First Look: Hot Wheels 1990 Honda Civic EF…

It all depends on what camp you are in.

To some, Hot Wheels releasing another Civic is a yawner.  What is this, the third Civic they have done?  Plus hasn’t Matchbox done one?  Why the obsession with a car that many associate with daughter’s first car?  Sensible, practical, and reasonably priced, but not terribly interesting.


Holy M*#herf*^#@ing Sh#* an EF!!  A F#*%ing EF!  Hot Wheels made a Kanjo Racer!  It is about time.  Hold on I am grabbing my tools…I am going to customize the shit out of this thing…

One side may not understand the other, but it should be made known to a fair share of unknowing folks here in the US that the EF to many is an epic car.  I won’t claim to know a ton about why the EF is so revered, but I know the 4th-generation is a favorite, and it seemed to carry all the traits that made the Civic a cultural staple in Japan.  And here in the US for that matter.

But let’s talk Japan.  No, let’s let these guys talk Japan, and a little about the highly illegal, extremely dangerous Civic-dominated Kanjo Racing in Osaka:

Now the Hot Wheels version.  There is a lot of excitement about this one.  That excitement may not be totally evident among the old-school Hot Wheels crowd, but the ebay prices for the first releases is all the evidence you need (look at the completed listings).

Hot Wheels’ resident JDM nerd Ryu Asada, already responsible for the Chevy C10 and C7 Corvette, along with the upcoming Porsche Panamera and Fiat 500, is behind this one.  And what Jun Imai is to Datsun/Nissan, Ryu is to Honda.  While designing for Matchbox, Ryu designed the Type R Civic and Ridgeline, and for Hot Wheels he has done the CR-X (which we will see again this year) and supremely-popular S2000 (which is also returning in 2014).

And there are signature Ryu touches on the EF.  Ryu is the king of proportion and detail.  Side-mirrors may not seem to be a big deal, but they are not common on Hot Wheels models.  It has a perfect stance, stock(ish) to remind Stephanie of her freshman year at ASU in 1991, but low enough to zip around the moving trucks and curves of Osaka today.

We may not be all about the hellaflush or other elements of the culture surrounding the EF, but we are 100% in on the EF as an emerging classic and a fantastic choice for the Hot Wheels line…

Hot Wheels 1990 Honda Civic EF (2014 New Models):

And by the way, the customizers are already ALL over it.  The EF has appeared on short card in a few areas of the world, and the customizers have already had their way with it.  Here are a few fantastic examples, with what we are sure are MANY more to come in the next few months:

17 Replies to “First Look: Hot Wheels 1990 Honda Civic EF…”

  1. All I have to say is wow.. and I am not saying that because I dislike imports or anything like that either.. So.. You are celebrating this car because people in Japan use it to put other peoples lives in danger by driving like a moron on the highway?!

    I am not a muscle car guy nor much of an Import guy (although I do have appreciation for both) but why not celebrate our own “emerging classics”.

    I honestly think they wasted their time on this. If they were going to do a import car.. they should have done a Silvia, actual FD RX7, R33 GTR, etc etc

    I wish Hotwheels would cover 80s-90s US cars but that will never happen..

  2. Fantastic model! Now, I don't care what people think about it or even hate it, because they're just not educated enough to appreciate this car's importance in the JDM world. According to me though, this is one perfect model. Ryu Asada has done his job again! Well done man! It has everything, proportions, right color, right wheels, right tampos, right mods, perfect. This will be a top contender in the 'best models of 2014, right up there with the Aston DB5, Datsun 620, Chevy Stingray and the Panamera. These are my top HW models of 2014. Anyway, thanks for the photos.

    – Black Wind.

  3. i agree with you. I don't get what the craze about this car is about. And that tey should have done a stock RX7 FD, or even an FC, or a stock NSX now that Ryu is with HW and is a Honda fan.

    No Toyota fans in the HW team? I would like to see a few more this upcoming year. Mainly a corolla or a camry. A newer Land Cruiser would be fantastic.

  4. I didnt even think about the FC.. I bet that would be a great seller. I know a stock NSX would be a sellout.

    I would love to see a sixth generation (93-99) Toyota Celica GT-Four. They have a great look to them.

  5. “I honestly think they wasted their time on this”

    Why? Because they didn't make the cars YOU want? I don't know how much exposure you have to basic marketing but let's just say a company as big as Mattel isn't going to let Hot Wheels designers draft up anything armed with a blank cheque and hope for the best that they'll sell. There is obviously been extensive research done before they even considered this model because they're here to make a profit. You know, because theyre a business and that's what businesses are supposed to do?

    And if this profit comes with the 'expense' of people making an OH SO GRIM connection with this car and street racing, so be it. So that makes me wonder, did you tear up when you saw the Top Secret tampo on the 2007 release of the 350z? Because that's as explicit as it gets when it comes to connections with reckless driving. Maybe they should stop with the Fast and Furious cars while we're at it.

    But …to make you feel better I'm sure there are more people out there who might see this as a clean OEM style civic than the number of those who are even aware of the kanjo loop.

    Oh and let's not forget licensing contracts with auto manufacturers also heavily influence what cars are to be released and when they are to be released. All of which are trade secrets that the general public doesn't have access to and probably shouldnt make wild speculations about, because that would be a true 'waste of time'.

    Tl,dr: grow up.

  6. Grow up?? If you are going to quote me, quote the whole paragraph.

    I said because they should have made a more important Import than a regular Civic. Then I listed a few examples if you knew how to read.

    I was only saying the whole thing about wreckless driving because this blog took the time to post that video and make it seem that the racing on the highway is the ONLY reason this car was produced by Hotwheels.

    Lesson of the day for you? Read COMPLETELY

    Thanks and have a nice day!

  7. I think what some people are forgetting or don't know is that this car was huge outside of the US and there are still a lot on the roads today. I can't wait to get my hands on it.

  8. I look at this car as the same way I look at customizing; the fact that not everybody is going to understand your vision, as with all things in life. I'll be honest, there have been many castings I have objected to very intensely and ruefully. Sometimes, not necessarily the car itself, but moreso the way it was done. But as a converted JDM enthusiast, I kinda “get” what all the fuss is about. I'ma keep it real though, I'm not what you consider a hatchback guy, or a FWD guy for that matter, but I admit this can be quite impressive, only if done tastefully. And the way import tuning works, that can be a huge IF.

    But this car is alright with me. Not really something I asked for myself, nor will it be my bread and butter casting. But with the way this casting looks, I most definitely have some ideas for it now. I believe Mr. Asada has done his job.

  9. The car looks fine as stock with a simple spoiler and factory side graphic. I'm more upset about the awful tampo and muddy windows. But this is a massive step up from the CRX, that model was garbage.

  10. PLEASSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    POST SOMETHING TOMOROW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  11. Actually I think there are 3 civics before…
    2 civics that are in the blvd line
    1 civic type r
    So this is the 4th…

    And I just saw a 4th gen civic hatchback in the parking lot on the way to dinner in Canada…

    Personally I won't get the HW (or any other) version, because I have associated them with people who put those loud noise makers at the tailpipe.. so I have no interest. (I know it''s a small % of people who do that… but mentally the damage has been done)

    Unless it's cheap enought for wheel donors (**cough cough $1 Blvds**)

    What others think is their opinions, so I don't really mind.
    Everyone's perceptions are from their previous experiences… mine too.

  12. a 4th generation Celica would be awesome. I grew up seeing those in the streets of Venezuela, as well as the Mitsubishi 3000GT. Honda were never imported or produced over there, as well as Nissan, so while i can appreciate them, my heart lies with Toyota. I was very happy this year, with the 70' celica, 2000GT, 87' Pickup, and the Toyota Supra. Still, i would like to see some other models, and models from other japanese brands. I am satisfied with FD RX7 as i don't collect Hot wheels or matchbox exclusively, and found these fantastic FD RX7 made by Motormax. I doubt hot wheels can make a better FD RX7 than theirs, other than using better looking wheels, but their casting is awesome.

  13. Absolutely awesome. My first car was a 90 CRX Si, 14 years ago. Now I own a 1991 Honda Civic Si. Lowered on a set of Honda OE alloys, not dropped, not slammed, not hellaflush, no DVD players, crazy graphics, loud fartpipe. It is a car that is more than what someone would think it to be. I will be purchasing plenty of these.

    As for the CRX, it was based on a magazine car actually. Not a real one, but a fictional comic book touge monster.

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