There isn’t much talk about the ’55 Chevy Panel anymore. That wasn’t always the case. After a surprising debut in the Hot Wheels Mainline in 2006, it quickly became to collectors what the 510 Datsun Wagon of ’55 Bel Air Gasser is today. With its bulk, weight, opening rear door, and metal motorcycle aboard, every release of the Panel was an event.
Fast forward 10 years, and there is little buzz about it. There are obvious reasons. It was probably used a little too much over a 5-6 year span, and of excitement can die down over time. That of course hasn’t deterred models like the ’83 Silverado or VW Drag Bus, but that is the case with the Panel. But most of all, the Panel has lost a little luster because it lost some of its best features, namely its rear opening door and carry-on motorcycle. The latest releases of the Panel have no bike, and the door is sealed shut. That’s a real bummer.
But that could mean that over time, the Panels with the motorcycle could become a collector’s item. They certainly deserve it. Mattel put a lot of love into the casting, and there are some beauties out there. With that in mind, I decided to strike on a couple I have wanted for a long time, and today they arrived:
I am very happy to have these two, and look forward to displaying them. I am probably not done with my pursuit either. But the top two are crossed off the want list.
2 Replies to “Time to welcome to new additions to my collection of the underrated HW ’55 Chevy Panel.”
I can’t speak for other collectors, but sometimes it’s the little things that make me less enthusiastic about otherwise popular models.
The only thing that bothers me about this casting is that front axle. It’s way too wide with the wheels protruding out from the body, making the stance look a little odd. They should’ve tucked the front wheels under the fenders just like the rear ones are. Otherwise, a fine casting. Too bad about the motorcycle and rear door.
Did you ever figure out how to close the rear door? Mine has the same issue. I so see if it has a locking mechanism to keep it open for display?