I remember the first time I saw a Lamborghini LM002. I saw it on Highway 5 south of Valencia, California, while traveling back from the Bay Area. I had no idea what I was looking at. An upcoming Lamborghini Concept to capitalize on the SUV craze? A Safari-inspired off-roader that some guy threw Lambo badges on just to be funny?
The thing was racing down the 5 billowing black exhaust and looking super cool. No smart phones at the time, so I had to wait to look it up. After I did, and learned what it was, I was sold. Unique can be the name of the game sometimes, and this one was on my list.
That is why I, along with so many of you, was super excited when Matchbox announced it was doing the LM002. It was a great sign that Matchbox was starting the long trek back to its previous glory. When Matchbox is at its best, its thinking is “If you are going to do a Lamborghini, why not skip the obvious and do the off-roader?”
Which they did, and it is one of many highlights in 2015.
And it is returning, this time in premium form in the upcoming Best of the World lineup. And it looks fantastic. Look, I promise I would tell you if I didn’t like it. Sometimes models or the deco they sport can be a little underwhelming, or totally hideous. But this one isn’t. (And full disclosure – I have seen all 10 and none of them disappoint.) The Best of World models need to stand out, and this one surely does, going white on white rims. I tried to look for what might have been the inspiration, and this is what was closest:
That will do. Michael Heralda just took a few steps further.
I will refrain from all the “Matchbox is back” talk, because the evidence is piling up. What I will state again is how it appears we are moving into another great time to be a collector. Both Mattel brands seem to be catering to the collector more now than ever, and it allows us minicar nerds to do this:
And for those of us who DLM our models, leaving the cardboard behind is even more fun than ever. There is just too much good stuff.
One other thing. It is obvious the excitement about where Matchbox is going is spreading, based on the comments we see. It is also obvious that there is a lot of concern, especially from collectors overseas, that they will never see these. I don’t know what the distribution plan for the Best of the World line will be, but when I do I will pass it on. I will also assure you that the new team is well aware of the problem and is doing all they can to address it, but it might take awhile. If this set is not available, I know sellers like our friends at Wheel Collectors will do all they can to make them available to overseas collectors. Let’s see what we can do when these are released. The Best of the World line is spectacular, and all who want it deserve to have it.
Plus, the more successful it is, the more likely we are to see more Best of the World models. I hope we can make that happen…