Don’t you just love it when one of your favorite Hot Wheels castings returns? I’m sure you do, because its more-than-likely a favorite casting because you can’t get enough of it. Well, over long periods of time — over a 5-year absence (at minimum) — the tools used to make these castings are lost, stolen, replaced and/or obsolete. So… that is where you hear the term “retool” come into play. Castings can also be retooled by choice which is usually done to upgrade it (for premium lines), or downgrade it (for cost savings) — either way, changes are made that modify the overall look of the casting.
In 2013, the #’81 Ford Fairmont was introduced as part of the retro-inspired Flying Customs series for that year. It was a retool of the classic #Front Runnin’ Fairmont, which has been a Hot Wheels racing favorite since its original 1982 Hot Ones release. However, due to the Flying Customs poor showing at retail in 2013, many collectors were not fortunate enough to find that one at retail.
Fast forward to the end of last year when the #’81 Ford Fairmont was announced it would be included as part of the #2018 Hot Wheels lineup — Woohooo! Collectors rejoice! … as part of the #Pop Culture line — DOH! See, the casting’s triumphant return was held in high regard to those collectors who love racing their Hot Wheels. NOTE: Check out RedlineDerby.com if you are unfamiliar with this scene. Though this #Nestlé Movie Theater Candy series looks exquisite in its Nestlé Crunch Bar racing scheme, the car wears #Real Riders, an essential trait of the Pop Culture line, which are not good for orange track racing.
Now, don’t get me wrong, the #Real Riders 10-Spoke Wheels (or Real Riders GT, or Cobra, or whatever you call them) look great on this specific release. …its just that, well, this casting was a favorite — at least in my book — as a fast track car.
Personal bias behind, this #Nestlé #Crunch #’81 Ford Fairmont turned out to be a pretty cool release. Unlike some #Pop Culture releases where it can feel like the licensed graphics are just slapped on an unrelated Hot Wheels car, these graphics actually look part of the racing attire for this stock car. The decision to only feature the Nestlé Crunch graphics on the sides was certainly a welcomed choice as it allowed for two great, full-length racing stripes in white to grace the top of this deep metalflake blue car. Compare it with the “slightly-aged” 1982 Hot Ones release I have, and they make for a great pair, telling the tale of two eras in Hot Wheels collecting.
If you checked out the base shot of this #’81 Ford Fairmont and the 1982 #Front Runnin’ Fairmont above, you’ll see the differences — mainly the two rivets (2018) versus the rivet and a hook (1982). I’m not sure if this will affect the casting’s track performance, but it should be noted.
So despite this #Pop Culture release of the #’81 Ford Fairmont not being in a line that is conducive to Hot Wheels racing, its great to see this casting back after five years — and looking this good! The hope is that we do see this car again in metal/metal form with some sort of plastic wheels so the Hot Wheels racers out there can pit it against some of the more modern cars of today — or even against that 1982 Hot Ones release! Look for this #Nestlé Movie Theater Candy release at retail now.