugatti Chiron, thinking that casting will give them the same types of returns. As it stands, the Veyron has been discontinued, but the Chiron offers hypercar lovers a Hot Wheels Bugatti at a fraction of the going rate on the secondary market.




HWC has certainly revived some collector favorites over the years. Many vintage Hot Wheels castings saw new life as HWC and Red Line Club releases. One of the more popular requests for a vehicle revival wasn’t an existing casting. Rather, it was for a vehicle featured in a drawing by designer Phil Riehlman. In a 2006 article here on HWC that examined the origin of the Volkswagen Drag Bus, HWCGary uncovered the drawing that Phil originally did as Plan B. Phil’s passion for a drag racing VW Bus eventually won out because of a last-minute sketch he did for that vehicle, but another fan-favorite was born in the process. 


Blown Delivery - Original Sketch - EDITED-tiny.jpg
Original sketch of the Blown Delivery edited by HWC to remove livery.


When shown in that HWC article, this ‘30s billboard truck caught the eye of collectors. Collectors clamored for the design to be produced. As the voices in favor grew, the HWC team obliged and the Blown Delivery was released in 2010. For the next several years, the Blown Delivery was an instant sellout, as it became a signature piece of HWC for a number of years. The story of its origin may have begun to fade in the minds of collectors, but those that were around remember the campaign that ultimately made the Blown Delivery one of the most collectible Hot Wheels vehicles of its time.




What other Hot Wheels castings have an interesting backstory? Please share with us in the comments below!









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Hot Kengas


Life is made of coincidences, at least that's what I think, the Master Hot Wheels Designer Phil Riehlman, who created one of the most beloved models and collected by collectors around the world, which is the VW DRAG BUS, which appeared in the Series Basic Hot Wheels and toured all the Hot Wheels Collector Series, including being the special miniature of several Hot Wheels conventions over the years, including here in Brazil at the convention held in 2010 in the city of Porto Alegre, RS, Brazil, and there the coincidences happen, the same designer also created Blown Delivery and that appears here in Brazil when the RLC-BR, Red Line Club Brasil is created, which had a short life in Brazil, it was only 10 months, but Blown Delivery was the last miniature announced at the Casting of the Red Line Club Brasil, and in the same year, 2010, that Phil Riehlman came as a special guest at the 3rd Annual Hot Wheels Brasil Collectors' Convention, the last held by Hot Wheels in Brazil.

Designer Phil Riehlman has the gift of making big, strong models that catch the attention of collectors, but this Blown Delivery RED RLC was very good, and is one of the most sought after, among those that can be purchased at a fair price, because this model was also highly valued, especially since it was only launched in special Hot Wheels collections.
Speaking of Hot Wheels, all models launched in the history of the brand, somehow carry the weight of being part of the casting of the most emblematic brand of all time, when it comes to diecast miniatures of cars.

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Posted (edited)

I recently found the blue mainline version so, short of the pink employee, the toy show, and the diamond version, I have all that have been released. This is in reference to the Custom Otto.



Edited by Chlaredo
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