This may be one of the best cases of Hot Wheels not only replicating a real car, but actually replicating a process.
It is not uncommon to see a Hot Wheels version of a designer’s actual vehicle. We have seen Jun Imai’s 510 Wagon and Fairlady Z, as well as Ryu Asada’s Honda S2000 and Acura NSX. There are quite a few others.
The latest Designer vehicle to appear in Hot Wheels form? Brendon Vetuskey’s Custom ’67 Firebird.
It’s raw. Not a Walmart Zamac, just an unpainted Firebird with a black roundel and no hood.
That may be all you see on the surface, but there is a lot more. I said it was a replica of a Designer’s vehicle. This is the vehicle:
We unveiled the Custom '67 Firebird last night at the 17th Annual Hot Wheels Collectors Convention which will appear in the mainline sometime later this year. Making this car is a dream come true for me and I'm quite proud of it. It's accurately detailed right down to the 5 toggle switches on my dashboard. Soon you too can own your very own BVbird, and for much, much less $$ than what I spent to build mine, ha ha. Thank you @hotwheelsdreamteam for making this happen! #bvbird #hotwheels #pontiac #firebird #musclecar #besthotwheelsever #hotwheelsofficial
So that is cool enough. Don’t ever doubt the automotive fortitude of the Hot Wheels Design Team. This car is all Brendon. He took a 67 Firebird, broke it all the way down, and customized it back up completely to his own specs.
But it goes EVEN further. You may know that Hot Wheels already has a ’67 Firebird, which debuted in 2010. Guess who designed it? Yep, that Vetuskey guy. The Hot Wheels Firebird debuted in 2010 in green:
Guess what? So did the real BVbird, as Brendon calls it.
That is what is was. This is what Brendon did to it:
(photo credit: Brendon Vetuskey)
So it starts with a green 67 Firebird 400, which Brendon turns into his very own custom. Like big, like little. Brendon did the exact same thing with the Hot Wheels replica.
He took the 67 he designed years earlier, and replicated all the changes he made to the real thing. Custom side air intakes, larger wheel openings, racing seats, rollbar, toggles on the dash, chin and rear spoilers. There are even more details on the chassis, and the honeycomb grill. Brendon is a stickler for detail, and it shows. Everywhere.
This is a tremendous final new model from what has been a great year. We’ll do the Lamley Awards a little later in the year, but this one has to be up there for one of the best. It’s badass. I think that word was invented for cars like this. Badass.
(Many thanks to Brendon for the photos and background.)