The new millennium brought change with it to the Hot Wheels world as the first #Tuner, the #Sho-Stopper, was introduced as part of the #2000 First Editions. A year later, the gates of tuner culture had been opened as we started seeing our first licensed tuners come through in the #2001 First Editions: the Toyota Celica, and this Honda Civic Si.
The #Honda #Civic was as popular among teens as any car at the time and tuner culture had become more than just a fad. Kids in the United States were grabbing their mom and dad’s import cars, which were prevalent among families at the time, and started adding performance parts to them. Hollywood caught on as well as The Fast and The Furious (2001) was a hit in the box office.
The Hot Wheels #Honda Civic Si (2001) is actually based off of a real car that was built as part of a challenge by Honda. Four magazines (Car and Driver, Sport Compact Car, Super Street and Popular Mechanics) participated in the 2000 Honda Civic Challenge in which they were given a stock Honda Civic Si along with a $10,000 budget and asked to create a race car, drag car and/or a show car. Super Street magazine won the competition with their #tuner inspired design. This Hot Wheels casting/release is a replica of that design and the real, 1:1 car is now part of the American Honda Division’s private collection.
Former Hot Wheels designer, Eric Tscherne was instrumental in bringing tuner culture to the Hot Wheels brand as it was his original design, the #Sho-Stopper, that was the brand’s first tuner car. He had a hand in designing this one as well, as he collaborated with two other Hot Wheels designers on the project. He shared how it went down on the Hot Wheels Wiki back in 2009;
The “Honda Civic Si” is based off a real car. The real model was the brainchild of Hot Wheels Designer Dave Martis and realized by Super Street Magazine. Martis’s design was ported into the mainline by [Alec] Tam and illustrated by Tscherne. This model was one of the first true production based tuners to be released by a diecast manufacturer.
So much history for one little car! It should also be noted that this was the first #Honda car to be produced by Hot Wheels. With this release being the #First Edition of the Honda Civic Si casting, it also saw a wheel variation as it also came with #Wire-Spoke/Lace Wheels. The casting itself was last released in 2014 as part of the Police Pursuit 5-Pack.
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