#Gulf Racing has been one of the hottest liveries in the diecast world as several brands (including Hot Wheels) have released their cars in that famous powder blue and orange. Collectors seem to devour these at retail as Gulf liveries never last long on the pegs. Enter Hot Wheels #Car Culture: quite possibly the hottest line Hot Wheels has ever had. The first series of 2019, #Car Culture / Gulf, just started to hit retail at the end of December and it is quite the mix. I missed out on the questionable Volkswagen Golf GTi because they are only one to a case, but I was able to secure the other four that I was truly interested in: ’69 Ford Mustang Boss 302, #Nissan Laurel 2000 SGX, #’60s Fiat 500D Modificado and the #McLaren F1 GTR. Those four and the 2019 HW Speed Graphics #’68 Chevy Nova and the 2017 Car Culture ’13 COPO Camaro are shown below.
One of these cars sticks out like a sore thumb: the #McLaren F1 GTR. That dark blue color seems off. Why does it vary from the powder blue used on all the other releases?
Simple. Its based off of a real #Race Car.
This dark blue #Gulf Racing livery appeared on the #McLaren F1 GTRs at Le Mans in 1995. The historical significance is that it won overall victory at that race, beating even the prototypes built for that race. Sports car racing is why there was a GTR version of the McLaren F1 built in the first place. Had Gordon Murray, creator of the F1, not been convinced to race the “built-for-road” F1, the GTR would have never changed racing at Le Mans… and we wouldn’t have seen this gorgeous release.
I totally expect the #McLaren F1 GTR to be the most popular car in the #Car Culture / Gulf series. Even with the ’69 Ford Mustang Boss 302 getting to nod to come 3 to a case. Its the replica racing deco of the #McLaren that I believe most collectors will be after. If anything, its the one I HAD to have.
A few things to note on this #Car Culture / Gulf release of the #McLaren F1 GTR. First, its the first time we’ve seen this casting with a metal base — a requirement for a premium line like #Car Culture. The casting itself, first appeared in the 2010 Speed Machines line — then had a few harder to find releases — before ultimately resurfacing in the 2017 Hot Wheels mainline Then and Now Series. There are tools that feature the car with a plastic spoiler, and a basic one that combines that piece with the metal body. This release clearly has the plastic spoiler as its a lighter blue than the body.
What do you think of the #Car Culture / Gulf #McLaren F1 GTR? I know its a piece that collectors have been asking for, for a long time. If this is a sign of what Hot Wheels has to offer in 2019 >> BRING. IT. ON!