HW Road Trippin’ ’66 Chevy Nova

I inherited my love of a good road trip from my dad, who always took us on family driving vacations. Whether it was a long weekend to an area campground, or the time he took us on an epic monthlong adventure around the western U.S., I logged a lot of road-trip miles before I even learned to drive myself. So I was happy to discover that one of my favorite castings – the ’66 Chevy Nova – was included in the HW Road Trippin’ series.

The 2014 HW Road Trippin’ series is a Walmart exclusive that includes 32 different cars. The series is broken up into at least 8 different scenic highways, each one represented by several different castings decorated appropriately.

I’ve only driven short segments of California’s Highway 1, and I’ve never been to Vista Point. But I if I ever make it there, I hope when I do I’m driving a sweet ’66 Nova.

IMG_4912 IMG_4911BDK85 | 2014 HW Road Trippin’ Series #15/32, Highway 1 | ’66 Chevy Nova | satin green with blue, white & black trim, Vista Point | PR5

I have quite a few of the more than two dozen variations of the Hot Wheels ’66 Chevy Nova made since its first release in 2007. To see a few, click here, here, here and here.

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1985 Corvette Stingray


This is the bonus car (purchased from the same seller to take advantage of combined shipping) that I got when I bought the Hare Splitter on eBay. I’m always happy to take in another Corvette Stingray, as it’s been one of my favorites since childhood. Of the many dozens of variations made since its debut in 1976, I also have the gold chrome version from 1979 and an orange model from 1980. This sharp white variation with blue, red and black racing deco is from 1985.

IMG_4514 IMG_45151985 | 9241 | Corvette Stingray | white with red, blue and black trim | Malaysia | blackwalls

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1979 Hare Splitter

Holy smoke, I can’t believe it’s been since September that I’ve posted anything! My busy summer turned into an even busier fall, and time just keeps slipping by. But now that snow is on its way, things are slowing down a little bit.

And even though I haven’t had much time for car-collecting lately, I do have some exciting news to report: When I landed this Hare Splitter in an eBay auction back in July, I completed my collection of Hot Wheels first-castings from 1979. (Look for another post soon showing all of my 1979 Hot Wheels).

Hare Splitter has been a favorite of mine since several years ago, when I acquired a clean variation from 1982. In fact, the only difference between the 1979 original and the 1982 variation is the color of the plastic spare tire rack. Versions from 1983 and 1984 have no tire rack, but all models from the original tooling have the black plastic opening hood.

IMG_4510 IMG_4511 IMG_45121979 | 2504 | Hare Splitter | white, Monte Carlo Rally trim, red tire rack | Hong Kong | blackwalls

Here’s a shot of the 1979 original and the 1982 variation side by side.


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1983 Mirada Stocker

I picked up this Hot Wheels Mirada Stocker on eBay. First released in 1981, the model has been produced in about 8 versions, most of them color variations using the same tampo as this shiny toy from 1983. The metallic gold paint is a nice compliment to the gold Hot Ones wheels.

The real Dodge Mirada was a short-lived rear-wheel drive coupe based on the Chrysler J platform. Dodge had hopes that the Mirada could bring it success in NASCAR racing, and they convinced none other than Richard Petty to give the car a try. The Mirada, however, proved to be both slower and less reliable than the competition, and Dodge would not be seen in NASCAR racing again until 2001.

IMG_0571 IMG_05721983 | 1700 | Mirada Stocker | gold with red, black, white trim | Hong Kong | gho

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2014 Heat Fleet ’65 Chevy Impala

I’m not one of those guys who shows up at Wal*Mart at 3:00 in the morning with a box cutter so I can tear into the unopened Hot Wheels cases as they come out of the stockroom. So I was a little surprised when I found the Hot Wheels Heat Fleet ’65 Chevy Impala at Toys”R”Us, took it home and realized it was not yet listed on the South Texas Diecast online collector’s guide. Of course, now that it’s taken me over a week to get it photographed and posted to my site, it’s all old news. In fact, the collector’s guide now lists this car, as well as a Super Treasure Hunt version with gold hub Real Riders.

Still it’s nice to get ahold of something relatively early. And this lowrider Impala really looks good in flames – as we saw last year with the Kroger Exclusive Sunburnerz version.

IMG_4517 IMG_4520BFD97 | 2014 HW Workshop – Heat Fleet | ’65 Chevy Impala | metalflake copper with yellow and pink flames | gold chrome and black OH5

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Adam’s (Less Than Mint) 1979 Greased Gremlin

One of the things I enjoy about collecting blackwall-era Hot Wheels, is that – compared to redline-era cars – it is much easier to find mint or near-mint versions at a reasonable price. For example, when I went to eBay to find the 1979 Greased Gremlin, the car I scored was in such great shape that it looked like it was fresh out of the blister. The problem was, it was only after I had it in my hands that I was able to inspect it closer and discover that it was not actually the 1979 first-casting, but the Hong Kong variation from three years later. You can see that car here.

I went back to eBay, determined to find the first-release that I was looking for. Now, as you are probably aware, sellers don’t always provide the best photos of their items. But, when I saw the images of this car – including a shot of the underside – I knew I had to make it mine. Not only was it the Malaysia-made original release, but it already had my son’s name scrawled across the bottom.
So, even though this car is in considerably less-than-mint condition, it is – for now, at least – my best and only example of the 1979 Greased Gremlin.
IMG_0308 IMG_03091979 | 2502 | Greased Gremlin | red with blue, white, yellow trim | MY | blackwalls
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1979 Vetty Funny and Bywayman

From the same eBay seller, I scored two more Hot Wheels first-castings from 1979.

Drag racing legends Don “Snake” Prudhomme and Tom “Mongoose” McEwen took their rivalry to the orange track starting in 1970, when Hot Wheels released the first cars with their names on them. In 1971, the two got rail dragsters. In 1972, they were given rear engine wedge dragsters. By 1973, both were driving the Barracuda dragster casting for Hot Wheels. In 1978, the Hot Wheels Army Funny Car was modeled after Snake’s Plymouth Arrow dragster, and in 1979 Vetty Funny was the orange track version of Mongoose’s Corvette funny car.

Vetty Funny has seen a few other paint and tampo variations and was produced up until 1995. My grey English Leather version wears the common red-yellow-black tampo from 1979, however the white-yellow-black variation from the same year will fetch the big bucks.

IMG_0311 IMG_0313 IMG_03141979 | 2508 | Vetty Funny | gray with black, red and yellow trim | HK | blackwalls

Collecting variations of the Hot Wheels Bywayman could keep you busy for awhile. Based on a 1973 Chevy Silverado C/K 20 pickup, the Bywayman has seen at least 3 dozen variations and looks good in everything from construction tires to saw blades. The trick for me was finding a first-casting with its plastic running lights still intact.

IMG_0306 IMG_03071979 | 2509 | Bywayman | lt. blue with white, black and yellow trim, black bed | HK | blackwalls

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1982 Datsun 200SX

The Datsun 200SX is the U.S. production model of the sport coupe based on the Nissan S platform. They were produced from 1975 through 1988 and the Hot Wheels casting represents the second-generation model from 1982. In addition to this white version from its debut year, the Hot Wheels 200SX was also released in yellow, metallic gold (1983), maroon (1984), and a fairly valuable plum variation that was made in Mexico in 1985. All of these wear gold Hot Ones wheels and feature an opening hood. I found this one on eBay and was initially pretty happy with how clean the paint and tampo were. However, the seller’s photos didn’t show the fact that the car had apparently been stepped on, resulting in a slightly caved-in roofline.

IMG_0302 IMG_03031982 | 3255 | Datsun 200SX | white with red, orange and yellow tampo | MY | gho

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2014 ’64 Chevy Nova Station Wagon

It’s been awhile since I found anything off the pegs, so I was happy to break the dry spell with one of my favorite castings. The HW Workshop ’64 Nova Station Wagon looks pretty fine all flamed-out, although I still prefer the metallic aqua variation from last year’s debut. Also, I noticed that there is a Mainline Limited Edition version of this latest that has Real Rider Steelies. I’m not sure how impossible it will be to find, but I’ll be keeping my eyes open for that one.

IMG_3924 IMG_3925BFF13 | 2014 HW Workshop Muscle Mania | ’64 Chevy Nova Station Wagon | metalflake brown with yellow and gray flames | 5SP

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1977 Formula 5000 and 1983 Turbo Streak

Here are a couple for you open-wheel racing fans. I picked up both of these from the same seller on eBay. The Hot Wheels Formula 5000 was released in 1976 wearing red-line tires but otherwise looking much the same as this blackwall version from a year later.

IMG_0225 IMG_02261977 | 9119 | Formula 5000 | white with red & blue trim | HK | blackwalls

The Hot Wheels Turbo streak was first released in 1983. There are other variations from that year without the words “elf” and “Michelin” on the orange, red and black tampo, as well as two others from 1983 with either gray or white real riders. This popular Indy Car has seen quite a few other variations up until 1998.

IMG_0223 IMG_0224

1983 | 3914 | Turbo Streak | yellow w/orange, red, black, Michelin 7 elf trim | HK | blackwalls

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