Lamley Daily: Hot Wheels Lexus SC400

Model: Hot Wheels Lexus SC400

Line: Mainline 1995

eBay Link: Hot Wheels Lexus SC400

Why I am featuring it:

About a month ago, my fellow Lamley writers and I were going through future scheduling of the Lamley Daily. A few of us were calling spots a few days in advance, and the jackass I am decided I would snag August 25. It’s my birthday, but more importantly, it’s also Regis Philbin’s. Anyway, since I’m clearly getting old, I had forgotten I requested today until I checked the blog and realized there wasn’t a Daily posted (it usually drops at midnight or somewhere near on the clock). 

So what does that have to do with the Lexus SC400 pictured before you? Not much in a direct connection, but it does remind me greatly of my childhood, something I often pine for (please don’t hold back on calling the waaaambulance on me, I know.) The SC400 is one of the earlier castings I recall being modeled after a car that wasn’t exactly mainstream, like a Corvette or a Ferrari. I also really enjoyed the many wheel variations it came with, and, to David Tilley’s delight if he were a HWs man, shades. 

Smooth sides provide perfect reflections.

Today I chose a darker burgundy with the 5-dot wheels, not because I wanted to, but because I’m pressed for time to bang this out before my youngest wakes from his nap. Apparently, infants don’t respect birthday peace and quiet. That also explains the iPhone photos.

Moving along, according to the Hot Wheels Fandom page, the casting was designed and released in 1993 by Bruce Baur. While Fandom has an incomplete list of models to his credit, the Lexus seems to be the only licensed one. Others include Rigor Motor, Power Pipes, Splittin’ Image II (a personal favorite amongst the fantasy castings) and Twang Thang. Fans of the SC400 will instantly recognize its long hood, short deck proportions, but there aren’t any door markings and the paint thickness makes the taillights difficult to distinguish. There is no questioning the front end though, it’s spot-on SC. Additionally, I was always a fan of the two big tailpipes sticking out from underneath. The interior is also relatively detailed and the contrasting beige looks great.

I know I have a handful of these in the bin of cars I played with as a kid, but whenever I see a carded one I don’t think I have, I waste no time in buying it. It’s just one of those unexpected castings from the blue card era that I really gravitate towards. 

Watch this space for more throwbacks to 1990s Hot Wheels. And maybe even a different photoshoot location. Probably not though.

12 Replies to “Lamley Daily: Hot Wheels Lexus SC400”

  1. I hear you on wanting your childhood back, as so do I. There is alot of hot wheels and matchbox and majorette cars that I had as a kid that I wish I still had. But now my son and step sons have some of my cars, and this Lexus is one that my son has that I had fond memories of, from my youth.

    1. Thankfully I still have all of my cars from childhood – beat to hell in some cases, but intact. My daughter, and eventually my son as well, has her own bucket of cars that is filled with reasons I needed to check out the toy section in whatever stores I shopped at, ha.

  2. Had a couple of these when I first started collecting in the late ’90s, stood out as being a stock, contemporary car…. I’m almost certain the Hotwheels Lexus SC400 is mentioned in passing in a Douglas Coupland novel… possibly’ Generation X’….doesn’t get more ’90s than that…

    1. Oh an unintended book recommendation…I’ll take it! Looks like its rating is decent on Amazon, too. Thanks.

  3. There was also the original Avtech Vector casting in a periwinkle color in the 1993 line. As far as the Splittin Image II goes, I like it better than the original redline casting from 1969.

    1. According to the Fandom, that Vector was designed by Larry Wood. And I agree, the newer Splittin’ Image is far smoother than the original.

  4. An underrated Japanese tuner from long before the JDM craze at Hot Wheels arrived. I wish they’d bring this back, preferably in Car Culture. Imagine how stunning this would look in, say, Modern Classics, in exactly this colour but with full details and new wheels!

    I feel you remembering your childhood. When this was still a hobby and people just enjoyed playing with toy cars without worrying about value or having more cars than the next guy. Those were the good days!

    1. I’m finding myself trying to collect all the wheel/color variations on this now, ha! But man, this would look great as a Car Culture release – with all the shortcomings rectified and some nice Real Riders. That would be great.

      I definitely tried to have more cars than the next guy…only to have the better traffic jam on my bedroom floor of course, ha!

  5. Great car choice- but would have been infinitely better with door opening lines. Kind of seems like a NASCAR with the solid sides. One of the most stunning real cars of the 90’s- I’d love to see it done right with today’s Hot Wheels designers.

    1. Totally agree. And one person on the Facebook comments made mention about the angle of the B-pillar. This would be a great candidate for a re-pop in an upcoming Car Culture line.

  6. Well how about that? I had no idea this casting existed. The SC400 was the car to have in SoCal in the 90’s and you’d see them everywhere. I remember being so amazed by the lines, or should I say curves, of this car. It really felt like something groundbreaking at the time. From the photos, this casting definitely looks soft. Could it be as you say, overly thick paint? With 80’s and 90’s Japanese cars getting more and more attention from Hot Wheels and from collectors these days, it would be great to have this car revisited with a fresh casting. One of my favorite [real] cars of this era.

    1. Big in SoCal, eh? Sweet!

      It’s probably a combination of think paint and soft lines. This would definitely be a great contender to make a comeback in say, a future Modern Classic release. It would benefit greatly from front and rear tampos. And door lines, ha. Cheers!

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