Honestly 2019 has been a magical year for Hot Wheels New Models. I can’t remember a year where such a wide variety of models has been introduced. And on top of that, the amount of clean, stock looks with only front and rear decos. When the Lamley Award voting starts – sooner than you think – it will be a blast to put all these together and see how many clean models have been dropped this year. It’s been a lot.
But there is one group that can be separated from all. The plain white models:
It started with the Nissan 300ZX, then was followed by the Porsche 911, Tesla Model 3, and now the Mercedes-Benz A Class. Plain white with front and rear tampos.
A couple go more pearl, the other two more straight white, but all look fantastic. I remember having a conversation with a Mattel employee a few years ago about how much I liked the look of plain white cars with dark rims, and I was told that would not be something we would see often on the pegs. The thought, logically, is that the silhouette and sides are the most important element, considering the car has to pop while hanging on the pegs. White doesn’t pop.
But it does. When done right. And maybe Hot Wheels figured out how to do it. Because these definitely pop:
Hot Wheels has pushed FAR into the realm of realism with their basics, way more than in the past. It doesn’t mean cars haven’t looked real in the past, of course, but we see far more stock versions. Part might be the fact that the cars they have chosen to replicate already look sporty, and that Hot Wheels touch is essentially already part of the car. Maybe a small tweak like a lower stance or a small after-market spoiler jumps in, but that is it. These silhouettes pop in plain white.
Yes, there are a few old school Matchbox collectors throwing fits that realism like this is Matchbox territory, but there is room for both. Plus, Abe and the gang over at Matchbox have their hands full making super cool Mercedes wagons and lowered Caprices. I like both Mattel brands churning out the realistic stuff. Although the space in my closet doesn’t. There is just too much to keep.
It used to be that there wasn’t a blank space Hot Wheels didn’t want to fill with a flame or a stripe. There are still plenty of flames, but a whole lot of blank space too. And white space. Dang things have changed.