The Hot Wheels Split Window ’63 made its debut in the 1980 Hi-Rakers series. In 1983 it was given a regular base and the popular 1963 Chevy Corvette model has since had a long run of over 100 different variations and counting. This flamed-out magenta version from Leslie’s box of toys is from 1987.
Not being able to go out hunting for cars means I’m looking around on eBay more than usual. It had been awhile since I checked prices on the Hot Wheels Scene Machines Captain America Van – the only one of the series from its debut year that I didn’t yet have in my collection. Well, mint examples are still going for a pretty decent chunk of money. But I happened to see this one, with a little bit of play-wear, but priced reasonably. I thought about it for a day or so, then clicked that “Buy It Now” button.
The Scene Machines have a little lens embedded in the back window: When you hold the vehicle up to the light and peer inside, you get to see a nice illustrated panorama. The series was introduced in 1979 consisting of six different models, with three new models issued in 1981. 1979 was also the year of the Marvel-themed The Heroes series, so it’s not a big surprise that three of the Scene Machines from that first year feature Marvel characters as well.
Here’s a photo of the exciting scene inside the Captain America van.
The Hot Wheels Baja Breaker was first released in the 1978 Speedway Specials series with a black plastic opening hood. In 1989, it was retooled to remove the opening hood and more than 50 variations of both versions can be found. This China-cast model from 1997 – one of the cars in the recent St. Louis Facebook Marketplace purchase my friend, Chris, found for me – was the last time the casting appeared with blackwalls.
Other Baja Breakers in my collection include a nice example of the 1978 first release, the 1979 Motocross Team van from the Scene Machines series, a green model from the 1980 Mainline series, the orange version from 1983, the A-Team inspired black and red variation from 1984, and a mint example from the 1989 Trailbusters series.
The Hot Wheels ’55 Chevy was produced from 1982 up until the 2001 Final Run series, and can be found in about 32 different variations, though this is only the second version I’ve added to my collection. This white model with a colorful tampo design is one of my recent St. Louis Facebook Marketplace finds – thanks to my friend, Chris.
This variation, which has a gray plastic base, might have been found in the #95 Collector card or as a McDonald’s promo giveaway. The other ’55 Chevy in my collection is a fun Color Racer from 1988.
The Hot Wheels ’80s Firebird, based on the third-generation (1982-1992) Pontiac, made its debut in the 1983 Hot Ones series and can be found in 30 different variations up to 1998. In 2011, the casting was retooled and has so far appeared 4 more times. The Firebird Formula, on which this 1988 variation in based, was a performance package available from 1987-1992.
This is the first ’80s Firebird I’ve added to my collection and is one of the cars my friend, Chris, recently found for me on the St. Louis area Facebook Marketplace. (It makes sense to me that a collection that had so many Camaros would also have at least one Firebird.)
The most recent lot of cars that my friend, Chris, found for me on the Facebook Marketplace out of St. Louis included 8 different variations of the Hot Wheels Camaro Z-28. I didn’t grab all of them, but I took five that had either blackwalls or gold hot ones wheels. In addition to one that I already have, this makes 6 in total, which may be the most of any one casting that I have in my vintage collection.
This first example is the first-casting, which was released in the 1982 Hot Ones series.
Apparently, there is also a version with identical paint, tampo and wheels which does not have ‘Camaro’ stamped into the base like mine.
This 1983 variation – also released in the Hot Ones series – is one of three from that year. They all have the same tampo and wheels, but one is enamel gray cast in Hong Kong, the other two in metalflake gray cast in either Malaysia or Hong Kong like this one.
And from the 1986 Hot Ones series, this red model with blue, black and yellow trim.
These next two blackwall examples from 1991 could be found in either the #33 Collector card or as McDonald’s promotionals.
The Hot Wheels Bywayman is based on the third-generation General Motors C/K series pickup and was first released in 1979. It was produced in about 40 different variations up until it was included in the 2003 Final Run series.
This light green model from 1980 – one of the recent batch of Facebook Marketplace cars that my St. Louis friend, Chris, found for me – is a little worn, but still has intact plastic running lights.
In my collection, I also have the 1979 Bywayman first-casting, and a pearl white variation from 1993. There is a variation of this casting which has a plastic blade attached to the front and I have two examples, including the 1992 Power Plower as well as a mint version from 1993 called Path Beater.