So where to start on this one?
The obvious place to start is the fact that this is not based on a real car. The Toyota 2000GT Roadster was never a production car. A normal 2000GT was turned into a convertible for a James Bond flick because Sean Connery was too tall for the car. So in that sense, this model is more like KITT or the Back to the Future Delorean than any other replicas, because it is based on a real car, but modified enough to be unique to the movie or TV show it was in.
But let’s be honest, that is interesting in a film-buff way only, and this is a toy car blog. From a replica standpoint, this is a must-have model. And it is still a surprise to see it as a Hot Wheels car.
It has been awhile, but think about how much of a surprise the Toyota 2000GT was when it debuted in the mainline as a Super Treasure Hunt. As far as I know, that is the first model to debut as a Super. It was supposed to be its mainline debut only, as it was slated to be part of the final batch of Hot Wheels Racing, but the that batch was cancelled. (It has become Hot Wheels lore. The lineup in that final batch was all JDM, and was stellar.) Thankfully the tool was done, and it was moved forward into the mainline.
JDM was just starting to heat up in the diecast world, and the Toyota’s debut as a Super helped push the scene into the stratosphere. There were other factors, of course, and it makes for a very interesting story. One that I will write another time. But the 2000GT was so out of left field, it surprised a lot of people, and introduced a lot of people to the world of j-tin.
And after a couple of years in the mainline, the casting took this year off, but it is returning with a vengeance. The release of Roadster is first, followed by the RLC version in Shelby Racing livery later this year. Methinks we will see more of it later as well. It is a casting that surely deserves it.
As far as the Roadster goes, this is about as pretty a model as Hot Wheels can do. It is one of those “should have been a Matchbox” models, along with the Aston Martin DB5. But it doesn’t matter, because the execution on both models is stellar. And while Matchbox usually wins the basic wheel competition, they have nothing to batch the beautiful lace real riders. So, I guess we can throw this in the “Glad this is a Hot Wheels” category.
Retro Entertainment should continue into the next year, and we hope it does if it means more models like this. The Toyota 2000GT Roadster joins models like the DB5, Dodge Macho Power Wagon, and Ferris’s Ferrari as pinnacle Hot Wheels models. Models that could end up one-offs, but we wouldn’t miss based on how nice their Retro versions were. In fact, we haven’t seen the Ferrari 250 California or Macho Power Wagon since, and we really don’t need to.
I would love to see what Hot Wheels does with future versions of the Roadster, but I am more interested in more versions of the hardtop. This Roadster is a fantastic model, and won’t be topped by anything later.
An easy candidate for Model of the Year…
Hot Wheels Toyota 2000GT Roadster (2015 Retro Entertainment – James Bond You Only Live Twice):