When we do posts like this, we like to talk about the real automobiles these minicars represent. But not today.
We will have plenty of time to do that later. Today and tomorrow we plan on showing all the models from the first two batches of the brand new Hot Wheels Cool Classics. So while there is a lot of history with the Max Wedge, Chrysler Turbine, and AMC Rebel Machine, we will save that for another day and talk about the Cool Classics line itself.
While no line really “replaces” another, it is easy to look at the Cool Classics as the replacement for both the Boulevard and Flying Customs line. Boulevard is done, Flying Customs is right behind it, and the Cool Classics is just hitting the stores. I like to look at the Cool Classics as the direct replacement of the Flying Customs/Hot Ones of the last couple of years. Both have special designs, diecast chassis, and plastic wheels. Boulevard, especially in 2013, was made to look as close to the real cars as it could, including Real Riders. So while Cool Classics moves forward, and Retro Entertainment and Pop Culture continue on, I personally hope we see another Boulevard-type line at some point in the future.
But lets focus on the Cool Classics. RLC members have seen these models sneak peek’d by designer Steve Vandervate, and my opinion on those sneaked has been mixed. But I now have them in hand, and here is my impression:
- The paint is REALLY nice! This new spectrafrost is clean and tasty. The gold on the Turbine (in Batch A) and the green on the Rebel Machine (in Batch B) stand out especially. I see Hot Wheels having a lot of fun with this paint.
- The new wheels are equally nice. I have always thought Real Riders were a little overrated, as the models don’t roll well, and until recently most of the Real Riders weren’t too easy on the eyes. That has changed lately, but I still like plastic wheels. Hot Wheels is loosing the plastic wheel game to Matchbox in a serious way, and can use a huge upgrade in wheel styles and variety. These help.
- The wheels run seriously smooth. The cars glide along the desk. It makes opening these models totally worth it. With their weight and wheels, the Cool Classics will fly down a track (and probably create a nice dent in any nearby walls).
- The model selection still leaves me wanting more. Of all the models in the first two batches, only two will be added to the collection. The emphasis is on American Muscle and Classics, and there is nothing wrong with that, but I hope to see more European and Japanese cars in the mix moving forward. I am sure that will happen if this line is successful.
- As nice as the paint is, it is not terribly realistic. It is great for this line, but it makes me miss Boulevard even more. Hopefully the gap is filled with more great Retro Entertainment models and maybe a new line at some point.
’65 Mercury Comet Cyclone
’63 Plymouth Belvedere 426 Max Wedge
’63 Chrysler Turbine