The Summer of ’97 brought Hot Wheels collectors a relatively unexpected surprise — Ex-Corgi castings popping up in the Hot Wheels mainline! When Mattel bought out Corgi in 1989, it released the former Corgi castings primarily under its “Hot Wheels Auto-City” line which was sold mainly in European markets. The Auto-City line lasted until 1995. After that line was disbanded, Corgi castings infiltrated Hot Wheels lines for a couple years until their mass-introduction to the U.S. in the summer of 1997. Known as the “Summer of Corgi” to some collectors, the #Ex-Corgi Castings seemed to fill up the majority of those case codes. These foreign designs were european-style cars and trucks, and featured an #Opening Feature which weren’t standard on Hot Wheels at the time.
Among these #Ex-Corgi Castings was the Tipper. A European-style dump truck, the Tipper had a bed that lifted up along with a rear hatch that swiveled open. Gone were the Corgi-style wheels present on Auto-City releases, as this one was released with the Hot Wheels brand 5-Spoke (5SP) wheels. Since the Tipper was released towards the end of the Summer of Corgi, it was in cases with 1998 mainlines and even came on the 1998 style card. Like most Ex-Corgi castings, this release was its #First Edition as a true Hot Wheels car, and its last, as the ex-Corgis became #Discontinued Castings.
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