I am not a van guy. I like vans, but I am not a van guy. The word van has morphed quite a bit in the last 20 years, to the point that owning a van represents selling out to the family thing. Nothing wrong with that, but this is not a blog about cupcakes and funny kid stories. This is a blog that has at least some connection to cool cars, so we will stick with what vans used to represent, whatever that was.
The Chevy Astro Van probably represents a bit of a transition from cool dudes with tight jeans and mustaches to soccer moms with mom jeans. If I remember correctly, the Astro Van was a little smaller than the standard Chevy Van, and was released on the heels of the Dodge Caravan, which led to the transition of the van. Looking back on the Astro Van, I have pretty much zero opinion on it.
Unless of course it is converted into a Drag Racer. I do not know at this point who designed this monstrosity, but I love it. I don’t know if it is based on any real vehicle, but who cares? I don’t know how Mattel ok’d this one, but they did. And we collectors are all the more lucky for it. The thing is over-the-top too cool for school. And this one has some nice little details, most notably the Mickey Thompson tires on the rear. I don’t remember seeing M/T’s on previous models, but I haven’t paid too much attention.
Whether this model is destined for the mainline or premium lines is unknown at this point, but I could see this becoming a regular in the convention car lineup, as well as an RLC favorite. It does not open, as other drag racers do, but it is heavy. So yes, this model is based on a real vehicle we would just as soon forget about. It is clearly built for collectors. It will surely be a collector favorite…
(Find the Astro Van on ebay…)
Hot Wheels ’85 Chevy Astro Van (2013 Boulevard):