I don’t blame any 1/64 collector who is a bit tired of the Nissan GT-R. For the last few years it has been everywhere. The first US batch of Majorette has two, Kyosho has dedicated entire releases to it (including one this fall), and Tomica Limited Vintage will have released over 15 (more I think, I lost count) by the end of the year.
There have been a lot. And now Hot Wheels is releasing its second GT-R casting. It released a first-gen R35 in 2009, and now comes the second. Maybe by now, with all the GT-R’s, I would take a “been there, done that” approach to this release. Not in the least.
It might be the best new mainline casting of the year, and my favorite 1/64 GT-R ever.
Crazy, right? 2017 has been a loaded year for new castings, from the REPU to Fairlady 2000 to the Porsche 934.5 to the Käfer Racer, among many. And there is a new RX-7 coming. But this GT-R is as good as an exact Hot Wheels replica can get.
Even crazier, with GT-R’s released by TLV and Kyosho, INCLUDING the 2017 R35, how could I say the Hot Wheels is better? Because it is. Sure, I don’t think anyone did a better first-gen R35 than TLV, but as far as second goes, Ryu Asada’s wins. Ryu got the stance right. He got the look and the essence of the GT-R. Every damn angle is spot on. Those that have the 2017 TLV know what I am talking about.
(This is the first, and maybe the only time I will actually compare a Tomica Limited Vintage model to a Hot Wheels. I don’t even feel right doing it. But in this case, the Hot Wheels is better. Man, that feels weird to say.)
One problem though. The Hot Wheels factory might be undermining Ryu’s work. When you have a designer as precise as Ryu, everyone needs to step up their game, including the factory. I have seen a few examples of the new GT-R, and on some the front grill tampo is crooked. Quite crooked. And it makes the model not worth having. Please, Hot Wheels factory, don’t make it so we have to thumb through several examples of the GT-R just to find one worth buying. Do better. It isn’t fair to Ryu, collectors, or Nissan.
Alright, factory foibles aside, this thing is a gem. Let’s see this RX-7, and maybe a couple of others. This will be hard to top.