Matchbox Monday: Matchbox’s Family of SUV’s…

(Before we start, remember that Matchbox Monday is sponsored by or friends at MVE Collectibles.  I really do hope you are checking out their store.  Many of the items, including Matchbox, Hot Wheels, Greenlight, Johnny Lightning, and M2 are very fairly priced, and many times cheaper whan what you find on ebay.  Check them out here.)

I think the SUV era is over, at least for now.

But it was sure some gas-guzzling fun while it lasted.  There are still plenty of SUV’s on the road, just a little different than those behemoths that were all over the place 5 years ago.

In the diecast world the SUV’s still are on the pegs.  The Matchbox Ford Explorer is just hitting and later we will see the Range Rover Evoque.  And as usual, Matchbox is the maker.  If you compare the two Mattel brands, Matchbox seemed to be the SUV specialist.  They came from Hot Wheels, but it seemed that the models that transported both soccer moms and self-proclaimed outdoorzies from the city came from Matchbox.

When looking at the list of SUV’s that Matchbox put out in the mid- to late-2000’s, there are a handful that really stand out.  To me the European SUV’s looked the best, so that is what I collected.  Tahoes, Suburbans, Expeditions, even Navigators looked clunky next to the sleek European trucks.

Here is a look at some of my favorites:

Range Rover Sport:

While there were some elements that Matchbox missed compared to the real thing, this was one of my favorite SUV castings.  The best version was the orange Superfast (pictured at the top of the page), but the last version released in black with 5-spoke wheels was pretty sleek.

Volvo XC90

The ultimate soccer mom car.  Maybe that is why it didn’t come off the pegs very fast.  Still, this Superfast version is a great example to have.

Porsche Cayenne Turbo

This was a casting that needed the right wheels to hit its peak.  And it did with the Superfast versions, all pictured here.  Later it was released in a 10-pack with the large 10-spokes, which also looked nice.  I just wish Matchbox had it in them to release one more with the large 5-spokes like on the black Range Rover.

Hummer H3

Ok, a full-on exception to the rule.  You want my opinion on Hummers?  I cannot stand them.  “Hate” might be an appropriate word.  They are ugly, useless, and represented the worst of 10 years ago.  Does that clearly state my opinion?

Yet, for some reason this yellow version appeals.  I think the blingy wheels paired with the bright yellow signify exactly what the Hummer was all about.  This was a very difficult model to find, as it was only available in ROW markets, and was hard to find even there.  So I am very happy to have it.

BMW X5 & X5 Police

A signature Euro SUV, and seen in Police form as recently as the 2011 Lesney line.

And for good measure, a couple of photos of the Range Rover customs.  Everything is how Matchbox intended except for the wheels.

So which is your favorite?  For me, I think the black Volvo takes it. 


If you are looking to find some these, follow the links below:

Matchbox Range Rover Sport

Matchbox Volvo XC90

Matchbox Porsche Cayenne

Matchbox Hummer H3

Matchbox BMW X5

10 Replies to “Matchbox Monday: Matchbox’s Family of SUV’s…”

  1. I like the Range Rover but think it would have been better had the B and C pillars been metal instead of built into the glass. For me the X5 takes the cake hands down. The casting is pretty spot on, details are right and color choices are great. The blue is striking and the Euro police livery is great. I'm with you on the Hummer, at least H2's and H3's.

  2. Most collectors didn't like these SUV castings, but I always thought they were the right choice because they represented what was most popular during that era. These are all very nice castings (well, the Range Rover Sport is a little off), the Porsche or the BMW are real gems, and the same goes to my favourite, the Hummer H3. This Matchbox looked so right, and spectacular in yellow.

  3. My understanding was that Mattel stopped doing so many SUV's because they aren't popular in the ROW (non-US) markets. Many of these real vehicles are not available in non-US markets so it doesn't appeal to them. I wonder what the international markets think of the 2012 line-up. I bet they want the SUV's to come back! On another note, it's already February 2013, five months into the HW 2013 lineup and I haven't seen any 2013 MB's.

  4. Well, for me the Volvo is the nicest of all. It looks great without causing any fuss. The Porsche and the BMW are next in line, with some great color and wheel choices available, I especially like the Lesney X5 in British Police livery. The Hummer is also a nice car, something a drug dealer or a rich kid would drive (in yellow of course). Something is missing from this list though, the Audi Q7. But still, I'm glad we (at least) have these great cars… um.. SUVs.

    – Black Wind, SwiftysGarage.

  5. The Porsche is easily my favorite, though I love that black Range Rover. Wish they did the black interior to make it triple black 😀


  6. MB has ALWAYS done the SUV the best, that is why I couldn't understand when HWs did the most recent Tahoe. MB was The brand that accented the detail of just about everything they done. If you compare MB and HWs MBs stock versions were right on. HWs puts out some nice stuff but let's face it they just should not do emergency vehicles! Same with SUVs HWs tend to be big and bulky where MB gets it.

    Swifty's Philly Wheels

  7. As much as I agree with you about the Hummers, I gotta say these are probably my favorite Matchbox SUVs… They're just so well done and accurate to the real thing and that's what I like about diecast cars. Even when the real car sucks xD

    But still, the Range Rover is either tied or a close second, even though these pictures.remind me.of several cars I regret not buying when I had the chance

  8. The Range Rover is on the top of my list, easy. The BMW X5 was quite the looker as well, so was the Cadillac Escalade. However, a close second to the Range Rover for me IS the Lincoln Navigator. It's just something about a good Navi for me, great design. Could never get behind the Cayenne though. Never got over the front end of the real one. Great interior/exterior colors though.

    Who remembers the Isuzu Rodeo and the Isuzu Amigo? Those were my go-to SUV's back in the day.

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