The Hot Wheels Garage: 7 July 2011

July 7, 2011.-- Hard to believe it's already July, isn't it? We're more than halfway through the year, and the majority of the 2011 Hot Wheels have pretty much been issued. I think the one everyone's waiting on is the A-Team Van, which should prove to be a highly collectible model, once it's released. Personally, I'm looking forward to seeing how the '70 Camaro came out! Other than that, enough have been issued for me to go ahead and do a 2011 Review of what Mattel has given us so far this year. Just remember, this is simply my own humble opinion, and yours will likely differ in many ways!
Realism Award (New Models): The Realism Award is given to those models that have been faithfully replicated to their 1:1 counterpart. It's all in the details!

1. Nissan Skyline H/T 2000 GT-X: Awesome detailing put this one at the top
2. '63 Studebaker Champ: A very nice tribute to the original.
3. '10 BMW M3: The tampo detailing is sweet, especially on the headlights

The front end details and tampo designs easily put the Skyline at #1.

Muscle Car Award (New Models): The Muscle Car award is given to those models that exude power and pay homage to the muscle cars of the past.

1. '70 Dodge Charger: The blown motor screams POWER.
2. COPO Camaro: Tough find, and captured the spirit of the Camaro
3. '71 Dodge Challenger: Great details, and 3 colors to appreciate!

This veritable homage to the "Fast & Furious" Charger was awesome!

Concept Award (New Models): The Concept Award is given to those concept models that were dreamed up in the designer's head, and stood out.

1. BTF Time Machine: DETAILS! Even the license plate says "OUTATIME"!
2. Buzzerk: The spinning buzz saw in the middle was just cool.
3. Blvd Bruiser: Try figuring out the many cars this one was based on!

Looks like it could still hit 88 MPH! Great Scott!

Variation Award (New Models): The Variation Award is given to those models that had the toughest variations to find in 2011.

1. COPO Corvette: White interior version is selling briskly on eBay.
2. D. Patrick '10 Impala: OH5 wheels variation is very difficult to find
3. '71 Challenger: Green Lantern orange version, w/painted headlights

How many of us left these on the pegs back in the day?

Alternate Color Award (New Models): The Alternate Color Award is given to those models that had the best color change issued.

1. COPO Camaro: (Orange) Blue was awesome; orange is even better!
2. '63 Studebaker Champ: (Aqua/blue) The metalflake POPS on this one!
3. '70 Pontiac GTO Judge: (Blue) Yellow was good, green bad, blue best.

The front grille was changed to black. Sweet!

Best Segment Series Award (New Models): The Segment Series Award is given to those series with the best paint jobs and model selections.

1. Heat Fleet: '77 Van, Corvette and '56 Ford lead the way. FLAMES!
2. HW Racing: Glad Mattel has kept up this tradition. Great set!
3. HW Performance: Great cars with performance product logos. Nice!

Flat-black with gold accents & flames will get it EVERY time!

Treasure Hunt Award: The Treasure Hunt Award is given to those models that stood out in the 2011 TH Line.

1. '64 Pontiac GTO: Great car, paint and wheels. Opening hood!
2. '80 El Camino: Nice, heavy car with a great paint job. Lots of metal!
3. '71 Buick Riviera: Sweet paint job on this one makes it stand out.

This one had a HTF painted engine variation, too!

And, there you have it. My choices for the 2011 Best of the Best awards. There are a few more out there that might sway me a bit, but this is pretty much how I felt about the line at this time of the year. Overall, a great job by Mattel, and I'm definitely looking forward to 2012! Until next month...

~Neal Giordano Founder/Editor

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