Monday, 30 May 2016

Favorite Matchbox Part 2: BMW 1M (M1)

As you can tell from the title, this casting is a 1:64 scale version of the 1:1 scale BMW M1, but the casting's official name is the BMW 1M. The 1M is the name of a far more famous BMW, but for some reason BMW insisted on Mattel calling the M1 a 1M for its Matchbox rendition. Okay enough about the name, let's enjoy the casting. 

So far, Matchbox has released 5 versions of this casting. In 2013, there was an orange mainline, followed by a blue mainline in 2014, a red mainline in 2015 and a black 'Best of the World' model in 2016. In the middle of all that was the 2014 Leipzig Toy Show Convention model. Limited to 500, the livery pays tribute to the famous BMW CSL Race Car that found its way to the Hot Wheels mainline this year. If it ever turns up on the pegs around here, I'll feature the 2 side-by-side. For now you'll have to enjoy the Matchbox. And you probably already have the Hot Wheels CSL anyways.

Why do I like this casting so much? For starters, it's one of the clean, licensed, tampo-less models that Mattel released in an era of overdone fantasy Matchbox castings. So it was fun to find on the pegs. Second, I love the lines, the stance and the molded cues the casting features. I also appreciate that lights, license plates, grilles and emblems are the only things that got tampo'd on the mainlines.

The Leipzig model, as any premium model should be, gets the full detail treatment. No, it's not 'clean' per se, but it's absolutely beautiful in traditional BMW colored striping and BMW windshield tampo-ing. I love this model.

The most recent release is the black 'Best of Matchbox' version. The paint job is a stunner, especially in hand, with a mix of gloss black and matte black. That contrast has worked for Greenlight in its Black Bandit line and more recently for M2, and sits well on this Matchbox also. The orange accents complete a mean looking package. My big complaint with this model, however, is the knobby rubber tires. Sure, Real Riders are great, but these things look like off-road tires. If any customizers out there want to tackle it, this one's begging for a wheel swap.

Another reason I'm a big fan of this casting is that the real 1:1 scale version of this car is quite rare. Especially in Canada, where I live. Only 500 or so real versions were ever imported to this country. I think I've only ever seen one on the roads. It's a fast, premium, balanced and incredibly lightweight car. Since it's so difficult to find in 1:1 scale, I'm more than happy to have these 5 examples in 1:64 scale. Enjoy the photos!

Happy Collecting!

Sunday, 29 May 2016

Peace, Love and Hot Wheels

There isn't too much to say about this one other than for some reason I find it incredibly cool, I mean-er...groovy! I've had this piece since 2007 and found it in my folks attic a few months back. When I stumbled upon it I just had to take it and crack it open for the blog. It's the most iconic car of the hippie-era done up in full hippie deco. With the new Beatles yellow submarine casting Hot Wheels just released, it seems like a good time to look at another hippie-mobile. Yeah, the wheels are a bit big for the casting, but I love 5-spoke Real Riders with redline tires. Enjoy.

Happy Collecting!

Friday, 27 May 2016

'40's Lead Sleds are Mad Cool!

The Hot Wheels '49 Merc Convertible is one you might not see so often anymore, but it's definitely worth taking a look at. Back when I started collecting in 2006 the hot castings were muscle cars, VW drag trucks/busses, and hot rods or classic cars like the Merc. Today it's JDM, Porsche/BMW and pickup trucks in the spotlight. However, some of these classic castings are still worth checking out. 

The '49 Merc is a perfect example of such a car. Also known as the 'Passion Too', the '49 Merc is the brainchild of Larry Wood, perhaps the most legendary of all Hot Wheels designers. Larry Wood is the man behind many great castings of '30's-'50's era American steel. Personally, I love the '49 Merc. I'm not a huge convertible fan, normally, but this casting is one big hunk of steel. Plus, it's a beautiful car. In the '40's and '50's, American auto designers were creating works of art. Curvy flowing lines, sculpted fender skirts and big, heavy hoods were all features of the heyday of the American auto age. 

Then people started to care about gas mileage, trends changed and beauties like the '49 Merc are little more than historical novelties. The great thing about diecast collecting, though, is that we can own multiple 1:64 versions of legendary cars. 

There was a super Treasure Hunt version of this casting a few years back, but today I'm going to show 3 of my favorite examples of the '49 Merc. My very favorite is the 2011 HWC Real Riders release in green with fat white walls. A close second is the Larry Wood World Tour riding on Neo-Classics. That one has the best detail of all 3 I show here. I can't bring myself to open it yet, so you'll have to bear with the carded photos. Thirdly, I took some shots of the 5th Annual Hot Wheels Nationals versions. I was lucky to get a loose one for under ten bucks. 

Enjoy the photos

Happy Collecting!